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SteelSeries Prime Wireless Review

Verdict

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The SteelSeries Prime Wireless is unlikely to let you down in battle. Its battery lasts a good while, and it knows how to intelligently make it last a few days more. However, it has a triple-digit asking price, but lacks the conveniences of other wireless mice half its price, relying on technology only a connoisseur will appreciate.

Pros

  • Great 18K sensor
  • Solid switch tech powering each click
  • Battery can survive 10-14 days on a single charge

Cons

  • Commands a claw grip
  • Software required for basic setup
  • Rather weighty at 80g
  • Far too expensive for the basic experience it offers

Availability

  • UKRRP: £129.99
  • USARRP: $129.99

Key Features

  • Long battery life:Can last 100 hours on a single charge.
  • Magnetic Optical switches:These optical switches allow for super-speedy inputs, which is vital for competitive gaming.
  • USB-C charging:By using the same charging input as most Android phones, it’s likely you have spare compatible cables.

Introduction

At the upper edge of the SteelSeries Prime lineup of mice sits the Prime Wireless. Overall, it delivers what you’d expect from a product with such as name, but it’s lacking in a few key areas. 

I’m a firm believer that wireless mice are the way forward. Gone are the days that cutting the cord meant battling with batteries and leaving your victory in the hands of a receiver blocked by a can of coke. The SteelSeries Prime Wireless is a fine example of a mouse that isn’t held back simply by swapping out a dangling cable for a dongle. 

This beauty scored me my first Fortnite victory in quite some time. And while I don’t doubt the sensor tech in both the Prime and Prime+ aren’t any less capable, I do believe the absence of a cord played a major part in my particularly high accuracy in that match. Would I have paid £129.99 for the privilege, though? Not a chance.

Design

  • Sleek and stylish matte-black chassis
  • Tasteful RBG trim on the mouse wheel
  • Lightly textured to avoid the soap bar effect

Like the Prime and Prime+ further down the price bracket, the SteelSeries Prime Wireless sports a professional design. The sleek black shell makes it one of the best-looking mice in the business right now.

But a minimalist aesthetic isn’t for everyone. Available only in black with minimal RGB lighting, it isn’t a unit you can customise to match the rest of your setup. It won’t out you as someone who spends a good chunk of their pay on a mouse that, to an outsider, is no different from one they could find at a supermarket – but it certainly will perform better. Much better, in fact.

The Prime Wireless is obviously trying to emulate the grip of the Logitech G Pro X Superlight. The Prime Wireless looks similar, but SteelSeries has been wise enough to offer light texturing that’s virtually invisible to the naked eye.

While it’s a good-looking mouse, its attractive curves don’t necessarily serve a purpose to every gamer who encases it with their paws. How it fits in your hand will drastically affect how you perform. And while I did score the first Fortnite Victory Royale I genuinely believe I deserved while playing with this mouse, it wasn’t a wholly comfortable experience. 

As someone who has always preferred a palm grip while popping heads, the SteelSeries Prime Wireless is just a tad too thin towards the front. My palm feels fine on its slightly larger backside, but things curve inward very fast, creating a sharp corner that simply doesn’t suit my pinky. It’s used to being cradled by the finger couch on my Razer Naga Pro – a mouse that I can confidently say isn’t as reliable in battle.

Performance

  • Rock-solid tracking
  • Battery refuses to give up as it teeters on the edge
  • Technically clicks faster than you’ll ever be able to

It wasn’t just in a few rounds of Fortnite that the SteelSeries Prime Wireless impressed on the performance front. Both in other shooters such as Destiny 2, and the world of Final Fantasy XIV, not once did I attempt to blame my own mistakes on the premium wireless clicker. While the sensors on the Prime line have all been perfectly fine for my less-than-professional use case, the cables on its cheaper siblings – the Prime and Prime+ – absolutely got in my way on more than one occasion. 

Another important area where the Prime Wireless delivered was with the magnetic optical switches powering each click. Leaning on the idea of having each keystroke break a laser, they basically trigger at the speed of light, so you’re unlikely to hit any kind of bottleneck in practice.

I can’t be sure the two generic side buttons positioned just above the thumb grip use the same tech, but they felt just as receptive to my touch. They’re a little spongier than the hard, “crisp” click delivered by the main buttons, but they feel dependable.

Then there’s the battery. Rated for 100+ hours on a single charge, the SteelSeries Prime Wireless has enough battery-saving measures to last a solid week. I didn’t charge it once in the first seven days of use. It would have been nice to have a wireless charging option, or at least a cool dock of the type accompanying some premium Razer mice.

The fact that it still hasn’t died after showing the one-bar battery icon for three days is enough to say its wireless life is a long one. My Razer Naga doesn’t wait for me to finish work. The Prime Wireless does: and I appreciate it for that. I also appreciate that SteelSeries scrapped the proprietary USB-C fitting for this mouse. My phone charger fits the port here – the same can’t be said for the other two Prime mice and their positively archaic micro-USB connector.

What I don’t appreciate is the fact there isn’t a place to store its rather chunky USB-C dongle, no option for Bluetooth – despite SteelSeries’ own Aerox Wireless offering it at half the price – and it lacks the swappable battery feature of the company’s premium headsets as well.

The SteelSeries Prime Wireless commands a premium price, but skimps out on many of the features offered by products with a similar cost. One great example is the Corsair Dark Core RGB Pro SE: a mouse that offers swappable grips, space to store the dongle, Bluetooth support, and even wireless charging at a much cheaper price. The SteelSeries Prime Wireless is a niche product that costs too much and offers too little.

Software and lighting

  • Simple software that’s easy to understand
  • Some interesting performance tweaks
  • Minimal yet tasteful RGB trim

The SteelSeries Prime Wireless is nothing without the SteelSeries GG software. Without the OLED screen of its cheaper sibling, the Prime+, hopping into the SteelSeries software is mandatory when it comes to tweaking this mouse to your liking.

There’s a DPI button underneath the mouse, but there’s absolutely no indication of the setting, requiring you to count the stages you set like you’d need to count the bullets in your magazine without a HUD. It’s not fun.

What is somewhat fun, though, is the software itself. Like the mouse, it’s sleek and pretty intuitive from a quick glance. Tap into the SteelSeries Engine section and you’ll see the connected peripherals with neat banner artwork. Here, you’ll find settings such as DPI, lift-off distance, polling rate, and some experimental stuff such as separate acceleration and deceleration sliders. 

Most won’t ever want to touch anything beyond cranking up the ISO to 1000 and dialing in the five stages of DPI from where the onboard memory will call, but there’s a case to be made for the final two sliders. 

By tweaking the acceleration and deceleration speeds, it’s possible to iron out any issues you might have with sliding your pointer across less than ideal surfaces. I’m not sure who would spend £129.99 on a mouse only to use it on anything but a decent mousepad, but if you do happen to use it on your desk or even your textured couch cushion when gaming on the big screen, these two settings will help to offset any little bumps the mouse might travel over.

But the setting most will want to have a play with here is the RGB lighting window. Like the rest of the software suite, it’s pretty basic and easy enough to understand. And with it being your only shot at personalizing this sleek black slab, it’s worth putting the time in to really tie it into the rest of your setup.

Should you buy it?

You want a wireless mouse you can trust: There’s no doubt in my mind that the SteelSeries Prime Wireless can get you through your game. It will put your mind at ease.

You want more for your many bucks:
Although it’s a solid mouse where it counts, the SteelSeries Prime Wireless skips out on a lot of features that much cheaper mice support.

Final Thoughts

The SteelSeries Prime Wireless is a fantastic mouse. It performs perfectly and looks great, but it’s clearly designed with high-end FPS play in a mind. The lightly textured grip puts it ahead of its closest competitor, but it also offers too little beyond the basic mouse experience to justify its high price.

You’ll struggle to personalize its looks, and without even the Bluetooth toggle that much cheaper products offer, it’s hardly going to be the one mouse to rule them all. And at that price point, it really ought to be. Wait for a sale.

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How we test

We use every mouse we test for at least a week. During that time, we’ll check it for ease of use and put it through its paces by playing a variety of different genres, including FPS, strategy and and MOBAs.

We also check each mouse’s software to see how easy it is to customise and set up.

We used as main mouse for over a week

Tested performance on a variety of games.

Tested the battery life

FAQs

Does this mouse have Bluetooth?

No, the SteelSeries Prime Wireless only supports 2.4GHz wireless connectivity.

How long does the battery last?

The battery is rated to last 100+ hours on the default lighting option.

How much does it weigh?

The SteelSeries Prime Wireless weighs 80g.

How long is the charging cable?

The charging cable is 2.08m. It’s also used to connect to the wireless dongle’s dock.

Specs

UK RRP
USA RRP
Manufacturer
Size (Dimensions)
Weight
ASIN
Release Date
First Reviewed Date
Connectivity
DPI range
Number of Buttons

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