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what's the best mouse for a macbook pro?

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I do a lot of 3D archvis, 2D CAD, graphics, etc. and have used Kensington's programmable Turbo Ball with the heavy 2"+/- ball (current model no. K64325) for years. I think it is less than ?75/$150. No complaints here.

MacBook Pro, 2.16GHz, 2GB, Mac OS 10.4.11

VectorWorks2008 SP2 (Build 83388) Fundamentals/Architect/Renderworks

Cinema 4D v10.111

VrayForC4D 1.0876

Maxwell Render v1.6.1, C4D/M~R plugin v1.6f4

Fryrender 1.9.1

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As a long-term Mac user, I've found that all kinds of crud can impair the moving parts of the Mac mouse which is standard issue (as well as others brands with a moving "ball & socket"). No matter how often you purge it of cat hair, etc., it will continue to be possessed. The best mouse I've ever used is the Kensington Pilot Mouse Optical #72127. It's quite old, but performs flawlessly.

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For whatever reason my own Apple scroll-ball mice at work and home have always worked perfectly well, but I've seen plenty of these mice go tits up when crap gets stuck in the ball seat. I've also seen plenty of people struggle immensely with the idea that they can be configured for more than one button, yet seemingly only have one button.

The mouse seems to be one area where, try as they might, Apple seem unable to submit to form follows function.

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I have used a cordless mac mighty mouse for a long time now and couldn't be more satisfied...and it's actually a useful 4 button mouse. Maybe the fourth button (squeeze) is not that great - i have it turned off.

The problem is keeping the ball clean. But this is a simple way with perfect result:


I recommend a very damp cloth with detergent to start with, then a dry one to finish. Let it dry for a few minutes and it's as new.

Otherwise Kensington mice are good too. I used them before Apple understood the need for more than one button.

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On the manky mighty mouse problem...

Being involved with steel & oil etc. a lot my keyboard and mouse go through the mill. The latest Mac keyboard (titanium thing, looks like a Mac Pro box) is excellent in this regard, utterly bomb proof and easy to clean, much better than the older tall white keys and clear plastic thing which was impossible. The mouse is entertaining. Quick way to reinvigorate the scroll ball is to unplug the rodent, turn it upside down and vigourously rub it's scroll ball on a clean sheet of paper in all directions; keep going until there's no more tracks left on the paper. I find this way is more reliable than the detergent based methods but that's probably because I gum mine up with oil rather than more household grot.

Other than the occasional de-clagging the mouse has been no problem whatsoever but the side buttons are virtually unusable - I click them by accident all the time.

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