PerformanceROCCAT’s Kone[+] mouse was put through its paces in a variety of games and tasks. To begin with the mouse was tested on a variety of mouse mats in order to see whether the sensor and implementation can handle the different surfaces. To little surprise the Kone[+] functioned well on all surfaces straight from my normal hardwood desk through mats like SteelSeries 9HD / S&S, ROCCAT Alumic, and last but not least the recently reviewed Epic Gear Hybrid Pad.
The sensor and firmware does a good job in terms of handling different surfaces without introducing unwanted jitter.
GamingThe gaming performance of the mouse is really good. Its large size lends it towards people using a palm type grip, but due to the button placement and general shape, people using claw/finger-grip will also find it useful. Coming from the SteelSeries Sensei at 5000 DPI to the ROCCAT Kone[+] meant that the transition period was relatively short. Mice that run on the same sensor have a tendency to behave the same, and this was definitely the case here. ROCCAT are also using an on-board CPU to handle some pre-processing and data transmission to the PC. All our games tests had acceleration and enhanced pointer precision turned off and the input method was switched to "raw mouse input".
At 1000 Hz polling rate, tracking is consistent all the way up to the upper limit of how fast you can move your hand. People playing with an extremely low sensitivity could theoretically hit it, the medium to low sensitivity gamer will never get near the limit. Prediction is very low if there is any on the Kone[+].
In both CounterStrike:Source and Battlefield 3 the mouse proved to be both accurate and responsive. The grip is slightly less comfortable than that of the SteelSeries Sensei and the Mionix Naos 5000 which makes it a little hard to handle some times, however, after a few gaming sessions you learn to adjust to it.
The EasyShift function and macro capability works in games, but is hardly usable in FPS games. MMORPG gamers will undoubtedly love it. The EasyAim functionality is pretty redundant in these two FPS games, but that too works without introducing unwanted delays.
Like the rest of the Avago based mice there is a small positive acceleration issue. The vast majority of gamers will never notice it and it is definitely less of nuisance than the hefty Z-axis acceleration issues of Philips Twin-eye based mice.
The ROCCAT Kone[+] mouse is a thoroughly good choice for gamers that play with a medium low to high sensitivity. The laser sensor used is still the best available and the firmware and implementation in the Kone[+] is top-notch.
With the sensitivity at 6000 DPI the mouse seems to track slightly less smooth than with it set to 5000 DPI. This is probably due to the sensor being at the very limits of its usable resolution. On all mouse mats we tested, going to 6000 DPI resulted in a less precise feel than 5000 DPI. Since ROCCAT does not use any form of interpolation to reach 6000 DPI our guess is that the sensor becomes slightly more susceptible to noise and surface differences at 6000 DPI.
The TDCU and lift-off-distance settings can be hard to get right with the Kone[+] and getting a good performing setup takes a little time and fiddling around with different combinations, however, once setup it performs admirably on most surfaces.
[subheading]General Work[/heading]The EasyAim feature is perhaps more warranted for doing Photoshop work than in games. For regular desktop work precision requirements are very low and many users prefer a fast moving mouse, but in some programs like Photoshop a lower sensitivity is required. The mouse is precise and tracks consistently which makes it more than good enough for everyday work. The 6000 DPI resolution of the sensor is definitely overkill for all desktop applications, but thankfully it is adjustable.
Ergonomics wise the Kone[+] is good although nothing spectacular like the Mionix Naos 5000, and it has slightly more forced ergonomics than the SteelSeries Sensei. The ergonomics of the Kone[+] lends itself towards people with normal and larger hands, however, the side button placement is only good for people with either small hands or someone using a claw type grip.