It's a Pen... It's a Mouse... It's Penclic
I didn't knew that the use of the mouse could cause RSI or Repetitive Strain Injury. Nor did I knew that something like this, like Penclic existed until I received a very interesting press release from one of my PR friends over at MediaPR. RSI is apparently a real problem nowadays and companies like Penclic are coming up with interesting solutions to fight just that.
One of these solutions among the others, is the Penclic Mouse which comes in 3 variations: corded, wireless and bluetooth. I was lucky enough to be provided their latest version for this review, the R3 which is the wireless edition. A couple of days ago it arrived packaged in a nice clear plastic cylinder case with an interesting lock mechanic.
Inside there was Penclic R3 Mouse along with instructions, a pouch, a USB wireless receiver, a retractable micro USB charging cable and surprisingly, a rechargeable AAA battery. Setting everything up was super easy, insert the battery, insert the USB dongle, pair it and that's it. No driver installation, no passcodes, nothing, it was a very smooth Plug & Play experience.
Here comes the interesting part of testing this hybrid. It's not a mouse, but it really it. I know that does not make any sense, but stay with me. From a first impression, apart from looking weird, you kinda get this idea that the whole concept will not work. You expect it to work like a conventional pen, but once you overcome that, you understand that it is just a mouse with a pen sticking out the middle, yet that's still not the whole picture.
You hold it like a pen, you move it like a pen and the optical sensor picks up every movement, no matter how small. Since the pen is mounted on a ball "bearing" strangely, it feels very natural. I've been using this only for a couple of days, but I have to admit that I am very impressed by it. It is very fast, it is super light, it works on almost every surface from wood to marble and it feels so good in the hand.
It is expected to perform like this since it was built for a very specific reason, fight the RSI. I personally, am not a heavy mouse user even though most of the day I spend it on my Mac. Strange, yes, but after a fatal error I had while using a Razer, I stopped using mices altogether. For the past 8 months or so, I have used only the trackpad and I have become good, like really really good with it.
So switching up from the trackpad to the Penclic, apart from being quite a hard thing to do, it feels really nice. Playing around Photoshop or developing Wordpress websites is easier since the level of control and precision is far better and bigger with the Penclic. Gaming, no, just no. But as good as Penclic is, it has some problems.
One problem and probably the biggest for me is the right click button. The way I hold the pen which I believe is the correct way to do so goes like this: the pen goes between the thumb and index finger resting on top of the middle finger. What this means is that the thumb does the left click and index finger takes care of the scrolling wheel and the right click button. Now the left click with the thumb is the most natural thing ever and so is the scrolling with the index. However when it comes to right click, 9/10 times you will fail to do if you are new to using Penclic and I don't really understand why this happens.
Most of the times you'll end up clicking both buttons and also the precision goes out the window since the mouse moves at the slightest movement. Again this problem will go away with time as your hand will acclimate to the ergonomic design, but we are taking for a long time. Another, yeah let's call it problem, I find with the Penclic is the durability. I am genuinely scared of breaking this mouse. A small fall might do the trick since the whole thing feels very flimsy. Also since I got the wireless model, that means that a USB dongle needs always a space and since I am on a Mac that means I only have one USB port left which sucks. And the final negative about this mouse is the price. Starting at €50 for the corded model up to €100 for the bluetooth one which is the one you should get, it's a little pricey.
Summing everything up, the Penclic is a great mouse. It is ambidextrous, it feels great in hand, it is very light, the battery lasts around a month and it helps against the RSI. This last part for me is hard to confirm or deny since I'm only on day 4 of testing. But you can read online other reviews from people whom lives changed because of Penclic so there's also that. Is this the perfect mouse? No. Is it worth it? If you feel you have RSI, then totally yes. Get yours now by clicking here. Thanks for reading!