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SteelSeries Prime Wireless Gaming Mouse review: Ergonomic comfort

By Hoots the Owl - 13 Sep 2021
Launch SRP: S$229

SteelSeries Prime Wireless Gaming Mouse review: Ergonomic comfort

Putting comfort first

The SteelSeries Prime Wireless sits at the top of the company's Prime range of esports-focused gaming mice, combining a comfortable, ergonomic shape with top-tier wireless performance. Wireless gaming mice are a dime a dozen today, so it's just a matter of picking the shape you like best. When set beside the likes of the Razer Viper Ultimate, the Logitech G Pro X Superlight, and the Glorious Model O Wireless, the Prime Wireless stands out because of its right-handed design and aggressive ergonomic contours. 

It shares the same shape as its wired siblings, which means it feels very similar to mice like the Zowie EC2, EC3, and the Vaxee Outset AX. There's a scoop on the left for you to rest your thumb, and the right side arches out ever so slightly so you can rest your ring and pinky finger. This allows for a very relaxed palm grip, and I can hardly ever see your hand cramping. The main body is even raised slightly at the left to accommodate the natural slope of your palm and wrist when resting. I find it best suited for the palm grip, although you might be able to make the claw and fingertip grips work if you have large hands.

At 125.3mm long, this is a very large mouse that isn't great for someone with small hands like me. It fills my palm comfortably, but it otherwise doesn't feel as precise as the smaller mice I'm used to. And as I said in my review of the Prime+, I'm not sure how good the size and shape are for competitive gaming. Of course, these things are largely a matter of personal preference, and I find that smaller, more symmetrically shaped mice allow for more precise grip styles and better control.

The Prime Wireless tips the scales at 80g. Not the lightest, and quite a bit heavier than the Razer Viper Ultimate and Logitech G Pro X Superlight. It doesn't feel too clunky in hand, but some weight reduction would definitely have made it feel a lot better.

Build quality is excellent, with no flexing, creaking or rattling. The textured matte finish feels great in hand, and resists the build-up of dirt and grime even over long hours. The switches are the same Prestige OM optical magnetic switches on the Prime+, which utilise magnets for more consistent click force. These are rated for 100 million clicks, significantly higher than usual. This is because there are no mechanical parts that can degrade over time. Switch actuation is detected using a beam of infrared light, which eliminates the need for debounce times and decreases response times in game.

These switches produce deep, satisfying clicks, with minimal post-travel. If you care about how switches sound, you should like these quite a lot. The side buttons feel similarly good as well, with solid, tactile clicks and no mushiness to them.

The scroll wheel is similarly stellar. It is quiet with well-defined notches, and I like the care taken to refine these aspects of the user experience. The scroll wheel is also the only illuminated part of the mouse, and you can choose between a few effects like Steady, ColorShift and Multi Color Breathe. 

The mouse feet are 100% virgin-grade PTFE, the only mouse in the Prime series to come with these by default. They are smooth and slick, providing an effortless glide right out of the box. 

One thing to note is that you actually lose some features coming from the Prime+ in the form of the OLED display. That's likely due to the need to reduce weight and account for the inclusion of the battery, but this means no onboard customisations without software. I didn't miss the display much, and esports players probably won't have much need to tweak their settings on-the-fly either. Still, the button at the bottom lets you switch between different profile configurations in the onboard memory. 

The mouse charges via a flexible Super Mesh cable, made from soft microfiber. If you want to use the mouse in wired mode, the cable produces minimal cable drag and exits the mouse at an angle so it doesn't catch on your mousepad. It uses a USB-C connector too, which simplifies the process of plugging and unplugging it.

Finally, there's the 18,000 DPI (or as SteelSeries prefers, CPI) TrueMove Air sensor, designed in collaboration with PixArt. It's supposed to offer true 1:1 tracking, but given the calibre of all the top sensors available today, they all pretty much deliver the same flawless performance. There's also tilt tracking to eliminate unwanted tracking during angled drops, tilt slams, and quick flicks. 

Compared to the TrueMove Pro+ sensor on the Prime+, the TrueMove Air swaps the secondary lift-off sensor for better power efficiency. That's a good trade for a wireless mouse, and tracking was indistinguishable from the other on both mice. SteelSeries is claiming up to 100 hours of battery life, which is pretty impressive. For what it's worth, I haven't had to charge the mouse in a week, and the fast-charging feature that gives you 40 hours of use after just 15 minutes of charging is pretty neat.

SteelSeries' Quantum 2.0 wireless tech delivers flawless performance, with no noticeable input lag or connection loss. It uses two wireless channels transmitting simultaneously across 40 possible frequencies, making it more resilient to channel interruptions. There is an adapter for plugging in the USB=C dongle and cable, so you can bring the dongle closer to you if you need.  

 

Conclusion

At S$229, the Prime Wireless is S$10 cheaper than the Viper Ultimate and G Pro X Superlight. That's not much of a difference, and I think the choice ultimately comes down to the shape you prefer. All these mice offer flawless tracking and wireless performance, so your grip style will probably be one of the key deciding factors. Another consideration is weight. The Prime Wireless is a bit heavier than the competition, so if you want a really light and nimble mouse, there are better options out there.

But if you've decided that you prefer an ergonomic shape, this mouse should be near the top of your list. Super comfortable, great switches, long battery life and fast-charging – SteelSeries has made an excellent mouse.

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8.0
  • Design 8
  • User-Friendliness 8.5
  • Features 9
  • Performance 8.5
  • Value 7
The Good
Optical magnetic switches are tactile and satisfying
Super flexible USB-C cable
Flawless wireless performance with quick charging
The Bad
Considerably heavier than the competition
Large, ergonomic shape is not for everyone
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