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The Test

I still haven't found a better way to test a mousing surface than to start playing a first person shooter game. Games like Quake III and Unreal Tournament require a lot of movement of the mouse and also the occasional difficult shot. I was quite impressed with the surface of the Icemat. I even tried an optical mouse and had no problems at all. Icemat doesn't recommend you use this pad with an optical mouse but considering how well the smoked glass worked with the mouse I'd say you'd be safe buying this pad for that use.

One area where the Icemat falls short is with its rubber feet. In order to keep the clear look of the pad it has some very small clear feet attached to it. It is not unusual to find yourself adjusting the pad every so often as it has a tendency to slide away from you. Another problem with their selection of rubber feet is that they have a rounded shape and not a flat bottom. That makes for less surface contacting the desk surface. The Ratpadz unit features more rubber feet at the front edge of the pad and one dead center on the pad and they are not only larger but flat. I think the Icemat would really benefit from the larger feet that the Ratpadz uses. Click on the picture above to see a closeup of these rubber feet.

Conclusions

I really like the idea of using glass as a mousing surface. The weight of a glass pad makes it more stable than the plastic surfaces that I've tried before. The edge of the pad has a tendency to get annoying after a while as your palm will let you know that the edge has not been rolled as well as it could have been. That is actually a minor quibble. The biggest problem that I had with the unit was the aforementioned rubber feet. I hope that the Icemat folks switch over to a better rubber foot and add a couple more for more stability.

All in all I'd say this is a great pad that deserves your attention. You certainly won't have to worry that everyone will have the same pad as you if you buy this unit.

Victor Oshiro 14 March, 2001

 





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