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andrew.design

3 Button Mouse for the Mac

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Concerning a 3 button mouse that works well with Mac...

I used Maya for a while and I actually used my Wacom Tablet Mouse and it worked perfectly. Its a simple 3 button mouse (middle button also a wheel) that is actually wireless with no battery (the tablet uses magenetics I believe). The buttons worked perfectly for Maya (as well as other apps - e.g. I set my middle button for Expose').

 

Drawback (of course) - Wacom Tablet ~ $300.

 

As a side note though, My tablet was EASILY the best money spent on my computer and I would HIGHLY recommend it to anyone that uses there computer for more than the basics. A Standard tablet comes with a mouse AND a pen which you can use interchangebly (The tablet recognizes what is present automatically and instantly). As I mentioned above - almost magically - neither use batteries. As a graphic designer there really isn't anything about it I don't like. I could go on but I will let ya'll check it out for yourselves on their site if you are interested.

 

My tablet ran me $310.00 (U.S.) and has been worth every cent.

Huge props to Wacom for creating such an amazing product.

~`Andrew.,.,.

 

(And No - Wacom isn't paying me either ;)

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Something you may consider is the USB Overdrive X driver for your current 3 button mouse of choice.

 

From the Web site www.usboverdrive.com: "The USB Overdrive X is a driver for Mac OS X (Jaguar, Panther and Tiger) that handles any USB mouse, trackball, joystick and gamepad from any manufacturer and lets you configure them either globally or on a per-application basis. ...."

 

I haven't used it to configure a mouse, but it works great on my Cyborg joystick, you can program anything on it. It does cost $20 though.

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I have three machines that I use the Contour Unimouse on. It's very comfortable, rugged and all three buttons are completely programmable. I'd highly recommend it. I picked them up from Fryes here in SoCal at about $30 each. I couldn't live without them working 10 hr days. Fully compatable with the OSX's including Tiger.

 

They have a Unimouse Optical for $35 too. See link below:

 

http://www.contourdesign.com/unimouse-opt.htm

 

Also I agree with Andrew above. I have a 9x12 Wacom tab with the 3 but mouse and it works fine, but it's a bit clunky compared to the Contour. I tend to go back and forth between the Contour and the pen. The only downside about the Contour is that your wired. Your choice.

 

Good-luck,

Tony

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if you can, avoid this Kensington mouse.

 

http://www.kensington.com/html/4769.html

 

it's got your left and right buttons, a scroll pad instead of a scroll wheel, and a small third button below the pad. i bought this a couple of years ago, and although it's programmable, it didn't agree with me very well.

 

using the pad to scroll actually takes some effort as the pad isn't very sensitive. the third button is also oddly placed and you feel like you have to go out of your way to get to it. i ended up just giving it to my roommate and he seemed to like it more on his PC for some reason.

 

i wish i had some kind of recommendation, but at least i can eliminate one from the list.

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Currently I'm using a mouse from MacMice.com (which forwards to http://www.dvforge.com/products.shtml ) called "The Mouse". It's virtually the same profile as the standard Apple mouse. It has 2 buttons and a scrollwheel which can be programmed to act as the third button. Love the slim design, but its not as "beefy" as my previous Kensingtons...

 

Of course, you could check out the "Contour Design UniMouse" which is a true 3 button mouse, though the size is larger than the standard Apple mouse. The direct link is http://www.contourdesign.com/perfit-new.htm

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i made a new thread about this under Hardware when i heard your problem on the podcast. i said...

 

i was listening to the 7/13 podcast and i heard someone was having a probelm with getting a 3-button mouse working for Maya. i am an avid Maya user and i use a Kensington 5 button mouse which works fine. i don't think i have ever used a 3 button mouse that did not work with Maya. i was wonder what the problem was with the mice used.

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From listener Matt via email:

As for a 3 button mouse for the MAYA listener, WACOM tablet folks

make a wireless 3 button mouse to work with their tablets. It comes

bundled with the tablet as well as the pen stylus. Maybee a thought...

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as suggested: usboverdrive works very well. the logitech driver is junk: uninstall it, reboot and use usboverdrive. i have used several models of logitech with usbdrive, and all the buttons, including the wheel button can be configured as desired.

 

cheers,

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Something you may consider is the USB Overdrive X driver for your current 3 button mouse of choice.

 

This is what I was going to suggest. I use it with my 5 button Microsoft mouse and used to use it with my Logitech Trackman Marble, until I bought a Logitech keyboard. Unfortunatley Logitech's drivers are bundled (keyboard & mouse) and they override USB Overdrive.

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Hey All,

 

I've posted this on the shownotes comments before noticing this forum link, so ignore if you've already read it there :wink:

 

I have used Maya on the Mac and it has features to allow usage with a mouse using one two or three buttons. Go into Maya's preferences and select the main Interface category and at the bottom is your list of choices. This will allow you to navigate in Maya with any mouse button choice.

 

Another thing is that with mice from Logitech and Microsoft, I have been able to use them fine and I can use the MMB in Maya no problems. The key is to not install their drivers. If you have, uninstall them completely and restart your Mac. OS X has great support for multi-button mice natively and I've had success using a wireless keyboard/mouse combo from Logitech as well as corded versions of both without issue until I installed the drivers.

 

What might be the problem is that Logitech and MS have deemed that you don't want to use the third button (Middle mouse button or click on the scrollwheel) as a third button click, but usually a double left click or some other thing they think you're incapable of performing by yourself. This problem has existed on both the PC and Mac platforms. If you can set it in the drivers (Logitech didn't have this supported correctly last time I tried their drivers on the Mac hence why I recommend not using them at all anyway) then please do so... it should be MMB = MMB click.

 

USB Overdrive is a great application and can help map any extra buttons (4th/5th buttons, etc) and AFAIR, the Kensington drivers do not rewire the buttons by default (hence why they work :wink: )

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From listener Michael via email:

I heard a post from a 3D user, Bill, in need of a true three button mouse.

I have a Logitech MX 510 mouse and absolutely love it. It is lightweight,

tracks well, and has 8 fully programmable buttons plus a scroll wheel. Only

drawback is that you can't program buttons per application but this can be

overcome with a program called USB overdrive (can be used with just about

any mouse to program it). Since my mouse has so many buttons I program

undo/redo, etc. right on the mouse. I suspect that your Logitech mouse can

be used as true three button mouse as well. The trick is that you have to

program the the mouse to use the third button as it not the default

configuration. It is simple just go to Logitech Control Center, Select the

Optical Mouse to configure, Click configure, Go to button you want to

configure, Click on the row of the button you want to configure in the

assigned actions column, change it to advanced click, and in the panel below

select 3 under button number. You actually set all 8 buttons on my mouse (I

personally set the third button to when you press the the click wheel).

Third button also offers built-in functionality in many Apple apps so play

around with it in different apps. Kensington and Microsoft mice are garbage

compared to Logitech mice.. Your productivity in 3D apps will sky rocket

once you get a good multi-button mouse. I had same problem with different

app until I got mine and never looked back. It you use your Mac to make a

living buy a good true mega-button mouse will be one of the best investments

you will make because of increased productivity.

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I also recommend buying a wacom tablet for Maya, but I actually use the stylus instead of the mouse. The tip is used as the primary (left) button and then the 2 buttons on the side of the stylus are used for the right and center button function. I am very comfortable working this way, and I feel that there is a lot less carpal tunnel impact than using a mouse. Wacom tablets rock!

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I use Maya 6.5 on my Mac, and I use a Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer

optical mouse. It's better than a "true" 3 button mouse because you

can use the scroll wheel to zoom in and out. The viewports,

Hypergraph, Hypershade, and Graph Editor allow you to zoom in and out

by scrolling the wheel. I find this useful to quickly zoom in and out.

The scroll wheel also works as the middle mouse button when you click

it, and this mouse is supported natively in OSX, no driver installs

needed. It was pretty cheap when I bought it, about $29 (CDN). Make

sure you get the wired version, though, I don't like the wireless one

that much, it has a different feel to it that I just don't like.

As to a Wacom tablet, Paint Effects has pressure sensitivity, but that's the only thing I've been using a Wacom tablet for in Maya. I'm more comfortable using the mouse.

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I also am using the MacMice mouse. I have the Bluetooth version. I really like it and it has the three buttons (the scroll wheel also doubles as a button) but the only drawback is that is really sucks battery power. I soon purchased rechargable batteries because I was changing them once a week. Other than that it is a nice looking and very funtional mouse. For accuracy you might want to avoid the BT version and get one with a tail because the BT can make the cursor jump sometimes.

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Logitec would be a great choice. Since you recently switched to the mac platform, I assume that you may still use the PC, (or at least still have it around as a door stop.) Logitec's products are cross-platform compatible, so it can be used on both. I have a keyboard and 4 button mouse on my PC, and when I heard your query, I decided to test it on my mac. It works fine, but the laser isn't too sensitive, so you may need a mouse pad, or something to help the optical unit. But all-in-all its a great mouse, completely customizable and if you buy it with a keyboard, you'll have a great setup going. Its all wireless too, so There's very little clutter. I've had my setup for about 2 years and battery life has been great.

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I think it's funny, because apple says on their Shake 4 website Under "tech Specs"

Mac OS X

Power Mac G5; Power Mac G4 or PowerBook G4 with 1GHz or faster PowerPC G4 processor

Mac OS X v10.3.9 or Mac OS X v10.4

QuickTime 7.0 or later

512MB of RAM or more

1GB of available disk space for caching and for temporary files

AGP graphics card with at least 32MB of video memory and OpenGL hardware acceleration

Display with 1280-by-1024-pixel resolution and 24-bit color

Three-button mouse

Optional: AJA Kona or Blackmagic DeckLink card required to preview composites on a broadcast video monitor

 

I just think it's funny that apple doesn't sell one of their own as an option for professional users, that they can just go and buy, the ocmputer would come with a 1 button one (like now) but they can go and buy the apple 3 button, anyway, jjust thought I would add that in.

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Apple is not generally like everyone else as evident in the design of their systems and the single click mouse. The reason that we do not have a mouse with two buttons and a scroll wheel as of yet is because they have not figured out how to give us two different clicks without buttons on the top of the mouse and a scroll feature without the wheel. :D

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Apple is not generally like everyone else as evident in the design of their systems and the single click mouse.  The reason that we do not have a mouse with two buttons and a scroll wheel as of yet is because they have not figured out how to give us two different clicks without buttons on the top of the mouse and a scroll feature without the wheel.  :D

 

Well, looks like your proposition from merely 1/2 a month ago has now been answered...

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Apple is not generally like everyone else as evident in the design of their systems and the single click mouse.  The reason that we do not have a mouse with two buttons and a scroll wheel as of yet is because they have not figured out how to give us two different clicks without buttons on the top of the mouse and a scroll feature without the wheel.  :D

 

Well, looks like your proposition from merely 1/2 a month ago has now been answered...

 

Yea... this is kind of freaky, huh? I was just messing around when I posted that. It is weird when I look back on it and see exactly how right on the money that post was. Weird! :shock:

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