There are a lot of great gaming mice on the market right now, but most of them are built for right-handed users only. A good ambidextrous mouse can be a hard thing to find, but they are out there. G.Skill, a company primarily known for its RAM, has decided to take a crack at ambidextrous mice with its Ripjaws MX780 RGB.
The MX780 sports a coat of black paint with a smattering of RGB LEDs and sharp stealth-fighter-like angles, both of which are in keeping with the trends nowadays. The LEDs put off a nice warm glow that isn't so bright that it becomes distracting. Most of the mouse's LEDs get covered up by the user's hand, anyway, so the backlighting isn't a bother in use unless you stare at your mouse for some reason.
The MX780 feels incredibly solid, especially with the brushed-metal base plate. The top of the mouse is made of sturdy plastic, while the side grips have a rubbery feel to them that can become a bit uncomfortable under sweaty hands. I occasionally felt a bit of grabbiness while sliding the MX780 across my desk, but I could never figure out the source of this problem. It isn't too noticeable when using a mouse pad, so it seems to be a minor issue.
At first glance, one might confuse the MX780 for a Mad Catz Rat, as bits of it are exposed and a few ridges jut out. While it doesn't feature the full customizability of a Rat, it does provide a few options. G.Skill includes two pairs of side grips that accommodate right-handed, left-handed, and ambidextrous users. I mainly used the mouse with the thumb shelf on the left side and the flat grip on the right, as I'm right-handed. Every combination of grips felt natural and comfortable, though. Some people prefer thumb shelves and other do not, so even for the non-ambidextrous user, the customizability is a plus. The side grips clip onto the mouse with two fairly strong magnets that prevent them from accidentally falling off in the middle of an intense gaming session.
The next bit of customization comes in the form of two 4.5-gram weights. This is a nice feature to have, as the mouse is fairly light to start with at 111 grams. Nine grams of extra weight isn't much to work with, though. The mouse feels slightly different with the weights installed, but the added bulk isn't enough of a boost for those who prefer heavier mice like I do. The weights slip into a pair of magnetized sockets on the side of the mouse. Unfortunately, the weights sit nearly flush with the edges of their sockets, which can make it hard to take them out.
The rear palm rest can be adjusted for comfort, too. The position of this palm rest is controlled by a screw on the bottom of the mouse. G.Skill includes the required adjustement tool in the box. I prefer the rest almost all the way down, but I used it with various heights and they were all fairly comfortable. I usually use a full palm grip, but I found myself naturally using a semi-claw grip when the rest was almost all the way up. My only problem with using the claw grip was that I would occasionally hit the side buttons on the right of the mouse by accident. That mistake won't be a problem for most people, though, as the right-side buttons are off by default.
Here's a table of the MX780's most important specifications:
|Ripjaws MX780 RGB|
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||5.12" x 2.76" x 1.50"
(130 x 70 x 38 mm)
|Weight||3.0 oz (111 g)|
|Adjustable weight||4.5 g weights (x2)|
|Max DPI||8200 DPI|
|Sensor type||Avago Laser Sensor|
|Switch life||20 million actuations|
|Max polling rate||1000Hz|
|DPI switching levels||5|
The MX780's $50 price tag is pretty reasonable for a premium gaming mouse these days. Logitech's all-plastic G502 Proteus Spectrum runs about $80, while EVGA's similarly-constructed Torq X10 sells for about $65. Now that we've taken stock of the MX780, let's see how well it works when the Teflon meets the mousepad.