Comparison of Steelpad Steel4S and Steel5L | Review of Logitech G5 Laser Mouse

It was early March and I decided to upgrade my trusty Microsoft Optical mouse that I had been using for 2 years and replace it with something a little more up to date …

I looked on the web and checked out reviews on mice and then start reading about the combination of mice and mousepads (albeit probably 3 years later than everyone else ……) and how critical the combination could be.

Now that I’m a little older and the “buy cheap, buy twice” policy makes so much sense, I came to the conclusion that I wanted the best mouse and the best mouse mat.

This brought me to two items

1) Logitech G5 Laser Mouse – Logitech G5
2) SteelPads 4S (Rigid metal mouse pad with chemical etched matt black surface) Steel Series Steelpad 4S

I nearly bit the hand off the delivery guy on the morning they were delivered, frantically unwrapping them like it was my 10th Birthday – looking good, opened the Steelpad 4S Steel first and saw the matt black, almost stealth looking mousepad. Great. Then opened the Logitech box and had a look at the G5 Laser mouse. Very impressed.

I plugged the mouse in and loaded the software ……

First impressions of the G5

1) It looked good. Felt great.
2) I didn’t like the wheel (it provided a lot more resistance than the Microsoft Optical mouse – it wasn’t as free wheeling)

I messed around with the weights and decided that it wasn’t for me so I put the Logitech G5 Laser mouse back in its packaging and contacted the supplier for a RMA number. Very disappointed indeed!


Next for the Steelpad 4S Steel

Now this looked good, felt good and best of all, it performed. Using my Microsoft optical mouse on it worked great – however it seemed to have quite a bit of noise and friction. I fitted some pad surfers (a strip of self-adhesive low friction material that is supplied with the steel pad) cut them to size and stuck them to the feet of the mouse. Much better.

A week passed and I’d not had a chance to send the G5 back – for some reason I thought I’d give it another try. I don’t know why I did this, however I’d kept on reading great reviews and thought I must be doing something wrong here.

I got it setup as before and initially it felt better on the 4S Steel surface than the optical. After an hour of me saying that the scroll wheel was too hard to move I started to get used to it. I also changed the buttons so that the ‘+’ button was (Ctrl+Enter), as I use Opera browser – this is useful for opera wand commands and the ‘-‘ button to switched between the current and last page open in Opera (Ctrl+Tab). Which, if you’re comparing two web pages, can be really useful.

I used the left and right on the scroll wheel to act as middle button so that it would open up the selected link in the background. Again a very useful tool.

It was starting to grow on me. The final straw was that I had an identical MS Optical mouse on another pc in another room in the house and once I used it – it felt so cheap and the scroll wheel actually felt like it didn’t have enough resistance!

A week or so passed and I started to get irritated with the scraping noise of the G5 Laser Mouse on the Steelpad 4S Steel so I ordered some, specially designed, G5 pad-surfers from Steelpad. This seemed to do the trick and I carefully removed the original ones from the G5. Much quieter – or at least it seemed. A week later I was getting frustrated with the noise again and the scraping feeling (cue the fingernails on chalkboard noise) – I’d had enough.

As I really liked Steelpad’s presentation and performance, but not the noise – I went back and ordered the Steelpads 5L cloth and plastic mouse mat. Wow, instant noise reduction, nice padded feeling (not too soft – just right) and it was a little bigger.

I now have the best combination of all now. The best mouse and it’s tied in with the best mouse-pad (well, in my opinion anyhow).

If you want a great combination don’t bother with the 4S get the 5L and the Logitech G5 laser – there’s no beating it!

One in 10 sleep at the wheel

One on 10 motorists admit that they have fallen asleep at the wheel according to a new report. Nodding off kills 300 people a year in the UK, says Green Flag who recently carried out the survey.

Researchers also found out that nearly 60% of the 1000 road users questioned, confessed to taking the wheel when “very tired”.

Men were the worst culprits, with two thirds owning up to driving with fatigue hanging over them.

Curing Squeaking Floor Boards

Over a period of time. the flexing of the floor or expansion and contraction of the timber may loosen the floorboard nails. It is the resulting movement of the wood against the nails or against the neighbouring boards that produces the typical irritating squeak.

The simplest cure is to drive the floorboard nails in deeper with a Nail Punchnail punch, which allows the tapered edges of the nails to grip the wood more securely. However, this may not be a lasting solution. If the problem persists, use either a larger or Ring Shank Nailsring-shank nails. The latter are designed to give a better grip however they need to have clearance holes drilled through the boards. Fill any redundant holes with a matching wood filler.

If the boards can’t be renailed satisfactorily (for example, because of twisting or bowing), use countersunk stainless-steel woodscrews. Countersunk Stainless Steel WoodscrewsBury the heads of the screws deep enough to cover them with filler or with matching wooden plugs. Dampening the wood thoroughly before fixing will help it to ‘give’ as the boards are screwed down.

Another tip…..

UK Project – 3D Maps of whats under our roads to reduce congestion from roadworks

The first 3D maps of what’s under our roads are to be created in a multi-million pound project to cut traffic jams caused by roadworks. The four-year survey will plot every pipe, cable, drain and sewer in the UK, and make the information available for contractors on hand held computers. Four million holes are dug in the roads every year, but many are unnecessary as there are no reliable plans showing utilities buried since Victorian days. The annual digging bill of £1billion rises to £5bn when the cost of congestion is included. Now, researchers from Nottingham and Leeds Universities are to use computer programs to combine data from thousands of separate plans into maps with pinpoint accuracy.

“Reducing roadworks would bring enormous economic and environmental benefits,” said Professor Tony Cohn of Leeds. The project includes a scheme to tag pipes as they’re laid so they can be found with a radio scanner.

Cigarettes in the car to go up in a puff of smoke

Smoking behind the wheel could soon be stubbed out, if changes to the Highway Code go ahead. A revised drivers’ bible, due out next spring, will warn motorists that sparking up on the road is a serious distraction. It could pave the way for an all-out ban in cars; Scottish van and lorry drivers are already preparing for new laws outlawing lighting up from May. The fresh code is part of a raft of Government changes concerning motoring habits. The Driver Standards Agency has now banned electronic parking brakes from learner test centres and says it’s looking to outlaw other driver-assistance gadgets.

Courtesy of BBC & AutoExpress

DAB Radio – Dead And Buried?

It won’t be long. That’s the view of a leading stereo manufacturer, which has axed its range of vehicle digital radios in favour of analogue. Experts believe the move by Kenwood sounds the death knell for digital stereo technology, unless reliability improves quickly. Users have reported interference and lost signals, problems which obviously deter potential buyers. Kenwood’s Mike Edwards said the brand has no plans to reintroduce digital products. Fellow in-car entertainment (ICE) specialists Clarion and Blaupunkt admit that in-car DAB has been ‘slow to catch on’. Article courtesy of Auto Express