Author Topic: Thumb vs finger operated trackball  (Read 25118 times)

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Offline wolf

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #50 on: Tue, 28 June 2016, 03:48:46 »
I use a thumb trackball - Logitech Trackman Wheel - and I use it for hours on end with no strain or fatigue.   I spend numerous hours at home on the computer using the trackball and I even take it to work with me to use it there as well as I find a trackball far preferable to a mouse.  Never yet had a problem with tiring out my thumb or any discomfort.

However, as others have pointed out, it's not going to be ideal for everyone.
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Offline Paspie

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #51 on: Thu, 30 June 2016, 07:30:40 »
I once used an M570, until last year when I became so frustrated by having to clean it all the time. Also, the left click button was wearing out. I would agree that the trackball is too small, it too easily moved about if I positioned my thumb close to the edge. It is now in sandwich bag in a cupboard, probably never to be used again.

If I had to get a Trackball now it would definitely be the CST L-Trac, with its middle click.

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #52 on: Tue, 27 September 2016, 05:25:28 »
I once used an M570, until last year when I became so frustrated by having to clean it all the time.

Yes, keeping the trackball clean is clearly an issue. But is easy since the ball just pops out when needed. :)

Offline MJL

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #53 on: Tue, 18 October 2016, 21:04:07 »
I've been in IT since 1984 and have used a variety of mice and trackballs. Must have had just about every trackball that I could get my hands on, cheap and expensive alike. Arthritis is plaguing me and several years ago my right hand (especially my right hand's index knuckle) got so bad that I had to start using my left hand for a pointing device.

Have tried a lot of different combinations like trackpad on one side, trackball other side etc. as well as different brands (for a long time used a 3M ergonomic mouse - more like a joystick).

At the moment I am using a Kensington orbit trackball with scroll ring (ABS plastic and the keys go shiny quickly). It took me about 18 months before I was totally comfortable using my left hand for the mouse, now I do not even think about it and using my right hand feels strange and uncomfortable.

Every now and then I clean the mouse - I am not happy that I cannot take the scroll ring off to clean underneath there - and then use some uMicroLubrol Ultimox 226 (a Teflon lubricant) on the trackball itself (and wipe it off afterwards) to get a silky smooth movement. Initially I used the finger tips but more and more I am using the intermediate (middle) phalanx to move the ball around and use my pinky/ring finger and thumb to move the scroll ring. (Also tried a thumb operated trackball but that quickly resulted in sore swollen joints at the base of the thumb).

I wish there was something available in better quality than this Kensington and have the impression that over the years the quality has gone downhill. Tried some older models without the scroll ring but came back to this one. If you want to try a trackball out then this might be one to start off with. One caveat: Using a trackball does not allow you to position / resize as accurate as a mouse. I also use something called splitview to quickly resize two programs exactly to a part of the screen and am using more and more keyboard shortcuts rather than "point and click and destroy the joints in your hand".
« Last Edit: Tue, 18 October 2016, 21:13:04 by MJL »

Offline MJL

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on another subject: your eyes....
« Reply #54 on: Tue, 18 October 2016, 21:29:31 »
The LED screens with their harsh blue backlighting will damage your eyes - I've got early cataracts and have damage to the retina. Opticians see more and more young people with damage to their eyes and they attribute this to the intense light, especially in the blue part of the spectrum, from LED screens and smartphones.

If you are wearing eye glasses you might want to investigate Zeiss's computer coatings that (hopefully) filter out the most damaging part of the blue light. (same as the horrible LED headlights of cars - they almost blind me when driving at night).

Initially I use flux for working late at night but since getting specific coatings I find that flux no longer is needed.

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #55 on: Fri, 25 November 2016, 23:37:23 »
One caveat: Using a trackball does not allow you to position / resize as accurate as a mouse.
I'm not sure about that. There are those who say that using a trackball is far more accurate than a mouse. Especially in the fields of 3D rendering and stuff. I for one have had no such issues. I suppose everyone is different. What is best for you isn't necessarily the best for someone else.

Initially I used the finger tips but more and more I am using the intermediate (middle) phalanx to move the ball around and use my pinky/ring finger and thumb to move the scroll ring. (Also tried a thumb operated trackball but that quickly resulted in sore swollen joints at the base of the thumb).

I wish there was something available in better quality than this Kensington and have the impression that over the years the quality has gone downhill.
Have you tried the Kensington SlimBlade?

I currently use a thumb operated Logitech M570. Never has any issues with it.


Offline DanD3n

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #56 on: Fri, 02 December 2016, 10:29:22 »
Had a Logitech M570, it was fine for two or three months, very comfortable, but the ball was small, required cleaning often and least but not last, my thumb's wrist tendons started to hurt. After that i bought a vertical mouse, and it was again fine for a while, until the pain appeared in a slightly different place. My conclusion: if you suffer for RSI, change your input method from time to time.

Offline YoshiCaps

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #57 on: Fri, 02 December 2016, 19:17:20 »
Had a Logitech M570, it was fine for two or three months, very comfortable, but the ball was small, required cleaning often and least but not last, my thumb's wrist tendons started to hurt. After that i bought a vertical mouse, and it was again fine for a while, until the pain appeared in a slightly different place. My conclusion: if you suffer for RSI, change your input method from time to time.
You see if I had to buy a trackball- I hate them honestly- bit i don't like the m570 cause it makes me want to move it around... when it has no sensor.

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Offline Tom_Kazansky

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #58 on: Fri, 02 December 2016, 23:23:25 »
I have a Kensington Expert Mouse (finger operated) for 2 years.

It certainly is not a mouse for gaming, but it is great for everyday use like browsing web.

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One thing I'm sad about this trackball is: I must run its software to get the custom key (and other features) working and when I do, the mouse scroll speed of Windows is reseted to 1 (it makes scrolling of other mouse, G502, slow...   :rolleyes: )
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Online ArchDill

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #59 on: Sat, 03 December 2016, 02:14:36 »
Just got a thumb trackball and I am enjoying it. Do people game with trackballs?

Offline DanD3n

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #60 on: Sat, 03 December 2016, 04:32:12 »
I think it depends on the game played and on the type of trackball used. For fast paced shooters, like quake 3, i've got great results with my thumb operated trackball, but i'm not a pro player by any sort of imagination. And you need practice till you get adjusted to the feel. But i think this only works when you can press the main buttons and still be able to spin the ball, otherwise it won't work in FPS games, only top down RPGs and RTS. The M570 is perfect for this, but your thumb will hurt in time (at least from my experience).

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #61 on: Sat, 03 December 2016, 11:25:49 »
I think it depends on the game played and on the type of trackball used. For fast paced shooters, like quake 3, i've got great results with my thumb operated trackball, but i'm not a pro player by any sort of imagination. And you need practice till you get adjusted to the feel. But i think this only works when you can press the main buttons and still be able to spin the ball, otherwise it won't work in FPS games, only top down RPGs and RTS. The M570 is perfect for this, but your thumb will hurt in time (at least from my experience).
There are those who are skeptical about using a trackball for gaming.

Then I did see a video of a guy using a thumb operated trackball for an FPS. He came about it by accident. Just out of necessity actually. His mouse broke and started using an old trackball just to make do that day. Found he liked it and then continued..
This is pretty cool.

Can use finger operated one too. I saw a video of someone using a Kensington Slimblade.
« Last Edit: Sat, 03 December 2016, 11:53:01 by knightjp »

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #62 on: Sat, 03 December 2016, 13:50:52 »

Offline happylacquer

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #63 on: Sat, 24 December 2016, 04:24:22 »
I have a M570. Bought it to try out thumb trackballs as I had never owned such a unit up until then... It's nice for casual use but any sort of precision is needed and it's god awful and frustrating. impossible to use with right hand too obviously, at least properly.

I've had the same Logitech Trackman for longer than I can remember. Even lacking a scroll mechanism, that trackball is perfect for me. I've got hundreds of hours in various FPSes with it and I just always have been able to do things I can't with mice with a trackball. It definitely works too, because I devastated at Overwatch (went back to CS:GO though where I am just okay)

I play Street Fighter 5 more than any FPS though...

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #64 on: Sat, 24 December 2016, 13:23:13 »
I have a M570. Bought it to try out thumb trackballs as I had never owned such a unit up until then... It's nice for casual use but any sort of precision is needed and it's god awful and frustrating. impossible to use with right hand too obviously, at least properly.

I've had the same Logitech Trackman for longer than I can remember. Even lacking a scroll mechanism, that trackball is perfect for me. I've got hundreds of hours in various FPSes with it and I just always have been able to do things I can't with mice with a trackball. It definitely works too, because I devastated at Overwatch (went back to CS:GO though where I am just okay)

I play Street Fighter 5 more than any FPS though...
Been using the M570 for a long time now and I like a lot. I have seen many reviews on youtube where the guys say that they loved it so much they bought another one.
However I am looking at getting myself a finger operated Kensington. I am looking at the Expert or the Slimblade. Wondering which one of them is the better one.

Offline happylacquer

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #65 on: Sat, 24 December 2016, 21:12:54 »
I have a M570. Bought it to try out thumb trackballs as I had never owned such a unit up until then... It's nice for casual use but any sort of precision is needed and it's god awful and frustrating. impossible to use with right hand too obviously, at least properly.

I've had the same Logitech Trackman for longer than I can remember. Even lacking a scroll mechanism, that trackball is perfect for me. I've got hundreds of hours in various FPSes with it and I just always have been able to do things I can't with mice with a trackball. It definitely works too, because I devastated at Overwatch (went back to CS:GO though where I am just okay)

I play Street Fighter 5 more than any FPS though...
Been using the M570 for a long time now and I like a lot. I have seen many reviews on youtube where the guys say that they loved it so much they bought another one.
However I am looking at getting myself a finger operated Kensington. I am looking at the Expert or the Slimblade. Wondering which one of them is the better one.

I can understand the love for the m570, if you don't have any problems with your thumb getting tired then it is a comfy design plus it's nice to be able to put anywhere when it's wireless. The Microsoft thumb trackball mouse (i forget the model name) was crazy popular and still sells for ridiculous amounts of money. I haven't used one since the 90s though so idk if it's better than the m570.

Online ChitownM2

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #66 on: Sat, 24 December 2016, 22:41:20 »
I've been using a version of the M570 since long before it was called a 570. Probably 1995 or so when it was just a 3 button trackball, then I had to buy a new one when they invented the scroll wheel, and then others as I got more computers. I absolutely love it and always have, I usually have the sensitivity set pretty high so the amount of movement required by my thumb is pretty minimal. At this point I don't think I could ever go back to anything else.

It has always treated me well and I've never had one break. I remember how "revolutionary" it was to have a laser reading the ball back then and not having to clean the physical rollers on the mouse. I also remember it being expensive....something like $80 back in 1995.

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #67 on: Tue, 10 January 2017, 03:11:06 »
I use a Logitech M570 at work and I just ordered a Kensington Expert for home use.

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #68 on: Tue, 10 January 2017, 03:26:08 »
I use a Logitech M570 at work and I just ordered a Kensington Expert for home use.

Which of the two types do you prefer?

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #69 on: Tue, 10 January 2017, 12:24:44 »
I still have not received my Kensington.

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #70 on: Fri, 13 January 2017, 16:24:18 »
If you ask this question on Google, you will see many threads on forums about "Finger vs Thumb operated trackballs.

I found this one that had most of the people preferring Thumb operated ones. http://www.techimo.com/forum/general-tech-discussion/54800-finger-thumb-trackball.html

While those who are fans of finger operated trackballs state that greater accuracy can be obtained, etc. Another interesting thing is that most of the noteworthy finger trackballs are ambidextrous. However not much is mentioned about the benefits of the thumb operated ones. The first one is getting used to a trackball. For instance my Logitech M570 is the first trackball I have ever used and I got to grips with it easily since its operation is so close to using a mouse. Most of the finger placements are the same. Size is another factor. Comparing with some of the well known finger operated models, especially a Slimblade or Expert, the thumb operated trackballs are smaller and more compact. I guess easier for those who are one the move.

I have been using my M570 for quite a while now and I do not have complaints or any health issues using a thumb operated trackball. I am considering on getting a Slimblade. This is to see whether I would enjoy using it more than using my M570. There is also another reason. If I was considering on switching to Dvorak, it is better to use the mouse with the left hand. That would mean that using a Slimblade would be essential.

Online ArchDill

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #71 on: Sun, 15 January 2017, 02:26:26 »
I use a Logitech M570 at work and I just ordered a Kensington Expert for home use.

Which of the two types do you prefer?

Kensington came in.

I still enjoy my thumb ball fork work and travel but I am LOVING this Kensington. I really enjoy the programming of it most of all.

Offline davkol

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #72 on: Sun, 15 January 2017, 07:26:25 »
FWIW my dad (who's had some elbow/arm problems) has recently started to use a Kensington Expert instead of Logitech TrackMan Wheel, that I gave him, and he calls it a night-day difference too.

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #73 on: Mon, 16 January 2017, 15:15:00 »
Kensington came in.

I still enjoy my thumb ball fork work and travel but I am LOVING this Kensington. I really enjoy the programming of it most of all.

What are your initial impressions of using the Kensington as compared with the M570?

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #74 on: Mon, 16 January 2017, 22:10:13 »
Kensington came in.

I still enjoy my thumb ball fork work and travel but I am LOVING this Kensington. I really enjoy the programming of it most of all.

What are your initial impressions of using the Kensington as compared with the M570?

It was a little weird getting used to at first. I love how bulky and comfortable it is. Have my double top click set for home and double bottom click set for end.

Offline deacon

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #75 on: Sun, 19 February 2017, 19:40:54 »
Thumb for me, finger balls have always felt weird. I am likely biased though.
I've been using Logitech Trackman thumb balls since an ADB square one, that's decades of normal use and FPS play. Loved my Trackman Marble Wheel but another couple tumbles off the couch and it was going to need surgery.

I begrudgingly went wireless and have been surprised by the M570 I got to replace it. It is smaller body doesn't support my whole hand but the deeper palm swell and steeper curves are quite comfortable for long periods. On a desk, the edge of your hand and rear of the palm rests on the desk and the M570 is under the remainder.

The M570 is addressed differently too with your first two fingers on the buttons and two on support grooves rather than the first three being over a button or wheel.

One thing I haven't liked is the switches are too light to "make" and too quick to "break" but that shouldn't been too hard to replace with different switches once these go wonky.

-D

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #76 on: Sun, 19 February 2017, 22:43:43 »
I've been using my M570 for a while now. In terms of quality, I cannot say for certain how it does compare with other trackballs; since it is my first and only. I can say that I like using it. It is certainly comfortable and those who are fans of it are certainly justified.


Offline happylacquer

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #77 on: Mon, 20 February 2017, 03:25:20 »
finger for precision
thumb for laziness and comfort

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #78 on: Fri, 17 March 2017, 06:37:55 »
I'm pretty much enjoying using my Logitech M570. So far it hasn't missed a beat.

Offline mozart

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #79 on: Sun, 06 August 2017, 15:01:38 »
I made the M570 mouse a stand so it became a real mouse, I like it because you do not have to move. In addition, there is a Logitech touchpad that is centered on Ergodox or left. I still have to get some tracball, because my branch is not very accurate.
Sorry translation is Google translate.
[ Specified attachment is not available ][/img] [ Specified attachment is not available ][img]
« Last Edit: Sun, 06 August 2017, 15:15:52 by mozart »

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #80 on: Sun, 06 August 2017, 19:52:28 »
Hahahahaha..  looks good.


Have you looked into HIGHER tenting for ur ergodox ?


I use 55 Degree personally. 


Put a couple books under ur ergodox and try it out.

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #81 on: Mon, 07 August 2017, 00:20:24 »
That looks good. Although I've never thought that the M570 needed a stand. Been using one for 3 years.. Its a great device.
I've never tried the finger ones though... Hard to get them here in Dubai and ordering from ebay or Amazon takes ages.

Offline mozart

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #82 on: Mon, 07 August 2017, 21:40:31 »
I can not raise any more because I use the drwbar, free height is 50mm.
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The picture will be reversed?
« Last Edit: Mon, 07 August 2017, 21:42:21 by mozart »

Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #83 on: Wed, 09 August 2017, 00:26:51 »
Got myself a Kensington Slimblade yesterday. Managed to find the only remaining one in Dubai for sale as brand new device and the price is half for what I would have paid on Amazon or ebay.
So far, apart from the amazing deal, I do like it.
The device itself does have really good premium feel. By comparison the Logitech looks really cheap. Strange thing is that I paid less for the Slimblade actually..  :D
Things are a bit awkward at the moment in terms of a computing experience. I'm still undecided on whether I prefer the Slimblade over the Logitech M570, but I'm attempting to give it a fair try.
For those who are used to mice, I would say that the thumb-operated one is a really good fit. Whether the ergonomics of the Slimblade is better than the M570, I have to see. But so far it is working well, and I have no issues.
The scrolling feature is nothing but genius. I actually like it. The moving the cursor and twisting the same for scrolling, makes workflow just as fast as being on the Logitech M570.  :thumb:
The buttons on the Slimblade have a different feel and require a bit of force to depress. I'm guessing since the device is new and has such a glossy finish, I'm hesitant to press it with the same amount of force that I would the M570...  :p



Offline knightjp

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #84 on: Fri, 11 August 2017, 15:24:23 »
Update on the Slimblade usage. I'm slowly getting to grips with the device. I guess that I need to unlearn quite a bit of muscle memory before I get completely comfortable with it.
The one thing that I say is I use a generic mouse at work. Since I am at work for most of my days and I only get to use the Slim blade in the evening when I get home. This can contribute to the slow learning of the device. Maybe I should consider hauling the device to work back. But I'm unwilling to bring my own devices to work... :P

The one complaint that I have though is that the I've set the top left button as the "Back" Button. The profile says all Applications, but it doesn't work on all applications. The only time it work is on a browser like Firefox or Safari. Yes.. I use Mac OS..  :thumb:
Maybe there is a problem with the driver.

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Re: Thumb vs finger operated trackball
« Reply #85 on: Sat, 12 August 2017, 01:29:09 »
I can not raise any more because I use the drwbar, free height is 50mm.
(Attachment Link)
The picture will be reversed?


You have to get into the mindset that if the table doesn't allow you to do something.

Fvk the table..  cut holes in the table, drill holes on the side to lower the keyboard tray, etc etc,,  it's just a table..   YOU ARE A HUMAN BEING,  the world bends to YOUR WILL,   not the other way around..