A solid mouse that’s a little too smooth
For a gaming mouse, the Func MS-3 (revision 2) looks rather unassuming and unpretentious. It is pretty big as mice go, but that doesn’t get in the way of its performance too much. The MS-3 also brings features that you’d see in more expensive mice.
Measuring nearly 5 inches long and almost 4 inches wide, the MS-3 doesn’t fit in your hand. Instead, your hand rides on top of it, filling your palm. For those who use a high finger arch (claw posture), your metacarpophalangeal joints (the joints at the base of the fingers) won’t touch the surface, placing your hand weight on the ball of your hand. The mouse is really built to suit those who prefer a flatter hand posture; there’s no adjustments here. Southpaws need not apply; this mouse is clearly designed for righties.
The MS-3 has a sizable footprint, which may put off some.
The right ring and pinky fingers get their own rests, which can feel a little awkward if you are used to holding the side of the mouse with those fingers. Again, these rests are built for a flatter posture, so a claw handed grip won’t take advantage of the molding, and it will feel a bit out of place for the two fingers. The mouse’s silky, yet slightly rubbery texture feels great on your hand. When you place your two fingers in the rests, you get the feeling that they’re being hugged. Who doesn’t like hugs? Crotchety old curmudegons sitting on the porch in a rocking chair with a shotgun, that’s who.
What we didn’t like about the mouse’s flatter profile and smoothness is that it feels like the mouse will slip out of your grip when you try to pick it up. This is only really an issue when you deliberately try to lift the mouse, as the low slope of the right side of the mouse results in reduced lateral grip. If you try to apply that lateral pressure with your little fingers, the fingers tend to want to slip out of the molded grooves. In the gaming situations that we tested, it wasn’t really an issue, but if you lift up your mouse constantly, it will be something you notice.
Those finger grooves both provide comfort and keep you from picking up the mouse easily.
The mouse is also a bit on the heavy side, but not as heavy as other mice we’ve used. We weighed it while holding up the cable, and found that it is 4.2 ounces. That’s a full 1.3 ounces more than a stock Dell M056UO laser mouse (2.9 ounces) we weighed using the same method. That means it will take a bit more force to flick the mouse around for quick movements, but the MS-3′s high sensitivity of 5,670 DPI compensates for that. Response felt snappy and accurate while moving on a bare black IKEA desk.
A gaming or high-end mouse wouldn’t be complete without good configuration software, and Func did a solid job here. The driver software lets you set three profiles, each with its own macros, colors, and DPI settings. Each profile has three DPI settings that you can cycle through, with a fourth “Instant Aim” mode that is by default activated by pressing the illuminated thumb button. This is great for gamers who prefer a high DPI setting for most situations, but need to dial in the accuracy for some situations. FPS players who play as snipers will really appreciate this. Of course, you could also set the DPI higher to get an inverse effect. Each DPI setting can be set anywhere from 90 to 5,670 with 10 DPI increments. You can also separate DPI settings for the X and Y axes, so traverse and elevation for vehicle guns in games like Battlefield and Arma can function at different rates.
The MS-3′s software offers a lot of configuration options, but is missing game detection and is only available for Windows.
The software can “backup” (export) settings to and “restore” (import) settings from a file on the hard drive. There’s also a tool to install new firmware, which will also perform a checksum on the firmware file to ensure you’ve got the official, intact file. It’s also great for security since the MS-3 stores its profiles and settings in the mouse’s memory. The onboard memeory allows you to configure the mouse on one machine, plug it into another, and everything will work as you’d expect. Want to reinstall Windows or use the mouse in Linux? No problem. Want to use it with a gaming laptop when you travel? Go right ahead, globetrotter.
We would’ve liked to see a per-game settings detection and import tool. Sure, you can effectively get the same result by restoring from a file, but an option to autodetect games and save or load profiles accordingly (like we see in Logitech Gaming Software) would be nice. Since this is a software-side issue, it would make a great addition in an update.
The thumb rest on the left side of the mouse provides access to four buttons, all of which are well spaced to prevent accidental clicks. The round center button lights up, and defaults to “Instant Aim,” which will be described a bit later. The two upper thumb buttons default to the usual forward and back in Windows, while the button at the base of the thumb rest defaults to an audio mute button. The top of the mouse has six buttons, including the standard left and right buttons and clickable scroll wheel. The two buttons behind the scroll wheel default to change DPI presets, while the button to the front-right will switch profiles. All of the buttons on the MS-3 are highly configurable, and can be set to keys, macros, or OS functions, depending on user preference.
We also liked that the mouse’s subtle, yet effective LED lighting illuminates the scroll wheel and side button. The LEDs are bright enough to be effective accents, but won’t signal aircraft or keep you awake in a dark bedroom. The lighting is fully customizable in Func’s software, including saturation and brightness, not just color. There are also three orange LEDs on the top left of the mouse that indicate which profile is being used. They’re pretty small and understated, but viewable between the thumb and index finger.
Thumb buttons on the MS-3 are accessible and uncluttered. Orange LEDs in between the thumb and index finger indicate which profile is active, and are visible while using the mouse.
The scroll wheel itself makes it very clear that this is a gaming mouse. Each click with a wheel turn feels deliberate, and won’t have you switching weapons by mistake. Clicking the mouse wheel button doesn’t make you feel like you’re going to move the wheel mid-click. Sometimes, we can be hesitant to bind actions to MOUSE 3 in games because of unintended wheel scroll; that’s not a problem with the MS-3. Clicks feel solid and stable, without unintended weapon or spell switch.
The price point is what really sells us on this mouse. For under $60, you get a top-tier gaming mouse that delivers on looks and response, even if it is on the big side. We definitely recommend this gaming mouse for righties who don’t mind a few minor shortcomings and don’t violently lift up their mice like a crane operator with a coke habit.