- Page 1 OrthoVia OrthoMouse
- Page 2 Buttons, Scrolling & Verdict
As well as holding your hand in a more comfortable position, the OrtheMouse also aims to reduce hand strain by having the buttons use a very light action – achieved by mounting the micro switches right at the base of the buttons thus making use of the law of levers to reduce the effort required. Sadly, as with the sensor, the use of rather poor quality micro switches means a Steel Series Xai, for instance, actually has a much lighter button action. Nevertheless, the OrthoMouse does still feel nice to use in this regard.
The final nod to better ergonomics on this mouse is its lack of a scroll wheel, which are notorious for really exacerbating finger pain from using a mouse. Instead OrthoVia has implemented a rather clever system whereby you press the button above your thumb to scroll up and below your thumb to move down. Press your thumb in and you have a conventional ‘middle’ button for ‘soft scrolling’ (a directional icon appears and you merely move the mouse in the direction you’d like to scroll) and whatever other functions you normally have a middle button for. Double and triple tapping the up and down buttons makes the scrolling faster giving you enough variation in pace that after a little bit of acclimatisation you don’t feel too hampered, though of course it doesn’t quite feel as intuitive or accurate as a proper scroll wheel.
All told, the OrthoMouse is certainly the most usable of all the ergonomic mice we’ve ever tested. From pointer movement, through button pressing and scrolling, it’s accomplished enough that day to day office work is not adversely affected like on many alternatives. It’s certainly a different story when it comes to gaming as accuracy and speed just aren’t sufficient. Likewise graphics professionals that are constantly using their mouse for accurate work would probably find it a little frustrating, though arguably they should be using a graphics tablet anyway.
The only stumbling block for the OrthoMouse then is its price. At around £105, it’s more expensive than any mouse we can think of bar the extraordinary Razer Mamba and for that money we’d want slightly better build quality with those non-slip rubber sections we mentioned, better micro-switches, and ideally a better sensor. Obviously one should be prepared to pay a little bit extra for a specialist tool but even so, this is a little too much for our liking.
The OrthoVia OrthoMouse is an effective way of reducing wrist and finger pain when spending all day using a mouse. It also offers better accuracy and general usability than many ergonomic mouse alternatives. However, it is a little too pricey for our liking, even accepting the premium for a niche product.
Score in detail