Just as you can’t bring a knife to a gunfight, it’s similarly unwise to jump into a first-person-shooter (FPS) without packing the right mouse in your holster. The Logitech G400s Optical Gaming Mouse ($59.99 list) is a decent option for FPS enthusiasts, offering a 4,000dpi sensor and a reasonable capacity for customization. That said, better options exist in this price range and are worth exploring before pulling the trigger, so to speak.
Design and Features
The G400s’s chassis is constructed entirely out of plastic. Its surface isn’t decked out with hallucinatory LED lights like the Roccat Kone XTD, and instead opts for a low-key aesthetic that contrasts the palm area’s white and gray pattern with an otherwise all-black body. While its design certainly won’t turn heads, the G400s’s surface nevertheless earns points for cleverly being coated with a hydrophobic layer that prevents unsightly sweat accumulation and fingerprint smudges. A matte-finished plastic material on the G400s’s thumb cradle and pinky rest provides a grip, though not as effectively as the coarse texture used in our current Editors’ Choice for gaming mice, the Corsair Vengeance M65. At any rate, the G400s’s sculpted body and raised profile makes for a fairly comfortable mouse. On the other hand (no pun intended), lefties get no love from the G400s since it’s not ambidextrously designed like the Razer Taipan.
Three plastic glide pads on the G400s’s underside effectively reduce friction and allow for smooth movement on most surfaces. At the same time, the G400s doesn’t come with any adjustable weights, which can be problematic for some given its lightweight plastic body.
Eight programmable buttons form the core of the G400s’s functionality. In addition to its left- and right-click buttons, the tracking wheel is flanked by two buttons that allow for on-the-fly DPI adjustment. An additional button beneath the tracking wheel allows for switching between user-created profiles that can be stored on the G400s’s onboard memory. A pair of buttons nestled in the thumb cradle initially come pre-configured as “forward” and “back” buttons.
The G400s is a wired mouse that connects via USB 2.0 cable. Although the freedom offered by wireless mice is undeniably appealing, this is a sensible omission in the precision-driven realm of FPS mice since wired connections deliver a direct, interference-free connection to your system. Less sensible, however, is the cable’s tendency to get tangled since it isn’t braided like that of the Corsair Vengeance M60.
The G400s packs a laser sensor with a maximum DPI of 4,000. Though not as hyper-sensitive as the M65 or Kone XTD (8,200dpi each), it’s responsive enough to satisfy most twitchy gamers. That, along with the fact that our testing confirmed its advertised polling rate of 1,000Hz, demonstrates the G400′s formidable precision, even if it isn’t the most precise.
Users can customize the G400s via software that can be downloaded free of charge from Logitech’s site. Though it doesn’t boast the dizzying level of customization seen in the Kone XTD’s software, it still allows for button assignment and the creation of user profiles that can be readily accessed on the G400. Since the G400s is a plug-and-play device, it’s compatible with both Windows and Mac systems. However, there’s a hitch: Logitech’s software only works in Windows (Windows XP / Vista / 7 / 8).
I tested the G400s by jumping into a few rounds of BioShock. As expected, its laser sensor delivered smooth movement without any noticeable lag. While the G400s’s heighted profile fit comfortably in my hand, its plastic body nevertheless felt too light for my liking. And although I was able to switching my DPI during gameplay with relative ease, I couldn’t help but miss the dedicated M65′s dedicated sniper button during those fleeting moments where the difference between success and failure hinged purely on absolute precision. Overall, the G400s made was a fine ally on the gaming grid, but nowhere near as effective as its competition.
So should you pull the trigger on the Logitech G400s Optical Gaming Mouse? While it’s a decent addition to any FPS enthusiast’s arsenal, it simply can’t compete with the Corsair Vengeance M65′s sensitivity, adjustable weight, and killer Blade Runner-like design. While the G400s isn’t a bad option by any stretch, be sure to check out other mice before heading into battle with it.
Copyright © 2012 Ziff Davis, Inc