Since switching to Apple Mac for over a decade now, it is only just recently that I decided to step back in the Windows PC camp once again to scratch that gaming itch once more. With both systems now surrounding my desktop, I was getting sick of having multiple keyboards and mice hanging around, so I soon turned my focus towards finding a single mouse that could operate both my Apple Mac and Windows PC systems. The Logitech MX Master 3 Advanced Wireless Mouse caught my attention and it seemed the perfect solution for removing the multi-system clutter from my desktop.
In the recycle-friendly box, you’ll find the MX Master 3 mouse itself, a tiny USB Unifying Receiver, and a decent length USB-A to USB-C charging cable, amongst a couple of manuals and promotional material for its multi-system pro-level MX Keys Keyboard that I have also recently reviewed.
After a decade of being used the lower profile of an Apple Magic Mouse, and later upgrading to the Apple’s rechargeable Magic Mouse 2, grasping the MX Master 3 feels somewhat unwieldy. You could probably stack 3 Apple Magic Mice on top of one another and be close to the overall height of the MX Master 3. If you are a lover of low-profile mice, the MX Master 3 may not be for you, but for the hope of decluttering my desktop, I persevered.
Setting up the MX Master 3 is super simple. If you have a Bluetooth enabled desktop or laptop you can turn on the mouse and search for it in your Bluetooth settings to pair it. Alternatively, you can plug in the USB Unifying Receiver into an available USB-A port. Once paired, the first of three system select options are lit on the underside of the mouse. A button below these indicators allows you to press and cycle between each system that you wish the mouse to control. Connecting to my second system was as simple as selecting option 2 and then pairing the mouse with my second system.
Once paired you’ll want to download and install the Logi Options software. On Mac, I had to search and download this manually, but on PC, a small toast window popped up asking if I wanted to install it. With the Logi Options software installed you can explore all the features this advanced wireless mouse can carry out as well as customise its buttons and functionality.
On the top of the mouse is an all-new MagSpeed Electromagnetic scroll wheel. This reinvention of the traditional scroll wheel not only nearly silent to operate, it feels solid and weighty to the touch with notched feedback felt with every minor scroll. The key addition is the electromagnetic function and its ability to seamlessly switch between stepped and resistant-free scrolling by how fast you scroll the wheel. Spin it fast enough and the magnets will allow the wheel to freely scroll, enabling you to scroll through pages on-screen much quicker – 1,000 lines in a second in fact. You can opt to enable this feature or have it permanently scroll freely by pressing the small button that sits nearby it. In its freewheel setting, it felt like I was able to scroll much faster than the gestures of my Magic Mouse 2, which in the days of internet browsing is super convenient.
The rest of the mouse features the standard buttons you’ve come accustomed to with PC-based mice on the market today. The two large L and R buttons have a good amount of length and click depth to them to allow people with short or long fingers to reach and operate them with ease. Over on the left side, we have two fairly narrow back and forward buttons. Although narrow, they sit very well above my resting thumb and allow quick and easy access to them without lifting my thumb too far to reach them.
Finally, above the back and forward buttons are a similar chrome scroll wheel. Its function will vary on the program and platform you are using at the time. In a browser window, you can be switching between tabs by rolling the wheel back and forth. In Microsoft Word, you could be zooming in and out of the page. In Microsoft Excel or Apple Numbers, you could be scrolling horizontally along a wide data spreadsheet. There are many functions to select from and the customised setting can be assigned globally or per application. Such as, in Photoshop you can set it to scroll through brush sizes, hardness or opacity, or in Spotify you can roll the wheel to change the system volume.
Another key feature of the MX Master 3 is its Gesture button. Sitting below where your thumb rests, there is a button that can be depressed and with a gesture movement of the mouse, you can trigger additional functions or commands. On the Mac, for example, you can press this button once to invoke Mission Control. Press and hold this button and slide the mouse backwards will enter Exposé, or slide the mouse left or right to switch between desktops. The button itself can be customised for other uses, but taking it away from Gesture will lose the additional slide functions. You can also customise what each gesture does from a variety of commands and functions too.
The Logitech MX Master 3 is no slouch when it comes to performance either. It is 5x more precise than a basic mouse and with Logitech’s Darkfield Tracking the MX Master 3 can be tracked on virtually and surface, including glass, whilst offering best-in-class 4000 DPI precision. So not only does this mouse deliver in applications such as Photoshop, but you will also keep the gamer in you happy by delivering those headshots with pinpoint accuracy.
Charging the MX Master 3 is as simple as plugging in a nearby USB-C cable or using the one that comes bundled along with it into the USB-C port on the front edge of the mouse. Unlike the Magic Mouse 2 disaster of its charging port underneath you can continue to use the MX Master 3 mouse whilst it is connected and charging. On a full charge, the MX Master 3 will last for up to 70 days and if you connect the USB-C cable to a suitable quick charger you can charge the mouse in 1 minute for it to last up to 3 hours. So by the time you’ve plugged it in, made a coffee and returned to your desk, you have charged the mouse enough to last the rest of the day.
The MX Master 3 comes in two colours, Graphite and Mid Grey. If you are thinking of pairing this mouse with Logitech’s MX Keys keyboard, I recommend you go for the Graphic option so that it matches in the looks department, the Mid Grey is matt, pastel in colour and looks much cheaper and less pro.
At a retail price of £99.99 or $99.99 US from Amazon, the cost of entry for this Pro-level mouse is a little high, but its features, build quality and software suite of customisations per application more than justifies its high price tag. On top of this, you have a wireless mouse that can operate up to three different devices, and that alone for me is worth every penny. If you’re on the market for a new mouse, be it for a multi-system, gaming or professional use, then make sure you put the Logitech MX Master 3 on your shortlist.