I use a mouse a lot with my work, it feels like it’s glued to my hand between 9-5 – I don’t really do all that much in the way of typing (blogging aside), it’s just hours and hours of moving things around and clicking away. I’m constantly worried about RSI, I have a wrist rest with my mouse that certainly helps – but I still get twinges. I was approached by Penclic, who make a range of ergonomic equipment to test out their Penclic R3 Wireless Mouse, it looked pretty awesome, and I thought that, as a designer, something more ‘pen’ like might suit me better.
In the box you have the Penclic R3 Wireless Mouse, a USB Wireless receiver, a rechargeable AAA battery and a retractable Micro USB Cable (for charging). Its just a case of plug and play. You can charge the Mouse as you use it, which is super handy, I’ve found mine lasts about a week on a single charge – which is fine by me!
Now.. Using the Penclic R3 Wireless Mouse definitely takes time, it’s essentially like a tiny mouse with a pen attached, the left and right click are either side of the pen, and the scroll wheel sits in the middle. It’s a very weird thing to use, especially coming from a mouse, and I’ll admit to being a bit annoyed with it for a few days. You then get to a point where something ‘clicks’ (hah!) and you’re using it with the precision of a pen. My thumb is now my ‘right’ click and my middle the ‘left’ click, and it really works well – as I say, it’s certainly not something you’ll ‘get’ immediately. Also, because I’ve not written for any length of time since leaving school, I had that pen holding soreness you get when writing out an essay in one hit – but this too subsided after a few days use.
I’ve also found that I can ditch my wrist rest / mouse pad because I don’t feel those aches and pangs of pain that I used to with a mouse – it’s definitely something worth looking at if you’re a designer. There are also three different DPI modes which alter the speed / accuracy of it which can be selected by a switch at the bottom which is helpful too – mine’s set in the middle.
To save battery life, after ten minutes of no use the Penclic R3 Wireless Mouse goes into ‘sleep’ mode, and is woken by a single click of the mouse, if you’re planning on not using for longer, there is an ‘On/Off’ switch at the bottom too.
I think my only gripe really is the Micro USB cable – because of the curve on the Penclic, it’s got a larger plug than a standard Micro USB, so you HAVE to use the supplied cable to charge – which for one that uses a standard connection, that isn’t entirely standard is a bit of a pain in the bum. Certainly not a show stopper, but worth mentioning!
So, if you use a mouse a lot it’s really worth looking at a Penclic R3 Wireless Mouse – the way your hand is positioned whilst using it, would certainly help combat RSI and I’ve definitely noticed a difference after using it for a month or so. DOn’t be put off if you don’t ‘get’ it straight away, it’s very odd going from having a mouse to essentially a pen that controls everything! It works across platforms, so will play nicely with Windows, iOS, Linux and even on my Chromebook.
It’s available in Wired (D3), Wireless (like mine) (R3), and Bluetooth (B3) flavours, so if your computer / laptop has inbuilt Bluetooth it might be worth considering that to save a USB socket for a cable / dongle. The RRP of the Penclic R3 Wireless Mouse is £59.99, although a bit of Googling should help you find a better price!
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