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Old July 30, 2009, 09:41 PM
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Default Logitech MX5500 short review

This is a review that I am going to do because of the excellent review by Toronto122 on the sexy G19.

My camera skillz is also horrible so don't chew me out on it. I will type this out section by section and add to this so I won't cry about losing entire post.

I will begin by stating a bit about the history of Logitech and their work on Bluetooth keyboard combo.


History Lesson

Logitech's MX series began at roughly 2002. During this time, MX 700, a wireless RF mouse and MX 500, a wired mouse, gained enormous popularity. This series had led to people wishing that a combo can be made by Logitech that will give them wireless keyboard and mouse.

Logitech answered with MX Duo, a combination of MX700 with a specialize Elite keyboard adopted for wireless RF operations. This proved itself a success. This was the time when gamers started to think that it may be possible to use wireless gaming peripherals after all. Logitech's cordless Rumblepad 2 came out roughty this time period too, and there seems little reason to not go further.

Logitech then developed the MX900, a Bluetooth version of the MX700, and also the birth of the DiNovo line, which features the MX900 with a Bluetooth keyboard. This marks the beginning of Logitech's Bluetooth combo. Cordless Desktop MX, being MX900 coupled with a Bluetooth Elite keyboard, is also developed at the same time, further advancing the MX product line.


DiNovo and MX moves to separate lines, as Logitech found people unsatified with the response lag from Bluetooth and a general loss of faith in wireless mouse + keyboard by gamers. It is roughly at the point of G7 and G5's introduction that Logitech ceases to consider wireless gears for gamers, thus marking the G7 as the last, and the only wireless mouse for gamers from Logitech.

MX series however continued to thrive. The introduction of MX1000 laser mouse made people wish for a wireless keyboard and mouse that will do it all, so Logitech made the MX5000, the true predecessor to MX5500. MX5000 experienced latency issues due to firmware problems, but those are rectified eventually...

It is during the introduction of the G series that Logitech began to use the SetPoint to allow for mapping of keyboard+mouse. Prior to Setpoint, Logitech had 2 separate applications, billed iTouch and MouseWare that handled the mapping matters.

Setpoint however has proved itself to be a major pain in the rear.


When Logitech introduced the MX Revolution, successor to MX1000, anticipation was high that a Bluetooth set that will rectify the mistakes of MX5000 will finally be made. And so, in 2008, MX 5500 made its debut.

So, about MX5500...


MX5500


And here she is.




It comes with MX Revolution Bluetooth, the MX5500 keyboard tailored specifically to pair with this mouse, and a Bluetooth receiver, and a mouse charging cradle. Ever since MX Duo generation, Logitech has avoided to integrate the receiver into the mouse charger, so that's why the cradle does nothing but to charge MX Revolution.

The installation CD is not important. This CD contains SetPoint.


MX5500 Keyboard

We now move onto the keyboard itself.




This is MX5500 in all its glory. The dimension of this smaller than G15. The unit takes 4x AA batteries to operate.



The keys are not backlit. You can see that the layout is not the typical keyboard layout, as certain keys are enlarged. One will also notice that the shortcut keys are designed so that you need to press the Function Fn Key to activate them. Multimedia keys are to the left, and there is zoom, flip, media center, photo gallery, gadget, sleep and a calculator key.

There exists some pre-programmed functions to this LCD.

1: Clock. This is synchronized to your system's clock.
2: Media. Shows stuff based on API output from Windows Media Player and not other media players.
3: Thermometer. Can be set to Fahrenheit or Celsius, but this is done in SetPoint.
4: Favorite Key functions. You can map F9~F12 to special function, activated by the Fn Function key, done in setpoint.
5: Key Counter. No one knows why Logitech has incorporated this feature in.
6: E-mail Inbox. tells you how many mails that you have that's unread.
7: Calculator. This is activated by pressing a Calculator button on the right of the keyboard, which turns the number pad into the input keys. It is a redeeming feature.

The keyboard features a LCD panel, but it is not nearly as powerful as that of the G15 LCD. This panel has no backlight on it and as such cannot be viewed in dim or very bright lighting.

You cannot program this LCD as you do with G-15... at least not yet. Foobar2000 folks have talked about how to get this thing to work with it, but no avail.


It is important to note that the extra keys DO NOT work without SetPoint. Calculator does work though, since this is a built-in function. Anything that needs to be programmed and mapped won't work.



Arms rest is ok.

Mouse and dongle

Let us move onto the MX Revolution itself.



Here shows MX Revolution mouse, with VX Revolution mouse and the Bluetooth Dongle that you need to work this combo. Note that this dongle is easily the size of a USB key, which is unusually large for a Bluetooth dongle.



This USB dongle is available for $10 USD over Logitech should you need a replacement.

The keyboard and mouse are all pre-assigned to the bluetooth adapter, so that you can simply plug this thing in and make this set work even from BIOS. You can of course go through bluetooth tethering process with other machines that has its own bluetooth, but don't expect the mouse and keyboard to get you into BIOS that way.

MX revolution mouse has around 800 dpi. This isn't a mouse marketed to gamers. It's extra button functionalities might not get successfully mapped to games such as WOW due to privilege level of SetPoint. There are other reviews about this mouse, so please read those as well.

MX Revolution is non-serviceable and you cannot replace the rechargable battery yourself. However, it uses the G7 battery pack. There's 3 years warranty on this unit, so I suggest going to Logitech to get a mouse replacement if the life is starting to go south. I find MX Revolution to be highly efficient at energy consumption, but it sleeps on you when you don't move it, leading to a lag when you move it after a long pause.

Impressions and summary

I find that:

-Keyboard's reasonable comfortable, not too loud, keys soft and sturdy, nothing special about it.
-I cannot program the screen, making it a bit of a letdown.
-Calculator function is sweet. Thermometer isn't bad either.
-Mapping this thing through SetPoint is sadly a reality.
-It by default will beep when you press Caps Lock. Turn this off in SetPoint so that you won't be annoyed to death.
-It has onscreen OSD. This should be turned off for gaming.
-keyboard latency is not really bad at nearfield. Do not game from some ungodly 20 feet away.

-Mouse is overall responsive enough for some gaming, but DO NOT let it sit. The lag from startup after it shuts itself off will leave you dead.
-Don't try to game from a long distance.


This set is a notable improvement from MX5000. I think it can be recommended for multimedia use and some light gaming. It will never be the weapon of choice for frag fest however. I would say that it's ok all the way up to playing mmos, and sweet if you're outputting over HDTV.


Feel free to ask me questions about this. I will try to answer to the best of my ability.

Last edited by panzerfan; July 31, 2009 at 12:38 AM.
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Old July 31, 2009, 09:23 AM
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Sounds like Logitech still doesn't know how to do Bluetooth 100%...

Doesn't seem that much better than the MX5000 set. Though that piece of shit lagged even if it hadn't gone to "sleep" and if the receiver was a mere 10cm away. So I guess they fixed that, but lag when it "wakes" up again shouldn't exist IMO. The normal MX Revolution doesn't nor do the MS sets I have elsewhere.

Nice review though
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Old July 31, 2009, 09:41 AM
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Quote:
Doesn't seem that much better than the MX5000 set. Though that piece of shit lagged even if it hadn't gone to "sleep" and if the receiver was a mere 10cm away. So I guess they fixed that, but lag when it "wakes" up again shouldn't exist IMO. The normal MX Revolution doesn't nor do the MS sets I have elsewhere.
Nice Review...BUT I did have this set-up for about 3 days and no..the lag was terrible, the mouse was "sporatic" and "jumpy"...brutal for anything, especially gaming. I had the Bluetooth Reciever about 3 ft away.
Anyhow took it back to FS and purchased (online) G15 Keyboard and Ikari Steel Series Mouse...never looked back!!!
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Old July 31, 2009, 11:04 AM
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Thank you all for the kind comments.

rjbarker, I notice that the mouse and keyboard can be a bit finickey. You need to get yourself a good set with the right revision and tether the mouse and keyboard correctly. Bluetooth multimedia set still isn't at the point of perfect maturity, but when it works, it flies.

The lag issue.. I will say this. Signal attenuation is the major cause of slow response. The lag when there's no interference whatsoever is not really there, to the credit of Logitech. The firmware is the only other contributing factor to this lag, and by the most recent firmware revision, this set is doing fairly well.

I think that the MX5500 isn't outright horrible at all. Logitech made the mouse sleep like this to conserve battery life. This is why MX Revolution will outlast any G7 mouse.
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Old July 31, 2009, 11:08 AM
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I hope it has more reliable connection then its older MX5000 combo that i own, seeing as occasionally it will drop the connection from the keyboard to the receiver if i am playing a certain game or if i seem to be using it for a prolonged used (and i'm not talking about low batteries)
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Old July 31, 2009, 01:27 PM
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This dropping out doesn't seem to happen as of the latest revision of the firmware on the receiver.
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Old July 31, 2009, 01:30 PM
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Hmm i looked i have the same receiver, its the EDR 2.0, is the firmware part of the software package (i am running the latest version of setpoint) or is it something completely separate? (i'd like to fix this problem, lol)
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Old July 31, 2009, 02:09 PM
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Go through the connection utility and get the tethering done again. It would be good for you to try it out over another rig. I have found that the more recent batch of MX5500 is more mechanically reliable. If you notice that your mouse doesn't do forward/backward keys, get it returned ASAP.
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Old July 31, 2009, 03:16 PM
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Decent review, reading it makes me wish I kept my MX3200 just for the sake of the keyboard, loved the look of it, mouse however was horrible since it kept jumping everywhere or just lagged and died. Wish they would make a new mx610 mouse with wireless that isn't so spotty.
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Old August 1, 2009, 07:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjbarker View Post
Nice Review...BUT I did have this set-up for about 3 days and no..the lag was terrible, the mouse was "sporatic" and "jumpy"...brutal for anything, especially gaming. I had the Bluetooth Reciever about 3 ft away.
Anyhow took it back to FS and purchased (online) G15 Keyboard and Ikari Steel Series Mouse...never looked back!!!
Never buy wireless for gaming, unless it is a Mamba.
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