In this review of the Logitech MX Master 3 for Mac, you can read about our experiences with this mouse, which has been specially adapted for the Mac.
Logitech MX Master 3 for Mac
Earlier we discussed the MX Keys for Mac , a special keyboard for the Mac. With such a keyboard you can imagine why adjustments have been made for Mac users, because some keys (think of Control / Option / Command) are slightly different. Is that also necessary for a mouse, or is it more of a marketing joke? In this review we tell you what is typically Mac about the MX Master 3, which is in the universal version for € 99 at Amac . The Mac version is still available in few places, but will soon be available for € 109 at Coolblue .
Update August 6, 2020 : The Logitech PR agency informed us that in addition to the hardware differences, such as the look and feel and the Mac keys on the MX Keys, there is also a subtle difference in the software: “This ensures that the MX for Mac products (both the Master 3 and the Keys) have a more stable connection with Apple products compared to the regular MX series. ”
Logitech MX Master 3 for Mac in short
These are the main features of this mouse:
- Advanced mouse with many programming options
- Ergonomic design
- MagSpeed magnetic scroll wheel + horizontal scroll wheel
- App-specific profiles
- Charging for 3 minutes means working for 8 hours
- 70 days of battery life
- Charging via USB-C (cable included)
- Available in space gray
- 4000 dpi tracking
- Works on any surface, even glass
- Available from € 99
The MX Master has built up an almost legendary status among computer users. For Apple users, the idea may take some getting used to: it’s so normal to choose Apple’s keyboards and mice that you might shudder at a mouse that’s actually meant for PC users. However, if you get over that initial hesitation, you’ll discover that these kinds of multifunctional mice have a lot more to offer than Apple’s. Some things are just that little bit more convenient. For example, you have to put the Magic Mouse on its back to charge, while with the Logitech mouse you can simply plug in the included USB-C cable, so you can continue working while charging.
It doesn’t make much difference in terms of price, both mice cost around 100 euros. I can imagine that the real Apple purist wants everything in the same style and therefore prefers to use a Magic Mouse clone than a mouse that looks completely different. In any case, Logitech has made an effort to make it fit well with your Apple products by simulating space gray anodized aluminum in plastic as closely as possible.
The MX Master 3 for Mac has a well-known design, similar to the MX Master 2S we used before. Only small details have been made some adjustments. The mouse is clearly larger than Apple’s and lies ergonomically in the hand. This makes it feel more natural and comfortable to hold the mouse. The many buttons and wheels may initially be a bit impressive, but if you take the time to discover them you will see that there are many useful functions possible. The functions depend on the application you are using.
For example, I have set that when you press the scroll button on top, macOS executes the key combination Command + W. This way I can close window or tabs super fast.
Of course you will find the standard left and right mouse buttons on top. In between you will find the metal scroll wheel, the Magspeed. This is controlled by magnets and therefore rolls a bit heavier than you are used to with a mouse. You will feel noticeable clicks while spinning. The mouse is then in precision mode , where you can point to something very accurately.
You can also switch this off and you will not notice any resistance at all. This can be useful if you want to scroll through a long web page very quickly. To switch between the two rotation methods, press the button on top of the mouse. The mouse itself is made of plastic, but the scroll wheels (there are two) are made of metal, with ridges so you have more grip.
On the left side is another metal wheel, which provides some more resistance. For example, you can use this wheel to scroll horizontally in a spreadsheet. You can also use it to switch between apps or to switch tabs in Safari . If you are used to making multi-touch gestures on the surface of the Magic Mouse, it takes some getting used to. You will have to make much more use of the (programmable) buttons, two of which are extra with your thumb. You can use this to scroll forward and backward, or for undo / redo. If you want to assign extra functions, you will have to do so via the special software. There is also a button under the mat where you put your thumb on.
At the bottom you will find the button 1/2/3 to switch between the three paired Bluetooth devices. This could be multiple Macs, but now that iPadOS has gotten cursor control it will increasingly be an iPad . Switching between devices is effortless, although we still have to get used to the idea that you can operate the iPad with a mouse arrow. My finger keeps wanting to point to the screen directly. The buttons allow you to click and right click, not much more.
A great promise from Logitech is that this mouse works on any surface, even glass. Of course, we wanted to try that right away, in case you have to work at a glass table in a hotel or something similar and don’t have a mouse pad to hand. This indeed worked, also on clear glass and vertically against a window (no idea why you would want this, but it is possible).
Special Mac version: necessary or not?
But why a special version for the Mac? If you look at the table on the Logitech website, you can see just a few differences:
- Colors: space gray vs. gray and graphite
- Charging cable: USB-C to USB-C vs. USB-C to USB-A
- USB dongle: no USB mode on Mac version
The Mac version only works via Bluetooth, while the universal version also comes with a USB-A dongle for another wireless connection. With the universal version you actually get more: more colors and an extra connection method. The USB-A cable may look less ‘modern’, but USB-A is still very common at the moment and is not a deal breaker for us . With a battery life of 70 days, you only have to charge once every two months.
The color space gray is also no reason to buy this special version, because with the MX Master 2S we found that the colors of the bottom and top are exactly the same. With the universal version, you can choose a different color light gray, if you still want to distinguish yourself from your colleague with the same mouse. While the previously discussed Logitech MX Keys still contains special lettering on keys, with the MX Master 3 there is actually no difference. It is therefore primarily a marketing choice to now release a special Mac version of the mouse that has been around since July 2019 .
If you can find a better deal on the non-Mac MX Master, it will do just as well.
Conclusion MX Master 3 for Mac review
The quality of this mouse is excellent, both in terms of build quality and functionality. After using this mouse for a few days, I didn’t want to go back to Apple’s bare mouse. The shape of the MX Master is tailored to your hand, while with the Magic Mouse it is exactly the other way around: there your hand must adapt to the product.
The Logitech MX Master 3 is definitely recommended, but whether you need the special Mac version for that? I’m not so sure about that after testing. The normal version of the MX Master 3 is just as comfortable to hold, has the same functions and is technically exactly the same. You only get a charging cable with a slightly different end included and the USB dongle is missing.