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SteelSeries Rival 700 Review

The SteelSeries Rival 700 is packed with features but can be bought in some shops for just £60, while many shops are charging £80, making it perhaps the mouse bargain of the moment. For a start, the Rival 700 is modular. You can swap out the top plate, replacing the soft-touch mottled grey one with a variety of optional alternatives that have different finishes and colors.

You can also tear out the whole optical sensor assembly and add in a laser sensor instead. The PixArt PMW3360 optical sensor is more advanced in terms of resolution (16,000dpi), tracking (300ips) and acceleration (500, but the laser sensor works on a greater variety of surfaces. The PixArt 9800 laser module costs an extra S24.99 US, though, and the mouse can’t be bought with the laser module already installed.

SteelSeries Rival 700 Review

Also included is an OLED display that sits on the left front side of the mouse, where its just about visible while you’re gaming. It can be used to show animated GIFs or for more practical tasks such as showing in-game information. Plus, it can be used to change the mouse’s settings.

Hold down the CPI switch button, and you can scroll-wheel and button-click your way through all its settings. This may sound tedious but it’s actually really quick and easy to do and it saves you from having to install any software to set up the mouse. You also get a haptic feedback engine. Just like the haptic feedback system on a phone, it buzzes in accordance the software instructions. The most obvious option is to have the readiness of game cooldowns – spells, special abilities and so on – indicated by a quick buzz.

The OLED display can show animated GIFs, as wellas in-game information

You also get two removable cables, one of which is braided while the other has a rubber finish. However, it’s a shame SteelSeries couldn’t make the micro-USB connection for the cables face out to the front, rather than straight down. In the current setup, you couldn’t use a normal straight micro-USB cable if the need arose. Backlighting is also present, with light emanating from the sides of the scroll wheel and the SteelSeries logo on the rear. Each can be set to whatever colouryou like and you can create various color patterns too.

Unfortunately, all those extras do add weight. This mouse weighs 138g compared to the lOOg of most of its competitors. Whether that s good or not is down to personal preference, but the difference is noticeable.

The single DPI switch behind the scroll wheel is also notable. Unlike mice that use two buttons to adjust the resolution, this button relies on you setting just two DPI levels and switching between them, which is far easier than reaching down to press one of two buttons. There’s also an extra button just forwards of the thumb rest area, which has no assignment by default but can be set to any function you like.

However, on our review sample, the left click button was a little loose, with a small gap before the finger plate hit the microswitch below, which affected the feeling of immediacy and pulls down the final performance score. Otherwise, performance is as excellent as you would expect.

Conclusion

The SteelSeries Rival 700 is a great performing mouse with loads of useful extras. However, its a touch heavy, some of the extras are of niche appeal and the left button could be better. Logitech’s lighter C403 is a better all-round option, but if you like a heavy mouse, the Rival 700 offers loads of features and a generally decent design for a very reasonable price.

VERDICT

With good performance and loads of features, the Rival 700 is a bargain for its current price if you like a heavy mouse.

SPECIFICATIONS

Sensor 16,000dpi optical

Buttons Seven

Sniper button Yes

Weight 135g

Weight management Yes

Extras Haptic feedback, modular design

8.5 Total Score
SteelSeries Rival 700 Review

With good performance and loads of features, the Rival 700 is a bargain for its current price if you like a heavy mouse.

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