Razer Mantis

Introduction

Razer are well known for their mice; including the Copperhead and Krait. What most people don’t realize is that the surface that you play on makes a huge difference to the mouse’s accuracy. Today we test the Razer Mantis; designed for control.

About Razer

Razer is the world’s leading brand in high-end computer gaming peripherals. We reinvented the computer gaming industry by bringing the competitive edge to gamers when professional computer gaming was in its infancy. In the mid 90s, with the advent of networked gaming and competitive first-person-shooter (FPS) games, gamers found that their legacy peripherals were inhibiting rather than enhancing their gameplay.

In the late 90s, after years of research and development, the Razer Boomslang™ gaming mouse, the stuff of gaming legends, was launched. Featuring an unprecedented precision of up to 2000 dpi when other mice maxed out at 400 dpi, the Razer Boomslang™ offered up to five times the accuracy of other gaming mice of its time. The Razer Boomslang’s™ precision technology was powered by proprietary opto-mechanical technology developed by the Razer engineering team and its sleek design and profile sculpted by ergonomics experts of its day.

And the rest is history.

NB: Razer’s full history is a little long, if you want to read all of it, click here

Specs and Description

  • Precision surface optimised for gaming
  • Control for low sensitivity gamers
  • Oversized 444mm x 355mm x 4.3mm design
  • Fibertek cloth weave for superior performance
  • Rubber base ensures grip on the smoothest surfaces

The Razer Mantis™ Mat is the next generation of precision gaming surface created For Gamers, By Gamers™. A premium cloth mouse mat engineered for top of the line tracking and enhancing gaming performance. The intricately woven fibers of the Fibertek™ surface ensures precise targeting and tracking without limiting the velocity or acceleration of mousing movements.

The Pad

Razer Mantis

The pad comes in a plastic tube with a paper insert which tells you all of the specs of the pad, and makes for a more eye-catching package. Once opened, the first thing I noticed was the smell; the pad stinks! It’s either the glue or the rubber backing, but there is a definite pungent odour that hopefully will go away with time.

Razer Mantis

Rolled up inside is the Razer Mantis. Printed across the pad is the green Razer logo, making sure that everyone knows who you bought it from. In the bottom right corner, Razer have put the Mantis logo, and the type of pad; either control or speed. This specific pad is the control version, and is designed for people who have their mice set to high DPI settings (i.e. every Razer mouse owner).

Razer Mantis

The Mantis actually uses the technology (Fibertek TM) made by EverGlide. In face, I’m pretty sure that it is simply an EverGlide pad endorsed by Razer and packaged as their own. The packaging makes it quite clear that EverGlide are the owners of the Fibertek trademark. Baring in mind that EverGlide are a well-known and trusted brand, I’m sure Razer’s decision wouldn’t be a poor one.

Razer Mantis

Most pads choose to go for a very finely weaved top that makes for a smooth surface. The Mantis differs, as it is weaved from thick synthetic fibres that leave large hexagon spaces between, allowing for optical/laser mice to accurately follow movement. The fibres are self-lubricating allowing for a low friction surface.

Razer Mantis

As with most pads, the back of the Mantis is rubber which stops it from sliding around when gaming. The pad is large, with over 40cm x 35cm of gaming space, allowing for large mouse movements.

Testing

First of all, after a few days the ‘new pad smell’ was reduced from offensive to liveable.

To test the mouse mat, I used the Razer Krait, which this pad was obviously designed for.

I used a variety of games, including Call of Duty 2, Chrome (old school gaming) and Command and Conquer: Zero Hour.

After setting the Krait to maximum sensitivity and finding a space big enough to accommodate the Mantis, I was ready to hand some ass.

First up was Call of Duty 2. I decided to play the desert defence levels, where high accuracy was required as the enemy is usually at distance. The pad performed beyond my expectations and the Krait just glided across the surface picking up every wrist movement, translating them into another headshot. I genuinely found that I was a better player which I have never found to such a degree with a new mouse pad.

Chrome, a javascript based game brought out in 2003, which requires a lot of long range shooting with horrendously inaccurate weaponry was the next choice of game. After a few minutes, the extra accuracy was beginning to take its toll on the enemy forces. Its hard to describe the effect of a mouse pad as its personal opinion; some like glass surfaces, others prefer cloth. I would honestly say that this is the finest pads I have had the privilege of testing.

On to Zero Hour, a strategy game brought out in 2003 which is a face-paced RTS requiring the player to play quickly to defeat their opponent. There wasn’t a great improvement in playing ability (unfortunately mouse pads can’t yet make you more skilful) but playing was more enjoyable.

Overall the mousepad is a no-frills does-the-job pad that is designed to be used with the Razer range of mice. It would work great with other high-def mice I’m sure, like Logitech’s solutions. Lower end mice would see less improvement, and it would be pointless to buy a gaming mouse mat without a gaming mouse.

The size of the pad is huge and is welcome in a spacious environment, but you have to wonder why Razer have decided to go for this size, when the pad is meant to be used with high DPI settings. Considering as 6 – 10cm of movement will get you from one side of a 1600 x 1200 screen to the other, the 40cm x 35cm is a little excessive.

Conclusion

The Mantis is a great buy for anyone looking to game at high sensitivities; it’s the best pad I’ve used so far, and compliments the Razer mice range perfectly.

The only downside I can think of, and one thing that really does need some future thought by Razer, is the horrendous smell when the pad is new

ProsCons
Excellent accuracyStinks!
Compliments your high DPI mouse 
Slick surface 

I’d like to thank Razer for providing us with the review sample

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