The Microsoft Wireless Notebook Optical Mouse 3000 offers basic mousing functionality at a cheap $29.95 price. Unfortunately, it's a little too basic for our tastes: it doesn't come with software, there are no extra buttons, and the receiver has a very short, 3-foot range. For users who won't stray far from their notebooks, this mouse could be a good fit, but we prefer the slightly more expensive, but much more functional Logitech V400, which boasts included software, five programmable buttons, and a 30-foot range.
To start using the Optical Mouse 3000, you need only to insert a single AA battery and plug in the wireless receiver. Microsoft's IntelliPoint software isn't included in the package, but you can download it from Microsoft's Web site. This software adds a tab to your regular mouse control panel. From there, you can select the left and right buttons on the scrollwheel and customize them from a list of functions and tasks.
The body of the mouse is an attractive blue-gray, and it features a contoured design that makes it fairly comfortable to hold. The left and right buttons are nearly full-size and are easy to click. The scrollwheel is a little small--about the size of two stacked nickels--and only allows vertical scroll, unlike the Logitech V400 which features a four-way scrollwheel. The Optical Mouse 3000's ambidextrous shape fits left-and right-handed users.
The Microsoft Wireless Notebook Optical Mouse 3000 comes with a USB receiver that snaps into the bottom of the mouse--a feature we consider essential on notebook mice. Unfortunately, this dongle is fairly weak, and it provided a pitiful 3-foot range in our tests--the Kensington PilotMouse Laser Wireless, for example, worked at distances up to 30-feet. Despite the Optical Mouse 3000's range, we were pleased with its tracking performance: we didn't notice any lag or errors from the 1,000 dots per inch (dpi) optical sensor.