ASUS ROG Strix Evolve mouse review: Affordable, ergonomic and customisable, what's not to like?

ASUS describes the Evolve as an “Aura RGB USB wired optical ergonomic ambidextrous gaming mouse.” That’s a lot of complicated words, but they’re not all marketing mumbo-jumbo.

Gaming mice come in all shapes and sizes and sometimes it’s a matter of luck as to whether you get the perfect mouse for your needs. For a gamer of any stripe, ergonomics are important.

When looking for a comfortable mouse, you have a few options:

You can find some way to experience some gaming mice for yourself, something that’s not always easy,

You can splurge some cash on a bunch of difference mice and spend years finding the perfect fit

You can buy an exorbitantly-priced mouse like the Razer Ouroboros (for Rs 12,000+) and sit and customise it to your taste.

You might get lucky and find a mouse that’s perfect from the get go.

The STRIX Evolve includes 8 buttons and a scroll-wheel

The STRIX Evolve includes 8 buttons and a scroll-wheel

Or, you might want to pick up the ASUS ROG Strix Evolve and save yourself a tonne of cash and a headache.

ASUS describes the Evolve as an “Aura RGB USB wired optical ergonomic ambidextrous gaming mouse.” That’s a lot of complicated words, but they’re not all marketing mumbo-jumbo.

Aura RGB refers to the fact that the mouse supports RGB lighting modes and that it’ll use Aura Sync to sync said modes with ASUS Aura supported peripherals and components. This is simply a cosmetic feature, and unlike the Gladius II that we recently reviewed, the Evolve’s RGB lighting is quite muted.

The lighting effects aren't as fancy as we've seen on other mice

The lighting effects aren't as fancy as we've seen on other mice

The “wired” and “optical” bits are, of course, self-explanatory. The optical sensor in this case is a 7,200 DPI unit that can handle 30 g of acceleration and track at 150 IPS. It’s not the best sensor around, but at it’s price, it’s certainly good enough. Personally, I prefer playing with my mouse set to around 800 DPI anyway.

At the time I was testing this mouse, I had three others with me, including the Razer DeathAdder, the Logitech G502 and the ASUS ROG Gladius II. In this company, and only on paper, my aging DeathAdder has the worst sensor and is followed by the Strix Evolve with the second worst sensor.

In testing, however, I found no discernible difference between the tracking quality of any of these mice. All of them performed admirably, tracked precisely and never made the cursor jump around. Unless you know you need more than 7,200 DPI, the Strix has you covered.

It's nice to have replaceable covers, but it might be more gimmick than value

It's nice to have replaceable covers, but it might be more gimmick than value

It’s at the “ambidextrous” and “ergonomic” bits of the description that things get interesting. This mouse can change shells.

The core of the mouse is symmetrical. You get the same button layout on either side and neither side is higher or lower than the other. On this core, ASUS gives you the option to attach covers. In the box, you get a high-profile cover and a low-profile cover and you can mix and match these as you prefer.

If you use two-low profile covers or two-high-profile covers, you get an ambidextrous mouse that suits your taste. If you use a high profile one on the left and a low-profile one on the right, you get a right-handed, swap them and you get a left-handed mouse. In all, that’s four configurations for the mouse. This is a pretty neat feature, but to be perfectly honest, I don't see the value in it. Once I swapped panels to my liking, I completely forgot about the other options.

The STRIX Evolve in the nude

The Strix Evolve in the nude

The rest of the hardware is just as good as we’ve come to expect from ASUS. The plastic is of good quality, the cable is braided (though not detachable, as on the Gladius II) and Omron switches sit under the left and right click areas.

The button layout includes left, right, scroll-wheel, middle-click, DPI, and left and right thumb buttons. In all, there are eight programmable buttons to play around with.

You can pick up a Strix Evolve for Rs 4,100 and it comes with a one-year warranty and it’s definitely worth it.

In this price range, there isn’t much competition anyway, so the Evolve is already a great deal. You can get a Razer DeathAdder 2013 for around Rs 4,600 if you really want to, and while I’m a huge fan of its ergonomics, these 2013 models did suffer from click issues and offer three buttons less. In fact, you don’t even get on-the-fly DPI adjustment.

If you’re looking to up your game, or have a higher budget, the ASUS ROG Gladius II for Rs 5,200 and the Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum for Rs 5,800 are great options.

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