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     " Touch Force Optical is a good choice for a new mouse on either your business or gaming machine. "

      Title: Touch Force Optical by Saitek

      Format: USB optical mouse

      Reviewing Monkey: Mojo Jojo

      The Hype: Optical mice are unquestionably the top dog on the heap and are a must for PC gamers everywhere. This version from Saitek also includes a snazzy force feedback option and a full version of MDK2. But is it worth picking up?

      What This Monkey Thought...

      Ergonomics: I have long since stopped wondering who, and by "who" I mean "what microscopically pawed spider monkey", peripherals are built for…but I know it's not for a monkey of my size. At 6' with appropriately sized hands it can be really hard to find anything that fits well, so it was no surprise when this mouse failed to fit like anything near to a glove. Contoured for low hand placement (so that your hand sits way back on the mouse) there are hard lines that are probably dedicated to conforming to smaller paws that decidedly clash with my larger one. Not to be limited to my experience, however, we did pass the mouse around the office so others could try and were surprised to find that no one, despite our vast variation in size, found it really comfortable. The hard contours were just too sharp to fit well with any of us. 2 out of 5

      Features: At the Touch Force's heart is a very standard 3 button and wheel design that is most of what any standard use would want in a mouse. The above and beyond of this particular model, however, is the TouchSense feedback technology that allows the mouse to "ping" and "drag" at the appropriate times. Ideally, this is meant for gamming so that you get physical responses to firing guns, piloting ships, etc. More rationally, however, we've seen people use it for "feeling" their way around window navigations, getting bumps around the outside edges of windows and sticking to interactive portions. Also worth noting, though only for the feeding of geekish ego, is the rather cool color scheme the mouse subscribes to. Silver and a rich blue, the mouse looks cool on the desktop when the computer's off and, more importantly, is ringed by a killer looking blue neon when in use. It's a little thing, I know, but for those of us who work hard to build LAN machines that will awe or opponents, looks are half the battle. 4 out of 5

      Performance: Easy to install and fully functional as a standard mouse, the Touch Force Optical is a good choice for those looking for a no hassle high performance periph. Of course, if you want to enable the TouchSense features, it'll require a bit more fussing. Still, once in place, everything works exceedingly well and gave us a high level of precision and a rugged durability for both work and gaming. 4.5 out of 5

      The Verdict:

       Performing at or near the top across the board, the Touch Force Optical is a good choice for a new mouse on either your business or gaming machine. The feedback technology was fun, the install was a snap, and the precision is second to none. Our only gripe was that the rigid design won't be comfortable for a wide range of gamers, but if it feels good…do it.

      The Good: Great functionality.

      The Bad: In a design that will not appeal to everyone.

      The Overall Ugly: Despite the rigid lines I'm still using it on my gaming machine…that says a lot right there.

      What it's Worth: Market

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