I’ve reviewed a lot of mice for Game Freaks 365, but this review is the first I’ve written for a Razer brand peripheral. Razer is known in the PC gaming world as the professional’s choice. Another important note about Razer mice is that none of them are wireless. Having a wired connection eliminates having to sacrifice performance to keep from killing the battery. In this case, I’ll be reviewing the Razer Diamondback mouse, which comes in blue, green, or red lighted, as well as “chameleon” paint with no lights. I picked up the blue lighted version for two reasons… first of all, my keyboard is lighted blue, so now they match. Also, Circuit City only had blue. (Ha!) Ergonomics-wise, the Diamondback isn’t top notch. It’s uniform on either side, so although that helps the 1% of PC gamers who are left handed and aren’t already used to a right handed mouse, it hurts the rest of us. The thumb buttons are very awkward , having 2 on each side, so either way I guess you get a pair of “thumb” buttons, as well as a pair of “pinky” buttons, which are practically impossible to use. The thumb buttons are hard to see, for one, because they are transparent just like the rest of the side of the mouse, and they are relatively small. Additionally, they are placed far enough UP to make them a pain to reach when you need to use them. Finally, unlike most mice with the “Mouse4/Mouse5” buttons mapped to the thumb buttons, on this mouse, “Mouse4” is mapped to the primary left thumb button, and “Mouse5” is mapped to the primary right thumb button, which is awkward to use as forward/back buttons when web browsing. Like Logitech mice, though, the Razer did come with a software CD which I was hoping would help me map the thumb buttons more usefully.
The software is total crap. First of all, although it DOES allow you to choose which function is mapped to which thumb button, some functions are not available for some buttons. Example? You cannot map the Mouse4/5 buttons to your normal left-side thumb buttons. Mouse5 is just not on the list for that side. Additionally, even if I tell the software to NOT start up with the computer, it does anyway. I didn’t bother updating, I just uninstalled as soon as I could. Performance-wise, however, Razer mice can’t be beat. It blows all of my Logitech mice out of the water in this department. It’s default resolution is 1600DPI, which is at least double what normal optical mice ship with. This allows for less movement of your hand for the same movement on-screen. For instance, if you have an old Dell mouse, and play Counter-Strike, you’re going to have to scroll over the entire mousepad twice just to pull a 180. If you set the in-game sensitivity real high, you lose the precision, as your movements are now multiplied. In the case of high-resolution mice, like the Razers, you get the high sensitivity paired with high precision. Another good point for this mouse is the cable length, it’s got to be a good 7 or 8 feet long, which is above average. The scroll wheel feels secure, and although you can clearly feel the “clicks” (as you should), it’s totally silent.
Other selling points include Teflon feet for maximum slidage, and rubberized side grips, although they aren’t really where I keep my thumb or pinky. All in all, the Diamondback is lacking in terms of ergonomics and software, but is totally unbeatable in performance, which is all that really matters to “hardcore” gamers anyway. I’ll keep my eye out for a nice, right-handed Razer for the future. Until then, if you’re looking for the most powerful, precise mouse for the price, you can’t beat the Diamondback.