Quick Review: Logitech Trackball


Quick Review: Logitech Wireless Trackball M570

Score (so far): 4.5/5

Trackball mice are out of favor with the majority of IT folk, which is a little ironic…considering they’re supposed to help ease the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, a very common IT handicap.  I personally found that after just a few minutes of using a trackball for the first time, I was completely used to it, and able to switch back and forth between that and a traditional mouse. (Think about this: Do you switch easily between a mouse and a trackpad? Same-same.)  I have also found that a trackball mouse really helps to prevent carpal flareup, while trackpads excacerbate them.

Today I went to my local Best Buy to peruse their selection of trackball mice, and as expected, found (and bought) just one model: The Logitech Wireless Trackball M570, my purchase price $49.99.  I ran right home and plugged it in.  Here are a few observations from the first few minutes:

  • Plug and play: I absolutely adore the modern-day usability standard: bring home a thingy, plug it into the computer, and it WORKS! I never get tired of things that just work. This trackball did just that.
  • The look: The mouse* is indeed ergonomic, comfortable, and fairly attractive. I’m not exactly sure why trackball designers feel the need to set a brightly colored ball against a drab background – it looks like bragging. It doesn’t particularly bother me, but I suppose it’d be nicer if I had a sleek, elegant device.
  • Buttons: In addition to the trackball and two mouse buttons, this model comes with a scroll wheel that works out of the box, and up/down buttons that don’t. I  downloaded the customization software from Logitech.com and customized the up/down buttons (they are now PageUp and PageDown!) 
  • The feel: A tiny bit lightweight for a trackball - I had one before with some heft, and I liked that. But otherwise, smooth sailing!  The trackball has a slight grindy feel to it that I don’t like. I’d be interested to see if this is common to the model, or if I just got a grindy one. This is the first thing about the device that I truly dislike.  
    (Edit: Twitter’s @SirSQL recommended I remove the trackball and check for debris to fix the “grindy” feeling. I followed instructions and found no debris, but the trackball action is now smooth. Thanks, Nic!)

 Now that I’m looking at the SetPoint software I downloaded, it looks like this is a very versatile little peripheral. You can customize the up/down and scroll buttons to practically any function (and also set application-specific button settings), alter pointer settings and scroll size (default is 3 lines), check the battery levels, and change settings targeted for games. (Hardcore gamers, please review and get back to me.)  I particularly like – but have not yet tried – the single unifying receiver that can handle up to six wireless devices (keyboards, number pads and so on).

In all, it seems like a perfectly nice wireless trackball mouse. I’ll let you know if anything on it falls apart.


*Yes, I’m using “mouse” and “trackball” interchangeably in this article, as they fulfill the same function.

One Response to Quick Review: Logitech Trackball

  1. [...] Quick Review: Logitech Trackball Author CloudAdam Machanic Alan Beaulieu Andy Olsen August Hill Bart Du Bill Grindlay C.J. Date Cesar Galindo-Legaria Chris Anley David Litchfield Deke McClelland Donald Farmer Douglas R. Mauro and Kevin J. Schmidt Grant Fritchey Itzik Ben-Gan Jamie MacLennan Janine C. Warner Jan Narkiewicz Jayaram Krishnaswamy Jennifer McCown John Heasman Jonathan Hassell Joseph Sack Joydip Kanjilal Julian Skinner Julian Templeman Kalen Delaney Kathy Jacobs Kimberly Tripp Louis Davidson Paul McFedries Paul Randal Rahul Pitre Randy Connolly Robin Dewson Rob Walters Roger Wolter Sajal Dam Sameer Tejani Santeri Voutilainen Slava Oks Thomas Rizzo Wei Xiao William R. Stanek ZhaoHui Tang Meta [...]

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