The result is pretty incredible. The R.A.T. 9 is like a deconstructed version of a regular mouse, with every possible feature broken down into its constituent parts. That means that absolutely everything can be adjusted, from mouse's length and surface texture to the position and angle of individual buttons and the product's general design.
Everything comes apart with the help of a kind of giant screw (the adjustment tool) which can itself be removed from the mouse body.
This mouse may look incredible, but given its hefty price tag, we'd also hope that it gives great performance and has a good-quality sensor. Time to take a closer look.
The length of the mouse can be adjusted from 11 to 13 cm as the palm rest can be slid
backwards and forwards. There's also an adjustable thumb-rest.
YES! The Sensor is ExcellentIt's actually quite incredible—we have to admit that we weren't expecting the sensor to be quite this good—but the R.A.T 9 is a great mouse, with a sensor the delivers very good, high-precision performances. Even when pushed to the extreme, the mouse tracked all our movements with great precision up to speeds of 4 metres per second. You'll rarely move that fast in practice, though, as even the fastest and most furious gamers aren't quite that quick. In comparison, the 41 mice we've already reviewed handle an average maximum speed 2.9 metres per second using the same test procedure.
Precise, But Practical?Here, things do get a little bit more complicated. With its jaunty edges, the shape of the mouse certainly has its charm, but it isn't without its problems, as you can constantly feel the pointy edges under your fingers and the palm of your hand.
Plus, building and altering the mouse can be quite fiddly. For starters, some of the pieces are really very small and could easily get lost. Plus, bits that drop off or that you decide to have a go at taking apart aren't necessarily very easy to get back into place. We found that the programmable thumb scroll wheel, in particular, could be a real pain. In other words, beware of being a bit too DIY-happy if you're heavy handed or lack patience.
Finally, the R.A.T. 9 seems to have a balance issue. Gamers with larger hands or anyone looking to reduce wrist strain will no doubt be tempted to set the mouse to its unusually long 13 cm body length. Unfortunately, with the mouse set to 13 cm, it tends to tip backwards all too quickly when you rest your palm on it—even without any of the additional weights added on. In fact, this mouse already weighs over 160 g out of the box, which is just too much for our liking.
Anyway, we'll let Cyborg round off this review, as the promotional video does a great job of outlining all the adjustable features:
- Original and attractive design, quality finish
- Excellent laser sensor (keeps track of movements as fast as 4 metres per second)
- Adjustable length
- Eight programmable buttons, feature-rich driver, user profiles
- Two rechargeable batteries supplied
- Can prove difficult to use at its maximum length setting
- Adjustments need to be made with care, otherwise don't bother taking it apart!
- The 1000 Hz frequency isn't continuous, it's nearer 500 Hz most of the time
- Jaunty edges of adjustable sections can be uncomfortable
- Very heavy: 163 g even without any of the extra weights!
The Cyborg R.A.T 9 deserves five stars for its originality, its finish, its design and its great sensor. However, you will have to put up with its rather unusual handling. It's not the most comfortable mouse out there and its very heavy design requires more effort to move.