So what of the mouse performance and features? Well, the buttons are a perfect mix of 'clickability', by which I mean touch and feedback, and 'stiffness', by which I mean that you won't accidentally click whilst leaning a little harder than normal. The side buttons are perhaps a little small, but work well in terms of placement.
Of course, the biggest revolution that Microsoft have been touting is the new 'Tilt Wheel'. Not only does this scroll-wheel go up and down, but also side to side. In practice, this works pretty well - the horizontal action is very nice, and facilitates easy navigation of large spreadsheets. I have to question how much it will actually get used by the majority of people, since it does not appear to be assignable from within any game that I have tried - so unless you run a low screen res, you are unlikely to get a whole lot of use out of it, but you may find it useful on occasion. More interesting is the changes that Microsoft have made to the wheel itself - rather than a distinct 'click-click' as you scroll up and down, the wheel now just rolls constantly. This is extremely bizarre at first, as you realise just how accustomed you have become to feedback whilst scrolling. The button has a slightly rubbery feel to it, and these factors combine to make scrolling akin to rolling wet chewing gum back and forth on a desk. Highly strange at first, yet somehow compelling once you adapt. I wouldn't want to go back to a clicky model now.
What of accuracy? Well this is the one area Microsoft have made a real improvement. This thing feels just as good as the MX700. Using Mouse Rate Checker
the v2 appeared to be refreshing at around 110Hz - slightly lower than the 125Hz measured by the MX700, making it ever so slightly less precise, technically. However, I can tell you this - I am extremely
picky about my mice, and am extremely fussy about mousing accuracy for PhotoShop work and gaming. I have no hesitation in using this mouse above all others, because it runs like a dream. No lag, pixel-perfect precision - sweet as.
So are there any downers? Well yes, just the one. The mouse still relies on standard AA batteries, and doesn't come with a recharging cradle. Whilst MS claims that you will be able to get up to 6 months of life out of a standard set of AAs, the Logitech solution is still a lot more elegant. If we could see this mouse with a dock, it would be the perfect mouse.
As it is, the Wireless Intellimouse v2 has earned itself a place on my RatPad, at my right hand (so to speak). It is, in my opinion, quite simply the most ergonomic, and the sexiest mouse on the planet. At only £40, £10 less than I paid for my tailed Intellimouse, it's a bargain. Now it is perhaps true that £40 for a mouse is a lot of money, especially when RF mice can be had for less than £10 in some places. My justification is this: your mouse, keyboard and monitor are the three parts of your rig that you will use more than anything else. Why, then, skimp on quality? Whilst there may be RF mice around for cheaper, they simply do not have the build quality, ergonomics or precision of the Wireless v2. Whilst mice are obviously a subjective choice, purely objectively this is a corker.
Downers:No recharging cradle
- Fantastic ergonomics
- Great performance
- Decent price
- Strangely compelling scrollwheel