Author Topic: Rollermouse Red overly detailed review  (Read 6479 times)

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Offline vivalarevolución

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Rollermouse Red overly detailed review
« on: Tue, 20 January 2015, 19:25:34 »
Hey guys.  I wanted to do a review of the Rollermouse Red with a short comparison to my earlier review of the Mousetrapper Flexible (https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=51250.0), two ergonomic mice currently on the market, for any of those interested in learning more about these devices.  I have an interest in ergonomic pointing devices because conventional computer mice cause pain for my hands with extensive use.

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Aesthetics and Design

Out of the box, the Rollermouse Red is a beautiful device.  They took a page from Apple's book and included impressive packaging to go along with a well-designed aluminum device.  Nice job, Contour Designs.  The box has a sturdy construction with magnet closure and classy images.

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The Rollermouse Red itself has that smooth aluminum housing.  The buttons are plastic.  I don't intend to criticize Contour Designs as ripping another company's design, because the look is very appealing.  The mouse feels as sturdy and solid as it looks, and is an upgrade from their previous models.  Not too many mice are made with aluminum.

I am very impressed with the quality of the design.  The previous Rollermouse models seemed to lack the finish and sturdiness that I would expect from a device that costs over $200.  The Rollermouse Red screams “QUALITY” with same volume as any high-cost, high-end device.  It delivers.  The look and feel of device lives up to what I would expect. 

Feel and Function

As a man of utility, I am most concerned with the function of the device.  I am not your girlfriend that likes football teams because the jersey colors go well together.  They could have made the Rollermouse in purple and orange with Ed Hardy-like designs, and I would have bought if it did the job.

Enough comedy.  The Rollermouse Red has 8 buttons with the basic mouse functions and extras functions, including copy, paste, and double-click.  A couple mouse functions can be changed with button combinations, but they are not programmable, to my knowledge.  I don't care too much about programmability, because I don't need my mouse to control my thermostat or anything.  Just do the job you were designed to do, please.  In addition to the basic mouse functions, the device includes simple, quick adjustments for cursor speed, click force, and click volume.  Appreciated feature.

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The device while in use is the smoothest ergonomic pointing device that I have used.  The placement and feel of the buttons are satisfactory and they shout of quality.  With the multiple DPI adjustments built in the device, I can make adjustments on the fly if I find the pointer speed to be unsatisfactory. 
The feel of the rollerbar is a significant upgrade from previous versions of the Rollermouse.  On the Rollermouse Red, the rollerbar is thicker, smoother, sturdier, and more “grippy” than previous versions. Older Rollermice seemed to have an instability to their rollerbar, but the Red seems to lack that instability and has a studier feel. Well done.

The palm rest also is an upgrade over previous versions.  The rubberized top part is thick and durable, while the base is also made of aluminum and clicks firmly into the main device.  Previous versions have a flimsy plastic wrist rest that paled in comparison.  The larger wrist rest on the Red Plus is indeed huge, almost obnoxiously so.

Overall, the rollerbar, the buttons, the housing, and the wrist rest produce a sturdy and durable device that has not been matched by any other ergonomic pointing device that I have tried.

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Ergonomic Quality

From an ergonomic standpoint, this device does a wonderful job.  As with any Rollermouse, I can use it with my hands on the home row, and use either hand.  Then my hands are able to use the device while open rather than closed around a mouse, which reduces my finger and wrist pain.  Since I switched to this device from a typical mouse, I have been happy with the effect on my hands.

Other Features

I can't forget about the keyboard risers.  The Rollermouse Red has all these attachments for linking the device to a keyboard prevent slippage between the devices.  They are a useful attachment, but I have not been to use them at this point, considering the keyboard that I am using with the device has enough rise already.

Potential Problems

The biggest problem with any Rollermouse is the precision of the pointer compared to typical mouse.  Even the cheap HP piece-of-garbage mouse that I was using before the Rollermouse arrived was more precise than this.  But I did not buy this thing for the precision, but for the ergonomic features and the build quality.

For some, the lack of programmable buttons on a device as expensive this might be a dealbreaker.  For me, I could care less, because Contour Designs did a decent enough job with their choice of functions and button placement that I have no qualms.

Is it worth the price tag?  I guess that is a personal opinion.  Depends on much you value the benefits of the device.

Comparison to Mousetrapper

About a year ago, I did a review for the Mousetrapper Flexible that I forgot about (https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=51250.0).  Both the Rollermouse and Mousetrapper have their strengths and weaknesses.  Obviously, the Rollermouse Red has superior build quality with aluminum housing and thoughtful engineering compared to the plastic and rubberized blackness of the Mousetrapper.

The Mousetrapper does have some obvious advantages.  Buttons programmable through software, a more precise pointer, portability, and wireless capabilities.  All these combine to create a device that lives up to its name as being flexible.

Currently, I use the Mousetrapper at home and the Rollermouse Red at work, so they both get some time in the rotation.  I can't say that one is better than the other, because they both have their advantages and disadvantages.  If you had a gun to head and told me to pick one, I probably would take the Rollermouse Red for its distinct sexiness, but I could be happily ever after with either device.  Actually, whichever has the bigger inheritance is what I'm after.

Conclusion

Out of all the trackballs and ergonomic pointing devices that I have used, the Rollermouse Red is probably the highest quality device that I have used.  The build, design, pleasure of use, and ergonomic features combine to make a device that I plan to use every day.  I give it a shining recommendation, even with the few pitfalls.

I don't mean to sound like a corporate shill for Contour Designs, but I am very impressed with the device and was happy that I took the dive.  The company took a risk by creating a higher-end device than their previous products, and I have enjoyed what they produced.

Rock on, Rollermouse!   :p

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« Last Edit: Tue, 20 January 2015, 19:38:43 by prdlm2009 »
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Offline vivalarevolución

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Re: Rollermouse Red overly detailed review
« Reply #1 on: Thu, 22 January 2015, 06:42:19 »
Questions?  Comments?
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Offline SonOfSonOfSpock

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Re: Rollermouse Red overly detailed review
« Reply #2 on: Fri, 23 January 2015, 00:44:02 »
Nice review! You definitely described it well from what I remember from my short time trying one out. Do you find that it pushes your keyboard back too far? Do you have any experiences pairing it with an ergonomic keyboard?

Offline MGH

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Re: Rollermouse Red overly detailed review
« Reply #3 on: Fri, 23 January 2015, 00:45:19 »
Off topic, but what keyboard is that?

Offline vivalarevolución

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Re: Rollermouse Red overly detailed review
« Reply #4 on: Fri, 23 January 2015, 13:49:23 »
Off topic, but what keyboard is that?

Matteo made a custom wood-case keyboard that I bought from him.  The caps are all over the place.

Nice review! You definitely described it well from what I remember from my short time trying one out. Do you find that it pushes your keyboard back too far? Do you have any experiences pairing it with an ergonomic keyboard?

With the big wrist rest, yes.  I'm going to exchange it for a smaller one.

I had some older versions of the Rollermouse that I tried with ergonomic keyboards.  Not a great fit.  With an ergo board, I would use trackballs, but I'm pretty much out of the ergo board game because the mice were more of an issue.

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Offline clickclack123

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Re: Rollermouse Red overly detailed review
« Reply #5 on: Fri, 17 July 2015, 05:17:29 »
Nice review. Thanks, it would have been helpful if I hadn't already bought one...  :cool:

The buttons are indeed programmable after installing the software though.

It would have been a dealbreaker for me if it didn't.

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Also programmable per-application, which is even better:

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You should probably edit your review.

BTW I agree, the Rollermouse Red is really good. I use it with an Ergodox which isn't ideal as the thumb buttons hang too low and make the Rollermouse a bit far from the keyboard, but I still like it as I usually switch between my mouse and the Rollermouse all the time.

I also have a Truly Ergonomic at work that I think would be ideal for use with the Rollermouse as the bottom part of it is flatter than the Ergodox. I can never go back to a horrible staggered non-ergo board now.
« Last Edit: Fri, 17 July 2015, 05:23:09 by clickclack123 »