The right mouse can make all the difference depending on the task at hand, whether you’re using a desktop computer or one of the best laptops. While a gaming mouse can help you use your skills to the fullest, a ergonomic mouse puts much less strain on your hands and wrists.
For me personally, I’ve been using a trackball mouse for five years for working from home and even just browsing the web. Although the Logitech MX Ergo was my first foray into using one, I’ve since started checking out other slightly cheaper models from different brands.
Over the summer I picked up the ProtoArc EM01 during First day and while I like the RGB ring around its trackball, the lack of customizable buttons is why I started using the MX Ergo again. However, it has seen its fair share of wear and tear, so once again I started looking for my next trackball mouse.
After hours of research, I came across a little-known Japanese electronics brand that offers even more options than Logitech, often at a fraction of the price. As I use multiple computers throughout the day, I’ve since had the chance to test several of their mice and if Elecom isn’t on your radar yet, it should be.
Loads of different trackball mice to choose from
Whether you are left or right handed, whether you prefer to use your thumb or your pointer finger, Elecom has a trackball mouse for you. They even make gaming mice but since I haven’t tested them personally I don’t know how they hold up best gaming mouse.
Along with their trackballs, there are also several different sizes to choose from. There’s the massive Trackball Mouse ($59, Amazon (opens in a new tab)) for those who want to use their pointer to scroll a heavy mouse to the Bitra Mobile Trackball ($49, Amazon (opens in a new tab)) which is more compact and thumb operated. Elecom has way too many different models for me to go into here, but if you’re looking for a customizable mouse, check them out for yourself.
Just like with Logitech’s MX Ergo and its Logitech Options software, you can use the Mouse Wizard (opens in a new tab) software to customize all mouse buttons. In fact, Mouse Assistant works with over 855 different Elecom mice – I told you they have a lot more options.
Even though Mouse Assistant was entirely in Japanese the first time I loaded the program, it was easy to switch to English, even though my profile name is still in Japanese. Once the software is installed, you can fully customize any button on an Elecom mouse.
From shortcuts for copying and pasting to actions like switching apps or minimizing a window, you can do a lot with the press of a single button when using Mouse Assistant. You can even configure your own macros if you select the arbitrary key parameter when programming each button.
Left click, right click and even a far right click
Since I wanted a large, comfortable trackball mouse to use on my main desktop computer, I chose the Elecom EX-G Pro which not only has more customizable buttons but is also cheaper than Logitech’s MX Ergo.
In total, it has eight fully customizable buttons with two above the trackball, one below, a tilting scroll wheel with two buttons, left click, right click, and even far right click. Yes, you read that right, this mouse has an extra click that you can use with your ring finger.
It’s worth noting how Elecom’s naming system works. Its regular models are available with a 2.4GHz USB or Bluetooth dongle while its Pro models come with both. However, you can also use one of the company’s trackball mice in wired mode by plugging in a USB cable.
While I use the EX-G Pro on my main computer, I also use the smaller EX-G on my other computer. It’s really compact and feels great in my little hands. However, it only has six customizable buttons, which will be enough for most people.
Although I’ve been using the EX-G and EX-G Pro for a few weeks, it was another of Elecom’s trackball mice that first caught my eye. During my quest to find my next trackball mouse, I came across the Elecom Relacon.
Unlike the company’s other trackball mice, the Relacon is designed to be used for presentations or other times when you’re not sitting at your PC. It almost looks like a Wii remote or Sony’s less popular PlayStation Move navigation controller for the PS3.
Although it’s smaller than the EX-G or EX-G Pro, it actually has 10 customizable buttons. Below the trackball there’s a tilting scroll wheel and below that you’ll find media controls in the form of play, back, forward and volume up and down buttons. The back of the Relacon is even more interesting as the left click is similar to a trigger and the right click is like a bumper button you’ll find on a game controller. It also comes with a little stand to hold it down in place on your desk.
I mainly used the Relacon to get my digital dashboard set up every morning, but it’s also great fun for browsing the web. I haven’t done a presentation since I was in school but if I have to do one I’ll be sure to bring the Relacon with me.
Sometimes trying a lesser-known brand pays off
When it comes to electronics and other home accessory work, you generally want to stick with more well-known brands. However, it’s worth checking out some of the less popular ones, especially when you have niche interests like me.
Who knows, maybe you’ll stumble upon a company you really like that has exactly the type of product you’ve been looking for. This has certainly been the case with Elecom and me and no, this article was not sponsored by them. I just wanted to give you more options if you’re looking for a trackball mouse and this is especially true for lefties as Logitech doesn’t even make a lefty version of the MX Ergo.