SteelSeries – Rival 700 Gaming Mouse
Tournament Grade FPS/RPG Gaming mouse, with Flawless Pixart PMW3360 optical Sensor (+ Swappable Pixart 9800 Laser Sensor ), OLED Display, 7 programmable buttons, tactile alert, Ergonomic Form Factor, RGB color lighting and quick DPI selection (100-16,000)
• Software - SteelSeries Engine 3
• Two Types of Cable
• User Manual
• Optical + Laser Sensor
• Customizable Nameplates
• Top Extra Pack
• Warranty Card
The Steelseries Rival 700 is an extremely popular mouse among eSport athletes, as it’s based on the Rival 300 which is personally one of my favorite peripherals, but with many tweaks and differences. So first, shape is quite ergonomic for right hand use with the little RGB logo and the swappable rubber plates at the back for team customizations. We have seen this on the Rival 300 before and it’s actually pretty good idea. With new Rival 700 the SteelSeries team has set the goal to create best gaming mouse ever made and they did that by taking a new philosophy. They wanted it to be more than just an input device, but other than that a two-way communication with the gamer. The customizable OLED display and brand new tactile alert, along with GameSense technology definitely proves that. So it actually is a very high performance mouse with extra customizability options. Those additional features allow this mouse to deliver real time information and notifications for gamers, which is quite phenomenal at this price. It bears noting that Rival 700 was first introduced to the gaming world on CES 2016 and to SteelSeries team. So now it’s our turn to have a look why is the Rival best gaming mouse for FPS and RPG games.
Design and Build Quality
Ergonomically the Rival 700 suits my preferences perfectly, with rubberized textured sides that help with steady grip without too much pressure from my thumb. At 135 grams I would call this a lightweight with their pretty balanced weight distribution. I am however used to a heavier mice, so it’s unfortunate we don’t have adjustable weight system. The slightly curved body and extra support on the right side make Rival very comfortable mouse, whether you prefer claw grip - so all fingers are placed naturally, or even palm grip - with elevated top for larger hands. As for the buttons Steelseries uses their own switches, so left and right click provide excellent tactile feedback with sturdy scroll wheel steps and sensitivity switch right behind it. Personally I prefer to run between 800 to 1600 DPI for Counter Strike matches, which makes my aiming quicker and I found having just two sensitivity modes is perfect without need to cycle through. The side browse buttons continue to travel even after they are registered and have a softer roll off, this will prevent any disturbance to your tracking accuracy which is a really nice feature.
The rival does feature a customizable LED sections with the logo at the back that is pretty vibrant and of course multi-colored, and then there is the scroll wheel. They are subtle, but having the ability to color match all of your peripherals is definitely something of an expectation for a gaming product. The Rival 700 also has a replaceable piece at the rear with two rubber nameplates. Steelseries does allow downloadable templates for 3d printing for really personal customization, which I think is great if you play online tournaments and you want to represent your team logo. It also has a swappable plates which are quite nice, as you can customize not only the inside specs but also the overall shape and the texture of the mice. For example you can choose your favorite plate with the custom logo on it and also use the RGB lighting at the back to complement your gaming setup.
On the left side the Rival 700 features a very grippy rubber that prevents your hand from slipping and also has two very large side buttons, which are strategically placed and easy accessible. Plus it comes with two red buttons on the left side to help you with finger remember, so next time you switch your gaming mouse you always know where to position your thumb. The distance between the left and right clicks is perfect and they provide nice tactile feedback. So Rival 700 is certainly one strong contender with excellent ergonomics and lightweight form factor that will give you a competitive edge on any game. I love how the switches feel and the CPI button is perfect with just two modes. Lighting is subtle and the optical sensor showed no acceleration with pretty excellent tracking and the software is definitely one of the best.
Features and Specifications
• Professional & Tournament Grade
• Esports Modular Sensor
• Esports Inspired Ergonomic Form Factor
• Designed by Pros for Pros
• Industry Leading Super-Lightweight
• Pixart PMW3360 optical Sensor + Pixart 9800 Laser Sensor
• Prism RGB illumination
• Vivid onboard OLED display
• Weighs - 135 grams
• Ergonomics built for every grip style
• Tactile alerts
• Compatible with any OS
Armed with 16,000 DPI optical sensor, Rival 700 delivers maximum tracking performance right out of the box. This system is considered to be one of the best, as it’s featured on Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum, that’s why I love this mouse. Moreover gamers can use modular sensor system to change sensor units. Currently there are couple options available including: Pixart 9800 laser sensor and PMW3360, but developers promise that in near future this list will expend and new technologies will be available for this platform. Personally I think that Rival gives the gamers an unfair advantage to have personalize tuned product, which completely changes the gaming rules. Plus I recommend you to use new mouse pad and good gaming chair if you want to get maximum performance and accuracy in the game.
SteelSeries has included a monochrome display on the right side that is always visible and mouse can be easily lifted and repositioned so you can view it clearly. This thing is hilarious, because you can input gifs, images into it, but most importantly you can integrate the OLED display with GameSense technology to get in-game alerts or aftermath statistics. So you can probably think of interesting ways to utilize the display for your team. For instance you can view how many headshots you have gotten within the game, or the total game time and even your kill death ration per match. You actually get the in-game alerts, things that are useful and not that you will be looking at the screen while playing, but in between rounds it will give you updates on how well you did, to keep track of your stats that way. So I think gamers will love this new feature as much as I do. Trust me, this is quite unique and all this new features will definitely help the gamers analyze their gameplay and improve battle skills. At this moment GameSense technology supports Counter Strike: Global Offensive and Dota 2, but the SteelSeries team is working on this module to add new features and make it more user-friendly for other games.
Customization doesn’t end there, beside the great sensor Rival 700 also has a tactile alert which is very cool feature for gamers, because it actually helps you while you are playing. In that you can set it to give you an alert that you wouldn’t normally see in your display. For instance: if you are playing Dota 2 and your cooldown period is over, you can set it to give you a little vibration. If you are playing counter strike it will buzz if you get a head shot or if your ammos are low, but you can always change this setting and create your own in-game alerts. I really see this mouse as a very high performance gaming product which was created purely for eSports athletes and game enthusiasts.
In addition to great software and the Rival 700 is also physically customizable, which enables you to change top cover plates and choose between different look like: a glossy version, rubberized version or a metallic surface. Plus you get two different cables: one meter for playing on laptop and a two meter cable for a desktop computer. For more custom look you can print out 3D version of nameplate to show your team name or your favorite eSports logo and with prism RGB highlight important part of the mice. So I think that Rival 700 is top notch gaming product very fun to use and most customizable in the category, which gives you a number of options to match your gaming style.
User experience and Performance
This mouse got fair amount of cool things but we are going to start with more basic ones and warm up to the exciting things. So first off it has a Pixar 3360 optical sensor, which you can swap out if you want, the idea is that if in future something comes out you can swap it out and change you current mouse sensor to upgrade the system. Personally I love the original Optical sensor, which is included in the package but for those who prefer laser one there is always a room for upgrades. The current one has 50g acceleration, 1 ms response time and zero hardware acceleration. The DPI range cycles through 100 to super-fast 16,000, which is great for FPS and RPG games and I personally prefer to use two mode sensitivity mode.
The case for me is not heavy, at 150 grams you have to make some adjustments to get maximum performance, but the good thing is that Rival 700 is very well balanced with a fantastic shape. So if they figure out how to make it lighter while still offering all the same perks this will be a very popular choice. One of the coolest thing about the Rival 700 is a built-in vibration motor for haptic feedback which produces a very subtle vibration depending on in-game changes. This is quite cool feature because as a player you don’t distract from the grip and you can still use the mouse as normal. I found this feature very helpful especially for CS:GO and Dota 2. For instance if you get flashed in Counter Strike and get a lucky kill while screen is white, this haptic feedback will notify you of the kill before the screen goes back to normal, so there are actually plenty of use to this haptic feedback. But the most interesting part is the functionality of this system, most of us would probably say: why would I want my mouse to shake all around, it’s going to screw up with my aim! At first motor itself is very weak which is exactly what you want, you don’t need strong motor in this situation and it’s vibrates vertically instead of left and right so it should not affect your aim at all. After playing couple of matches I didn’t notice it affecting my aim either, which is great. Moreover gamers can change default settings and set-up completely new pattern of vibration, which will trigger based upon different in-game events. For example I decided to have a slight buzz of the mouse to let me know that I am out of ammos, that will eventually help me to load the weapon quicker and be always ready to beat my opponent. Plus you it can react to health, ammo or head shot stat so right now if you are under 50 percent HP it starts a hear-beat vibration, if you had shot someone it vibrates twice and when you get low ammo it vibrates once. But again you can configure all of these things, you can change the amount that it reacts on, you can add different layers per each one using intuitive software SteelSeries Engine 3.
SteelSeries Engine 3
The SteelSeries software configurator was built to enhance gaming experience for all of the products that this company is producing so far, including gaming mice, keyboards, headsets and controllers. The Engine 3 is really compact, lightweight solution that allows you to customize your gear exactly the way you want to game. When designing the Rival gaming mouse engineers really focused on very unique and differentiating features that I think makes this peripheral best in the category. With Engine 3 players can now adjust the lift off distance, create new macros and commands, control the polling rate, change the DPI setting, customize the OLED display and also set their favorite Color effect. This is only part of this huge system which allows the gamers to have full control over the mice, plus there is lot more to learn and explore.
You can do so much just with the hardware and with stock drivers in your OS, but the Engine 3 sit-on-top of that and gives you a nice easy way to configure everything. It allows you to switch configurations between applications and over time more and more features using your hardware together. There are lots of things that I really like about this software and one of them is actually the ability to control the mouse sensitivity. Within the Engine 3 you can change mice acceleration and increase the sensitivity of your mouse depending on how fast you are physically moving the Rival 700. But on the other hand, for first person shooter you can use deceleration option in the opposite to slow down your hand movement when you want to snipe. Plus mouse acceleration can be also useful if you are trying to do a quick 180 turn.
The SteelSeries team built the Rival in-mind to have no-inherit acceleration in the hardware, this allows the gamers to have a choice, whether they want to add acceleration/decoration or just have no acceleration. Rival 700 also comes with angle snapping feature which monitors your cursor movement and if you turn angle snapping on, it will help correct your human error, so you can move left to right or top to bottom in a straight line.
Moreover players can change the RGB values and color match there gaming setup. There are two lighting zones on the mouse the scroll wheel, and the one at the palm rest which illuminates the logo. With Prism RGB you can also change lighting effects and even do a color shift using default presets, which allows you to cycle through a rainbow of colors. Engine 3 comes with some pretty simple features, that are exciting but at the same time simple to use. The three words I would use to describe the SteelSeries Engine 3 would be performance, excellence and delight. So the performance of the application itself, the excellence in the technologies they have chosen to implement in the software and the delight for this user experience.
I think that SteelSeries Rival 700 is a true marriage of hardware and software that deserves to be number one FPS and RPG gaming mouse. Developers created a mouse which is completely customizable and there are so much extra features and benefits that can be realized through their software - Engine 3. The idea behind this product is to change the way we think about gaming peripherals, what we should expect and what the next generation gaming mice is going to look like. The interesting thing about Rival 700 I that, it’s world’s first gaming product with OLED display and vibration alerts, plus you get interchangeable sensor units, all packed inside the ergonomic shape. This new features allow the players to get real-time stats and notification which is a crucial part of today’s online world. On the fly customization options, along with swappable cover plates and RGB lighting helps you create personal gaming weapon that is going to be an unbeatable power in any tournament. This mouse is a very good hub of technological and innovations that Steelseries has come up so far. All this little changes perfect your in-game skills and therefore you become a better player.