UtechSmart Gaming Mice Roundup ReviewBluePanda - August 11, 2013
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UtechSmart Gaming Mice Closer Look (The Mice):
I'm going to play things out of order a little and start with the higher priced UtechSmart 8200 mouse. Both mice are palm fitters and I will go ahead and jump out and say that I do like the fit of the 8200 a little better, even this early on in the review. The little extra grip pad on the right and slight curve in provides a more comfortable, controlled grab. From the top of the mouse you can see the scroll wheel (with tilt), the DPI toggle, and the edges of the rubber grips to the left and right of the mouse. An UtechSmart logo appears on the glossy patch of the palm, which will light-up later for some fun. The left click and right click feel even (as if the same, which we'll find out later isn't true for the 8000). It is a little nicer looking in pictures than in person, I must say. The seemingly silvery buttons for the DPI switch and side buttons are actually just painted plastic, but really, if you don't STARE at it, you won't even care.
The bottom of the mouse has a little trap door to add/subtract weights to; we'll see this a little closer up later. The UtechSmart logo is printed neatly with the model number along with the typical QC check sticker. There are four skates for the mouse to travel on, and if you recall from the unboxing photos, you get four more for when you're ready to "replace the tires" after the mileage has taken its toll. It glides quite smoothly on these feet and has quite the exceptional feel for the asking price.
Looking at the front of the mouse you can catch a glimpse of the blue and black braided cable. It's not much of a "feature", but I do find it pretty neat compared to just your standard black braiding. You can get a closer look at textures here as well, with the buttons having a slight rubber coating and the strips down the sides and center remaining glossy black for a unique appearance. The four cutouts on the right (the actual left of the mouse) are individual LED lighting that will indicate the DPI level when plugged in. The butt end of the mouse really just shows off the shape of the mouse; the indentations for the thumb and ring/pinky, respectively left and right. Otherwise it just has a bit of a "fat" looking butt and nothing much to talk about.
The side profiles of the mouse provide a little more idea of what the mouse has for buttons. The right side has a button way up near the front. Honestly with a regular grip on the mouse I can't find this with my ring finger for the life of me without shifting my hand forward. Perhaps I have short fingers, but I don’t see myself setting this button to any function I'd regularly (or honestly) ever use. It's hard to get to, and because of that, I forget it's even there. By default it swaps between red, green, and blue LED color options on the UtechSmart logo on the palm. To me it's not really a major loss, but those of you looking for extra buttons (for other features), let's hope you have fingers that are a little longer.
Again, the rubber gripping on this side provided a nice grip for me. It isn't glossy and slick after hours of play and isn't overly done to make it irritating either. The left side of the mouse has a similar rubber pad that also plays nicely with holding your thumb in place happily. There are actually three buttons on this left side rather than the standard two for front and back. The lower third button is by default set to be double click; an odd option to have out of the box. I didn’t really use it much that way, but fortunately the software (you'll see ahead) allows for changing this to your choice. Overall the mouse seems pretty comfortable fitting with all of these things and has an okay start for final marks.
Getting a little more personal we can take a look inside the back door of this mouse; careful, these images may be NSFW (just kidding). Inside, there is a pad of foam with six cutout holes for six weight options, weighing in at five grams a piece for a total wight change of 30g in the heavy direction. I preferred the mouse best without any additional weight, but that's a mouse to mouse, person to person deal. Either way, the weights were easy to insert/remove and best of all, didn't rattle around inside the mouse! The weights do come in a neat box to keep them from getting lost on your desk; the packing is quite nice looking AND big enough to manage on the go.
This mouse is a standard USB mouse (it's rare to see PS/2 mice anymore) and plays nicely without any drivers installed. Off the bat it comes programmed as about a standard mouse for the regular left/right, front/back, and scroll features, while the additional buttons function as mentioned. Installing the software, as you will see on the next page, gives you a lot more control in setting all eleven buttons to your deepest desires. Ultimately, for a cheap mouse (and even though you haven't heard about the next mouse yet) this UtechSmart 8200 is the breadwinner in this review.
Here's a few pictures of the mouse lit up in the glorious blue color. But, although you can change the color of the mouse, you can only change the UtechSmart logo. The blue LEDs at the top left (showing DPI indication) are forever blue. This can be good or bad depending on how you feel about blue!
Moving on to the UtechSmart 8000 mouse, we have a slightly different feel. It's a little cheaper selling at $29.99 and has a different overall feel as well. Looking at the top-down view it's a little swoopier than the 8200 and just a very different overall look (good or bad, I'll leave up to you to decide). There are three buttons on the left of the mouse that stick out quite far and are easily viewable from above. The scroll wheel lacks the tilt feature, but features a button above and two buttons below it. The UtechSmart logo on the palm has the appeal for some future glow ability - can't wait! The bottom of the mouse masks the same profile as above in reverse. It has three skates to glide upon, and though a little rougher than our above friend, still slides along nicely. There is a button down here to switch between the two saved profiles the mouse can handle. A trap door turns on and off to hide some additional weight options we'll unveil later.
From the front of the mouse the tilt wheel looks rather crooked in appearance, however it has a nice feel in hand. Despite the little bit of over-blur effect I have on this particular image, the mouse has a nice basic look to it. The left and right buttons are rubber coated while the sides give off the glossy appeal (not my favorite, but it looks ok). The butt of the mouse doesn't show off much, other than the fatness of the palm grip, but I will point out that the right edge for your ring/pinky finger is a glossy disappointment.
This picture of the right side of the mouse really shows off the glossy mess I spoke of above. Though the picture makes it look like a botched spray paint job it isn't quite as horrible in person. You don't notice it much in the right lighting or really with it pointing away from you at your desk. You do, however, notice your hand getting a little sweaty on this edge and not quite the ergo-fit you may be hoping for. The buttons on the left side of the mouse are a whole new story to the ideas of "standards". Usually you expect a forward and back with two buttons and a third button as a surprise option. In this case the furthest back button is by default a button for Left ALT, the middle for Left Shift, and the front for Left CTRL. It's not ideal, but thankfully you can install the driver for some reasonable options. In my opinion this takes the real plug'n'play option out of this mouse.
The bottom of the mouse, like we saw before, has a little twist off door for adding some weight to the overall mouse. I'm still a fan of it without any added weight, and this is how I ended up using it. There are six little TINY weights you can add/subtract weighing in at only 2.4g each. It doesn't seem like much, but adding a few actually provides a noticeable change. I will complain a bit about how tiny they are as even with the container I found them seemingly easy to lose; not a good thing with pets or small children around.
The UtechSmart 8000 comes with a braided cable with a gold plated USB connector. It looks like your standard plug and is just as simple to plug in. Overall it's a pretty good upgrade from just a standard non-branded mouse or that Logitech "Internet" mouse you might be using. It is definitely affordable and if you are just looking for something with a few buttons it is for sure a good start.
Here's a couple of shots with the mouse glowing blue. Remember again that the DPI indicators at the top left do not change from blue with the logo; they remain blue no matter your choice. Just something to keep in mind if you can't stand blue coloring.