SteelSeries Kana review: SteelSeries Kana

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Typical Price: $59.00
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4 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Light and easy to use. Good accuracy and smooth action. Good hardware for the price.

The Bad SteelSeries Engine software needs a dramatic overhaul UI-wise. Limited macro capability.

The Bottom Line For the price, the Kana actually does very well — unless you need greater flexibility over your macros, in which case you'll need to look elsewhere.

8.0 Overall

SteelSeries' Kana is like a grown-up Kinzu — a slightly larger shape, the addition of a single mouse button on either side, glowing orange bits and orange stripes on its braided cable. It's otherwise a standard mouse, aside from the CPI switcher under the scroll wheel.

It's not quite the Xai or the Sensei, and the pricing reflects this accordingly.

The Kana plugs into SteelSeries' "Engine" software — a universal driver for all of its mice. Engine sadly still has the issues it had four months ago; the macro-recording process is confusing thanks to the layout, and button text is blurred in places — even SteelSeries' own logo is out of focus. It's also too tall for 1366x768 screens, and it can't be resized smaller. Impressively, though, as you switch between SteelSeries mice, it detects them and changes the options accordingly.

In small images, SteelSeries' "Engine" looks good. But it needs an overhaul to its usability, and advanced macro editing needs some attention, too.
(Screenshot by Craig Simms/CBS Interactive)

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