Mouse replacement - kensington slimblade or wacom tablet?

as above!

my apple trackpad just isn’t doing it for me anymore, and after digging through threads for alternatives, i’ve narrowed it down to either the kensington slimblade trackball, or a wacom tablet (not sure of model yet).

it seems that both will make life easier for my wrist, but otherwise appear to have unique advantages:

slimblade - macro buttons for workflow, minimal wrist movement, cursor movement via inertia, looks solid, reasonably priced, and i suspect it would be a fairly quick adjustment.

wacom - the main advantage here would be that i’m big into hand lettering, and more time using a pen = more pen skillz, as well as the obvious benefits using photoshop and illustrator. huge plus. however i suspect the learning curve would be steeper, as would nailing down my preferred settings, hand position, tablet angle etc.

i’m aware there’s no right answer here, but if you had to choose between these, what does your gut say? and if the tablet, could you recommend a model?

i use ableton for all DAW duties btw, if that factors in.


I was looking around for this stuff recently. I ended up with a Logitech MX Master, and it’s a beast. Very comfortable.

I would also like to try a trackball, but it seemed more likely to be a wasted buy - need to try before buying.

I would definitely recommend against a tablet. They are awesome for visual art, but absolute shit for general control. You’ll find yourself switching back to the mouse all the time.

I’ve tried many things over the years (I’ve been a software engineer over 20 years) and I’ve always come back to the good keyboard + good mouse combo. For artwork tablets are great, but for general usage I don’t find them that good (you actually move your hands around more). A mouse is just faster.

On a DAW (like most software) the best trick is to learn the keyboard shortcuts, the more of those you learn the less you need the mouse.

After getting RSI early in my career I only use Natural Keyboards (usually Microsoft) and Logitech mice (I also confuse everybody and have the left and right buttons swapped).

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great thoughts guys, exactly the kind of info i was after. tablet is out the window, i think i’ll give the trackball a shot and if it doesn’t work out i’ll just go for a quality ergonomic mouse.