Conclusion: Fantastic Mice, But Expensive

ROCCAT's Kone mice were incredibly pleasant surprises. Usually doing these peripheral reviews is just interesting for me because I get to see what other vendors are producing before going back to my Logitech G500, but having had time to play with the Kone XTD has left me questioning whether or not I want to make the jump. I mean hey, the Kone XTD's lighting could match the K90. That means something, right?

As far as the mice themselves go, they're mostly bulletproof. The texture used for the grips is soft without causing your hands to get too clammy over time, the lighting is attractive, the grips themselves are very comfortable, the software has a tremendous amount of functionality, and as a whole they're both exceptionally full-featured. While I feel like the Kone Pure is just a little bit too low, and I do wish they'd managed to find some other way to incorporate the "Easy-Shift" functionality, these are small gripes in the scheme of things.

The Kone XTD is definitely the mouse of choice out of the lot, but boy will you pay dearly for it. The XTD is a punishing $89.99 on NewEgg, putting it in the price range of a lot of esoteric (and ergonomic) mouse designs. That makes it kind of a hard sell, when other mice (including some popular Razer kit) are available for less, but it might still be worth the investment. This mouse does a hell of a lot, and it feels good in the hand. A good mouse is, like a good keyboard or a good monitor, often worth investing in.

At a less astronomical but still pricey $69.99, the Pure is at least a more affordable alternative. It's true that you lose the adjustable weight, extra button, and mouse wheel tilt, but all the functionality is still there in the software. Given the choice between the two I think I'd fork out the extra Jackson for the XTD, but your mileage may vary. The Pure's slightly lower profile may even be more suitable for some users.

Of all the mice I've reviewed so far, I have to say the ROCCAT Kone XTD and Pure are among my favorites. Reviews on NewEgg will tell you that settings sometimes take a long time to apply (approximately 20 seconds), and that's true...within the software. It's a minor nuisance and I hope they fix it, but no product is absolutely perfect. The XTD and Pure do just about everything else right, and while the software itself is tremendously busy and can seem difficult to use, it's definitely powerful and wonderfully complete.

As with any peripherals, your mileage may vary, but I definitely think the ROCCAT Kone XTD and Pure are worth considering. ROCCAT has produced two exceptional peripherals here, worthy of a Bronze Editor's Choice, and I look forward to getting more of their hardware in for testing.

ROCCAT's Kone XTD and Kone Pure in Practice
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  • shaolin95 - Thursday, February 28, 2013 - link

    I went through a long research and those were my two top choices. I ended up with the ROCCAT and I couldnt be happier but the 8200 seems to be awesome as well so I dont think you can go wrong.
  • BrokenCrayons - Thursday, February 28, 2013 - link

    Neither of ROCCAT's mice look overstated or obnoxiously "loud" and I like the idea of adjustable weights. While I'm partial to an Evoluent VerticalMouse 4 series at work because of the acknowledgement to ergonomics, I can't see myself gaming on something that's turned sideways. The Kone XTD in particular catches my interest. The only thing I'd like to see added to the design is (bear with me on this) a micro SDHC card slot buried someplace in it. With programmable profiles stored on the mouse, it would be nice to see some ability to cart a game, documents, or portable app suite around with me and maybe the mouse's drivers so I could drop it between PCs without needing to tote a thumb drive. I only suggest user replacable flash for the sake of upgradeability and, depending on how hard you thrash your portable storage, fault tolerance.

    Despite my probably unreasonable wishlist, it still seems worth a closer look and maybe a purchase.
  • graison - Thursday, February 28, 2013 - link

    Got an XTD last week, upgrading from an MS intellimouse, it's awesome. Well made, super customizable software, nice feel. You can't go wrong if you got $90.
  • BadVoodoo - Friday, March 1, 2013 - link

    i complained about the long apply time at roccat support a while ago and they told me to set up the kone monitor.exe and the option.exe as exceptions in microsoft security essentials. The apply time dropped from 30 to 2 seconds.
  • B3an - Saturday, March 2, 2013 - link

    Got one of these the other day, upgraded from a Logitech G5 and had loads of other gaming mice before that. This is miles better including the software which is excellent, i've not found one bad thing about the Kone XTD so far... best mouse i've used.

    I stayed away from the Kone+ as it didn't have a braided cable and the scroll wheel seemed poor from user comments. Both these issues have been fixed on the XTD. Also didn't like the tacky silver logo on the Kone+ and silver paint on mice ALWAYS gets worn off after a few months usage, so atleast on the XTD it's just a thin silver outline. I'd prefer no silver at all but thats the only small issue i have with this mouse.
  • snoukkis - Thursday, March 7, 2013 - link

    Dude, it's a gaming mouse. You barely even reviewed it. :(

    The higher dpi is not meant for making it faster, but to enhance precision.

    1. max out the dpi in driver
    2. leave "windows pointer speed" setting to "default" / "+-0" / "middle" / "1:1" (different names)
    3. disable windows mouse acceleration
    4. reduce sensitivity in-game to compensate for driver dpi setting

    Now you are able to make more precise movements. If the game is poorly programmed, the in-game menu mouse speed will be crazy fast like in windows because the sensitivity affects only camera movement.

    Ideally you should test with a game that meets the following:
    - high FPS
    - low input lag
    - no mouse acceleration (in addition to windows setting)
    - no dead zone (poor console ports might have this)
    - no vsync
    - sensitivity affects both camera and menu speed

    Did I forget anything? I'd recommend Quake 1. Anyone else want to suggest something more modern? Except for menu speed, Minecraft meets those requirements (disable vsync and set view distance to tiny to max out fps).

    And as mentioned in previous comments, you should note the poll rate. It's important.
  • snoukkis - Thursday, March 7, 2013 - link

    more to perfect game:
    - no movement smoothing/filtering (adds input lag and hides possible problems)
  • Galbias - Tuesday, March 12, 2013 - link

    The XTD looks tempting; I use a Cooler Master Storm Inferno myself and I love the "Shift" functionality that it has since I find myself running out of buttons to assign on most standard mice, but it seems to be a rather uncommon feature. The XTD seems to have more assignable buttons in the end since it has horizontal scrolling and assignable vertical scrolling so I may look at getting one. Thanks for the review.
  • GullLars - Friday, March 29, 2013 - link

    I've got a Roccat Kone[+] (plus), and before that i had the original Roccat Kone for 4 years. I made the switch from MX518, which is basically the prior iteration of the G500.

    The reason it takes a while to apply changes in the software is because they are flashed onto the storage in the mouse, which is a self-contained unit. Everything you can access in the software is hosted on the system integrated in the mouse, you can plug your mouse into a system that doesn't have the software and you still retain all your configurations, profiles and macros. This is a big selling point for users that can make use of this functionality, be it gamers that travel and use other machines, or for productivity work on many different machines. A mouse is not too big to carry with you if it increases productivity and ergonomy notably.

    I don't game as much anymore, but i buy enthusiast grade gaming equipment because it's made for people who have high requirements for their eqipment and don't settle. I spend so many hours in front of the computer that +$50 for (each of the) peripherials is worth it, and because of typically higher quality the TCO if the equipment lasts 3 years or more is not that much higher.
  • Hypersphere - Wednesday, February 10, 2016 - link

    I was frustrated by my tests of the Roccat Kone XTD and Roccat Kone Pure. The sticky feel of the transparent plastic used for the cosmietic lighting on the XTD was a deal-breaker for me. The Kone Pure does not have the LED stripes, but it is too small. I am also not fond of the ostentatious Roccat logo on these mice and the cheap weight cover on the XTD. This is unfortunate, because otherwise the build quality, size, shape, weight, sensor, and switches of the XTD are all excellent. I especially liked the solidity and quietness of the scroll wheel. Alas, the clammy feel of the light stripes on the XTD ruined it for me.

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