Magic Mouse – A designer’s nightmare review

So, I decided to get a magic mouse as well to accompany me in this new Mac-ish experience I’ve started of late. Aside from the fact that getting it meant going through all kinds of hell with the courier (on that on my other blog, Anti-Turma), I had some very high hopes set for this tiny piece of engineering.

Design & Ergonomics

I can’t say I’m disappointed by the design. Its tasty with a side of drool. It’s like a jewel. Very high quality build, look and feel. No complaints in this department, but the ergonomics are complete and utter shit. Its very very shallow and doesn’t feel well in my hand. Given that most of my life I’ve only used gaming-grade mice, this particular one struck me as a cumbersome experience. Being heavy and the weight being distributed along the whole of the mouse, it feels like trying to move a brick around the table. Not cool at all.

It’s noteworthy to add the fact that this mouse has a lot of gestures that enable it to be more productive, which is great, but at the same time, those really crap ergonomics, make it a nuisance and hinder in usage. The low profile makes it virtually impossible to slide with 2 fingers from app to app without moving the mouse at the same time. This is crap ! Apple, what the fk were you thinking ? Same goes for the single-finger swipe to go back or forward. It happened to me several times. Would’ve been nice if the front profile would’ve been higher so as not to strain the finger(s) and move the mouse around.

Another annoying this is the fact that the whole damn surface is one huge button. I can’t rest my fingers on it without making it click, especially because I got heavier fingers/hands and I do sometimes feel the need to not click anything, you know ?!


Again, comparing it to gaming-grade mice, it falls short of being able to set the dpi on the fly. This is especially useful when playing but also when doing illustration. Illustrator has some very cool vectoring tools, that need a mouse with a very low DPI setting to work properly and have accuracy. The only thing that is adjustable and not on the fly, is the tracking speed, which is not the same thing and it somehow does a weird combination between the windows cursor acceleration and the pointer speed. Not ideal.

What would also be nice was if the mouse had the start-stop switch redesigned. If you just cut your fingernails, its some kind of special hell to have to turn it off and on. Also, it doesn’t have a lithium-ion battery pack, but runs on regular joe batteries. This is both positive and negative, depending on the situation. I wouldn’t have minded if it would’ve used a 3200 amp li-ion battery charging through USB/Lightning to the Mac. Also, why not include VOOC ? Its a device you use every day, so it gets depleted fast. Would be nice to be able to charge from 0 to Hero in 1 hour. In that way, it feels a bit stone age.

On the other hand, if you really ran out of juice on your mouse, you can just pop open a bunch of batteries and start it right up back again if saaay, your laptop was shut. But then, if you wouldn’t have any juice left in your Macbook, what would you possibly want to do with the mouse ? Its only compatible with Mac computers anyway ?


Even with all its inconveniences and annoyances, the Magic Mouse is still a nice thing to have, especially if you really hate wires and are not an OCD designer that wants all his vector knots looking spic and span. I would even go as far as to say this a perfect mouse for desk and everyday office work, as well as programming. Its very easy to switch from a desktop to the other with a flick of a… well 2 fingers. Provided the mouse doesn’t go wild and starts to slide away during the gesture like it did in my case.

The Magic Mouse feels very nice on web pages and when editing a lot of documents. The reason for that is because, there, you need little to no precision and the gestures are really helping your productivity jolt forward. So I’d say, if you’re a secretary or someone who’s handling copious amounts of text, do get it. It will save you quite some time.

If you’re a graphic designer, in love with product design, like me, and have hopes of using it as a every day tool, I have bad news for you. You will want your money back and will want to throw it out the window. Its that bad. Its quite shit for you, really. Unless you do a lot of traveling. Then it’s ok-ish. But even then, I would rather recommend getting the Logitech Performance MX instead. Its wireless too, and it’s far, far superior in terms of ergonomics and functionality. You can see some specs here: Logitech Performance MX Wireless Mouse – Product page

In conclusion

The Magic Mouse is a decently-performing, stunningly-looking mouse. It will not cure aids, it will not help you become a better anything, and it will definitely not help you automagically conjure up design out of thin air. Get real. It’s just a mouse. A decent one, but only a mouse. Make of it what you will, I for one, will go back to my trusty Roccat Kone XTD.

Ergonomics: 4/10

Design: 10/10

Features: 7/10

Overall Performance: 7/10

Accuracy: 6/10

Battery life: 0/10 Obs: The mouse was new, and so were the batteries, which is why, I cannot comment on battery life yet.