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3.8 out of 5 stars84
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 4 December 2009
I've had the Microsoft Sidewinder X8 for a couple of weeks now and so far I've been very impressed. I previously used an old laser microsoft mouse but this has well passed it's best days now and felt that it was time to get a new one. My top priorities for a new mouse were decent DPI and wireless capability. Through various reviews and browsing forums I concluded on getting the Microsoft Sidewinder mouse (its predecessor). However, just when I was about to purchase the mouse, I heard Microsoft was releasing this version...so I waited. I'm glad I did!

The major differences between the Sidewinder X8 and the Sidewinder are increased DPI (from 2000 to 4000), wireless, and lack of adjustable weights. I was quite surprised to not see adjustable weights but it is not something I worry about. Some gamers might question the wireless on a gaming mice due to lag but Microsoft has stated they did intensive testing and found no difference in latency between wired mouses and the Sidewinder X8.

Installation of the software was a breeze. Once that was completed, I plugged in the USB and as soon as I started using the Sidewinder X8 I noticed a significant tracking improvement over my old microsoft mouse. It's much more precise and this was at 2000 DPI. The vertical side buttons are as good, if not slightly better than the horizontal ones but they may take a while getting used to them. The rest of the buttons work great and haven't had a problem with setting up a macro on the macro button. The LCD screen showing the battery metre and DPI is a nice touch as well.

The wireless receiver is shaped like a puck and its charger wire is wrapped around making it very easy to extend. The magnetic end on the charger wire allows it easily to snap on to the mouse. If your battery is dead (which didn't happen for awhile) you can still use the mouse as soon as it attaches. Inside the puck contains two different mouse feet pads in addition to the default ones on the mouse. I tried them all and there is a slight difference between them but opted to leave the default ones on. However, I noticed they easily attract moist and accumulate scratches. I'm afraid that this might disrupt the smooth movements although I have not noticed any so far.

Overall I have been extremely pleased with this mouse and would highly recommend to anybody who is currently browsing the market for a new mouse.
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on 14 December 2009
I've had the X8 for a couple of months now, and while I'm very happy with it, there are some features I miss.

Pros:
- The wired/wireless system is awesome: forget about batteries or charging docks.
- The 3 different speed buttons are very useful when playing, specially on shooters.
- I like a lot how the buttons feel: It's almost impossible to hit a button accidentally.
- Very good response time even for a wireless mouse.

Cons:
- The macro button is useless, specially since there are only 5 programmable buttons and you'll probably have most of them already assigned.
- The shortcut button to the games folder is rather useless, it's a lost button.
- The lights are not as cool as they're on the picture: The red lights only glow while charging and the blu light of the bottom isn't actually visible when the mouse is on the table.
- Probably not the best one in terms of ergonomy.

I'd say it's totally worth if your needs are like mine: need a wireless mouse (I can use it from the bed :-P) and also want a good device for gaming. If you don't need the wireless, look some other mouse, it probably will be better and/or cheaper.
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on 26 October 2009
Lets just skip to what is in my opinion the X8's defining feature: the glorious side buttons. Much improved from the previous iterations of the Sidewinder which featured odd circular variations of these buttons, the new ones are much better. For one, they're comfy and flat with no odd curves pressing into your thumb as you use it. For two, they're angled inwards forming a comfortable little groove that perfectly fits your thumb. Finally it's the vertical positioning that really makes them stand out and makes them incredibly easy and quick to use compared to the traditional fore and aft placement of side buttons.

Moving away from that though the rest of the mouse is of solid quality, it's got a nice smooth plastic finish with good grip. The mouse wheel feels very solid with a nice metal finish and has a tight clicky action, good for individual ticks but scrolling for a while is a bit stiff. The middle mouse button has an oddly loud click in comparison to other mice but it's not loud enough to be an annoyance. The scroll wheels side clicks for scrolling left an right are solid enough that you won't use them accidentally but not overly tight. Left and right click get the job done, there's not much to write home about here other that the buttons site pretty flush with the top of the mouse and fit your fingers nicely.

The other buttons on the mouse are a set of utility buttons, all are pleasantly tucked away in places that aren't tricky to press when you need them but are positioned that you won't hit them by accident. The DPI switch buttons sit along the ridge of the mouse behind the scroll wheel, easy enough to tap with an index finger when you fancy switching up or down but unobtrusive enough that you won't do so by mistake. The macro record button sits ahead of the side buttons and it's the same story except with your thumb doing the work.

The quick launch button (which opens up the mouse customisation software) is the only utility button which requires you to move your hand off the mouse to hit, it's also recessed so you won't jam your palm into it. This is forgiveable however as you'll rarely need to open up the software anyway and when you do you shouldn't need to do so quickly. The DPI switches are customisable and you get three of them, so a total of three different settings. You generally shouldn't need any more and hot swapping is more convenient than cycling in my books. Changing DPI also gives you good feedback causing the selected switch to light up red along with the LCD which will momentarily display the DPI you switched to.

In terms of size and curves, there's no denying its size. Yes it is big but don't let anyone tell you that's a bad thing. If you find small mice comfortable or have quite small hands then you may find this isn't the mouse for you. Upgrading from previous Microsoft mice though I found the size not much of an issue and users that "palm" their mouse will find it's quite comfortable. It's shaped to fit your right hand and aside from a slightly odd curve on the right hand side of the mouse it does this job pretty well.

As a wireless mouse it really shines though, it's quick, responsive and packs a hell of a battery life. You can switch it off manually from underneath when you're not using it but most of the time it's not worth it as the power saving features do their job well enough. Unlike other wireless mice I've used it's got an excellent wake up time to the point where it's barely noticeable, to wake it all you need to do is move it as well. The receiver is also inspired as well as in addition to carrying the mouses two sets of extra feet (the feet come in slick, medium and rough for different surfaces and speeds) it's wrapped with the play and charge cable. If your mouse starts running low you can just connect it to the cable (it has a three point magnetic plug which just drops into a corresponding dock at the front of the mouse) and continue using it as normal. The cable is nice and secure when in use and is almost effortless to connect and remove which removes one of the biggest headaches for wireless mice (the low battery syndrome).

Things to keep in mind:
- The macro system isn't that intuitive and takes some getting to grips with.
- Don't be fooled by the marketing pictures, while it is an attractive mouse that blue glow from under the grills at the rear doesn't actually exist. Plus it only lights up when charging or using the utility functions (macros, DPI switches). Mostly it's black a lot of the time.
- This mouse does go up to an impressive 4k DPI but if you don't know what that feels like or whether you need that much I wouldn't have it high on your list of reasons to buy this mouse. At most you'll likely use 1-2k DPI. 4k is too twitchy and erratic for most normal usage. I suppose it's nice to have but I didn't consider it a factor in my purchase.

All in all a great mouse for gaming that doubles as a good everyday mouse.
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on 17 August 2009
A really great mouse! it's well made but does feel a bit light. Everything works well, I love the recharging facility which magnetically clips underneath the mouse, it's saving me a fortune in batteries...... I bought the mouse for gaming but as a professional photographer working in Photoshop every day being able to instantly change the DPI for more precise retouching is fantastic. Defiantly worth 5 stars, best mouse I have ever used.
Update: 9th August 2011 - This mouse has had some serious use for two years now, I have used it for my work in Photoshop nearly every day and my son has used it for gamimg, still works as good as the day I bought it.
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on 19 August 2011
Great price, great features and for three months it was the best mouse I've ever owned. Then it stopped charging. The fancy charge cable that seemed so great when I bought it just doesn't work any more. I've tried a huge number of ways to try to fix it, but it seems dead. Everything else works fine, but one of the reasons I bought this mouse was to avoid having to buy and replace the batteries.

Amazon refuse to take it back or supply a replacement, and good luck getting anything from Microsoft. Their customer services seems like a black hole where requests go in and nothing comes out.

Only get this mouse if you're either a light user, or if you don't mind replacing the batteries yourself.

Genuinely disappointing.

Update: It's been around six months since buying the mouse. The charger cable is still bust and all hope with Microsoft's support has been lost. It seems to last a good few weeks on each standard AA rechargeable battery. The scroll-wheel click now joins the charge cable in being broken (possibly dirt filled). I'm still not that impressed.
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on 1 July 2009
Microsoft Sidewinder X8 Mouse

The best product I have ever owned. It is so sensitive that I found I had to reduce the sensitivity, but this was quite simple and for my use made it ideal.

A gamer's dream and for normal use a really perfect mouse.
It can so easily be used corded or cordless and will work well with other units using laser technology. It even can be set up with another cordless mouse, or keyboard, of a different manufacture, in the circuit.

Great product 5+*****
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on 24 October 2010
The majority of wireless mouse now seem to be of the mini laptop variety. I was looking for a standard size quality mouse with forward and back buttons and a good scroll wheel. This mouse seemed to tick all the boxes, so although quite pricey I ordered one.
I was immediately impressed with the high build quality, especially the scroll wheel which was metalic and had click stops, which I like. You can customize it any which way. It is very sensitive, which is adjustable, and extreemly accurate with no discernable delay or wake up time. There is a very natty charging cord with an innovative magnetic clip. You can use and charge at the same time and you wouldn't know that the cord was attached, as it is so thin and flexible. The mouse pulses red when it needs charging. A small LCD screen show the charging status and resolution.
I have quite small hands and find that for me the mouse is a bit big, but I think most normal people would find the size just right. I wasn't too keen on the rather small vertically mounted forward and back buttons, so I reprogramed the scroll wheel push function to be the back button and that solved the problem for me. Two gimmics are the programable macro button and the go to games folder button. These are both unreachable in normal use, but maybe someone will find a use for them, they don't detract from an excellent mouse. There is a switch on the base which allows you to switch off the mouse but I have never bothered to use it as the battery life is very good, it lasts for weeks of heavy use. The battery is a single AA rechargeable, so is user replaceable or use a standard AA in an emergency, just don't try charging it! It is 2.4GHz, but not Bluetooth, so will work alongside Bluetooth or 27MHz devices without problems.
This is an excellent big wireless mouse, very accurate, excellent scroll wheel, a host of features, good battery life and a natty charging system.
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on 14 April 2010
Grip: Plenty
Size: Larger than most mice; good for larger hands; maybe not so great for small hands?
Appearance: Not entirely as pictured; but it still looks like a piece of space gear.
Accuracy; Table-Excellent; Mousemat-Great; Glass table-Bit stuttery here and there (normal laser mice cant operate on this table)
Functionality: Can program every button (apart from the macro button and the "game" button on the top) to do almost anything you like; including macros or functions. Can be setup so buttons perform different actions in different applications. Has issues with keystrokes and applications running in Administrator mode in Vista/Win7 but this is usual unless you run intellipoint as admin.
DPI switches are amazing; I play a few FPS games like new BFBC2; switching from 4000 for a tank, to 2000 for running about to 750 for sniper rifle is one of the most useful things around (The 3 values are customisable in the application and then stored on the mouse for use on say linux later maybe); not to mention the "QuickTurn" that can be setup to turn your player 180deg almost instantly.
The "game" button on the top of the mouse is less than useful; I like it but I wish I could program it!

Battery life: for a rechargeable AA battery that was probably made in some developing country by the look of it; it does well to last on the batteries as long as it does. The included AA gets a bit naff after a while; recommend a nicer AA rechargeable for it. The recharge cable is easy to use and doesn't get in the way; if it is tugged it will disconnect; so you don't miss that shot.

Range: Better than any mouse ive had wireless before!

Mouse-wheel; tilts nicely; with click noises. Scrolls just fine with nice clunky scroll steps so you don't over do it. Solely metal coating; lack of grip if you sweat like a pig through your fingers; but I've had no issues with this wheel at all; personally like it. Scroll is stiff enough to not accidentally scroll when using the mouse wheel click function.

Frills: Plastic feels a bit light; however it seems nicer to not have the mouse too heavy; has a good texture for good grip.
Change of mouse feet are available; 3 different types for different friction on surface; however I don't notice too much difference in them; and once they wear (all mice feet wear with time and my use) they will all be the same regardless.
The transceiver is a bit bulky; but its got a good range on it I guess... still a bit large though; about the same length of the mouse in diameter and circular shaped.
Cable length is adequate for charging mouse; not tested extremes.
There is a light along the back of the mouse; where the 2 bits of black plastic appear to join in the images. This light is: long single pulse Red when changing DPI or switch on; Constant pulse Red (like cylon) when charging; constant pulse orange when low battery; single pulse orange when changing DPI or turning on with low battery. Quite useful to catch your eye; that and the LCD pulsing on low battery.
The DPI buttons only light up when depressed or when turned on.

LCD screen is nice; showing different icons for Low batt, charging batt, full batt, DPI number, Macro status, or charge/other error.

Macro button only lights when pressed / recording macros on the fly.

Macros can be recorded on the fly or edited later (or start from scratch) in the macro editor; very extensive keyboard macro-ing; and per-application macros just like per application button settings.

Button quality on the side of the mouse could be better; but i've not seen much better.

I've never regretted my purchase; nor looked at other mice since (for fear this beast will wake in the night and eat my face with its powerful wrath).
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on 16 December 2009
I bought this mouse on impulse because it was on some sort of sale and i got it at half the price of the Razer Mamba (my initial target for purchase). It is of splendid value for the price. The unit is built well, the tracking is flawless, the recharge mechanism is brilliant and i detect no latency issues vs a wired razer deathadder. The 2 side buttons work very well and their positioning somehow fits my hand perfectly even though i have relatively small-ish hands (reviewers stated this is a mouse that fits big hands - i found that to be misleading after using it).
The software is nothing to write home about but it's functional and serves it's purpose easy and fast.
Live macro recording is a very nice feature and i use it alot when gaming, but less when working since i have a Razer Lycosa keyboard to satisfy my macro needs.
The Quick Launch button (the one on top of the mouse) is completely useless though since you can`t remap it to whatever you want by standard means so for most people it`s just gonna stay as the Windows Game Browser button ... so useless.
The presence of the LCD display is ... cute and gives nice feedback when changing DPI on the fly or using the live macro feature.
I would definitely recommend this mouse to any interested party. Great value.
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on 29 September 2009
I have always used Logitech in the past but after reading about the Sidewinder X8 thought I would make a change. The ability to switch dpi on the fly is good as is placement of the side buttons, but the wheel is NOT, it is slippery with not much grip for your finger & sometimes jams or locks when your finger just slips on the surface. It really needs a rubberised non slip surface.
The pictures of the X8 are also misleading inasmuch as it appears to have a blue light underneath at the rear end, this is not so there is NO blue light other than the main scan light, so if you are buying this for the appearance DON'T!
Battery life is brilliant, set up easy, overall not a bad mouse just a shame about wheel & lack of blue light (as per pictures)
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