Don't Overlook the Mousepad
The mousepad is an often overlooked item in every gamer's computer setup. If you think about it, it is strange that people would be willing to pay hundreds for a top of the line processor and the latest and greatest video card to get as many frames as possible in 3D games…but then at the same time use a 50 cent fabric and foam dirt trap that passes for a mouse pad! Let's face it, that free pad you got with your computer just doesn't cut the mustard. After just a couple weeks of use, it's dingy and crusted with dirt, dust, lint, and most of all, the body oil and dead skin cells from your hand and wrist. All the grimy nastiness that cakes up on your mousepad invariably ends up on the rollers of your mouse (assuming you're not using an optical mouse).
The Wingman Gaming Mouse Pad
It IS a big deal
So what's the big deal with that you say? You like your dirty mouse rollers because it adds character. The fact of the matter is that dirty mouse rollers hamper your gaming performance. You'll notice skips in the cursor tracking, and in extreme cases, complete non responsiveness in your mouse movement. The dirt on the rollers isn't the only cause of this either - uneven mousing surfaces like a real wood desktop, or that dirt encrusted mousepad, can cause unpredictable tracking on screen. This hurts your aim in shooters, and could cause you to miss a lot of rails that you should be nailing dead center. Some days I find that my lightning gun aim is particularly poor - cleaning the mouse rollers helps that.
Pad with First Mouse +
Even in RTS games, precision can be critical. In Starcraft it's actually happened to me that I missed with a Broodling spell on an enemy Templar because the mouse mistracked. I hit the Zealot standing next to him instead. That really put a crimp in my mass Zergling attack because that same Templar that SHOULD have been dead cast a Psi Storm that fried about 2 dozen of my Zerglings.
3M PMS and Everglide
A couple of companies have recognized the gamers' need for an even, consistent surface for mousing. 3M was first on the scene with their "Precise Mousing Surface." The 3M PMS (yeah, yeah joke it up) features a special micro-textured surface of peaks and valleys for your mouse to roll on. The idea is that the nasty stuff resides at the bottom of the valleys while your mouse ball rolls on the top of the evenly spaced peaks, keeping your mouse clean and the onscreen tracking predictable, smooth, and consistent. The original 3M pads were very thin - just a couple of millimeters in thickness, but their problem is that they wear out once they get dirty (albeit slower than a regular foam pad). They also have a tendency to slide and slip around the desk once the bottom gets dirty. Everglide came out just a bit later with their plastic, textured mouse pads. These were washable (alleviating the dirt problem) and had rubber feet to prevent the sliding, but some people found the surface too slick and the pad too thick. So which is better? Well, that's a religious argument. I switched over to Everglide primarily because I was tired of the 3M pad slip sliding around on my finished wood desk.
So what if the 3M pad was somehow stabilized so that it wouldn't slide around as much? Enter Logitech.