Just when you thought everything was calm and it was safe to bring the kids in and show them the wonders of using a 3D mouse to create amazing products and fly around virtual worlds… 3DConnexion slaps a brand, spankin’ new 3D space manipulatin’ device on the table to completely shock your senses.

Gather the children, 3DConnexion has just announce the next in their line of 3D mice, their “most powerful 3D Mouse Ever”, the SpacePilot PRO.

We’ve got the release and the photos, but within the next couple days we’ll have a hands-on nitty-gritty look at all it offers you design, engineers and 3D hobbyists. In the meantime, feast your eyes on the the LCD screen and fresh, new button arrangement. Nice.

SpacePilot PRO Goodness
I had a quick chance to play with this at SolidWorks World 2009. I’ll have one in my hands later today, but in the meantime here’s some highlights sure to interest you.

Color LCD

  • Lists function-key assignments
  • Access to e-mail, calendar and task lists
  • Totally customizable

Improved Navigation for MCAD

  • Five new dual-function QuickView Navigation keys
  • One-touch 32 view access
  • Simpler, more customizable control

Advanced Function Keys

  • One-touch access to 10 frequently used commands
  • Automatically detects the active application
  • Color LCD shows functions assignments

Improved Comfort

  • Soft-coated wrist rest
  • Smoother fingertip control
  • Symmetrical layout

Close-up Images
Well have more, not so PR’y photos coming up. Here’s some close-ups of the new buttony comfort. Click to Enlarge.

After using it…
It is indeed more comfortable. The buttons are also improved making it A LOT easier to press the keys. The layout of the keys feels much more natural and the symmetry is definitely welcomed being left-handed. THe LCD screen… well, just amazing really, I had some comments to them about this, so it will be interesting to see if it’s changed, improved and what it will add to the workflow. More coming soon.

If you want to know specifics about any feature, option or function, let me know in the comments below.

UPDATE: Here’s some pricing and compatibility info! From the manufacturer…

“The SpacePilot PRO is backed by a three-year warranty, and is currently available at a suggested retail price of $499. The SpacePilot PRO is supported by Windows XP, Windows Vista®, Sun Solaris 8 (SPARC), Sun Solaris 10 (x86), and Linux® (Redhat Enterprise Linux WS 4, SuSE 9.3 or later). Linux and Solaris support workflow assistant function key assignments only.”

You can pick up their other products for about $20-30 less at places like Amazon, so be on the look-out for prices around $450-475.


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.