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BuildOrBuy Group Network
www.buildorbuy.org | www.buildorbuy.net ]

BuildOrBuy News
  1. images/bullet2.gifAudio Control Surface
  2. images/bullet2.gifPointer News
PC Pointing Devices:

We've typically considered a Mouse, the Pointing Device of choice. For some time we've had alternative choices.

IF a Mouse is where you're thinking, have you considered a stationary roller ball / trackball? OR an optical device? Roller Ball mice have become tedious and obsolete when contemplating upkeep & cleaning. Ever tried cleaning more than 100 Mice in one setting?

And the BIG difference we've seen in the past comparing Retail vs. OEM Roller Ball Mice consisted of lesser quality nylon or plastic components in OEM Mice as opposed to Retail Mice which usually have Metal Rollers for 'X-Y' coordinates. Next time you open a Ball type Mouse to clean it, take note of the components inside. Also take note - Genuine Microsoft Retail Mice have a smoother texture than their Genuine Microsoft OEM counter parts which have a grainy textured finish. Why buy Genuine Manufacturer's parts? Get what you have paid for, not what someone may be trying to sell you - Junk! Your customers will thank you later too!

When Optical Mice first came to market, they were rough to manipulate and required a special pad to be used for optical sensing. Then Optical Mice went padless which was a major improvement with higher resolution manipulation. Now, an Optical Mouse allows greater dexterity whether tethered, wireless or stationary Roller Ball Optical type.

Another often overlooked Pointing Device would be a Graphics Tablet. Wacom Technology leads the field in Wireless Pen Tablets. WACOM now has their Wireless Pen & Optical Mouse combo. The Tablet hooks up to your USB port. Yes, the old WACOM serial Tablets still work and you can still get drivers from WACOM for them - Quality! Anyone whether a graphics aficionado or Business User can benefit from using a Graphics Tablet. Try one when you get a chance! Be careful though - You may decide you like it!

Our preferences for each will be listed below.

images/bullet2.gifSTIM - MouseSite - A resource for exploring the history of human computer interaction beginning with the pioneering work of Douglas Engelbart and his colleagues at Stanford Research Institute in the 1960s.


Audio Control Surfaces:

Tools for controlling audio, video, graphics or animation software. We expect this List to grow since new Technologies such as Contour A-V Solutions allow us to bridge PC / Audio boundaries.

  1. emusician.com - Control Surface Reviews and Tutorials: (7/9/2003).
  2. HID Audio Controls and Windows (1/2/03).
  3. audioMIDI.com - Computer Control Surfaces: Source to purchase from.
  4. Contour A-V Solutions: USB ShuttlePro
  5. Cakewalk.com:  Contour AV Solutions, USB ShuttlePRO - Has 13 buttons, and a jog / shuttle wheel for augmenting workflow.
    1. Other Cakewalk Control Surfaces (Audio Mixer Control Surfaces) Link Removed!
  6. Griffin Technology: PowerMate, USB Multimedia Controller & Input Device
    1. PC: Configuring PowerMate in Windows
  7. Mackie - HUI: Human User Interface for DAW's!
    1. Mido I/O; 2 MIC Preamps + Jog Shuttle!
  8. Mackie - Baby HUI: Compact Touch-Fader Master Controller (Human User Interface)
    1. Midi I/O; No MIC Preamps & No Jog Shuttle.
  9. Mixed Logic Control Surface Audio Mixer:

    Cakewalk Sonar M24 control surface plug-in version 2 and manual now available for D/L from: www.cakewalk.com.


  10. 1394 - mLAN: harmony-central.com - 01X mLAN Music Production System: Yamaha Introduces World's First mLAN Music Production System - "01X is the first product to feature Yamaha's new generation mLAN technology and guarantees high-speed audio and MIDI networking between computers, synthesisers and other mLAN compatible devices." (3/6/2003).

    1. YAMAMA 01X: www.01xray.com


Digital Media Control Devices:
  1. Keyspan Digital Media Remote


Graphics Tablet:
  1. Wacom Technology

    Tired of mousing around? Sure there are others. Why mess with anything less than the very best? After all, you deserve it! No, we Do NOT work for nor do we receive compensation from WACOM... Not yet anyway! ;) Enjoy!


Optical Mouse:
  1. AOpen O-35G Dual-Wheel Optical Mouse - Slick! For the price - Value @ $8.88 Retail! Since Acer is changing their name, this may be a short term deal from AOpen, too early to tell yet. We've seen this @ MicroCenter in Houston, TX. Get 'em while you can! (7/3/2002)
  2. Gyration.com:  Makers of GyroMouse Wireless Mouse, GyroRemote, and Wireless Keyboard: Gyration - NEW Ultra Cordless Optical Mouse. Available in
    August for $79 (7/3/2002).
  3. Logitech - Products By Feature Optical Precision - For Logitech Fans!
  4. images/bullet2.gifMicrosoft.com:  IntelliMouse Optical - 4 Button Optical.


Optical Roller Ball:
  1. Logitech - Products By Feature Optical Precision
  2. Microsoft Pointing Devices


  1. Logitech.com:  Cordless Optical, with KB. This is the BEST Wireless Optical Solution! (As listed on our BuildOrBuy PC Specs by Joe Whinery).
  2. Microsoft DOES have a wireless Mouse & Keyboard solution. We tried the OEM version, it stinks! The Mouse is a Roller Ball, NOT Optical Roller Ball Mouse! And since it's OEM, the Mouse has nylon instead of metal rollers for sensing 'x' & 'y' coordinates. PASS!


Pointing Device News & Information:
  1. www.wireless-computing.com: New Simplified Remote... RF-100 Remote Control Pointing Device is designed for delivering electronic slideshows, with buttons for slide-forward, slide-back and blank-screen allows Presenters to stay focused on the message! (5/27/2003)
  2. Keyboards: www.extremetech.com - Keyboard Kraziness & Mouse Madness A Week of Wacky Input Devices: (4/22/2003).
  3. X-Arcade Trackball Mouse For Authentic Arcade Gaming On Golden Tee Golf And Arcade Classics (4/12/2003).
  4. IOGEAR GME321R - Phaser Mouse: Hand-Held RF Wireless Mouse with Laser Pointer. This product was pointed out to us from a BuildOrBuy Reader (2/18/2003).
  5. ExtremeTech.com:  Logitech MX700, A Cordless Mouse For Everyone, Even Gamers (10/12/2002).
  6. Alternate Pointing Devices (Trackballs & Other) - Vendors
  7. vnunet.com Acecad Acecat Flair USB Graphics Tablet
  8. Before You Buy a Graphics Tablet - Features to Consider
  9. ConsumerGuide.com:  Graphics-Writing Tablets Review, Rating, Prices Consumer Guide
  10. Graphics Tablet Solutions - Book Info
    1. Iril C. Kolle - graphics tablet solutions - Book
    2. pspPower November 2001 Drawing Cartoon Characters with a Graphics Tablet
  11. Microsoft Mice and Keyboards Upgrade Computing Experience with More Comfort and Efficiency
  12. Microsoft Hardware Web Site
  13. On Magazine.com -- Reviews -- A Great Graphics Tablet for $70
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Web Development, Gill Boyd & Team - Posted 07/03/2001; Updated 07/09/2003