Razer Diamondback Optical Mouse ReviewFormer staff writer - October 4, 2004
I have spent the several days, testing the Diamondback out. However, I had some minor problems with the Diamondback and I thought it needed more testing before I made my conclusion of it. My testing includes application usage, Internet surfing, and ALOT of gaming!
As I have been saying throughout the entire review, this mouse looks more comfortable than the Viper - well it is! It feels a lot more like a mouse made by Razer, than simply a small laptop travel mouse. It feels less "cramped" and your hand is more relaxed. The sides of the mouse feel very comfortable as well.
Over the last several days I have been trying to get use to the side buttons on this mouse, but have failed to do so. I find the buttons very hard to use and here's why. My thumb and pinky naturally rests on the lower portion of the mouse, while the buttons on the mouse are at the upper portion of the mouse. This makes it very difficult to reach the buttons when gaming or in a situation where you need to be fast. I would much rather prefer buttons like found on the Boomslang, where practically the entire side is one big button.
The placement of the buttons was not the only thing I had a problem with. I also had a problem with how much force was required to push the side buttons. Once you get use to the position of the buttons, if you ever do, then you may find it hard to push the buttons in.
For example, let's say you are playing Counter-Strike: Source and you've bound your 2nd weapon to a side button. Now you are sitting around camping with a sniper rifle and hear someone coming up around the corner, just to be safe you decide to switch to your secondary weapon. Due to the force required to push the side button, your mouse moves around the screen, and by the time you are able to reposition the person coming around the corner has killed you.
Maybe I have a weak thumb but I found that this was the case whenever I used the side buttons. When I pushed one of the two buttons with my thumb, the mouse would jerk slightly since I had to push the button so hard. With a very high speed and sensitivity mouse like the Diamondback, the smallest of jerk can throw your mouse off the screen. I know when at LAN Party's if someone bumps in to my chair, they think I'm having some sort of spasm because my mouse jerks all over the screen.
I found that the way I had my hand situated on the mouse, my pinky is barely able to reach both of the buttons. Pushing these buttons in with my pinky was even harder, since the pinky finger is less strong than the thumb.
As for the other aspects of the mouse, they were flawless! The precision and speed was absolutely phenomenal! The scroll wheel was very smooth and easy to use, the relaxed feel of the mouse was welcomed, and the lighting under the translucent body looks great!
The Diamondback includes a lot of new features and changes that the Viper simply did not have. Features like the programmable side buttons, high DPI optical sensor, redesigned teflon feet, and the heavier and more stable design, which were all very welcomed. While I love the comforts of the new Diamondback, I found the side buttons hard to use while gaming. During normal application usage and surfing the web, the buttons could be used because the "jerk" of the mouse is not a problem. The Diamondback costs only $10 more than the Viper currently costs. Despite the fact that the buttons were hard to use, I would still recommend the Diamondback over the Viper because it is more responsive, more comfortable, and it does have the extra buttons that you could use in normal application or perhaps gaming.
It is also worth noting that the Diamondback offers a 16-bit processing for the X/Y info. This means that unlike mice that do not have 16-bit processing, like the MX500, the Diamondback completely eliminates mouse drift or negative acceleration. 16-bit processing is a feature that not even the Viper offers and is something that gamers must have to prevent any hicups while using their mouse in tournaments.
The Diamondback may be pre-ordered online at the Razer web site. The Diamondback will hit the steets on November 1st, 2004 and also pre-orders will ship at this time.
- 16-bit Processor (Eliminating Negative Acceleration)
- Four programmable side buttons
- On-the-fly sensitivity adjustment
- Very high DPI optical sensor
- Smooth scroll wheel
- Fast and stable teflon feet
- Available in two different colors
- Always On
- Optical (No mouse ball to get dirty)
- Razer Software/Drivers
- Side buttons require strong fingers
- Side buttons in awkward position
- Side buttons are too small
- USB Only