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Chris G. Williams Beware: I mix tech and personal interests here.

A few weeks ago, I got an early opportunity to test out the new Logitech MX Series Mouse and Keyboard "designed specifically for Software Developers" (as opposed to most high-end stuff which appeals to power gamers).

I had to go out of town for a week right after I got them, but I've been using them nonstop for the last couple weeks, and overall I'm really happy with both.

The MX Master 3 Mouse has a nice ergonomic shape with conveniently placed buttons, including the usual assortment of programmable functions.

The thumb wheel for horizontal scrolling took a little getting used to (for me, at least) as I keep pulling my hand back to try and use it with the tip of my thumb. Just a bad habit I'll need to correct.

The vertical wheel has been completely re-engineered and is 100% mechanical now. Slow and fast scrolling work wonderfully, as long as your battery is fully charged. As the power dips, it appears this is the first feature to suffer. (Not the wheel itself, but the signal itself. More on that in a bit.)

The MX software is smart enough to tell what app you are in, and allows for custom mapping to the various mouse functions based on whether you're in Excel, Visual Studio, etc. I don't use that much, but it's nice.

The MX Keys keyboard has the nicest non-mechanical typing experience I've ever had. It's surprisingly solid for a wireless keyboard, and has a bit of heft to it. The keys are all scalloped and offer nice travel. It's a full-sized keyboard too, which is nice. I like the mouse, but man I LOVE the keyboard.

Both devices can connect via USB-C or Bluetooth. I'm using Bluetooth for both, primarily because of an additional feature that both offer: a 3 way KVM switch (well, Keyboard and Mouse at least.)

I can pair these devices to three computers at once and switch between each with the push of a button. I use it all day long, and I love it so much more than having 3 keyboards (and 3 mice) on my desk.

And of course, because I'm using Bluetooth for both, there's the power issue. The keyboard seems to last forever, but the mouse needs recharging daily (still not bad at all). Each comes with a power switch so I can turn them off at night, or when I'll be away for a while, which is nice.

Even at low power, the mouse performs well, aside from the previously mentioned scrolling issue. It seems to disregard that entirely as the battery gets low (although truthfully, I imagine it has less to do with the mouse than the bluetooth signal itself, but I'm not a mouse engineer.)

It looks like each device retails for about $100 (according to Best Buy) so they aren't exactly an impulse buy (at least for me) but I think if you try them out you'll be quite satisfied.

TL;DR: Pricey, but solid well designed peripherals that I think most developers will really like.

Posted on Friday, September 20, 2019 11:20 AM | Back to top

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