The latest mouse in Logitech's seemingly endless line of input devices is the Wireless Mouse M505, an AU$89.95 portable pointer with an attractive design that comes in three colours: black, grey and red. It's also one of the first devices to feature Logitech's Unifying technology, which allows you to connect up to six other compatible Logitech devices, including keyboards and mice, to the same mini-USB transceiver. The technology promises to free up USB ports for other devices, but it also means you're marrying into the Logitech family.
No thumb buttons
The M505 is similar in size and shape to the Microsoft Wireless Mobile Mouse 4000. It fits comfortably in both hands and there are slotted grooves in the clicker area for your fingers. The scroll wheel in the centre of the two buttons is notched (as opposed to smooth), which allows for more precise scrolling through long web pages or documents. The wheel is clickable as well, bumping the total number of buttons up to three. Unlike the 4000, however, the mouse is missing the thumb buttons that we've grown accustomed to using as a shortcut for the back button in our web browser.
Underneath the mouse, you'll find the laser tracking unit, an on/off switch for preserving battery life in transit, and a release for the battery cover on top of the palm rest. The laser performed well in our accuracy tests, but we prefer the 4000's BlueTrack technology, which lets you use the mouse on many surfaces that a laser just can't handle, including carpets and other rough and reflective textures.
The mouse runs on two AA batteries that are included in the package. It doesn't support rechargeable batteries, but Logitech says the two alkaline batteries will power the mouse for 15 months with help from the "smart sleep" mode that automatically switches on during periods of prolonged inactivity, consuming less power.
The tiny Unifying receiver can be housed on the underside of the mouse when not in use.
The mouse's USB transceiver is both an innovative selling point and the reason why this mouse is so expensive. If you're completely dedicated to the Logitech brand of peripherals, you'll be happy to hear about the company's brand-new Unifying receiver. This new technology lets you connect up to six compatible mice and keyboards to a single USB plug. Each device comes with its own Unifying receiver, meaning that you can conceivably leave them all plugged into several different computers at home and work. It also frees up USB ports formerly occupied by keyboards and mice. If you ever do need to take it out, the half-height USB receiver fits into its own compartment underneath the mouse for convenient storage.
Logitech doesn't include any third-party software in the bundle, but it does offer SetPoint for Windows and Mac, which enables side-to-side scrolling, as well as extra customisable functionality for the middle button.
The Logitech Wireless Mouse M505 is accurate and comfortable but, forAU $89.95, we're disappointed by the lack of thumb buttons. If you're looking for a no-fuss wireless mouse to throw into a laptop bag, we'd recommend the Microsoft Wireless Mobile Mouse 4000 instead. It offers many of the same features and more for AU$20 less.