Review of Logitech Performance Mouse MX

Summary: The “Logitech Performance Mouse MX” is a newly released high end laser mouse which I will be taking a closer look at today. Two innovations which brought my attention were the “Unifying” wireless technology and the new “Darkfield” laser sensor technology.


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INTRODUCTION

It is not a secret that the Performance mouse MX is first of all intended as an “all tasks” mouse. Of course I tested its gaming capabilities as well which you can read about further down in this review. Without a doubt, the Performance Mouse MX has some really interesting specifications as you can see from the table below. One of the most prominent features is the new “Unifying” technology which connects up to 6 devices to one single USB receiver. The only downside is that this technology is not compatible with older wireless products from Logitech.




Logitech Performance Mouse MX

Sensor

Darkfield laser

Resolution

Configurable, from 100 to 1500DPI

Interface

USB

Wiring

Wireless. “Unifying” at 2,4GHz

Buttons

9 buttons, 7 configurable

Power

Rechargeable AA (included)

Other characteristics

Darkfield, hyper-fast scrolling, reloadable via USB or network, a case to keep the accessories is included

Supported operating systems

Windows XP, Vista and 7
Mac OS X



The other innovation I mentioned above: “Darkfield”, is actually an improvement of the laser sensor which makes the laser work on surfaces which normally does not work with laser mice.




FIRST IMPRESSIONS

The mouse comes in a regular cardboard box with Logitech’s branding all over it as well as pictures of the mouse and explanations of its new technologies.


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When I opened the box I found the mouse and the Unifying receiver displayed in a fashionable way within the box. Logitech clearly knows how to present their products. I noted that the Unifying receiver was really small as you can see from the pictures below. I took everything out from the box and apart from the mouse and the receiver Logitech has included a black case for the accessories, a printed documentation and a CD with the drivers. In the case, I found the cables for recharging the mouse, either through an USB port or directly from the power grid. I think it’s great that Logitech makes it possible to charge it in both ways, since it facilitates everything when travelling.



LOGITECH PERFORMANCE MOUSE MX IN DETAIL

What is important when choosing a mouse? Of course that is a question which answers depend on your specific preferences and what you intend to use your mouse for. However, one thing that always is important is the ergonomics of the mouse, because if you don’t feel comfortable with it, how are you going to be able to spend all those countless hours in front of the computer doing whatever you do? This mouse has a somewhat unorthodox design and it takes some getting used to, but once you have familiarized yourself to it, I think it will be hard to go back to anything else.



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Another outstanding feature of this mouse is the amount of buttons that incorporates (a total of 9). Four (+2 normal) of these buttons are located on top of the mouse, easily in reach of you digits and thumb. The area for the thumb is made in some kind of smooth rubber.



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There are three LEDs which indicate the charge level of the battery or in another mode display DPI´s current settings. There’s a special button placed behind the wheel which controls the scrolling speed of the wheel. This comes very much in handy for fast configuration of the wheel.



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The connector for recharging the battery of the mouse is placed in the front side. The connector is of the type micro USB and Logitech has included cables for charging through an USB port or directly from the power grid. This is actually the most elegant solution I have seen, it just works perfectly.



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When flipping the mouse over and looking at its underside, you will notice that the mouse rests upon three pivot points with rather big individual surfaces. There is also a power switch which completely turns the mouse off and saves batteries. The mouse is powered by a single AA (1,2V) battery.  There’s not much to say about the laser sensor other than that it looks like an ordinary laser sensor, but the “Darkfield” printing next to it suggests otherwise.


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In the image above you can see how small the receiver is. The size is so small that we can let it be always plugged in without risking damaging it or the USB port which is a common problem with bigger USB receivers.



INSTALLATION AND TESTS

The installation of the drivers was no great mystery, I just inserted the CD and clicked “next” until it said it was finished. The software controlling the settings of Logitech’s devices is called “Setpoint” and you can have a look at it in the images below.


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The first thing you need to do is check the button settings and the laser sensor resolution. Even though Logitech doesn’t market this mouse a gaming mouse, they have included a separate tab with settings important for gaming, for instance you can choose to turn off all acceleration of the mouse.


The configuration of the Unifying receiver is a piece of cake. To add a new Unifying compatible unit, all we need to do is have all units turned on and then click “Add” and all found units are connected automatically.



One of the features I liked was the possibility of horizontal scrolling with the wheel. It is really one of those functions you cannot live without once you have gotten used to it. The mouse felt wonderful in my hand after I got past the initial resistance I felt with the ergonomics.


Another very interesting new feature is the applications swapping enabled by the button closest to your thumb. Once you push it you are prompted with all the open applications and you can switch between them fast and easily. Really useful. Below is an example of what it can look like when pushing the button.


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The function I spoke about earlier that controls the scrolling speed of the wheel comes in handy when working with bigger documents or when browsing longer web pages.


Logitech puts a lot of emphasis in their new Darkfield sensor, they say it can be used on almost any surface, even glass. To test this I used a mouse pad made out of glass (3mm thick), the SteelSeries Icemat 2:nd Edition, famous by its good performance and its incompatibility with laser mice. My conclusion of this test was that it works, but it didn’t work extremely well. However, Logitech recommends a thickness of at least 4mm so I can’t really draw any real conclusions from this little test since the pad I used was of only 3mm thickness . When I used the mouse with the Ozone Ground Level mousepad which is mate of a textile fabric, it worked flawlessly. It is truly a pleasure to use this mouse with a pad like that.


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Logitech does not market this mouse a gaming mouse but of course I had to test it out at 1500DPI with some of the latest FPS games. The results were very good but not exceptional.


The duration of the battery must also be mentioned as in important factor. I used the mouse for 16 days straight without turning it off and the charge level was still at half power. The charge process lasted approximately 2 and a half hours in USB mode but of course you can continue to use the mouse while charging.



CONCLUSIONS

Weak points? I really can’t think of much. But one should remember that we are all different and some of you may not like the design or the ergonomics. This is quite a big mouse which might be a problem to some. It fitted my big hands greatly though. Doubtless, Logitech has yet again put out an innovative and high quality product with great features and ergonomics.



The quality and feel of the used materials and the construction of the mouse seems very good. The charging options are also outstanding as well as the USB receiver.


Perhaps the unique thing that I have to put on the negative side is its rather staggering price at around $100 (90Euros). But of course, it is a high end mouse directed towards people who accept nothing but the best.


Pros:

  • Ergonomics
  • Unifying and Darkfield
  • Excellent charging solution
  • Advanced and practical Software


Cons:

  • Price



Logitech Performance Mouse MX

Packing and accessories

0,5/0,5

General quality and finished

1/1

Special characteristics

2,5/2,5

Software

1,5/1,5

General use

3,5/3,5

Price

0,6/1

Total

9,6/10


The final score is 96 out of 100 owls, and we give the “Logitech Performance Mouse MX” our Editor’s Choice Award.



TestSeek Labs Editor's Choice 2009 Award


 

 

 

As you know, TestSeek collects all expert reviews of many different product types. Head over to our Mice category to find all expert reviews of alternatives to the Logitech Performance Mouse MX.

 

 

 

Thanks goes out to Logitech for letting me review this mouse.



Author: Manuel González Fernández

Translator: Vince Emiloz Sanderson


Weak points
  1. r4i card
    November 20th, 2009 at 20:34 | #1

    r4i card

    Expensive (but worth it); Unifying feature only a benefit if you upgrade to other Unifying products.

  2. Manuel González
    December 23rd, 2009 at 07:12 | #2

    r4i card :
    r4i card
    Expensive (but worth it); Unifying feature only a benefit if you upgrade to other Unifying products.

    Yes, the Unifying technology it´s interesting only if your plan is buying other Unifying pheripherals in the future.

    Bye!

  3. charlz1085
    December 26th, 2009 at 15:18 | #3

    Got it and love it. Only complaint is when I use it wirelessly, it goes to sleep pretty fast and takes a second to start back up. Other than that, it’s great.

  4. Bryan
    February 4th, 2010 at 11:57 | #4

    Is there a left handed version or have we been left out yet again?

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