Contour Rollermouse Free Review

Contour Rollermouse Free Review

Posted by Human Solution on Jan 11th 2010

Contour Design gave our office the new Rollermouse Free to try out. We originally resisted any type of switch like this because we’re all such fans of the Evoluent mouse, but we gave it a go.

After a month or so, we feel like we’ve got a pretty good handle on the ins and outs of the Rollermouse Free. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Central location - instead of worrying about stressing one hand with mousing, you get to spread the workload to both hands. Previously, making any effort to learn how to mouse with my recessive hand was slow and tedious. With this user-friendly mouse, I had no problems putting my left hand to work. The placement of the mouse in front of the keyboard makes it easily accessible with both hands.
  • More shortcuts - the Rollermouse Free offers copy, paste, single and double-click buttons to further reduce keystrokes and increase productivity. This innovative mouse also offers a scroll wheel with a clickable scroll lock.
  • Three places to click - you can click the trackbar, the single click button or the double click button. This is a great feature because you use different fingers to click, instead of stressing one finger repetitively. Using the trackbar to double click isn’t completely accurate because you can accidentally move the cursor while clicking. That’s never bothered me though, since I also have the click and double-click buttons to use.
  • Precise cursor movement - the trackbar lets you quickly move the cursor with ease. I can fly around my two monitors. If I ever hit the end of the trackbar before I reach my destination, I simply push the trackbar against the end of its track and it adjusts the cursor over on your screen. This is a great mouse to consider for graphic design or any applications that require precision and steady cursor movement. It’s like the designers combined the two knobs on an Etch-a-Sketch: SCIENCE!
  • Removable palm rests - the palm rests quickly detach from the mouse for travel or to save room on a work surface or keyboard tray. This ergonomic mouse is much smaller than the previous model, the Rollermouse Pro.
  • No software needed - the Rollermouse Free is plug and play, so there is no need to deal with software downloads or find drivers before putting your new mouse to work.
  • Ergonomic design - The Rollermouse Free is made to let users manipulate this mouse without gripping or clutching a device to control the cursor. This eliminates the need to flex your fingers and reduces the strain placed on the carpal tunnel, which ultimately helps avoid problems like numbness, tingling and pain.

While the Rollermouse Free has a lot of nice features it does come with a few cons as well. For starters you’re going to have to be very careful when pairing this with a keyboard. The RollerMouse doesn’t get along well with keyboards that feature integrated palm rests. This wouldn’t be so problematic if it weren’t for the fact that most keyboard models have said feature. It just takes up too much space on the desktop and the keyboard palm rest obstructs the Rollermouse which makes using it with these keyboards a less than ideal experience. If you haven’t bought a keyboard yet this may not be an issue for you but if you have one that you love already, it’s going to be a problem.

Another issue with the RollerMouse Free has to do with keyboard ergonomics. Typically you would want your keyboard to be at or below your elbow height. What ends up happening if you follow this guideline while using the RollerMouse is that you get a slight back-bend in your wrist. You can mitigate this by raising your keyboard up slightly via a keyboard tray or something similar but then you run the risk of your keyboard being up too high.

While we can appreciate the features of the RollerMouse Free, we still recommend the Evoluent Vertical Mouse. It works with virtually any keyboard configuration or set up and comes in a wireless version for convenience. In short, the Evoluent is made to fit your workspace rather than your workspace having to fit it. For more mouse recommendations, or information on these two models, feel free to call 800-531-3746 and talk to any of our fine ergonomic experts!

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