There are two things you notice immediately about the SpacePilot Pro 3D mouse.

The first is its very unorthodox looks. A small LCD screen and a large dial are surrounded by a number of different buttons.

The second thing you'll notice is how heavy the device is. This is not a device for holding in your hands as its very unwieldy and uncomfortable to hold.

The instructions suggest you place the SpacePilot Pro 3D mouse to the left of your mouse and keyboard - the assumption being that it will join them to form an essential trio for controlling your computer.

At first controlling a computer using the SpacePilot Pro 3D mouse feels more like a struggle than a natural evolution of control.

Frustrated, we found ourselves regularly returning to the comforting familiarity of the keyboard and mouse, leaving the SpacePilot Pro 3D mouse sitting redundantly on our desk.

However, as with most new control schemes, after a while using the SpacePilot Pro 3D mouse, things start to fall into place.

The large dial in the centre can help with zooming in and rotating 3D objects, and once you've got to grips with the controls it can help with 3D modelling.

Programs such as Google Earth also benefit from the new controls, but you can't help but return to the mouse and keyboard every now and again to help you get your bearings.