Razer’s DeathAdder range has enjoyed a comfortable position at the top of the mountain that is the gaming mouse industry for many years now since they first burst onto the scene in 2006. The current incarnation from DeathAdder is the Elite, and here we take a look at whether this mouse lives up to its name and gives us an elite gaming experience!
|Switches||Razer / Omron mechanical|
|Lighting||Razer Chroma™ lighting with 16.8 million customizable color options|
|Buttons||7 independently programmable Hyperesponse buttons|
|Polling/Report Rate||1000 Hz ultrapolling|
|Acceleration||Up to 450 IPS / 50 g acceleration|
|Cable||Seven-foot, lightweight, braided fiber cable|
|Grip||Ergonomic right-handed design with textured rubber side grips|
|Wheel||Gaming-grade tactile scroll wheel|
Design and Features
Let’s start with the price. Razer offer the DeathAdder Elite at around $70.
The design of the DeathAdder Elite is simple yet stylish, in-keeping with the rest of the DeathAdder range. The shape is ergonomic and the light-up accents (with adjustable colors no less!) make the mouse stand out on your desk without being garish.
The lights can be set to one color or to fade between different colors. You can even select reactive lighting, where the lights illuminate in time with your clicks which is really neat.
The Cable is soft, flexible and a lengthy 2.1 meters, which allows for improved fluidity and aim. There are two Teflon-coated mouse feet on the underside, plus another around the sensor, helping the Elite to glide smoothly over both soft and hard pads.
The texture of plastic casing is very similar to the Elite’s big brother, the Chroma, but you can still feel the subtle upgrade in the Elite’s smoother plastic. You will also find a nice bit of added texture to the side buttons.
Let’s talk Buttons: Razer teamed up with pro-grade switch manufacturer Omron to codevelop their own switch for the DeathAdder Elite. The Chroma’s buttons were very popular, so understandably Razer have kept a similar feel and click sound with the Elite. However, the improved switch means the click is even more crisp and defined, if fractionally louder than that of its predecessor.
The finger grooves on the buttons are fairly deep, which does mean it feels quite raised where they meet in the middle and the buttons do have a slightly sharp edge at the end which hasn’t been to everyone’s liking. This feature is fairly easy to get used to though, and you’ll enjoy the feeling of these smooth grooves hugging your fingers as you play.
Of course, nestled between the main buttons is the mouse wheel with its LED accents. The wheel is quite loud, and is a little tight to press. The grip could have more tension but is good on the whole, with a dotted design that gives a good sense of control.
The hump of the mouse is quite central and sloped, which means this mouse is best suited to those with larger hands. That’s not to say the smaller handed among us can’t enjoy the DeathAdder Elite, but the hump can mean that the fingers lie in a slightly unnatural position in order to use the mouse effectively and your aim in FPS games may be impaired a little.
Overall the build is solid and lightweight. There is a little rattle when the mouse is shaken, but don’t let this put you off – as soon as your fingers grip the many buttons, that rattle goes away. It’s clear the DeathAdder Elite was built for endurance as well as performance. With that in mind, let’s look at the performance spec.
The sensor is the real star when it comes to the Elite’s performance prowess, with an impressive 16,000 DPI (dots per inch). This allows the mouse to glide easily and smoothly on both hard and soft pads.
Thanks to its excellent optical sensor, the Elite keeps on track really well during gaming. It will remain steady when being swiped at speed and even lifted off the pad, with a lift-off distance of 1 DVD.
The Elite is accurate with no skipping or jitter. Acceleration is good, and latency tests show an impressive score of around 180ms. The resolution accuracy also stands at a sky-scraping 99.4%. This is higher really than most of us need, but still nice to have and to gloat about!
The two small “DPI buttons” found on top of the Elite allow you to adjust your DPI settings without skipping a beat. For those fans of customization, though, you are able to reprogram these buttons in Razer Synapse – the downloadable software that comes with this mouse.
Of course, for an optimal gaming experience, grip is everything. A mouse can have all the flashing lights and sensor accuracy in the world but if you can’t grip the thing, all these features are not going to be much use to you.
The curves, grooves and textures on the Elite mean users can comfortably cradle this mouse as it glides along with their every move. Although, as we’ve already mentioned, the Elite does slightly favor a larger hand. The Elite is best suited to a claw or palm grip but, for those gifted with 20cm hand length, fingertip grip is achievable.
With all these performance wins in mind, the Razer DeathAdder Elite is definitely a gaming mouse at its core (and a good one at that!). But this doesn’t mean it’s not suitable for general use too.
You can hook up your DeathAdder Elite and get to playing, browsing or whatever you want to do. For those who want that extra control and customization, though, the Razer Synapse software can be downloaded.
Razer Synapse is uncomplicated to use and allows you to adjust the performance and lighting of your mouse, set macros and tailor the mouse to your specific preferences. Preferences can even be saved in different profiles, allowing you to load up the exact performance spec for the specific game you are playing.
From setting sensitivity or polling rate, tracking stats and calibrating for particular surfaces to personalizing the LED lighting and adjusting acceleration, the capabilities of the Elite’s software are vast.
There is no on-board memory with Synapse, but any settings or changes you made are saved directly to the cloud, which does mean you can load your personal spec wherever you are. Be ready to create an account and login though before you can adjust any settings.
The Elite has numerous differences to its predecessor the Chroma, but at its core, it remains true to the classic DeathAdder build and design. After all, this is a seriously popular range of gaming mice and if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. But while fixing isn’t necessary, improvements and fine-tuning are always welcome and the Elite definitely achieves this.
The upgraded sensor is the star of the show, and design-wise the Elite brings us brighter lights, richer colors, and ergonomic hold. The cable is long and flexible, there are buttons galore and the Synapse software provides a wealth of customization options.
- Excellent sensor
- Ergonomic design
- 7 programmable buttons
- Customizable lighting and more
- Slightly sharp edge to buttons
- Software has no stored memory, only cloud
- Grip can be an issue with smaller hands
Razer DeathAdder Elite Review
- Overall - 9.4/109.4/10
Suitable for both casual and serious gamers, the Razer DeathAdder Elite does not disappoint and is great value for all the features and design that it offers. Ergonomic yet stylish, with a killer sensor – The Elite earns its place in the DeathAdder dynasty.
Samuel is GamingScan’s editor-in-chief. He describes himself as a hardcore gamer & programmer and he enjoys getting more people into gaming and answering people’s questions. He closely follows the latest trends in the gaming industry in order to keep you all up-to-date with the latest news.