Most advanced users, especially those that are interested in gaming, have almost certainly heard of SteelSeries, a reputable manufacturer of gaming-related peripherals and hardware. The company originates from Denmark and today has offices in the US and Taiwan. They have a very large selection of products available and we cannot possibly cover them all in a single review, but today we will be having a look at their most advanced (and expensive) mouse, the Sensei Wireless.

We received the Sensei Wireless inside a simple, well-designed, hard cardboard box, which should offer ample shipping protection to the lightweight mouse. Aside from the mouse itself, the only other items inside the box are the dock, the USB cable, a company sticker, and a basic manual. There is no CD with the required software, which instead must be downloaded from the company's website.

 

The SteelSeries Sensei Wireless Mouse

The SteelSeries Sensei Wireless is a symmetrical mouse of classic design. It is a good choice for left handed or ambidextrous users and very comfortable for prolonged use, although perhaps not as ideal as ergonomic mice that are shaped to fit either the left or the right hand. For instance, the Sensei Wireless has two buttons on either side of the mouse. Two of these buttons can easily be pressed by a thumb but it is painfully frustrating to press the other two with your pinky or ring finger. The ribbed wheel of the mouse offers good feedback and comfort, without being too stiff or too soft. There is only one button at the top of the Sensei Wireless that, if not re-programmed, can be used to cycle through the CPI settings.

The top and sides of the SteelSeries Sensei are made of corona treated ("rubberized") plastic, which feels comfortable to the hand and improves adhesion. The company logo can be seen at the top part of the mouse, which illuminates once the mouse is powered on. You can even pick the illumination color and intensity through the software, as well as select from a couple of visual effects, such as "breathe" and "battery status". The default colors of the mouse are red and it is set on "breathe", but these can be easily changed to virtually any color combination and intensity possible.

Perhaps the most interesting feature of the Sensei Wireless is its metallic charging dock. The heavy dock has a metallic surrounding frame but its central and bottom parts are plastic. It is heavy enough so that it won't slide around on your desk and it's shaped to be a perfect fit for the mouse. It also acts as the wireless receiver, but unfortunately the fact that the wireless receiver is integrated into this large, heavy, metallic dock reduces the portability of the Sensei Wireless down to virtually zero, at least if you want to use it in wireless mode. An illuminated ring surrounds the dock, which can also be programmed via the software.

The cable that SteelSeries provides can be connected to either the charging dock or the mouse itself. This way, if you run out of battery, you can just connect the cable to the mouse and keep playing. The proprietary molding of the cable is a perfect fit for either the mouse or the dock. The connector will lock into place once attached to the mouse and you'll need to be careful and not forget about the unlocking button when removing it, as otherwise it is easy to cause permanent damage. There is a catch too; due to the proprietary shape of the connector, finding an exact replacement will be a pain should you lose or damage yours. A typical mini USB cable will fit into the dock but it will not really be a good match for the mouse.

The Software, Performance and Conclusion
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  • Notmyusualid - Friday, May 2, 2014 - link

    Indeed, I think I once paid less than $30 USD for a Razar Deathadder in Shanghai, in 2009.... and it was the real deal.

    Great mouse but I'd like one smaller than that really...
    Reply
  • Egg - Thursday, May 1, 2014 - link

    This looks just like my Kinzu V2 o.O

    Of course the sensor is worse, there are only 2 buttons + CPI adjustment, and it's wired. But for a fifth of the cost shipped, I can't complain.
    Reply
  • Wall Street - Thursday, May 1, 2014 - link

    I have to agree with others that the mice reviews here could be so much more. On the subjective side, I don't think that most "hardcore" gamers actually care for weight systems, more than five buttons (including the wheel) and adjustable shapes. Also subjectively, the author doesn't talk about the grip at all or compare it to other mice. On the quantitative side, the measurements including size and weight aren't even present. There is no effort to measure tracking, latency, liftoff distance, perfect control speed, jitter, prediction or acceleration. Take a look at Takasta's reviews on overclock.net, the ESR Mousescore review, the utmalesoldiers.blogspot lag test and Enotus mousetest. These are the cutting edge of mouse testing just like benchmarking was the cutting edge of GPU testing circa 1997. Reply
  • Notmyusualid - Friday, May 2, 2014 - link

    It looks nice and simple - but 159 EUR? Well I understand why - having lived 3yrs in Denmark full time, some of us paid 60% income tax, 25% VAT, and 80 to 110% tax on new vehicles, depending on whether it is for business or private use. Of course these rates my have adjusted slightly by now, but you get the picture.

    So they have to charge a lot for the mouse, in order to make *some* money at all, given the above repressive tax environment.

    I once heard a marketing man say, there is no such thing as bad products, just bad prices. :)
    Reply
  • piroroadkill - Friday, May 2, 2014 - link

    Yeah, Danish taxes are infuriating, and the money gets pissed up the wall.

    However, I highly doubt these are actually made in Denmark. Unless someone knows otherwise, I'd bet these are made in the same cheap-ass factories in China as everyone else's mice.
    Reply
  • Notmyusualid - Friday, May 2, 2014 - link

    Hej, er du Dansk? Reply
  • piroroadkill - Saturday, May 3, 2014 - link

    Nej, jeg er Engelsk, men min kæreste gennem 4 år er Dansk. (Jeg rejser til Danmark hver 2 måned).
    Min Dansk er ikke god, men jeg lærer en lidt.
    Reply
  • Notmyusualid - Sunday, May 4, 2014 - link

    Ok, I'll switch back to English... But really? Your Danish is quite good! I'm impressed.

    I knew there was a relationship involved as soon as you said you were English. As the Danish say, 'nobody comes here for the weather, or the taxes'. Ha ha, how very true....

    Hej hej...
    Reply
  • risa2000 - Friday, May 2, 2014 - link

    Does the wheel rattle when turning upwards as it did on Sensai RAW?
    This and "unstable" acceleration were two reasons for which I returned the mouse then.

    I am long time optical user (Diamondbacks in different incarnations) and that there was something wrong with the movement was pretty obvious the first time I moved the mouse. Maybe today's gamers are already accustomed the laser sensor behavior but for me it was something hard to miss.
    Reply
  • JeffFlanagan - Friday, May 2, 2014 - link

    $160 for a mouse, and they can't even be bothered to pack in a thumb-drive with the drivers? Reply

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