It's fair to say that the Cyborg R.A.T. 7 is a little bit nuts.
Customisation is the name of the game in gaming mice, but rarely to this degree. While the occasional vendor tosses in weight adjustment or swappable grips, the custom stuff is mostly left up to the software.
Not so the R.A.T. 7, which, before even getting to the software, has decided that the whole mouse needs to be adjusted before play begins proper.
Yes, it's got weights — five discs of 6g each — but it's also got three swappable palm rests, one that's covered with the in-vogue rubberised plastic, one that's the same but 4mm higher, and another that's cross-etched to provide extra grip. Each one of these grips has a lever that can be depressed, allowing it to slide back and forth into four lockable positions, attempting to compensate for the variance in personal grip and hand length.
But we're not finished yet. See that silver knob at the base? Unscrew it and it becomes a hex tool, used for further adjustment of the mouse.
The thumb rest on the left is anchored at the base near the palm grip, and can be pulled away from the mouse near the left- and right-click buttons to minimise the effort your thumb needs to actuate the buttons. This same thumb rest can be slid back and forth so the buttons rest perfectly where you need them to. When you're done, you lock them into place with the hex tool. It's marvellous, although the back and forward buttons are still a stretch too far for us, and we'd prefer to swap them for the horizontal scroll wheel, which is situated between the thumb rest and the body of the mouse.
The pinky rest is also swappable, offering rubberised plastic, cross-etched grip or a "wing"-shaped design that supposedly allows your pinky to rest during long bouts of play — we found quite the opposite, the shape propping our pinky into an unnatural position.
Swappable parts. A gaming enthusiast's heaven. (Credit: Cyborg)
The buttons themselves have a wonderfully solid click, the scroll wheels thunk satisfyingly between detents (although the horizontal scroll is awkward to reach), and the DPI switcher while not perfectly placed is reachable, with four lights on the left-hand side lighting up to denote what DPI the mouse is currently set at. These levels can be customised in the software, with x and y axes able to be set independently.
Setting the DPI for each mode. (Screenshot by Craig Simms/CNET Australia)
This is all fairly standard, but what isn't is the precision aim mode, something infinitely more usable than on the fly DPI switching: hold down the red button on the thumb rest and the DPI drops to a custom level, allowing you to pop off a more accurate sniper round. Release the button and the DPI returns to normal. Simple, and genius.