Review Roundup: Corsair M65 Elite, Harpoon Wireless, and Ironclaw Gaming Mice
New Corsair Gaming Mice
This week at CES 2019 Corsair is launching two new gaming mice as well as featuring another recently-launched flagship. The M65 RGB Elite, released late last year, and the Harpoon RGB Wireless and Ironclaw RGB, launching at CES, each offer unique features geared toward specific games and user preferences, including improved optical sensors, refined designs, and more options for customization.
We got an early peak at each mouse along with the MM350 Extended XL, the latest version of Corsair’s gaming mouse/desk pads. Read on for a quick look at what each new gaming mouse brings to your PC gaming experience.
Corsair Gaming Mice Spec Comparison
First, here's a quick look at the major features and price point of each new mouse.
|M65 RGB Elite||Harpoon RGB Wireless||Ironclaw RGB|
|Connectivity||USB 2.0||USB 2.0
Bluetooth LE 4.2
|Resolution||Up to 18,000 DPI||Up to 10,000 DPI||Up to 18,000 DPI|
|Battery Life||N/A||30hrs 2.4GHz w/lighting
40hrs Bluetooth w/lighting
M65 RGB Elite ($59.99)
The M65 RGB Elite is an update to Corsair’s existing M65-series. New features include an optical sensor with up to 18,000 DPI resolution, which Corsair calls the “most accurate gaming-grade” sensor, a redesigned frame with exposed aluminum, tweaked thumb side buttons and sniper trigger, and a lighter-weight design at 97g, a 15% reduction over its predecessor.
The new Elite retains the customizable weight and distribution feature from the previous generation model. It uses three sets of weights that screw into the bottom of the mouse. Removing one or more weight allows the user to adjust the overall weight of the mouse from 97g to 115g. This tweaking has the effect of adjusting the device’s center of gravity for precise control over how the mouse moves and feels.
The M65 RGB Elite also continues to feature the sniper button near the thumb, although the button’s shape and positioning has been slightly modified from the previous model. The sniper button, overall one of the most intriguing features of the M65-series, automatically reduces the mouse’s sensitivity while pressed (to a user-customizable level that can be set in the iCUE software). This lets you have fast movement for mouse looking and navigating combined with precise aiming when you need it. And because it’s a hardware-based feature, it can work with any game or even with productivity and media applications such as Photoshop.
But the star of the show is arguably the improved resolution. Corsair teamed up with PixArt to develop the new sensor, which now offers resolutions between 100 and 18,000 DPI in just 1 DPI increments. The M65 RBG Elite ships with five DPI stages by default — 800, 1,500, 3,000, 6000, and 9,000 — but users can fully customize their preferred resolution via Corsair’s iCUE software and then switch modes via the buttons placed behind the scroll wheel.
While continued improvements in optical sensors for mice is of course welcome, in our testing we found the higher DPI values to be, unsurprisingly, way too much. We’re sure that certain gamers or applications will be able to take advantage of these insane levels of resolution, but in our case anything over about 4,000 DPI gets to be a bit nuts.
Of course the M65 RGB Elite includes a range of features found in both its predecessors and other mice in the Corsair lineup, such as customizable RGB lighting, game profiles and macro support (including double macros), custom polling rates, surface calibration tuning, and onboard storage for using your custom macros, lighting, and DPI options without needing to install or launch iCUE.
In short, the M65 RGB Elite is a welcomed refinement over the previous M65-class devices. Its new features probably aren’t enough to justify an upgrade for those who picked up an M65 Pro last year, but fast-paced gamers looking for a high quality, feature-rich, and customizable new gaming mouse will want to take a look.
Harpoon RGB Wireless ($49.99)
The Corsair Harpoon RGB Wireless is a wireless version of Corsair’s existing Harpoon RGB gaming mouse, and it features a trio of connectivity options to suit any gamer’s setup: wired USB, Bluetooth, or Corsair’s 2.4GHz low-latency “Slipstream” wireless technology.
Corsair claims that the latest version of its wireless tech is 50 percent faster than the previous generation, with less than 1ms of response time. Onboard hardware continuously scans the wireless frequency for congestion, and automatically shifts to the fastest available wireless channel to ensure the best possible performance. Corsair touts a range of up to 33 feet, although we started to experience connectivity issues (albeit in an environment packed with wireless devices) after about 20 feet. Still, for most users that means ultra-fast wireless gaming from the couch or beyond.
The Harpoon RGB Wireless sports the same basic design as its wired-only counterpart, but with a detachable micro USB cable. On the bottom of the mouse, a small toggle switch lets the user choose between wired, Bluetooth, and 2.4GHz modes, with the 2.4GHz USB receiver tucked neatly away inside a separate compartment.
The Harpoon lacks the more aggressive styling of the M65-series, but still offers a comfortable grip with six programmable buttons, customizable RGB lighting effects, and an optical sensor capable of resolutions up to 10,000 DPI. Users can customize up to five resolution presets and then rotate through them via the button below the scroll wheel.
Like the M65 Elite and its wired counterpart, the Harpoon RGB Wireless offers complete customization via iCUE, including macro support, lighting effects, onboard profile memory, and changeable polling rates.
The device’s 99g weight makes it one of the lightest wireless gaming mice available, but without sacrificing acceptable battery life. The Harpoon RGB Wireless of course won’t get you the same kind of battery life as a non-gaming productivity-focused wireless mouse, but Corsair advertises up to 60 hours via Bluetooth with lighting off, or as little as 30 hours via 2.4GHz with lighting enabled.
Our relatively short time with the mouse prior to its launch didn’t allow us to fully test the complete battery life, but we’ll at least say that, after its initial charge, it never ran out of battery as we tested it and the other Corsair mice over the course of a week. In fact, as of the date of this article’s writing, iCUE reports that we still have about 35 percent of the battery life remaining from that initial charge.
Overall, the Corsair Harpoon RGB Wireless takes an affordable and well-reviewed model and adds excellent flexibility thanks to its multiple wireless options.
Ironclaw RGB ($59.99)
Rounding out the new and improved mice from Corsair is the all-new Ironclaw RGB, a wired mouse aimed at those with larger hands or who prefer a fuller grip for their input device.
The Ironclaw features an overall larger design than the first two mice discussed, as well as a taller arc for comfortably accommodating larger hands. Like the M65 Elite, the Ironclaw offers insane resolutions up to 18,000 DPI along with seven customizable buttons and dual zone RGB lighting options.
With a weight of 105g, the mouse is relatively lightweight, although unlike the M65 there are no official ways to adjust it. In fact, even though the other two mice have lower minimum weights, the Ironclaw felt in our testing to be lightest of the three, almost too light, even. This is perhaps due to its large size which causes one to expect a heftier feel.
And, of course, like the other mice discussed here, the Ironclaw is fully customizable via iCUE with support for lighting effects polling rate, resolution, surface calibration, macros, onboard profile storage, and more.
Corsair markets the Ironclaw as being ideal for MOBA players, and it certainly offers enough features to suit that demographic. But with the gaming mouse industry moving to more “aggressive” designs every year, it’s good to see a feature-rich gaming mouse with a more subtle look. We’d therefore recommend the Ironclaw to frequent gamers looking for something less obvious to sit next to their keyboards, or for gamers with large hands who have trouble using lower profile mice comfortably.
Our only concern is the design that, again, may be too light for our tastes. But if you prefer your gaming mice to be on the lighter side, and you’re not interested in ditching that wired connection, check out the Corsair Ironclaw RGB.
MM350 Extended XL
Finally, there's the MM350 Extended XL mouse pad. A continution of Corsair's mouse anti-fray cloth mouse pad lineup, the MM350 joins the MM100, MM200, and MM300. There's not much to say here: it's a high quality mousing surface that's large enough to accommodate your keyboard and offers a few extra inches of depth compared to its predecessor (15.7in vs. 11.8in). It features a gray and black "etched" Corsair design with a non-slip backing, reinforced stitched edges, and a clean, low-friction surface for accurate mouse movement.
As mentioned, the M65 RGB Elite is already shipping, while the updated Harpoon, new Ironclaw, and extended MM350 will be hitting retailers soon
|Review Terms and Disclosure
All Information as of the Date of Publication
|How product was obtained:||The products are on loan from Corsair for the purpose of this review.|
|What happens to product after review:||The products remains the property of Corsair but are on extended loan for future testing and product comparisons.|
|Company involvement:||Corsair had no control over the content of the review and was not consulted prior to publication.|
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