Kensington Orbit Trackball Mouse with Scroll Ring Review

Last update:

In the last month or so I’ve switched over to the Kensington Orbit trackball mouse instead of my Logitech Trackman Marble mouse.

So why did I make the transition? And how have I found it?

Before I answer those questions, let’s go over a few things to think about when deciding on an ergonomic mouse.

Things to consider before buying an ergonomic mouse

When picking an ergonomic mouse, there are some things to keep in mind:

  • Size relative to your hand. A mouse should fit in the palm of your hand. You shouldn’t have to contract your hand too hard or reach too far to click the buttons and scroll.
  • Current physical issues you have. If you’re dealing with thumb discomfort, then avoid thumb operated trackball mouses. If one hand or arm in particular if feeling overworked, then you might want an ambidextrous mouse, which is usually symmetrical and can be used by either hand.
  • Computing needs. If you need to do high-precision graphics work or heavy gaming, trackball mouses may not be your best bet. Otherwise, a trackball is precise enough for virtually any normal use scenarios. 

Note: I’m not a medical specialist, so this is not medical advice — make sure you talk to a qualified professional where appropriate.

The point here is that your personal needs are a key factor in what mouse will work best for you. That said, let’s get into my experience with the Kensington Orbit.

Kensington Orbit Review

Like the Logitech Trackman Marble, the Kensington Orbit is a popular trackball mouse that can be used by either the left or right hand equally well. 

With a central trackball placed between the left and right buttons, it resembles the Trackman Marble in design. However, it differs in one KEY way: the Kensington Orbit has a built-in scroll ring.

This allows you to easily scroll up and down when needed and solves what I felt was the biggest issue with the Trackman Marble.

As mentioned in my review of my previous mouse, the lack of a built-in scroll wheel or ring was awkward. It often put unnecessary strain on my hand since I had to hold down a button while moving the trackball. 

So, despite the other good qualities of the Trackman Marble, I decided to try out the Kensington Orbit. 

How have I found it?

Overall, VERY happy with the move. After just a few days, I wondered how I’d gotten by so long without built-in scrolling. The cursor movement is also smooth and precise. 

This is definitely my favourite mouse at present.

My only slight annoyance with the Kensington Orbit is its width. It is wider than the Trackman Marble, no doubt because they had to accommodate a scroll ring in between the trackball and the buttons.

While this has caused no major issue for me, it doesn’t feel quite as comfortable for me as a narrower mouse, since I have pretty small hands for a guy. Don’t give me crap about that, you know what they say about small hands… sexy face (ok maybe it’s just me that says that).

So if you’ve got particularly small hands, the Kensington Orbit may be a little on the wide side. Otherwise, it is a fantastic pick if you’re in the market for an ergonomic trackball mouse.


  • Affordable
  • Built-in scroll ring
  • Can be used by both hands equally well (ambidextrous design)
  • Compatible with both Windows and Mac
  • Reduces strain in wrist and overused “mouse fingers” (index and middle)
  • Smooth cursor movement


  • Basic “scroll, left & right click” functionality (no extra buttons to provide other features i.e. back and forwards buttons)
  • Buttons are a little “hard”, requiring more force to activate
  • Not wireless
  • Not the best pick for very small hands in my opinion


Finger Operated Trackball

The Kensington Orbit features a blue 40mm trackball, with precise tracking and control. It looks like this:

Traditional mice can impose additional strain on the wrist by requiring extra “left and right” motions, or radial and ulnar deviation.

By avoiding these movements, a trackball design can help take the strain off muscles or tendons.

There are also a variety of ways the trackball can be manipulated. You can move it with any of your fingers or using several different muscle groups (fingers, hand or arm). 

This variety helps prevent any one body part taking all the strain.

This is a video of all the different ways you can use the Kensington Orbit:

Scroll Ring

Did I mention the Kensington Orbit has a scroll ring? Yeah, I know I did, but another mention can’t hurt. 

The scroll ring allows scrolling to be done naturally by the fingers as they rest on the trackball. I tend to use either my thumb or ring finger to scroll, but you can use the finger(s) you find most comfortable.

Many trackball mouses neglect scrolling as an in-built capability, so this is a handy feature to have.  

 Also, compared to the scroll wheel found in a conventional mouse, a scroll ring lends itself to more variety in the scrolling motion, allowing different fingers and muscles to be used.

Thumb and Little Finger Buttons

With the Kensington Orbit, the primary clicking buttons are placed on either side of the trackball.

This means that the thumb and little finger can be used for clicking instead of the normal index and middle fingers. Therefore, stress is alleviated on these overworked fingers and other fingers can carry the load.

Ambidextrous Design

Like the Logitech Trackman Marble, this mouse can be used by either hand equally well.

This allows the mouse to be alternated from one hand to the other, helping prevent too much strain on any one hand or arm.

Stationary Base

This mouse also remains stationary during use, since cursor movement is generated by manipulating the trackball.

Many users online report moving to this mouse so that they stop bumping into other objects. 

Clearly, this is a handy feature for people working in small, enclosed environments. 

What Others Are Saying

This mouse, overall, gets a lot of love online. It’s a best seller for a reason.

A lot of the feedback from other users echoes my experience (except my gripe about the width, I haven’t seen that mentioned as much as I expected).

The positive features that seem to come up most in other reviews are the smooth, precise cursor movements, the handy scroll ring, and the ambidextrous design.

Here’s one comment I found from one happy user regarding the overall experience of the mouse:

“… It’s built well and it feels so natural and good on the wrist. with the old standard mouse I would make mistakes moving folders into other folders, with this it can’t happen because the ball is so high and my fingers wont touch the right and left tap buttons. Plug and play straight up, no software to use or anything. I can move fast and just feel great while using it.

I love the scroll circle on it, that was pure genius!

 I don’t want another mouse EVER!”

Comment from user rahim4411 (source)

Of course, there were some small issues that other users mentioned. 

Some users find the two buttons take a bit too much force to press. Also, some find the wrist rest that comes with the mouse to be on the flimsy side and hard to attach. 

I tend to concur with the wrist rest complaint and so haven’t been using it personally.

Minor issues aside, this mouse is a popular choice online.


Logitech Trackman Marble

As I’ve probably mentioned ad nauseum, this was my previous mouse.

It is fairly similar to the Kensington Orbit  in design, featuring two big buttons on either side of the trackball and a symmetrical shape.

Compared to the Kensington Orbit, however, it is narrower and has buttons that can be activated with a little less force. 

On the down side, though, the Logitech Trackman has no built-in way to scroll.

That said, many folks still swear by it. Check out my review of it here.

Logitech MX Ergo

This one looks a bit like if a trackball mouse and a high quality normal mouse had a baby.

Instead of a central finger operated trackball, it has a thumb operated trackball on the left side. It also has a scroll wheel and left / right click buttons at the front that resemble a traditional mouse.

On top of this, it is wireless and has a tiltable base for maximum ease of use. Essentially, where features are concerned, it is the “give me it all, thanks” option.

Elecom DEFT Pro

This is a mid-sized trackball mouse with a thumb scroll wheel built into the side and a few more buttons.

By default, you can left click with your thumb, and right click with any finger. That said, the extra buttons (8 in total) allow you to customise button functionality for maximum comfort.

The Elecom DEFT Pro also supports either wireless connectivity or a wired set up depending on preference. For the cable-phobic, this is a nice bonus.


The Kensington Orbit ticks all the main boxes you want in a trackball mouse: smooth cursor movement, ambidextrous design, and a built-in scroll ring.

It’s also very affordable, and for that reason I consider it one of the best value for money options on the market. 

That said, if you’ve got particularly small hands or want extra buttons, this is not the best pick for you. Otherwise, highly recommended.