Razer Mamba 2012 review

Razer Mamba Wireless
The new and improved Razer Mamba 2012






  • Wireless/wired functionality
  • Battery life of 16 hours
  • 9 programmable buttons
  • 6400 DPI dual sensor system
  • for PC and MAC

 

The Razer Mamba 2012 (also referred to as the Razer Mamba 4G) is the upgraded version of Razer’s flagship wireless gaming mouse that came out in 2009. Among the improvements over the 2009 version you’ll find improved battery life, the ability to change the lights to any color you want as opposed to just blue and an improved sensor which promotes it from 5600 DPI to a 6400 DPI dual sensor system which uses a laser and optical sensor simultaneously for better tracking.

Performance

As mentioned above the most interesting feature about this mouse is the fact that it’s outfitted with both a laser and optical sensor. The idea is that no matter what surface you’re gaming on, it’s always going to automatically calibrate the sensor for the best experience so that any surface will do. It can also calibrate the lift-off distance automatically which is great for FPS players. This is quite the nice feature, although one minor complaint is that if you switch surfaces you have to plug the cable back in so that the software can recalibrate.

The DPI itself can be set to anything from 100 all the way up to 6400. The Razer Mamba 2012 lets you save up to five different DPI levels that you can use on-the-fly. Mouse prediction is thankfully non-existent. Comparing the tracking when wired as opposed to wireless showed that the wireless mode did have a problem keeping a steady 1000hz whereas the wired mode (obviously) had no problem with this. So when used wirelessly it’s recommended to drop the polling rate down to 500 for more consistent results.

Ergonomics and battery life

From a top-down perspective the mouse looks relatively ambidextrous, but due to a small rightwards curve (not to mention the side buttons on the left) the Razer Mamba is meant for right-handed gamers only. The actual ergonomics of the Mamba are actually fairly interesting, it can be used with a palm, claw or fingertip grip.

Due to the palm swell being shallow, it doesn’t get in the way when using a fingertip grip. If you want to use it as a palm grip mouse instead, you just move your palm up so that it rests on the swell. The button placement is pretty standard, two (concave) side buttons and two more to the left of the left main button meant to be DPI switchers. All 7 buttons click nicely and fit well within the mouse. If you’re wondering where the other two “buttons” are I’m also counting the up and down movements on the scroll wheel since those are also programmable.

The Razer Mamba 2012 comes with one battery and a charging dock (which lights up nicely alongside the mouse by the way.) The battery life has been improved by 15% and will last you approximately 15-16 hours. There is a 3-part battery life indicator on the mouse and once it’s out of juice you can simply plug in the cable to use as a wired mouse. Because of the fact that they included only one battery that means you have to remember to actually charge it up when it’s low, it would have been better if they included two.

Razer Mamba software

razer mamba softwareThe Razer Mamba software comes with every feature that you would expect from a gaming mouse this expensive. First of all you can set five profiles that automatically detect what game you’re playing, program all buttons including the mousewheel, independent X-Y sensitivity, a full macro editor and the ability to pick from about 16 million colors, even a mode that slowly cycles through them automatically.

Other nice features of the Razer Mamba 2012 include the ability to choose after what duration the mouse goes idle to preserve battery life, choosing when the battery life indicator flashes below a certain percentage and reducing the brightness of the LEDs when in wireless mode if you want. One very minor complaint is that if you change a setting when you’re in wireless mode, it takes a few seconds for the changes to go through. This shouldn’t be too big of a deal unless you change your settings every five minutes, but it’s still worth mentioning.

 

VERDICT

The Razer Mamba 2012 has a fantastic automatically calibrating sensor, intelligent ergonomics and excellent software. If you’re willing to put down some money for a good wireless mouse, the Mamba is a great choice.

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