ROCCAT's Kone XTD and Kone Pure in Practice

The software for ROCCAT's Kone mice is almost frighteningly complete and even daunting to use, but how do the mice handle once configuration is done and you're ready to go? Do you even have to configure them to get mileage out of them in the first place?

As it turns out, not really. I found that the default settings for the mice were surprisingly good. The default sensitivity setting of 800 dpi is definitely sluggish, but the next step up at 1600 dpi is just about perfect. I'll never be a twitch gamer but it's nice to know there's an almost comedic amount of headroom beyond 1600 dpi. Users are liable to be confused by the back button being used for "Easy-Shift" instead, but that's a minor grievance.

In Productivity

As day to day mice, the Kone XTD and Kone Pure are both very comfortable and easy to use. While peripherals are undoubtedly very subjective, I found that the grips of both mice fit my hands securely, and that the buttons actuated with the right amount of force and in the right places. Contrast this with Thermaltake's Level 10 M, which for all its adjustability still demanded a larger paw and a different grip. I've heard other people absolutely enamored by the Level 10 M, by the way, so if you enjoyed the grip of that mouse the Kone may feel a bit small or may not suit your mousing style.

The slightly smaller body of the Kone Pure did prove to be a little problematic, though. While the overall grip feels slightly better due to the lack of glossy stripes, the the Pure is lower to the mouse pad, and I found my pinky routinely brushing the pad. I have fairly small hands to begin with, so I wonder if the Pure might not be just a touch too small for some users. The XTD, on the other hand, fit perfectly.

In Gaming

There isn't much to say as far as gaming is concerned. I fired up F3AR (which I still consider to be grossly underrated) for a test drive and found the default 1600 dpi sensitivity to be ever so slightly too high, but still well within the realm of playability and easy enough to adjust to. The reality is that with the way different games handle any mouse you're probably going to have to make some adjustments, though the spectrum isn't quite as wide as it used to be.

ROCCAT's Kone Software Conclusion: Fantastic Mice, But Expensive
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  • Kalessian - Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - link

    They never tested lift off distance either, or even mentioned if you can change the poll rate?

    Though to be fair this is not the site to look at when meticulously judging gaming mice.

    I have a first gen deathadder which has been retired to office use, an abyssus which I just could not get used to grip-wise, and have returned to using the WMO, which I developed my fingertip/claw hybrid style on. It's a huge pain to keep at 500mhz, though, and I feel that most pros have moved on to newer mice, but I don't have the money to buy each of them to try out for a week to see if the grip is compatible.
  • JPForums - Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - link

    there is no reason to use the g500
    the sensor isn't that good
    g400 is better

    optical mice are better in general, ...

    That statement requires a lot of qualification that you don't present. Optical mice are better in general IF you are using it on a cloth mouse pad. Laser mice don't perform to their potential on cloth mouse pads. To be fair, this is situation you see most often.

    Laser mice track on a wider array of surfaces and are therefore better than optical on surfaces that they have trouble tracking on. Also, it can be argued that Laser is better on rigid, textured surfaces. In general, laser is more sensitive (not to be confused with more accurate).

    The only inherent advantage/disadvantage between the two is that Laser are smaller and can therefore support higher resolutions. This also means they use a smaller aperture and are more susceptible to dust if they aren't cleaned. In practice, though, laser sensors employ prediction to smooth traces due to the fact that their greater sensitivity reveals jitter in the movements of most peoples mouse movements. Unfortunately, when low ratios of cursor movement per dot (high cm/360), this can also have a negative effect on the mouse movements. Built in mouseaccel isn't universally applied, but like prediction, doesn't really manifest itself very much at high ratios of cursor movement per dot.

    In conclusion, currently, optical mice are better for people who use a suitable surface and prefer 45cm/360 (rough guess) or larger cursor speed. Lasers are better for people who prefer 15cm/360 or smaller (or have non-optimal tracking surfaces). The cross over point isn't clear.

    All that said, it doesn't matter how well your sensor tracks if the mouse ergonomics prevent you from moving how you want to in the first place. You just get a well traced crooked line. The Razer Lachesis had such terrible ergonomics that it forced jitter every time you clicked one of the main mouse buttons. Not that it tracked perfectly otherwise, but there was no practical way to snipe even if it were.

    I've used a lot of Logitech mice (though not the G400), number of razer mice (though not the deathadder 4G), and a few others, but I still haven't found a better optical mouse than the MX518. In most settings, I prefer my G500 due to my preference for a low cm/360 except when sniping. Of course, the MX518's ergonomics make it better for me than most other laser mice.
  • cactusdog - Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - link

    I bought the Kone+ about a year ago, it ws the most expensive mouse but the mouse didnt live up to the high price.

    Problem 1. In a very short period of time, the grippy coating wears off and you have finger wear marks on the mouse making it look old and beatup in no time.

    Problem 2, Changing the driver settings takes a very long time. With so many settings I thought I would test out a few different settings, So you change one setting , then click apply, then wait......and wait.....and wait maybe 20 seconds later the new setting is activated. If you want to test more settings,forget it, it takes so long I just gave up.

    Problem 3. Driver updates come with firmware and the Roccat update process is by far the worst updating software I have seen in any device in over 12 years. You install the driver, then the automated firmware update invariably fails forcing you to dig into program files to find the stand alone firmware exe to update firmware manually. Drivers wont work until new firmware is applied.

    Problem 4, Early mice had a dodgy mousewheel problem although I believe they have fixed that one.

    The mouse feels ok in the hand but too many problems for a highend mice and unfortunately you dont find out until its too late. It has the kind of problems that arent mentioned in reviews.
  • 053EC2A5B2 - Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - link

    Thanks for the great review.

    I'm on the market for a new mouse, can you recommend anymore ergonomic mouse that is titled for right-hand, maybe with less bells and lights and cheaper?
  • Slash3 - Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - link

    Roccat Kova[+] - it's great. I bought one a while back after watching some youtube reviews and looking at the high res mouse pictures. Has a nice, wide rubber scroll wheel, two buttons on either side (ambidextrous in function and shape) and tracks great. It has the same profile software with the ability to use a shift button function, and has little glowing LEDs that can be changed to cycle, set for a color or disabled. I let it do a slow "breathing" cycle and find that it doesn't annoy me at all.

    Plus, it's ~$50 on Newegg or your favorite web store. Just punch in Kova and it'll come up.
  • 053EC2A5B2 - Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - link

    yes roccat mouses look great, and so far are my best option but I'm looking for more good quality mouses that are NOT ambidextrous.
  • Amp300 - Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - link

    The Mionix Naos 3200 (~$50) is the best inexpensive ergonomic right-handed "gaming" mouse I was able to find. I have medium-sized hands and the mouse shell feels like it was molded specifically for me.
  • Khato - Wednesday, February 27, 2013 - link

    I'll second that - I actually bought a Roccat Kone[+] first and while I liked it initially not having anywhere good to rest the ring finger got to being extremely bothersome. On the logitech G5 style there's an adequate ledge to the right of the right mouse button that works quite well for that, but there's no analog on the Kone - instead there's a smaller amount of space at a less ideal angle and a sharp corner. Now I acknowledge that this won't be a problem for everyone as some are fine with having their ring finger on the side, but yeah, that bugged me.

    Comparatively the Mionix Naos ergonomics are great. About the only problem being that it can be a bit difficult comparatively to pick up the mouse if you're so inclined.
  • quas - Thursday, June 6, 2013 - link

    There's actually a problem for Naos that all the reviews I've seen didn't mention. The material surface used attracts sweat like crazy. In just 5 minutes of usage, it makes my palm sweat more and then the sweat stains really permeate through making it impossible to remove. The Roccat Kone may have the ring finger problem but the surface material used is superb, it doesn't attract sweat and it doesn't make me sweat either.
  • Pheesh - Thursday, February 28, 2013 - link

    Definitely the G400. Least flawed sensor you can get and not that expensive. It's a favorite of FPS gamers.

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