Razer Viper Mouse Review

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Company: Razer
Platform: PC
Windows System Requirements: Pentium 200 MHz, 32 MB RAM, USB Port

Official Site: razerzone.com

Razer initially made its impact by launching the Razer BoomSlang series of mice in late 1999. Named after a venomous snake, the mouse was designed for hardcore gamers with hardware that more precisely and accurately monitored mouse movement than other products on the market. In subsequent years, the company fell on harder times, and the BoomSlang went out of production. Soon after, existing Razer BoomSlang mice were commanding prices in excess of $200 on eBay, confirming demand for the product. Razer made a recent comeback and is currently selling the Viper, a high-end optical mouse.

Kyle Ackerman

Razer's Viper mouse is simply an amazing mouse. Razer describes the Viper as the "most responsive, precise and accurate optical mouse ever made." It is.

There is a lot of technical mumbo-jumbo that goes into high performance optical mice. Most of it comes down to how much data the optical sensor captures, how often it captures that data, and what the super-secret software does to that data after it is captured. Just as experts constantly debate over definitions in the video card wars, you'll find hardware mavens who argue over the significance of points like the Viper mouse's 1000 DPI sensor. What you can't argue about is that the Viper is incredibly precise. There is at least one other mouse that comes very close in terms of perfectly tracking tiny motions, but the Viper currently rules supreme.

Razer explicitly lets you know that if you like to move your mouse a lot while playing or working, this mouse wasn't designed for you, and would just be an unnecessary expense. On the other hand, if you are a skilled gamer who prefers to land a headshot with your sniper rifle, using only the tiniest twitch of the wrist, this mouse is amazing. The same goes for folks, like digital artists, who need a precision mouse for constant work.

The Viper really is impressive. In competitive games like Unreal Tournament 2004, it is so much easier to rapidly snap your reticle to your target. If you are a gamer of at least mediocre skills, and don't flail the mouse around the mouse pad, you should notice an immediate improvement in your game after picking up the Viper. Putting the Viper into action was like immediately jumping into that sweet groove you discover after a few solid hours of gaming.

The mouse looks cool, and comes with software to help you better customize your gaming experience. The Viper is mostly transparent, so the red glow from the sensor echoes off its surfaces, giving it a ghostly, red appearance. The side grips also reflect the light to look like running lights. The entire mouse is symmetrical (so it can be configured for left or right-handers) and features very large buttons that take up more than half of the mouse's top (a scroll wheel is nestled in the front). The buttons are another excellent feature, as they respond to slight touches and comfortably cradle your fingertips.

So what is there to dislike about the Viper? There's nothing to hate, a lot to love and it functions perfectly – so it comes down whether you like the form. This mouse is ideal for those who like a thin and low slung mouse. Personally, I prefer a slightly larger mouse, with a few additional buttons. But I want a slightly larger mouse, with a few additional buttons, that works just like the Viper. At just under $50, the Viper is a mouse for people who spend a lot of quality time with their mouse But if you need a performance instrument, you can't go wrong with the Viper.

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This page contains a single entry by Editor published on June 17, 2004 4:50 PM.

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