Mac Mouse Jumpy/Jerky

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2014
Just moved back to the Mac after several years on the PC., a new Powerbook. Got the Logitech Bluetooth MX900 mouse to go with it. To my great surprise, it was horribly unresponsive, and when ever I tried to make small movements it would jerk and jum all over the screen.



"Crappy Bluetooth," I thought, and so I plugged in a Microsoft wired optical USB Intellimouse to use. But this was just as bad! Slow to respond, and jerky as all hell. Is this just the way the mouse works on a Mac (considerably less smooth than on a PC)? Or is there some setting I'm missing? I've tried fiddling with the mouse speed in preferences, but this just makes it jump and jerk quicker (no smoother).
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 25
    No no no, Mouse smoothness is just as nice on a mac as on a PC. Doesn't sound like a hardware problem, more of a software. Not sure what, lol sorry.
  • Reply 2 of 25
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    if you check in genius bar, i posted the EXACT same problems just a few weeks ago, and was greeted by silence and crickets. so it doesn't seem to be a COMMON problem. after a week of troubleshootng and a whole nuke & pave of the system (i was geetting desperate and the system was unusable in illustrator when i couldn't target a friggin bezier control handle, i finally got it to settle down. a few things to check on...



    first, even though optical mice SHOULD run fine on anything except reflective surfaces like mirrors and glass, it still helps them dramatically to have a mousing surface that has some sort of regular pattern to it. try chaning mousing surfaces.



    next, if you can find one, see if the same thing happens with a good ol' fashioned ball mouse. i am using one now with no problems and perfect accuracy.



    third, you may have to clean out some caches. brad told me where to find 'em once. plus, some most drivers base their speeds off the main mouse preferences, and i have no idea what happens if you have several drivers installed simultaneously. they SHOULD only affect their mice, but lots of things SHOULD happen with computers, yet don't...



    anyway, hopefully something out of that list will help you out.
  • Reply 3 of 25
    mr. memr. me Posts: 3,219member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by jpeicott

    Just moved back to the Mac after several years on the PC., a new Powerbook. Got the Logitech Bluetooth MX900 mouse to go with it. To my great surprise, it was horribly unresponsive, and when ever I tried to make small movements it would jerk and jum all over the screen.



    "Crappy Bluetooth," I thought, and so I plugged in a Microsoft wired optical USB Intellimouse to use. But this was just as bad! Slow to respond, and jerky as all hell. Is this just the way the mouse works on a Mac (considerably less smooth than on a PC)? Or is there some setting I'm missing? I've tried fiddling with the mouse speed in preferences, but this just makes it jump and jerk quicker (no smoother).




    I have been using Macs since 1989. I have never seen a PC mouse as smooth as a working mouse on the Mac. Although not impossible, it is nearly so to make an optical mouse misbehave. I suspect that the problem lies between the keyboard and chair.



    The first thing that you should do is to make sure that your trackpad is working properly. Quite frankly, I see no need for an additional pointing device on my PowerBook, but to each his own. Then adjust the tracking speed of your mouse to ensure that it is behaving properly. I know that you said you have done that already. Humor me. Move the slider to the slowest setting. Then adjust it upward. Another thing that you might do is to make sure that your support surface is reasonably smooth. Apple mice are tolerant of a wide spectrum of surface types. I have no experience with optical mice from other vendors, except Sun. Another thing that you might try is to borrow an Apple mouse from a friend.
  • Reply 4 of 25
    outsideroutsider Posts: 6,008member
    I've found that with optical mice the mousing surface needs to be just like rok says, a textured patterned surface. I've found that cloth mouse pads or mouse pads specifically made for optical mice are the best.
  • Reply 5 of 25
    kerbkerb Posts: 4member
    MX-900 isnt Mac compatible
  • Reply 6 of 25
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    i am beginning to think there is an issue with the latest mac os update and rf mice in general. or maybe just logitech's version of mice and transceivers. i'm personally getting sick of buying mice, trying them out, then returning them. i have now seen the xact same symptoms (crazy erratic mouse movement) on TWO logitech cordless optical mice. however, when i switch back to my corded mouse, no problems. this combo USED to work fine for me months ago. even after i upgraded to panther.



    anyone know if there have been any revisions to the mouse controls in os x in the last few minor updates?
  • Reply 7 of 25
    dogcowdogcow Posts: 713member
    Don't use it on a wooden surface. I found that my optical mouse would get confused by the wood grain in my desk and cause it to jump.



    Also, make sure you download any software that the company makes for your mouse. I have a kensington wireless mouse and it's software allows you to tweak the acceleration and speed.
  • Reply 8 of 25
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    um, i found my problem with the mouse, but i don't think anyone here will believe it. in fact, i'm not sure i even believe it.



    jpeicott, try moving your setup to another room if you can.



    i kid you not, the mass of power cables on the exterior of my house outside my office was interfering with the rf signal needed for the mouse to operate smoothly. i wouldn't have figured it out, except



    a.) every new mouse i tried showed the exact same behavior

    b.) a complete reinstall of the machine did no good

    c.) CORDED mice worked fine, even if optical



    as a final test, i brought the logitech keyboard and mouse into work and hooked them up to my work computer, which is essentially the same set up. NO PROBLEMS WHATSOEVER. all jumpiness gone.



    so, jpeicott, if you are using a wireless mouse and a powerbook, take it elsewhere, perhaps even a coffee shop, and see if you experience the same issues. i am willing to be dollars to donuts that it'll go away.



    color me stunned.
  • Reply 9 of 25
    outsideroutsider Posts: 6,008member
    Makes sense!
  • Reply 10 of 25
    Perhaps a metallic screen behind your computer setup might help.
  • Reply 11 of 25
    rraburrabu Posts: 239member
    I've found the same thing. I had a Kensington mouse on my iBook that worked perfectly. However, I got tired of the cord so I bought a Logitech cordless mouse. It is quite jumpy and annoying to use compared to the Kensington mouse. So far, I just thought it was a driver issue. Logitech drivers don't let you mess with the acceleration like Kensington's. But from your comments, perhaps any cordless mouse is jumpy? I sure hope not. I like not having wires...



    Mind you, I haven't removed the Kensington drivers yet. Maybe there are some problems with the two. A long time ago, I gave up on using a Logitech keyboard and Kensington mouse at the same time. The drivers just didn't like each other unfortunately.
  • Reply 12 of 25
    ibook911ibook911 Posts: 607member
    I have a corded mouse, and I found getting used to the mouse on my recent (past 2 weeks) switch to mac the hardest part. I use my same USB optical mouse, but it just doesn't feel the same. I have adjusted the speed to where I want it, but it still isn't quite right. I'm getting used to it though, and I don't think it will bother me in the near future.
  • Reply 13 of 25
    johnrpjohnrp Posts: 357member
    The power cables will be cause. I have the same problem (Logitech MX 700) but only when my mobile phone is charging and it rings, there must be some kind of interference. It's ok tho because I have to stop using the mouse to answer the phone. :-)



    j.
  • Reply 14 of 25
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by Code Master

    Perhaps a metallic screen behind your computer setup might help.



    just as a quick follow-up to this thread, i've been trying to look into purchasing some sort of metal to act as a shield along the wall behind my computer. i would like it to be somewhat interesting, without breaking the bank. home depot has limited options (though i have an idea regarding corrugated aluminum roof material sheets). anyone know what i could look for as an affordable alternative that would look okay? i would think i need, at minimum, a 4 foot by 4 foot sheet. preferably perforated aluminum similar to the G5's.



    any knowledge would be appreciated.
  • Reply 15 of 25
    rraburrabu Posts: 239member
    It may be more boring that you want but you could cheaply purchase a chunk of glavanized steel (like what heating ducts are made of). These can usually be bought from businesses that do furnace installs.
  • Reply 16 of 25
    messiahmessiah Posts: 1,689member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by kerb

    MX-900 isnt Mac compatible



    Correct.



    If memory serves, it's the MX-700 that's Mac compatible.



    I've had the same problem with several Logitech and Microsoft mice over the last few years. The cursor leaps frog-like across the screen.



    That's what I love about AppleInsider - all the problems I experience (and can never figure out at the time) seem to raise their heads years later and start to get discussed.



    If you're using a Microsoft Mouse, make sure you install their Intellipoint drivers. The mouse will semi-work without them, and whilst I know it tempting not to install their drivers - you really should.



    The Intellipoint drivers fixed this problem with my current Microsoft Mouse (but I have continued to suffer from this problem in the past, even after installing the Microsoft drivers).



    Hope this helps, I'll keep an eye on this thread to see if anybody can come up with a solution.



    All I need now is an explanation for the mystery pauses I used to experience back in the QuarkXPress days, and why Address keeps crashing on me...
  • Reply 17 of 25
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    Quote:

    Originally posted by rrabu

    It may be more boring that you want but you could cheaply purchase a chunk of glavanized steel (like what heating ducts are made of). These can usually be bought from businesses that do furnace installs.



    hmmm... not bad. i may also buy several 1 ft by 1 ft squares and tack them up in a tilted grid pattern.
  • Reply 18 of 25
    westnabwestnab Posts: 1member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jpeicott View Post


    Just moved back to the Mac after several years on the PC., a new Powerbook. Got the Logitech Bluetooth MX900 mouse to go with it. To my great surprise, it was horribly unresponsive, and when ever I tried to make small movements it would jerk and jum all over the screen.



    "Crappy Bluetooth," I thought, and so I plugged in a Microsoft wired optical USB Intellimouse to use. But this was just as bad! Slow to respond, and jerky as all hell. Is this just the way the mouse works on a Mac (considerably less smooth than on a PC)? Or is there some setting I'm missing? I've tried fiddling with the mouse speed in preferences, but this just makes it jump and jerk quicker (no smoother).



    I've also been plagued with an erratic USB optical mouse. I've just found out why - mouse mat curl! It seems optical mice like the flat. I feel a little foolish that I've been suffering for days unnecessarily. Obviously won't fix everyones issues ...
  • Reply 19 of 25
    kinokikinoki Posts: 2member
    I also have problems with a jumpy mouse- a corded optical mouse on a computer with OS 10.5.8 - and I'm beginning to think its an OS problem as I've tried everything I can think of:

    another mouse, same model (which works fine on a computer with "Tiger" OS 10.4.11)

    Using jumpy mouse on computer with "Tiger" (it doesn't jump)

    various mouse mats

    Reinstalling the software

    Updating

    Unplugging and re-plugging

    Trying USB Overdrive



    Nothing works so now I'm thinking its the OS. Anyone have thoughts or experience on this problem?
  • Reply 20 of 25
    bbwibbwi Posts: 812member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by kinoki View Post


    I also have problems with a jumpy mouse- a corded optical mouse on a computer with OS 10.5.8 - and I'm beginning to think its an OS problem as I've tried everything I can think of:

    another mouse, same model (which works fine on a computer with "Tiger" OS 10.4.11)

    Using jumpy mouse on computer with "Tiger" (it doesn't jump)

    various mouse mats

    Reinstalling the software

    Updating

    Unplugging and re-plugging

    Trying USB Overdrive



    Nothing works so now I'm thinking its the OS. Anyone have thoughts or experience on this problem?



    Did you install any Adobe products, like Dreamweaver?
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