Closer ExaminationThe SteelPad S&S was one of the first hard plastic mats to have a good balance between glide and control. Besides that the S&S is one of the most comfortable hard mats to play with due to the thickness of the pad, measuring only 2 mm or 0.07 inches, this pad is extremely thin.
One of the things that makes the S&S concept unique is that SteelSeries' developers have managed to make not only an extremely well balanced surface but also a mat that is thin and stays in place while gaming. The only real problem area with the old S&S was the rubber that was sprayed on the bottom of the mat to make it grip the desk surface, it was made in such way that it was quite fragile.
The adhesive used to glue the rubber to the back of the pad seems to be a bit better than the stuff used on the old version.
One of the most unique things about the S&S is the surface. It's one of the best compromises between control and glide, this is achieved through a medium grain surface that has a soft and smooth feel to it.
As you can see from the picture above, the surface is quite grainy but the peaks are smooth, this is probably what makes the S&S surface so balanced.
PerformanceTo test this mouse mat I have used both the Microsoft IntelliMouse Explorer 3.0 (IME 3.0) and the Razer DeathAdder. The MSI 3.0 is probably one of the best low sensitivity gamer mice on the market today that relies on a standard optical sensor. One of my main reasons for testing this mouse mat with the DeathAdder is that it features a brand new infrared sensor, a sensor that functions like an optical mouse but utilizes the infrared spectrum.
When testing this mat in-game I tried using it both with a relatively high sensitivity and a really low sensitivity, just to see how easy it is to get a feel for the pad.
I started off by testing it in Battlefield 2 with my ordinary sensitivity with the DeathAdder. The transition from my NOIDpad to the S&S was quite easy since they both have a well balanced surface. On only thing that I had to get used to is that the S&S doesn't absorb any of the shocks from when I realign the mouse, I do this a lot since I play with a low sensitivity and the S&S is quite small compared to my normal hybrid mat.
The tracking was really good and precise at all times, I was able to make precise 180 degree turns.
During my testing in both Battlefield 2 and CS:S I tried the mat using both high and low sensitivity and I must say tracking performance was really good in all scenarios and due to the pads' gliding performance the mouse is also suited for low sensitivity gamers that can make live with only a relatively small pad.