|Min OS X: Any Version Requires: USB Port|
The Instagib TestMy ultimate test for any mouse is several extended rounds of Quake 3 Instagib. Instagib is a modification for Quake 3 that equips you with a railgun whose damage has been increased to kill with one shot. There are several variations of this mod, but you quickly take on the "rail or be railed" mentality, especially on a server with several good players. In a frantic game with six or more people, you'll be flicking your mouse everywhere, trying to pick off your opponents before they splatter you all over cyberspace.
The IntelliMouse Optical passed this test with flying colors. Not once did the tracking skip or jump like the old IntelliMouse Optical did. Because I set my sensitivity relatively low, I tend to lift the mouse to reposition it and I found myself wanting some rubbing grips, like on the Dual Optical.
Another area in which this mouse excelled was closing those annoying pop up advertisements. My speed and accuracy increased dramatically with the IntelliMouse Optical and in a perverse way, it was even more satisfying than dominating an Instagib match. Sometimes, I would seek out sites which spawned many ads just to show my skill (those innumerable low brow PC gaming websites come to mind). Pop-under ads can no longer hide from me!
Final ThoughtsThe IntelliMouse Optical is an excellent all-around mouse. With five easily accessible and customizable buttons, a scroll wheel, and a greatly improved sensor, it can fill a variety of needs. Although it's not advertised as a gaming mouse, it does serve admirably in that area. There isn't much that Microsoft could have done to improve it, but a smoother, quieter scroll wheel and rubber side grips would be welcome in the next revision.
• 5 customizable buttons
• Much-improved IntelliEye technology
• Fits left and right handers
• Affordable ($45)
• Scroll wheel is just plain bad
• No side grips
Test System: Sawtooth G4/500, Mac OS X 10.1.5, 10.2, 9.2.2