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Four-way Gaming Mouse Roundup: G9X, XAI, Abyssus and SideWinder X8 (Page 2)

By: Nathan Davison from May 19, 2010 @ 6:05 CDT

Logitech's G9X

The G9X is quite the intriguing mouse when looking at the retail package. The box opens up like a menu detailing all the specs and information needed to get a geek's heart racing, and also offers a quick glimpse into what the package contains - which is quite a lot. Other than the software disc and the mouse itself, the G9X package comes with two grips/shells and a neatly organized sardine can-like container with an assortment of 4g and 7g weights.


Not one for following instruction manuals, it took me a few minutes to figure out how the G9X's weight system worked, which involves removing the grip from the mouse body and pushing in the weight slot so it pops out. From there you can insert up to four weights, which means you can add up to 28g to the mouse body. I've got to say, this is a very impressive feature of the G9X which has an impact that shouldn't be understated; one of the biggest factors when it comes to finding the right mouse for your style is its weight and being able to customize that is fantastic.

Installing the G9X is a breeze and unlike some Logitech peripherals in the past, the software isn't intrusive and 'bloaty'. Available from the Logitech software are comprehensive configuration options covering the ability to define profiles and macros, as well as change settings such as scroll wheel speed and the ability to update the firmware.

The software also lets you define up to 5 DPI speed settings which you can cycle through using two buttons on the G9X near the left mouse button. For those not in the know, this setting dictates how many pixels your cursor moves per inch of real mouse movement. The lowest setting is 200 and the highest is 5700, so you have a large range to choose from.


Really, though, such a range is mostly useless as the realistically acceptable range is going to be much smaller for most gamers. Personally, I like the DPI set at 800 for most, if not all games and don't really see the need to do any adjusting, but it's certainly nice to have the option not only there, but accessible during gameplay without having to resort to any alt-tabbing. Furthermore, the DPI adjustment buttons on the G9X are not easy to accidentally hit, which is another big plus for the design of this mouse.

Like most gaming mice, the G9X will also do up to 1000Hz for its polling rate, which means it has a 1ms response time over the USB connection. This is becoming somewhat of a standard in the quality mouse market, so this is just another notch on the belt of the G9X as a full solution.

As far as the full body design of the mouse goes, it depends on what grip or shell you have attached. The darker, coarser grip has the texture and feel of a slimmer mouse, while the light, smooth and wider-at-the-base grip adds a bit of a chunky feel. Either way, you can't really go wrong as the comfort level for both is top notch, although I personally prefer the wider and smoother grip. One thing to keep in mind here is both grips and the mouse itself are really only designed for right handed gamers, so lefties miss out unfortunately.

With mostly positives covered so far, it's time to point out that there really is little in the way of negatives to cover on the G9X; it really is a quality gaming mouse that Logitech have perfected over their lengthy time and experience making such devices. If there was one aspect lacking perfection, however, it would have to be the scroll wheel, or more specifically, the wheel's function as a button. At times it can be a little difficult to press it down without accidentally scrolling up or down while doing so. The issue seems to be that the wheel button is quite tough to press, so you need to apply significant pressure to achieve a click, which is hard to do from the natural position your hand takes on the mouse. You have to go almost perpendicular with your pressure to get the wheel to click and when you do, the feel and sound is a bit unsatisfying - you really want to be able to hear the click.

This isn't a deal breaker as far as I'm concerned, but it does tend to spoil an otherwise top class mouse, particularly when it forces you to release your cooked grenade unexpectedly in Modern Warfare 2. With that said, however, one cool feature with the G9X's scroll wheel is the fact you can toggle between two tightness settings via a button on the bottom of the mouse. One setting is ultra silky smooth, while the other is the normal "clickety-clack" mouse wheel on most mice out there. So while the wheel can be hard to press down as a button, it is great to use as a scrolling device.


But, back to the negatives, the G9X is also not a wireless mouse, which I know some people must have these days. I'm not one of these people, but I know it's important to some. It doesn't help that the cable is quite prone to tangles, although I can't say during my use of the G9X I ever felt restricted due to the cable tangling. In any case, with two of the other three of the models in this roundup also being wired, it's obviously not a rarity in the gaming mouse market.

At a RRP of $US 99.99, the Logitech G9X is also not the cheapest gaming mouse you'll find, but a quick glimpse on price checking websites here in Australia shows you can almost buy the G9X for $AU 99, so that is obviously not a hard lined pricing level.

Overall, the G9X is a top quality mouse and it's going to be tough to beat. It really offers the complete package with the customization both physically and in its software that the enthusiast gamer craves. However, the G9X has left some room for the rest to jump ahead, but the question is, can they?

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