Asus ROG Spatha Mouse Review. The Spatha launched recently intending to please MMO users primarily, with its 12 buttons and RGB elements the Spatha is feature rich. Design wise; you’ve likely seen nothing like it, wrapped up in a premium package the Spatha carries a price around the 129.99 mark, placing it in the same playing field with products such as, the Razor Mamba Chroma and the Steelseries Sensei Wireless. Does the Spatha offer more or outshine them? Let us find out…
[Product Specification & Description]
- Programmable 12-button design optimized for MMO gaming
- Increased flexibility – play in wired or wireless modes
- Easy-swap switchable socket design for customizable click resistance
- Customizable RGB lighting effects across three areas
- Solidly-built magnesium alloy chassis
- Built-in flash memory to save your favorite profiles
- Exclusive ROG Armoury interface for easy customization of buttons, performance, and light settings.
- 8200 DPI, 150 ips, 30g acceleration and 2000Hz USB polling rate supported in wired mode for pixel-precise mouse tracking
Courtesy of ASUS, read more.
[Packaging & Bundle]
ASUS bundles the Spatha in a box that screams premium. The design is brilliant from the top; we see the Spatha from above. From the left side of the box, we see the left side of the Spatha and…You get the idea. Colours and such are very low key pushing all the focus on onto the RGB element.
Remove the lid and we’re greeted with the mouse, but underneath is much more than I expected.
- 1 x wireless receiver/ charging dock
- 1 x 2-meter braided USB cable
- 1 x 1-meter rubber USB cable
- 2 x Japanese-made Omron switches
- 1 x carry case
- 1 x star-head screwdriver
- 2 x ROG logo stickers
- 1 x ROG certificate
The bundle is most impressive, and the care taken inside the box is evident too. For 129.99 the balance is just right, the decision to offer multiple cables and a premium dock is a smart one.
[A Closer Look]
We shall start our tour of the Spatha with a view from the front side. Focusing our attention first on the wireless/wired aspect. The tip of the USB cable has a unique shape, as does the hole it fits into, eliminating that frustrating “is it in yet” element..(Behave!) The area around it has an almost Vader look right? From this angle we can spot 2 of the RGB areas, First being on the scroller, and the next on the left side (more on this soon) Design-wise, it’s unique, with lots of hard and angled lines.
Spinning around to look at the left side mouse, we have a few elements to talk about. Colour wise, notice the distinct changes between the top and base? Also, Your eyes are likely drawn to the six buttons, ideal for MMO’s. At first glance, they look a challenge, but because each is angled slightly different to the next, they are actually very practical. Below them is a thumb rest, sporting the STRIX styled design, this is made up of rubber and offers excellent grip.
No button on the mouse’s right side but good news for your fingers, as the Spatha has a spot for your ring finger, and grip below it for the pinky to sit
Looking now from above, we can see the Spatha in all its glory.Notice the skirts at either side for your fingers.
The Spatha will suit both palm and claw users. Apart from the left and right clickers, the mouse features two additional buttons on the left side. The Scroll wheel is coated, with the same design as what’s used on the thumb grip.
The ASUS logo is the next main area for lighting.
On the underside, we have the pads and the 8200DPI sensor. To the right, we have the pair, power and charging point.
As this is a wireless/wired product, ASUS don’t just offer a single wire. Thiers a choice between either a 2-meter braided USB cable
and 1-meter rubber USB cable. Likewise, if you intended to go wireless one or the other is used to connect the charging dock. A quick note on this, only more recent motherboards support charging while your PC is turned off, so do check ahead.
[Software + Lighting]
Customization is handled with the ASUS Armory application. It’s a ROG based application, features are neatly separated into logical tabs consisting of
A self-explanatory tab, here we can assign mouse commands, keyboard strokes, macros, multimedia or even common windows shortcuts
Sensitivity, angle snapping, polling rate (up to 2000 Hz! in wired mode) button response and acceleration can be tweaked with ease
RGB isn’t for everyone but those who like it will appreciate the amount of control here. Some nice effects are found, and can be further fine tuned to suit. A cool addition is the battery indicator, and can be assigned to multiple areas.
The actual tones we set, were representing well on the Spatha, and I appreciate the brightness control! The images really don’t show the true reflection of the product sadly…
This addition is brilliant, not only does it have prebuilt profiles but you can manually set it too.
Customize the sleep time and change the battery warnings
The Armory is a solid and able piece of software
[Testing & Final Thoughts]
We don’t have a predefined list of games for our testing. As time has passed, new releases are often thrown into the mix, but more often than not old schoolers like Unreal tournament, and CS: GO are at the center of the testing. That said, I never jump into a gaming on day one of our mice reviews, as I feel it fair to allow for the transition period. We’ve all been there with say a new keyboard; you spend the entire day mashing all the wrong keys, activating lights and such. Mice have a similar and distinct transition period.
After a few days to settle and become accustomed to the Spatha, I loaded up a few FPS and gave it some serious testing. Hours turned into days and…You get the picture. I’ve had the Spatha under my hand for a good while now, and I’m ready to share my thoughts. My daily driver is small, and low ambidextrous affair, I often find that day 2-3 is tough when I review mice. Aches are often a problem.
The mouse is not without issue, at least for me with small/medium sized hand (palm grip player). Right of the bat, I struggled with the two additional buttons on the left click. I could use one with the ease, the other took some stretching and just wasn’t practical. While that’s negligible pending on hand size, the real issue is the weight. It should be expected given the sheer size and amount of hardware inside, but long term the Spatha is just that little bit heavy for my preference. Asus have missed a real chance to further shine, by not including a weight system. Alternatively, a cutback, and lighter model would please me!
Going forward I’ve nothing but praise, coming back to the actual design. Credit is due, for cramming so many buttons into one product, without any real impact on practicality (except above) the harsh slants are a work of art, I could and did spend far too much time just admiring it. While it’s clearly been crafted towards the MMO users first, the Spatha is still an all-rounder, and is very practical other genres too. Focusing on MMO titles, though, those additional buttons are a godsend. Using them was surprisingly easy to manage. Unusual angles help the user differentiate between each.
On the performance front, the 8200DPI sensor was flawless, and the calibration tool works extremely well. To be fair, the Spatha coped, when switching between hard surfaces and multiple mats. The Omron switches (default) are great and being able to switch them out is a massive advantage over others. The armory software unleashed and further enhances the Spatha, with a mass of settings and profiles.
Pricing is on the higher end, and therefore it will be compared to others such as the Mamba Chroma or Sensei wireless. While user preference will be the determining factor foremost. Let us just glance over what the Spatha has, that they don’t. The Spatha has additional RGB areas, more buttons, DPI indicator, support for profiles (built into the mouse) Magnesium alloy chassis, carry pouch and swappable switched. I’d say the Spatha really has the upper hand right? The bundle is balanced just right, and very fair considering the price tag.
We would like to thank ASUS for providing the sample. We look forward to seeing more from them, shortly!