A Mouse In The House: USB Logitech Trackball Review


A simple USB mouse.  An ordinary tool but tough to use with stiff and achy hands. After I had to have surgery on my right wrist I wasn’t able to use my right hand for over a month. It was supposed to be ‘routine’ outpatient surgery, and my recovery should have been quick, but nothing is routine with me or my body. I’ve learned to laugh when doctors or even friends use it in reference to my various ailments. It was around this time that I found a USB Logitech trackball mouse for under $30 at my local computer store, but it could be found on any number of online stores. It just made my life easier.

Fast forward four years later and I am still using the same style mouse but this time I am battling a severe shoulder injury and active RA (Rheumatoid Arthritis). This time, being able to use the trackball when my joints are swollen and stiff has enabled me to keep in touch with my friends online while I recover from shoulder surgery and near constant RA flare. With just the small touch of my fingers and roll of the ball, I can move the cursor over the laptop and read tweets and articles from others just like myself. Just by plugging in this mouse even on days when I can barely move and turning on the laptop, I can reach out and feel connected to people who understand.

With an easy roll of the mouse, I give the USB Logitech Mouse Trackball 5 pain-free spoons.  You can buy aLogitech Trackman Marble Mouse on Amazon.com or any other online retailer.




Article Written by Staff Writer, Christina Stevens

Christina  is married with 3 young children while managing moderate to severe Rheumatoid Arthritis.  While technically a stay at home mom, shevolunteers as instructor chair for a weekend event with Women in the Outdoors, an amateur radio operator and writer.  You can find her on twitter at @ss_sunset or on Facebook at CSSunset.

  • Cigar Dave

    Dear Logitech,
    This was the best mouse ever (for those that used them). I had a 3 button variant I got back in ~1998 and used it until it fell apart and got this one ~2006 until the left button had to be shimmed about 4 times in order for it to click. This isn’t a complaint against it, but rather a testament to how good this thing was. I did eventually toss it because I didn’t think it was going to be hard to get a new one.
    I hope the guy who “has the patent” is happy with himself and I hope he never has a working mouse again in his life.
    Where is the mouse that this one conflicts with? I’ve never seen it. How can there be a patent conflict with a device that doesn’t exist? I looked at the legaleze nonsense from the lawsuit and its just a bunch of jibberish bs.
    This mouse went for ~$25 and, with the amount of demand, you could charge as much as you do for that wireless equivalent which isn’t as good in my opinion.
    Good business is where you make it.
    Figure it out.

  • hochschulabschusshabender

    I use the track man wheel since 12 years, no problems ! May be, your one was “made in China”.

  • Sky

    I might add that I have been using the wireless blue ball version. Apparently, many people have problems with this one and they say, the wired version was much better, which I never used but since it is not available now, avoid the one with the blue ball.

  • Sky

    I used to love Logitech products and I was particlarly fond of this trackball mouse which I have used for 3 years now, but alas, this was the second one in 3 years which has become defective after a year and a half of use. In my country, this product costs $100 to buy and paying a hundred bucks every other year or so for a mouse is not my understanding of a solid quality product. It seems they are either too fragile or it is built in that they would go bust after a short while so people keep buying new ones. Shame on you, Logitech. My advice is do NOT buy this product. Look for an alternative.

  • strjon

    I’ve been using this trackball for 13 years. I got it in 2001 after my mouse was leading me to carpal tunnel problems. The worst thing Logitech ever did was stop making them. Now they make a wireless version of this with a blue ball. Although the new wireless version is more reliable than the old red ball wireless version, the materials used on the trackman aren’t nearly as good and the trackman is smaller. The blue ball can’t be compared to the Red Ball Wired Usb version. I guess Logitech needed to cut corners and make things more cheaply.

  • Nancy

    I have 2 of these, one I use for my laptop and one for my desktop. I do quite a bit of design work and this mouse is the only one for me.

  • Brandon R Buckley

    I love this mouse I just wish the link wasn’t to a different mouse, it would be nice to have a link to the actually mouse shown in the picture, but hey what can you expect common sense is still a mystery.

  • King

    My employer purchased a Trackman marble wheel back in ’96 to address pain issues in my right arm. I’ve never looked back. Since then I’ve purchased more than a dozen thumb activated Logitech devices for myself and all my family. Everyone loves them, especially my wife, who never has a clear spot on her desk to set a mouse. No one needs mouse pads. Now, we’re all using the wireless model. I have three workstations in our home office and none of the wireless 570s or wireless keyboards have any trouble playing nicely in the same small space. My only complaint is that since the wireless 570 model came out these devices have become pricey. I’m glad I have our wired models in sandwich bags in storage just in case.

  • Aruvqan

    I absolutely LOVE this mouse!!! It is both wonderful sitting on the bed table next to my laptop, or if I am somewhere and crunched for space, it sits happily on my thing or the arm of the chair. I love how accurate the thumb located trackball is for moving around the screen – I play MMORPGs [EVE Online and LOTRO] and I adore never having to move the mouse around on a surface! I can’t understand people wanting something like a regular mouse after using one of these for about 10 years! They are around $35 delivered, which is quite reasonable in cost as well [at least for USA people] @Beth – Different strokes =) I can’t manage the forefinger version you favor but my [now passed] 88 year old father loved his forefinger version.

  • Beth

    I have not tried the trackball pictured but I do have a logitech trackball mouse. It’s the one that has the marble in the middle, not on the side. I have to say, it is the BEST!! I did try the one you control with your thumb but it required more hand movement and I just couldn’t seem to move my thumb properly. It felt like it does when I try to write with my left hand instead of my right, just unnatural.

    The one I have, I have had for almost TEN years. It just broke this week. It’s still usable, but doesn’t move as smoothly so I will be replacing it. Thankfully, W*lmart still sells them (online). This particular mouse uses your index finger to move the trackball and your thumb rests on the left click button. I can not rave enough about how wonderful this mouse is. I couldn’t use a computer without it.

  • Sandra

    I just bought one of these yesterday and at first found it a bit difficult but by the end of the day I am absolutely loving it. I am always on the lookout for new technology or other things to help me – like curved keyboards and now a new mouse. Thank you so much for the information!

  • Fran

    I’m just getting used to using a quill mouse at the moment – which arrived this morning provided courtesy of the OU – a trackball was just too big for me to use and on a bad day a normal mouse is worse than useless !!!

  • Elaina B

    I brought this one to work with me, at my own expense. It seriously saves my hands every day! If I have to use someone else’s computer I notice instantly that my hands will hurting afterwards. I recommend it to Risk Management all the time!

  • Morag

    I can’t use a mouse at all but use lots of keyboard shortcuts and mousekeys. Go to Control Panel – Accesibility – mouse keys.

  • Sarah

    I have the sort with the ball on top, so that I barely have to use my thumb. My employer bought it for me (along with a mass of other bits and pieces) as reasonable adjustments to my workplace.
    I adore it and really couldn’t get by at work without it!

  • Tracie

    I stopped using my trackball after several years of use. But I loved it. I started using it because of wrist pain, stopped when the pain in my thumbs (even after De Quervain’s surgery) got too bad.

    I now use a little, light, cordless mouse by Logitech, the M215. I get a better range of motion with it.

    Use what works for you!

  • sue

    i love my mouse i couldnt live without it i have the mouse that has the ball ontop…its annoying when i have to use my moms mouse..once you go tracball you wot go back…ive had my mouse for 15yrs

  • Christina,
    I love my Logitech mouse. It makes a world of difference in computer work. I am on the computer for hours per day doing book marketing and writing. It makes a difference.
    With fibromyalgia anything that makes life easier is a friend to me! lol
    God bless you,

  • I have a Logitech MX1100 mouse that I love so much that I bought a second one after I wore out the first one in a year. It doesn’t have the marble (my thumbs don’t work that way) but it does have a wheel on the top that you can change the button and free wheel or hit the button again to do single clicks. It is a huge handset, cordless and the set up disk gives you 10 “hot button” items. Love it, love it, love it. There is no drag to it that you would have with a cord. Cannot recommend it highly enough! I do not have the hand pain that plagued me with the corded mouse that was too small for my hand. I still wear my splints at night so it hasn’t cured everything. I smashed my left thumb 20 years ago, I’ve had 2 failed surgeries and my right hand (dominant) has been going downhill for 5 to 6 years now and I refuse to have surgery. My friends have assured me that they will not be available for potty duty so I have to take care of what I have. This has been a God-send. Thanks for posting, everybody needs to know about these convenient variations on a common mouse. 5+ SPOONS