3D Mice Just Took The Next Step

April 23, 2009

To meet the rigorous demands of design engineers working in powerful 3D applications, 3Dconnexion has announced the new SpacePilot PRO. The company’s flagship 3D mouse is designed to deliver advanced control of 3D models, easier access to the power of professional 3D applications, fewer interruptions in the design workflow and superior comfort. Specifically, the SpacePilot PRO features a new colour LCD Workflow Assistant, second-generation QuickView navigation technology, Intelligent Function Keys and an improved design for enhanced comfort and control.

“3Dconnexion’s 3D mice have rewritten the rules on the way design engineers and professionals interact with 3D environments,” said Dieter Neujahr, president of 3Dconnexion. “Our new SpacePilot PRO builds on our market-leading industry experience, delivering the most powerful 3D mouse we’ve ever made. It enables increased performance that ultimately results in better designs, created in less time.”

The SpacePilot PRO 3D mouse provides the highest level of performance features ever available from 3Dconnexion, including:

  • LCD Workflow Assistant: The colour LCD lists function key assignments and provides at-a-glance access to Microsoft Outlook e-mail, calendar and task lists, allowing professionals to access important information for a fully integrated design experience with fewer distractions. Through 3Dconnexion’s open software architecture, the workflow assistant can be further customised to meet the needs of individuals, companies and software vendors.
  • Advanced MCAD navigation: Five new dual-function QuickView navigation keys improve error detection, design review and design presentation by providing one-touch access to the following views: top and bottom, right and left, front and back, two isometric views, and 90-degree view rotation of any view either clockwise or counter-clockwise – for a total of 32 views. A short press activates a key’s primary view command, while pressing and holding a key activates a secondary view command. In addition, new Navigation Setting keys offer simplified and customisable control, allowing professionals to turn pan-and-zoom, rotation and one-axis control on or off, making it easier to define navigation settings for certain work modes.
  • Intelligent Function Keys: Five new fully customisable, dual-function keys offer immediate, one-touch access to 10 frequently used commands within any supported 3D application. The SpacePilot PRO automatically detects the active application and assigns appropriate function keys – whether default or customised. The colour LCD denotes the function key assignments and application mode so engineers can easily identify commands and design states.
  • Superior comfort: The SpacePilot PRO has a new sculpted, soft-coated wrist rest that positions the hand in relation to the controller cap to support a balanced workflow. The micro-precision six-degrees-of-freedom sensor allows for fingertip control with minimal effort from the arm, wrist and hand, while frequently used commands are conveniently positioned at your fingertips. The intuitive and symmetrical layout of the function keys makes the device usable with either hand.

Unlike traditional mice confined to motion on one flat plane, 3Dconnexion 3D mice enable design engineers to move in all three dimensions simultaneously, using six-degrees–of-freedom sensor technology. By gently lifting, pressing and turning the controller cap, design engineers can easily pan, zoom and rotate without stopping to select commands. Using a 3D mouse together with a traditional mouse engages both hands into a balanced and cooperative work style.

3Dconnexion's 3D mice are supported by more than 130 of today’s leading 3D applications, including Autodesk Inventor, SolidWorks, CATIA, Pro/ENGINEER, NX and Solid Edge. For a complete list of applications supported by 3Dconnexion, visit the company's solutions webpage.

The SpacePilot PRO is backed by a three-year warranty and will be available in late-April for the suggested retail price of £399. The SpacePilot PRO is supported by Windows XP, Windows Vista, Sun Solaris 8 (SPARC), Sun Solaris 10 (x86) and Linux (Redhat Enterprise Linux WS 4, SuSE 9.3 or later). Linux and Solaris support workflow assistant function key assignments only.