Do you prefer a mouse with substance or one you can flick with the slightest effort of your wrist? Do you need a wide mouse to fill a large hand, or would you prefer something more diminutive? Do you like a scroll wheel that clicks or one that rolls smoothly? Logitech’s customizable G9x Laser Mouse can suit you however you choose to answer the above questions.
Furthermore, the customization options don’t end there. As with the company’s new G19 gaming keyboard, you can create a variety of custom profiles for different games and applications so that the mouse looks, feels, and operates however you might like.
The G9x comes with two interchangeable grips—shells that snap onto the mouse and change the way it feels in your hand. The Wide Load grip features a smooth surface, a broad ledge on the left side for resting your thumb, and a bulbous palm grip designed to fill a large hand. The Precision grip is much more compact and comes with a micro-textured surface that Logitech calls DryGrip technology. Neither design is ambidextrous, so lefties won’t like them at all. You can also load special tuning weights into a tray that slides out the back of the mouse to further customize the mouse’s feel. You can add up to 28 grams of mass in four sockets, distributing the weight up front, in back, or evenly across.
The mouse itself has the typical right and left buttons on top, a scroll wheel containing a third button, and two thumb buttons on the left side. We found the left top button to be even more hypersensitive than the G9x’s twitchy predecessor—the G9—and frequently found ourselves unintentionally firing our weapons while playing the first-person shooter Crysis: Not exactly an endearing trait when you’re trying to sneak up on an enemy’s position. We encountered similar frustrations with real-time strategy games such as Supreme Commander and Command & Conquer 3, where an unintended mouse click would select the wrong unit or immediately shift our point of view to a different area of the map. As for the two buttons mounted on the left side, bending our thumb back to activate them felt uncomfortable and unnatural.
We have the exact opposite complaint about the button in the scroll wheel; it offers much too much resistance. Not every game or application makes most use of it, but you depend on it in Crysis to cycle through your character’s suit’s special attributes and the modifications available for the weapons you carry (silencer, scope, etc.). Trying to make changes in the heat of battle can be frustrating at best and deadly (for your character, that is) at worst.
The scroll wheel can spin smoothly or you can push a button on the bottom of the mouse to engage a set of micro gears that provide tactile feedback. The wheel can also tilt from side to side for horizontal scrolling. Plus and minus buttons located behind the left mouse button let you fine tune the mouse’s resolution. Boosting the resolution (trimming it to as little 200 dots per inch) increases the precision at which the cursor moves across the screen and is useful for applications such as photo editing. Reducing the resolution (to as much as 5,000 DPI) increases the speed at which the cursor moves across the screen and is useful for twitch gaming.
Logitech G9x Laser Mouse
Programmability and Conclusion
A second button underneath the mouse activates custom profiles that are stored in the mouse’s onboard memory. These profiles enable a customized G9x to operate in the same way no matter which computer it’s plugged into. Programming the mouse is accomplished using Logitech’s SetPoint software. Any button (except the left primary) can be assigned a single command or any series of mouse actions or keyboard keystrokes that you’ve recorded in a macro. You can create any number of profiles, but only five can be stored in the mouse itself. The G9x comes with preset profiles for gaming, productivity, and general use. You can identify which profile is active by the color of the LEDs on the top of the mouse. Profiles can also be linked to specific applications so that the profile becomes active the moment the program is launched.
Maybe we’re just too heavy handed for it, but we’d like the G9x a whole lot better if its left mouse button didn’t have such a hair trigger. As much of a problem as this is in gaming, it’s even worse while you’re delicately editing a digital photo. All this mouse’s programmability, customization, and precision – each welcome traits in our book – is for naught if the slightest twitch of your index finger leaves you repeatedly reaching for the undo command.
- Completely customizable
- Highly programmable
- Stores profiles in its own memory
- Precise control
- Overly sensitive left mouse button
- Overly resistant mouse-wheel button
- Side buttons are awkwardly placed