Saitek GM 3200
Let’s start with the worst then. The Saitek GM (does it stand for genetically modified?) 3200 is without doubt the ugliest mouse I have ever seen and my best description is: "Resembling a Terry’s Chocolate Orange wrapper". I removed it from its packaging and asked myself - why is this mouse this crazy orange colour? No answer could ever suffice. It’s a big brute too, like a Logitech MX 500 series that's forgotten to go to Weight-Watchers.
I’m not a mouse racist, and thus decided it would be unfair to judge on colour alone. I started by having a look at the button design. The first thing I noticed is the great big spot on the back end of the mouse. This lights up red and blue with the catchy slogan ‘Saitek’. You’ll certainly look cool at your LAN party with that flashing underneath your palm.
The next design issue I encountered are the two buttons running down the centre. The first button, labelled 'Mode', allows you to change the mode of the mouse. This is a feature I wasn’t really able to explore as the mouse drivers failed to install on any of the computers I tried to use it on. That's three PCs, folks - not good for a mouse driver
. The other button controls the DPI. This, thankfully, did work and allowed me to turn the sensitivity of the mouse up and down on the fly.
Unfortunately, the one thing that worked on the GM 3200 comes with a massive flaw. Due to its location I found my fat fingers brushing the DPI button whenever I went to click the mouse wheel. As a result, when playing in games, my mouse speed could suddenly change making me completely lose my bearings.
The mouse has a weight alteration system, as you can see in the pictures. It's quite a simple mechanic that allows you to remove weights from either the front or the rear of the mouse so that you can customise it to feel as heavy or as light as you deem necessary. As far as weight systems go, this is fine, but we prefer the slightly more elegant solution seen in Creative's 1010 (more on that later).
The nail in the coffin is the fact that the mouse is the most uncomfortable thing I have ever held in my hand. It’s bulbous, forcing the palm of your hand upwards, making your fingers pivot down. I can see what Saitek tried to do here, mimicking Logitech’s popular MX 500 series, but they have failed miserably. This is both ugly, difficult to use, difficult to install and generally offended me in ways I didn’t know a mouse could.
RTS & FPS
The performance in games was always going to be hindered by the distasteful design issues. I could never recommend you go and buy this product but if, for some bizarre reason, an Aunt who knows nothing about computing does give it to you at Christmas, then all I can say is that it does operate in games. If you have no other mouse at all and you’re absolutely desperate to play, you can use this.
That’s about the limit of it though. In terms of price the Saitek is cheap, in comparison to the rivals, but then why would you ever want to pay for it at all? We found it on Dabs for £23.58
- the ideal Christmas present for your worst enemy.