Razer's new range of StarCraft II peripherals includes the Banshee headset, Spectre mouse and a keyboard called the Marauder. The feature Razer is most keen to shout about is the APM (actions per minute) lighting system. Each peripheral bristles with lights that glow different colours, depending on how many key presses and mouse clicks you make.
The lights can also indicate if you're under attack, and you can independently customise the lighting system of each peripheral using Razer's StarCraft II Configurator. We'll investigate each peripheral to find out if they're any good, or just a package of flashing lights and gimmickry.
The Spectre mouse has a 2.1m braided cable and thumb buttons, and the StarCraft II Configurator software offers a huge number of tweaking options. Each of the five buttons is programmable, and you can add up to five sensitivity settings between 100 and 5,600dpi.
However, the only way to toggle between sensitivities, other than allocating this function to the finger or thumb buttons, is by using a switch on the underside of the mouse. There are also options that enable you to adjust the acceleration and the USB polling rate to 125Hz, 500Hz or 1,000Hz. Plus, you can create profiles and macros too, assigning each to a specific button.
The Spectre isn't very comfortable to use, however. The symmetrical, angular shape didn't fit comfortably in our hands, and there were points in the shell at the rear that dug into our palms. The mouse feels very narrow too, although the mouse pointer at least moved in a smooth and predictable way.
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We were heartened to see that the Razer Spectre wasn't just an already existing product with stickers applied. Razer seems to have genuinely worked on creating a mouse that looks unique and ties in closely to the game.
Unfortunately, though, the Spectre only offers basic functions, and it's also pricey and uncomfortable to use due to its angular shape. Only the biggest StarCraft II fans should look at the Spectre; everyone else should consider either the CM Storm Inferno or the Mionix Naos 3200