I tore the tender gristle from my wrist joint last week and sent my loose appendage into the Exhibition hall of Autodesk University 2011, straight down to the 3DConnexion booth. Before the blood completely drained, I (or rather, my hand) was able to twitch uncontrollably on top of the new product from 3DConnexion, the SpaceMouse Pro. A big thanks to Mark, Kristen and Mei for not freaking out and booting it into a seminar on data management. Here’s what I found out…

3DConnexion SpaceMouse Pro

If you have a 3DConnexion 3D mouse, you’re probably use to them being quite comfy. The SpaceMouse Pro takes that approximately 2 1/2 notches higher. Unless you have misshapened thumbs… or no thumbs, you’ll find the button configuration and wrist pad to fit up nice enough to get your joints moving about with ease. All the buttons are larger and more easily accessible for your digits as well. Hold down any of the function keys on the SpaceMouse and an on-screen display pops up reminding you what’s assigned to the buttons and highlighting what you’ve selected. Windows users also have the joy of being able to access a numerical input pad to input numbers via their regular mouse. Here’s a breakdown of what I found way better about the SpaceMouse Pro.

  • Astounding ergonomics
  • Better layout of Function buttons
  • Better layout of quickview buttons
  • Larger keyboard modifier buttons (buttons on the left side)
  • No unnecessary digital display
  • 15 programmable buttons
  • $299 price point

It really is all that is good about the SpacePilot Pro and SpaceExplorer mixed together and introduced to your sweaty palm for the same price as the SpaceExplorer. While I like the idea of it taking more focus off the keyboard with the numpad, it’s still difficult to tap in numbers on screen. That’s being really picky though. Everything about the device is absolutely solid.


Josh is founder and editor at SolidSmack.com, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.