XTracPads Pro Mousepad and Mad Dotz
Author: Zahn Funk
Editor: Shawn Knight
Date: 12-10-2007
Provided by: XTracPads

Okay, I'll admit it. I'm still using the same mouse and mousepad I have been for the past five years (I'll pause a moment while the collective gasp fades away). Yeah, they're both starting to look a little ragged around the edges, but they still work fine. I guess I just never saw the sense in replacing them until it was absolutely necessary. The mousepad is your typical size, rubber bottom and hard plastic top, nothing special about it, just a freebie I got from the cable company to promote their internet service. The mouse is a Logitech iFeel, which has long since been discontinued, seemingly even disowned by the manufacturer. I guess force-feedback just never caught on in mice, which is a shame because I love it. And another reason why I haven't gotten rid of it, nobody makes an equivalent replacement.

Anyway, as you can imagine, the mouse is pretty severely worn on its underside. The stick-on teflon feet applied by the manufacturer have long since vanished and it catches/drags sometimes when I'm using it. This gets annoying, especially when I'm gaming or trying to do detailed work in Paint Shop or Visio. The mousepad causes its share as well, slipping and sliding over the surface of the keyboard tray. And it always seems like I'm running out of room, having to pick up the mouse and physically move it back to the center of the pad. This has become a big problem since upgrading my monitor to a 24" LCD, and even playing with sensitivity and acceleration controls I can't seem to quite get it to where I'm happy with it.

So while doing some online shopping recently I decided to look into how I might possibly improve my mousing experience, and the Pro Mousepad and Mad Dotz from XTracPads caught my eye. To be honest, the Mad Dotz were the only aftermarket stick-on mouse feet/pads I saw at this particular site, and the Pro was the cheapest gaming mousepad that didn't have pictures of dogs or WoW characters printed on it. XTrac offers both types of surfaces, but I went with the soft cloth rather than the hard plastic as I was looking for a change in feel from my old one.

Both products arrive in similar envelope-style packages, with product images and features printed on the jacket. The Mad Dotz comes with 36 individual stick-on PolyTetraFluoroEthylene (PTFE) pads which, even at four per mouse, should last me a long time. There is also an alcohol pad for cleaning the mouse before installation, necessary to ensure good adhesion. XTrac claims faster mouse movement, easier glide and increased lifespan for your mouse feet and pad.

The Pro Mousepad is the same size as a sheet of letter paper, 8"x11" and only an eighth of an inch thick. It looks huge compared to my old pad but is actually only about " taller and 2" wider. XTrac labels the Pro as a size L, they also offer pads in XL, 2XL and 3XL sizes, the largest of which is 3' (yes three feet!) by 18" and is designed as a combination keyboard and mouse mat. The Pro features a super soft cloth surface, sure grip rubber backing and hexagon/textured pattern for enhanced tracking. XTrac also guarantees 100% compatibility with many Logitech models including the MX300/500/700/1000 series and G5/G7. They've also thrown in an XTracPads sticker to use on your case or wherever else you might want to advertise your gaming surface.

Continue ahead to installation.

  Sponsors Links

  Sponsors Links