Raptor M3 Review

Raptor M3

Gaming mice have developed in recent times into a whole new sort of rodent combining adjustable DPIs, moulded finger placements, cable-routing and much more. The latest product up for review is the Raptor M3 Platinum which will hope to raise Raptor’s profile in the UK by showing off its vast adjustability allowing the user to create their prefect mousing setup. Let’s take a look…

Raptor-Gaming’s Take on the M3 Platinum

The brand new RAPTOR-GAMING M3 PLATINUM re-invents the era of adjustable Gaming-Mice. It offers much more options of individualisation and the ergonomic shape is completely renewed compared to all already existing mice of RAPTOR-GAMING. The resolution of the laser mouse is adjustable by hardware in steps of 800, 1600, 2400 and 3200 dpi.

A truly highlight is the new weight-change system. It allows the user through the RAPTOR-STEELWEIGHTS to not only define the weight but also the weight-point of the mouse.

The innovative ergonomic right-hand design and the special soft-touch surface secure that Gamers hands will never slip off the mouse again. The elegant silk-black and silver mouse also includes additional sets of mouse gliders and a flexible cable with a length of 2m. Another innovative new feature is the integrated cable management system. This gives the Gamer the freedom to decide in 6 different ways on how the cable should leave the mouse. The size of the mouse can be adjusted with the new RAPTOR-GAMING-WRIST-REST.

To complete the extensive feature set of this Hardcore-Gamers weapon, two additional neoprene-bags are included in the delivery content. One bag is specially designed for the secured transportation of the Mouse (RAPTOR-MOUSEBAG XL) to LAN-Parties. The second, smaller bag, is designed for the secured transportation of the different weights (RAPTOR-WEIGHTBAG).

Specifications

  • High resolution laser gaming mouse
  • Resolution adjustable by hardware in steps (800 dpi, 1600 dpi, 2400 dpi, 3200 dpi)
  • Resolution adjustable by software in steps (up to 3200dpi)
  • Different weight settings (110gr. – 155gr.)
  • Special Design for right-handed use
  • Removable RAPTOR-GAMING-WRIST-REST
  • Special Soft-Touch Surface
  • Flexible 2m USB cable
  • 6 buttons incl. mouse wheel
  • Additional sets of mouse slider

Hardware and software requirements:

  • Any Pentium or IBM compatible PC with Win 98/ 2000/ ME/ NT/ XP
  • Programmable 3rd, 4th, 5th, button function require driver in Win 98/ 2000/ ME/ NT/ XP
  • 64MB RAM memory or above recommended
  • One free USB port

Contents & Packaging

The M3 Platinum, great name by the way, is packaged in a sleek black box with the whole mouse visible through the plastic packing in the middle. The front sees the full delivery content plus a special mention on the adjustable DPI settings. A row of awards above the name Raptor Gaming logo finishes it off nicely.

 

The sides see some translations for multilingual purposes; after all Raptor-Gaming is predominately a German company and isn’t that well known in the UK as of yet. That could all change though with the M3 Platinum.

 

The back is full of information on the hardware requirements (they are pretty minimal), technical details and other bits and pieces. A number of images that display the different features are also shown including one at the bottom which appears to show a woman kissing the mouse! – Perhaps trying to make this mouse seem a little ‘sexy’ or something.

 

A whole host of accessories accompany the mouse:

  • Raptor Mouse bag XL
  • Raptor Weight bag
  • Raptor-Gaming Wrist Rest
  • Quick installation guide (German and English)
  • Additional sets of mouse sliders
  • Application software CD (always get the most current version on www.raptor-gaming.com)

 

The bags are great idea as they are perfect for transporting the mouse around to LAN parties etc. The inclusion of a separate, smaller weights bag is also not a bad idea as it keeps any additional weights that the user doesn’t need in the mouse together.

 

The Teflon feet that are provided are in many different sizes and shapes which is good so that the user can choose their own personal level of resistance.

 

The Product – Raptor-Gaming M3 Platinum

First inspection of the mouse reveals it be of similar style and order to many rivalling gaming mice already available. Your hand immediately moulds around the design with each finger sat comfortably in the allocated finger moulds.

The M3 Platinum has all the marks of a great product in that the adjustability and number of features incorporated in the design is so vast. What will define this product is its ability to pull each and every one of these features off.

 

In terms of aesthetics, the soft, smooth rubber finish that is now expected of gaming mice is incorporated and it is indeed very comfortable of your hand and fingers. The shape of the M3 is very ergonomic and fits in with the placement of all 5 buttons. Looking more closely at the ergonomics, it is evident that everything has been well thought out and implemented so as to provide the user with easily accessible buttons that are correctly placed. This is all very good except for one small detail – the DPI switch.

This button, located pretty much in the central part of the mouse is not near any of the finger placement and so using it requires having to take your hand off the mouse to press it; clearly this is not ideal especially whilst in game and thus the DPI flexibility appears to be more of a ‘set and play’ feature than something which can be changed mid-game.

 

The DPI can be set to four values using the switch which works by clicking it once and then using the scroll wheel to light up a series of LEDs which correspond to the level of sensitivity – without changing the settings these speeds are 400, 800, 1600 and 3200 DPI. The later of these values seems to be roughly the top end speed of all current gaming mice.

 

The other button locations are, naturally the left and right lick buttons, along with the centrally placed black scroll wheel and two more silver buttons next to the thumb. These are in fact quite hard to push but this is good as it means they cannot be accidently pressed (especially annoying when surfing the internet and this button is set to back).

The scroll wheel is a fairly simple affair but spins freely enough without any issues.

 

Flipping the Raptor M3 Platinum over reveals yet more adjustability; the first of which has been granted the fancy name of ‘integrated cable management system’ – essentially it just alters the point at which the cable leaves the mouse. A total of six positions are available which does seem slightly excessive but at least is gives the user greater manoeuvrability depending on the position of other objects on their desk.

A quick point about this is that it’s best not to adjust this with the computer on as it requires holding the mouse and pushing the cable in quite forcibly which, unavoidably, means clicking a whole series of buttons in the process.

 

The second feature concealed within the mouse is seemingly the latest gizmo to hit gaming mice – adjustable weights. This is a kind of something or nothing feature that in all honestly I can’t really see the point of as surely all users want the mouse to be as light as possible? Nonetheless it has been implemented into the construction in the form of two foam inserts each containing numerous small metal weights. Simply take out or put in as many of these weights as you want.

Having made this preconception, I did actually find that without any of the weights, the mouse did seem very light and so I found that at least a few of the weights were useful to give it a much better feel.

 

The covers for the compartments containing the weighting mechanism are double sided with one side having large Teflon feet and the other comparatively small ones (hence the different sized feet provided with the mouse).

The idea behind it is that, the user is able to determine their own level of resistance when using the mouse – the larger feet give more friction. Again this seems a little pointless as surely most people want less friction for faster mouse speeds?

The final feature is more of an accessory than an integrated part of the M3 Platinum. It is an extended piece of moulded plastic that clips on to the back of the mouse to allow a completely different style of rodent use! This involves the user placing their whole palm on the mouse and controlling the movements with the whole of their hand rather than just their wrist. It’s not really my cup of tea but it’s a nice inclusion for clearly some enthusiasts prefer this approach.

 

Finally, we come to the braided cable which more and more gaming mice are beginning to utilise for its non-tangle properties. Unfortunately many products cannot live up to this claim but in this instance it really does and with 2 metres of cabling there’s plenty of length.

 

Software

For the Raptor M3, drivers are required in order to utilise some more changeable settings but Windows did recognise the device straight away and it installed in a short time period.

The CD containing the drivers is very small and provides the standard set; however the latest drivers can be downloaded from the Raptor site.

There are three main categories in the software: buttons, scripts and speeds. The first of these factors contains an image of the mouse surrounded by a drop down menu for each button. A whole host of different actions can be set to each button but unfortunately there is a limited selection (still pretty long) but does mean that the user can’t set their own actions.

Moreover, on this screen the LEDs on the side buttons can be changed and turned off if the user so wishes.

 

The most important of the other screens is the speeds setting which allows you to change the pre-set values of the DPI from 400, 800, 1600, and 3200 to a range of values up to a maximum of 3200. Thus although there are only 4 settings which is a lot fewer than say the Mionix Saiph 3200, for example, they can at least be altered to suit the user.

But as I mentioned before, the only real way to utilise this feature in game is to develop the talent of pressing the buttons with the palm of your hand – not ideal as you may have guessed!

Testing

The Test Setup:

ProcessorIntel C2Q Q9450 Quad Core @ 2.80GHz
MotherboardGigabyte S-Series GA-73PVM-S2H
Graphics CardXFX 8600GT
MemoryCorsair XMS2 PC6400 (2x 1GB)
Hard DriveHitachi HDT7250 (250GB)
Power SupplyNOX Apex 700W
OSWindows XP Pro 32bit

Methodology

As with all peripherals and accessories, they are extremely subjective with different people having their own personal opinions. Therefore, it is advisable to test the peripheral yourself before you buy as people’s opinions vary greatly.

In order to test mice here at Verdis Reviews, we use the product for an extended period of time (incorporating general use and gaming) looking at performance, durability and comfort.

In order to test the Raptor M3 Platinum mouse, I used the following games:

  • Call of Duty World at War
  • Battlefield 2

Results

Gaming

Call of Duty: World at War
Call of Duty World at War is an extremely fast paced first person shooter that requires pinpoint accuracy, high precision and split-second reflexes. I jumped straight into battle and immediately began to pop off head shots very easily. I must say the precision and speed of the mouse is first rate. I personally, like a very high DPI so whacked mine up to 3200 which also helped in terms of speed.
One of the things that are very helpful for gamers is that you can pretty much adjust everything: resistance, DPI, weight, cable-routing etc. Therefore, you are able to set up the mouse to meet your very specific needs.

Battlefield 2
Again Battlefield 2 is a fast person shooter but it is slightly less fast paced with much bigger maps. Again, the M3 handled very well and I was able to compete well – I even got top of the server once.
I chose to try out the wrist rest too which was very strange to start off with as I have never tried anything like it. It involves putting your whole hand on the mouse and controlling the movements with your palm instead of your wrist. It took quite a while to get used to it but it seemed to perform reasonably well. I personally wouldn’t choose to use it but it’s another piece of adjustability that gives the user much more flexibility.

Comfort

Your fingers immediately sink into the moulded finger positions and feel instantly comfortable. The smooth rubber finish to is very easy of the hand; overall it’s a very well designed mouse that is one of the most comfortable I have ever used.

Durability

The mouse seems to be very well built and there doesn’t really seem to be any obvious design flaws that might cause the M3 Platinum to be damaged easily. I would have thought this mouse would last for a long time without displaying much in the way of ware and tear.

Cost

The huge amount of adjustability and flexibility does, unfortunately, come at a price and a high one at that – the M3 comes in at a whopping £90.

Conclusion

Clearly, the Raptor M3 Platinum is a brilliant product in terms of flexibility and the amount of adjusting the user is able to determine. The resistance, cable-routing, weight, button configuration and DPI are able to be changed in order to set up the perfect gaming mouse for the particular user.

The problem is that once this optimal layout has been setup, all the adjustments are not really used again which means that if the user knows the kind of mouse that they are after, there are a lot of cheaper alternative routes that they can go down – £90 is a lot of money for a mouse indeed.

However, in defence of the M3, it will provide amazing performance in pretty much all layouts and setups. The design has been very well thought out in order to combine the vast amount of features and come up with a truly awesome gaming mouse.

If you’re not entirely sure what kind of mouse you are after or just want a great mouse that can be adjusted to specifically meet your needs, then the M3 is certainly a great choice.

Pros

  • Amazing adjustability
  • Great features
  • Comfortable
  • Sleek and attractive
  • Great gaming performance

Cons

  • Very expensive

90%

Thanks go to Meroncourt for providing the mouse for review.

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