Steelseries Rival 700 Gaming Mouse Review
Published: 30th December 2016 | Source: Steelseries | Price: £79.99 |
When a product comes along with this many features it is difficult to know quite where to start. We could just talk about the sensor and the switches, but when there is so much extra sizzle with the steak it seems like we'd be doing the Rival 700 a disservice.
However, the meat of any mouse is the quality of the sensor, the crispness of the buttons, the comfort in use and how all that brings better accuracy and performance to your gaming experience. The Rival 700 ticks all of these boxes without breaking a sweat. Based around the 16000 CPI Optical sensor there is plenty of accuracy for even the most demanding professional. Our feelings about these insanely high speeds haven't changed - we still think it is a pointless arms race to be the first to produce a 20000 DPI gaming mouse - but flagship models have moved onto this setting and so Steelseries have to follow suit. The buttons have a great tactile feel to them, if we ignore the vibration for a moment, and the Rival is very comfortable in the hand. It's heavier than a lot of mice you might be used to, but it's by no means so heavy that it is an impairment to your gaming prowess. If you adore ultra-featherweight models then perhaps it's worth trying before you buy.
Customisation is where the Rival 700 really shines though. It starts with the RGB lighting, something that is now commonplace on all high end and even most mid-range hardware, but as always with Steelseries the application of it is done brilliantly with both searing hues and subtle shades replicated with equal clarity. There is none of that "gentle hue is just white" problem you might see on lesser lighting solutions. You can change both the Rival logo at the wrist position and the cover that sits beneath your palm too, either for Steelseries own alternatives or if you have a 3D printer and some creativity for one of your own design. This ability to adjust continues with the sensor. Four screws and the whole sensor drops out and can be quickly changed, should you prefer a Laser sensor rather than Optical. This customisation even goes as far as Steelseries supplying you with two cables of different types and lengths so you can be certain to have a fragging weapon that fits you like a glove.
The two big features have to be the OLED display and the vibration or "tactile feedback" to give it their own name. The OLED display doesn't just show your DPI setting but can display animated gifs, the onboard settings menu and even be tweaked to display certain images in certain scenarios. It's a fantastic piece of design that is both easy to see and yet not intrusive. The tactile feedback is something which sounds like it's a bad thing on paper. After all, who wants vibration to disturb their sniping, but in actuality it is no more intrusive than the haptic feedback you get on your phone. Even better, it can be adjusted to a whole range of patterns so you end up with something which really does enhance your gaming experience. Much like we couldn't imaging console pads without rumble. How Steelseries have managed to implement this but in a way that doesn't vibrate the mouse itself and thus move your pointer we don't know. It's wizardry.
The Rival 700 takes a brilliant base package of class-topping sensor, crisp buttons, great placement and customisation options, and enhances them by letting you adjust almost every element of it to give you a mouse that is not only your own unique one, but actually improves your gaming performance by combining reactive lighting, tactile feedback and the OLED display into a blistering weapon of death and glory. It is a genuine game changer, and wins our OC3D Enthusiast Award.