My favorite mouse for gaming has been the Logitech G5 the past year. It fits my hand perfectly and offers great performance. There was one problem though and that was Logitech did away with one of the two thumb buttons. Well, a year later and we have a new version of the G5 that adds the missing feature back in and changes the look a little bit.
Before I start off, if you know the performance of the G5 then you know how the G5 V2 performs. They are practically the same mice so don't expect any performance improvement. You have the same great engine that's capable of performance at 2000dpi and it can process 6.4 megapixels of data per second. Because it's a laser, it can work on surfaces that some optical mice cannot, namely some reflective ones. Using the G5 and the G5 V2 in tandem I didn't notice any difference between the two so the same great performance of the first version carries over to G5 V2.
As with the original G5, I didn't like the amount of pressure needed to push down on the mouse wheel. It was a complaint I had with the first G5 and I have the same complaint in the new revision as well. Other than that, the mouse wheel feels fine. The mouse wheel movement clicks strongly as you rotate it and the tilt function is also present as well.
Underneath the wheel are the mouse sensitivity switch buttons. The are two small buttons with a plus and minus on top to let you know whether you are increasing or decreasing the sensitivity. They have a strong response when push and are small enough that they won't interfere with you when you are scrolling the wheel. I've actually used the sensitivity adjustment more and more in games and found it to be a nice little feature in certain situations.
The big addition for this version is the second thumb button. I'll be honest, I don't think Logitech should have omitted the thumb button in the first place so it's very nice to see it back on their premium gaming mouse. In my original review of the G5, this was one thing I really didn't like and I am happy to see Logitech go back and redo the mouse with the second thumb button. The two thumb buttons feature a large and a medium sized button so you can tell which is which easier. I don't know if it's my model but I found the springs to be a little bit too soft on the mouse and there wasn't enough physical indication that the buttons were pushed. It doesn't take much when you push down to register a click and with the soft mouse click it was harder to tell that I did push the thumb buttons over other mice. Like I said, this could be a product of my unit but I would've liked to have seen a stronger click response on the mouse.
For those that liked the customizable weight system, it makes it's appearance again in the G5 V2. A package of weights consisting of eight 1.7 grams and eight 4.5 grams are included and you can use any combination of them to suite your needs. You can really feel the difference when using the various combinations of weights so customizing the mouse to you is taken to another level by Logitech’s weight system. The extra weights that you don't use sit in a nice tin so you can put them in a safe place if you decide to use them later on.
The color scheme has changed with the new release and instead of the silver and orange accent, the G5 V2 now features a black with blue veins design on top. The black area is really raised rubber so there's a certain texture to the top of the mouse. I didn't like the design as much as the first G5 but I do like the feel of the raised surfaces a little more.
For the cord, the long braided style makes it's return as well. It's a more rigid design over regular rubber coated lines but it's suppose to help from getting caught on things. The length of the cord id pretty generous so you shouldn't have trouble if your CPU is far away.
The software for the G5 V2 allows you to adjust both the X and Y sensitivity for each preset. If you like to be able to have the vertical reaction be less sensitive than the horizontal one, it’s all possible now with the mouse in an easy to use GUI. A minor limitation is that your settings must be contained between the one above and one below. Without the software, the mouse can switch between 2000 dpi, 800 dpi, and 400 dpi. Since I found that 2000 dpi to be unusable for me, I knocked the presets down with the software to more acceptable levels. And to help gauge what sensitivity preset you are at, there are three light indicators on the mouse near where your thumb and forefinger meet. It’s a nice quick visual cue of where you’re currently set at and one that’s helped me a few times as I sometimes forget how what my current sensitivity level is. An audio cue can also be activated when you change sensitivity settings. The audio for the cue can be changed as well so you can choose one that suites you.
As I stated earlier, the performance is the same so when I used this mouse in both gaming and general usage for the past month I was very pleased. It was smooth and accurate when playing first person shooters such as Unreal Tournament 2004 and Half-Life 2 as well as doing photo editing with Photoshop. Since the first G5 is my primary mouse for everything, I was pretty much use to the sensitivity of the G5 V2 and used the sensitivity adjustment for certain games comfortably.
If you already own a G5, its hard press to suggest you purchase the second version unless you absolutely must have another thumb button. They both have the same specifications so you won't see any difference in terms of performance. If you're coming from an older mouse or looking for a new gaming mouse, the Logitech G5 V2 should definitely be tops on your list to look into. You get a great software suite ad well as awesome performance for a good price. It's a slight upgrade for the G5 but one that I will now be using as the extra thumb button is what I was sorely missing.
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