As PC Advisor’s production desk turns into the latest battleground in the war between Apple and Microsoft, your reviewer’s cherished Mighty Mouse has been swiftly replaced by the Wireless Laser Mouse 6000 – and it’s not hard to see why.

Sporting five buttons, a scroll wheel, a sharp ‘moonlight silver’ design and a decided lack of wires, the 6000 is a classy piece of work. The fourth and fifth buttons, one big, one small, are intuitively placed for thumb use, and as well as moving vertically, you can press the wheel down (as the fifth button) or to the left and right for horizontal scrolling in certain applications; unfortunately, this felt a tad clumsy. A good idea, however.

The 6000’s Magnify function, set by default to the small thumb button, allows you to zoom into the screen with a degree of panache that had colleagues punching their hands with envy – although we think using the thumb buttons as back and forward makes more sense, and reprogrammed the 6000 with Microsoft’s bundled IntelliPoint management software.

Incidentally, the software also approximately doubles the number of tracking-speed settings you can choose from – ideal for gamers. Unfortunately, the mouse occasionally decides to temporarily adjust speed for you, which can be disorienting.

As far as the wireless element goes, there were minor issues at first getting a strong enough signal, but these disappeared once we manually reset the device/receiver transmission codes. Microsoft claims the wireless range is 1.8m, and we’re not quibbling. Indeed, we got the 6000 to work at a greater distance than this, but the low-signal-quality dialog started to appear after a minute or so.

Presumably as a result of the batteries, the 6000 is nicely weighted in the hand and feels great in use. We were impressed by the cunningly positioned ‘scoops’ for our fingers and thumbs, although the shape may not suit lefties.

Wireless Laser Mouse 6000: Specs

  • Wireless mouse and receiver
  • 1.8m range
  • IntelliPoint management software
  • 2x AA batteries
  • 2-year warranty. Requires: 233MHz Pentium processor or equivalent
  • Windows XP Home or Professional Edition with Service Pack 2 or later, or Mac OS 10.2 or later
  • 128MB RAM
  • 35MB hard disk space
  • USB port
  • Wireless mouse and receiver
  • 1.8m range
  • IntelliPoint management software
  • 2x AA batteries
  • 2-year warranty. Requires: 233MHz Pentium processor or equivalent
  • Windows XP Home or Professional Edition with Service Pack 2 or later, or Mac OS 10.2 or later
  • 128MB RAM
  • 35MB hard disk space
  • USB port

OUR VERDICT

It costs a bit, but the Laser Mouse 6000, with its natty looks, intuitive design and innovative features, is worth every penny. Better have a Gold award, then.

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