Review: aLLreLi M910BU Vertical Mouse

I’ve been a fairly satisfied trackball user for a number of years, so when the folks at aLLreLi approached me to review their M910BU Vertical Mouse, I was intrigued.

Typically, gamers buy vertical mice because they have better ergonomics (a contour grip) and quick access to multiple buttons. I am not a gamer, but the idea of being able to assign functionality to each button was something I was most curious about. Within a few days, the aLLreLi M910BU showed up at my doorstep.

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Inside the box are a small CD containing Windows drivers, an instruction booklet, and the mouse itself. This particular model is a wired unit and connects to your computer via USB.

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The M910BU has good looks and a comfortable feel, especially when compared with traditional mice. This mouse is built for right-handed folks, with the thumb resting along the left edge of the unit and the other fingers positioned across the top.
The thumb section gives you access to 4 buttons, while the top of the unit contains 5 buttons. (One of the buttons comes in the form of a scroll wheel, while the other toggles the DPI for extra precision.)

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Inside the unit are removable weights, to adjust the feel of the M910BU. Personally, I like the dense feel of the M910BU when its fully populated by its weights. The M910BU is an optical mouse and in my testing works across most surfaces without issue.

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Hardware-wise, the M910BU looks good and feels well built. It comes with a palm rest to give your hand extra support. The scroll wheel is firm but smooth.

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The manufacturer claims that the M910BU is compatible with both OS X and Windows. In OS X, the left and right mouse buttons on the top of the base serve as left and right click, respectively. Two of the thumb-side buttons let you adjust the volume up or down. Beyond that, in OS X, you cannot assign functionality to any of the M910BU’s buttons without the aid of a third party application. This was a bit disappointing, given that the M910BU is billed as being Mac compatible.

To customize the M910BU’s buttons in OS X, I used SteerMouse from PlentyCom Systems. SteerMouse costs $20 and comes with a free 30 day trial. While I was able to assign functionality to some of the buttons on the device with SteerMouse, certain buttons were off limits – including the volume adjustment buttons on the thumb-side of the unit.

The feel of the M910BU’s buttons is solid, with a nice crisp tactile response for each click. I found the DPI toggle button to work well, serving as a quick means of adjusting the M910’s cursor speed on the fly. I primarily tested the M910BU on the Mac side of my Hackintosh. My evaluation of the M910BU on the PC side was limited to using the vertical mouse with Autodesk’s Maya on Windows 10. In that testing, the M910BU worked well and without incident. Additionally, the Windows drivers let you install up to 5 distinct user profiles, making for quick customization depending upon the app you are working in.

I expected that I would quickly return back to my trackball mouse after using the aLLreLi M910BU for a few days. One week in, I’m still on the M910BU. Hardware-wise, the M919BU is well designed and feels durable. It is also comfortable to hold and use for long periods of time. My biggest disappointment with the unit is the lack of OS X drivers. It comes with an 18 month warranty and a removable palm rest. Though the M910BU retails for $99, it can be had for under $30. Mac users will have to add on another $20 to be able to use the M910BU’s programmable capabilities. For the money, Mac users might be better off in finding a mouse with built-in OS X driver support out of the box, to take advantage of the extra programmability options. The aLLreLi M910BU earns 3.5 out of 5 Bob Weiners.

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