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Razer Mamba Gaming Mouse - Razer Mamba Gaming Mouse

By Edward Chester

Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score:

9

It's almost a shame that Razer has given this mouse a headline-grabbing, record-breaking DPI level of 5,600 as it's actually the least interesting part of this mouse and detracts from its truly unique and laudable features. Still, if you really feel 3,200 DPI is not sensitive enough, the Razer Mamba can take things to the next level for you. Like most gaming mice, the DPI level can also be changed on the fly with fives levels on offer. The two small buttons just next to the left mouse button are used for tracking up and down the levels whereas the value of each point can be specified using the included software. A small three-stripe LED readout displays which level you're on by using a combination of green or red stripes.

All told, it's a simple and intuitive system to use, though Andy did say he found the positioning of the DPI-buttons interfered with the primary left-click button. Also, I've yet to meet anyone who actually uses more than a couple of DPI settings with any regularity so as such I would prefer to see an even simpler switching system like that on the SteelSeries Ikari.

On the bottom of the mouse are three relatively small teflon feet that despite their size provided a super smooth and wobble-free glide. The battery compartment is also hidden under here and it houses an 800mAh Li-Ion battery that's apparently good for 14hrs of continuous use or 72hrs of 'typical' usage. Our experience suggested these figures were reasonably accurate. Nevertheless, we'd prefer to see a spare battery included at this sort of price. The battery compartment also doubles as the indent into which the wireless dongle-cum-charging dock sits.

The bottom is also home to the button for syncing the mouse with its wireless dongle and an on/off switch for controlling the mouse's wireless signal. Meanwhile, the little latch, with the eject symbol next to it, is a clue to this mouse's unique feature; its dual wired and wireless modes.

Unlike the Microsoft SideWinder X8, which featured an easy fit charging cable to enable non-stop wireless mousing, the Razer Mamba can actually be both a proper wired mouse and a wireless one. You simply unplug the USB cable from the back of the wireless dongle and plug it into the mouse, where it is held firm by said latch. It can be a bit of a fiddle to swap the cable but with a bit of practice it becomes no bother.

Of course, the advantage of the mouse becoming truly wired means you aren't hamstrung by that slight lagginess that all wireless mice suffer from so you can be at your absolute best when gaming. Admittedly, the superb wireless technology that Razer has used on this mouse means it's pretty darned good but the difference between it and using the mouse wired was still easily discernible.

Verdict

We've had to knock the overall score down a notch simply because it's so expensive but the combination of true wired performance, wireless convenience, superb styling, and amazing ergonomics make the Razer Mamba quite simply the best mouse we've ever tested and it will take something seriously special to beat it.

Overall Score

9

Scores In Detail

  • Value 7
  • Features 10

smc8788

May 13, 2009, 6:33 am

Out of interest, what DPI setting(s) did you use while gaming? Personally I would find 5000 DPI far too sensitive to be accurate in any game. I even find my Deathadder (which looks to be ergonomically similar to the Mamba but 1/5th of the cost) to be too sensitive at 1800 DPI, so I have to turn the master sensitivity down. Surely this makes such high DPI setting in mice redundant for the everyday user (except perhaps on very high resolution monitors)?





All in all, this still wouldn't convince me to move away from the still much cheaper option of separate wired and wireless mice.

Xiphias

May 13, 2009, 6:49 am

I wonder if Razer hasn't been brave enough; Whether they would have gotten more sales if they'd pushed the price up to £150 or £200 and used the money to use extra high quality materials and add all the trimmings (changable mouse feet etc.) to make a mouse that could be legendary.

TheLostSwede

May 13, 2009, 9:25 am

Well, I have found that the DPI setting varies from game to game, but 5000 sounds insane. In strategy games a high DPI can actually be advantageous, as you can move quicker around the screen, but I don't find it as good in FPS games, as it's hard to aim, hence why on the fly adjustment is important.

Ed

May 13, 2009, 2:12 pm

DPI is an odd thing. I've never really seen the need for really high figures. However what it does give you is the option to lower the in-game or windows mouse sensitivity setting (thus increasing accuracy as it's not multiplying your movements) without losing your preferred speed of movement.





@Xiphias: Not sure too many people would agree with you there. I for one don't like all this interchangable stuff - weight systems? Gimme a break. The build materials are also as good as I've ever known from a mouse so I don't think there's much to improve there. Only thing I'd want is, as I said, a spare battery.

Chris

May 13, 2009, 5:03 pm

I dunno, I've never really found that cordless mice offer any real advantages to offset their numerous disadvantages. It's not as if you can effectively use them while sat on a sofa, like you can a wireless keyboard. A cordless gaming mouse has an even greater disadvantage in reduced responsiveness.


This looks like a great mouse, but why couldn't Razor just wire it up, remove the wireless electronics and sell it for less? The Death Adder is close, but it features some aesthetic affectations and a lower tracking resolution. Not that the huge DPI count is necessary either, but that's for another rant...


I'll stick to my G9 methinks. BTW, the G9 features the same soft gippy surface which certainly does peel away over time. However, I can replace the grip on the G9 - I'm now on my third.

Jay4d0

May 13, 2009, 5:59 pm

£120 for a mouse!!


I would if I won the lottery but I just use a £5 optical mouse for gaming and I game well above the average in the games I play - I never have noticed any delay in the movement of the mouse or clicking the buttons, the wheel is notched and a good weight I could even be pushed to recommend it.

Chris

May 13, 2009, 9:06 pm

@Jay - The higher tracking resolutions afforded by gaming mice are very noticeable in use. This manifests as smoother, more accurate motion. Besides, you really don't need to spend anything like as much as £120 to get you hands on something that will do the job nearly as well, although spending more than £5 would be a start. :)


Also, you shouldn't find that any noticeable delay is introduced by your £5 mouse - it is corded right?

Mikko Lahti

May 14, 2009, 5:16 am

I guess there are no SteelSeries Ikari -fans here, since nobody has pointed out the typo, "Steel Series Akari" at page number two :) So it's written together, SteelSeries, and the model is Ikari.

stranded

May 14, 2009, 8:40 am

At last, a decent gaming mouse (i mean, it passes the base rating of 5).


Mouse (gaming or not) experience is not subjective.


No peeling off, at least after 2 years of use (and if it has the same surface as Death Adder). Top wheel too.

Ed

May 15, 2009, 2:10 pm

Well spotted Mikko. Fixed.

TechVegan

May 15, 2009, 8:32 pm

@Chris:


Indeed, the 'peeling off' on the grips of the G9 is also something my one is suffering from, and while it's possible to easily buy replacement grips, the point is one shouldn't have to (especially not after only 1 year!). I'm somewhat disappointed with Logitech in this regard, since usually they make excellent products. Hopefully it's a flaw the new G9x will fix. Now if only the company would bring out a wireless version, and move the scroll-mode switch to a more convenient location than the mouse's bottom...





Oh and for the record (in regards to Ed's comment), I like weight systems in a gaming mouse :)

Chris

May 16, 2009, 12:29 am

@Ardjuna:


Thanks for the response. Unfortunately a diligent journalist will have to endure another year of hard gaming to find out if Logitech have resolved the peeling issue for the G9x. Still, I'm looking forward to the TR review ;)

Rickysio

June 30, 2009, 8:18 pm

I'm using a DeathAdder myself on a 1280X1024 screen, and the artificial acceleration Windows provides is clearly affecting sensitivity. =(





If only I had more cash...

Christopher Woods

February 9, 2010, 6:45 pm

For what it's worth, be wary buying the Razer mousemats - a friend recently bought a Mamba, and a Razer mousemat to pair with it (which was sold to him as working particularly well with the Mamba).





Sod's law, the Razer mousemat actually refuses to provide a good surface for the Mamba - he gets more consistent tracking using his wooden desk! So, irony of ironies, he bought a SteelSeries QCK+ ... Just like I did. ;)

Cookie

January 25, 2012, 1:37 am

Dunno if anyone will read this.... anyway just wondering if it's possible to get hold of a charging dock for this mouse?

Bought it second hand and all it came with was literally the mouse, i've been using it wired all along, but just got a battery for it and then realised that need to dock to connect wirelessly.

Tried contacting razer but they haven't been much help, saying to contact the retailer where I bought it...

Ed

January 25, 2012, 2:23 am

Hi Cookie,

I certainly am not aware of you being able to buy the chargers separately but I'll contact Razer's PR and see if they can enlighten us.

Best,
Ed

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