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Mice are fun. You simply can't argue with their inherent cuteness. Also, in computer terms, they're probably as important as the wheel; better yet, they even have wheels. But they didn't always, and that's the point. Computer mice are an evolving species, and they're doing it a lot faster than their furry four-legged counterparts (seeing as furry mice are hyper-intelligent pan-dimensional beings, I doubt that - ed).
We've moved from two buttons to as many as nine (as seen on the Logitech G9), from balls to optical to laser, serial to USB, and from no wheels to vertically and horizontally adjustable four-way ‘microgear' ones (as used by the MX Revolution). Heck, these days we even have 3D mice, as seen in our review of the 3Dconnexion SpaceNavigator 3D Mouse.
But arguably, the revolution all started with Microsoft. Before Logitech became the dominant player it is today, Microsoft's IntelliMouse ruled supreme, even leading to the widespread adoption of the beloved scroll wheel. And today we're looking at a mouse that represents the pinnacle of Microsoft's know-how, incorporating many of the aforementioned technologies; the Wireless Laser Mouse 6000 (V2).
Of course, Microsoft has a 7000 out. And an 8000 (which we reviewed as part of the Microsoft Wireless Entertainment Desktop 7000 - and no, that's not a typo; the Desktop 7000 includes the 8000 mouse - go figure). Why then are we reviewing the 6000? Simply because, much like Logitech's G5 and G7, they are different products aimed at different users.
So how does the 6000 relate to its higher-numbered cousins? On a superficial level, they all have different styling and colour-schemes, of which my personal favourite would be the black 7000 with its metallic highlights. By contrast, the 6000, while not ugly by any means, is somewhat less attractive.
In terms of technology, though they're all 2.4GHz wireless, the 8000 is a Bluetooth mouse, while the other two are RF. Between the 6000 and 7000, the distinction can simply be summed up as follows: if you want your mouse to be portable, buy the former. Otherwise, go for the visually more appealing 7000, which features a recharging cradle.