Pros: Superb mouse, large amount of features and buttons
Cons: Software is awful - can't even apply settings to mouse
The Kone XTD is Roccat’s new flagship mouse, replacing the Kone[+] before it. Offering a market-leading 8200dpi, 576kb of onboard storage and a 32-bit Turbo Core V2 processor, the Kone XTD is more like a brain than a mouse.
The Kone XTD is one of the most fully featured mice I have ever seen, with 12 assignable buttons, expanding to 24 with the use of the ‘Easy Shift+’ button. These buttons can be configured to do a variety of things, including multimedia control, changing the DPI or sensitivity, or even starting a timer. The real magic of this mouse is setting up macros, with one mouse button sending a variety of keystrokes or clicks; perfect for changing your class in an FPS or even more mundane tasks, like copying and pasting something.
The mouse also has a variety of DPI and sensitivity options. Within the settings panel of the mouse, you can configure the DPI steps, and using the aforementioned buttons you can change your DPI on the fly in-game, perfect for when you open use a scope and need the control to pinpoint your enemies. The DPI goes from 200, all the way to 8200, which is the highest I’ve ever seen on a mouse. One thing of note is the amount of settings here is somewhat overwhelming. It is difficult for a new user to grasp what the difference between DPI and sensitivity is, and I am too uncoordinated to fully appreciate high DPIs due to how low my sensitivity is. Roccat would do well to explain what some of the settings do.
All these features are useless however, with the latest software (version 1.15) branded ‘Roccat Kone XTD Mouse Option’ being seriously buggy, at least with Windows 8 (for which they tout compatibility). If I press ‘Apply’ or ‘OK’, the program freezes for up to two minutes, and even then it takes a few tries for the mouse to actually respond to what I want it to do. Beyond changing the sensitivity or DPI, I can’t do anything except change profiles. This means I am basically limited to the five default profiles, with their button assignments and colour options, and thus I literally have no way to customise the mouse. This is a serious flaw, and something which Roccat needs to address ASAP.
Sporting a right-handed design, the Kone XTD is very large in the hand. In comparison to other, regular mice I’ve used, it definitely feels a lot larger, although I imagine this is a common trait of gaming mice. The mouse is quite sharply curved, with a groove on the left for your thumb. Your index finger goes on the shorter left mouse button, and your longer middle finger extends to the edge of the right mouse button. Your final two fingers must then grip onto the right edge of the mouse. Both mouse buttons extend into the rest of the mouse – they are not separate.
Between the two mouse buttons, there is an assignable button, followed by the five-way scroll wheel (which has distinct clicks as you scroll), followed by two more assignable buttons. On the left edge of the mouse there are two more assignable buttons, making for a total of 12 different moving parts.
Along each edge of the mouse, two transparent strips with LEDs behind them allow the user to customise the colour of the mouse. On the rear of the mouse there is a large Roccat logo, as well as the ‘Roccat Kone KTD’ branding on the front left, although the ‘Roccat’ part is in blue, which is unfortunate.
The compartment for extra weight resides under the mouse. This allows the user to add up to 20 grams more (in 5 gram increments) to the 123 grams the mouse already weighs). The underside also houses three points for the mouse to glide across, the laser sensor and the obnoxiously large serial number and other information. One thing I’ve found is the lid to the compartment for extra weight is somewhat difficult to get back on, despite the arrows and other diagrams. Finally, the 1.8m cable is braided as opposed to plastic, which is a nice touch.
But what would all the customisation and aesthetics be without a mouse than can move your cursor. I am pleased to report that the Kone XTD ticks this box. Moving more advanced, the 10.8 megapixel sensor polls at 1000Hz, with a built in tracking and distance control unit, allowing users to calibrate their exact surface and control how far they can lift off their mouse before it stops tracking. The mouse has 30G acceleration at 3.8m/s (150ips).
With those tech specs out of the way, I’ve found the mouse to have the right amount of weight distributed across the mouse for a balanced feel. Using 15g of extra weight in conjunction with the ‘speed’ side of a Razer Vespula, the mouse tracks well, and responds to each movement. Putting the mouse up to full sensitivity and DPI, even a slight movement causes the mouse to move thousands of pixels.
In FPS games, the mouse responded like I expected once I found the right sensitivity for me. This is something you will need to experiment with. The Kone XTD is ridiculously accurate and allowed me to hit multiple enemies in quick succession. A great feature was when I was going to snipe someone in a stealth mission, I brought the sensitivity down, without leaving the game, enabling for a more accurate and thus successful shot.
As a mouse alone, the Roccat Kone XTD is fantastic, offering greater accuracy and speedier movements than otherwise possible on a mouse. With the range of sensitivity and DPI options available, the mouse caters for many different specific use cases and scenarios.
As an all-in-one macro creator, computer controller, colour-changing desk accessory, the Kone XTD has potential and the ability to be some great. But with the poor software accompanying it, many of the promised features are not able to be enabled, and the user is stuck with 5 default profiles. Should a driver or firmware update become available, my opinion on this mouse may change, and thus the $70 AUD I paid for it may become a good use of money. Unfortunately, many of the features can’t be used and thus I have to conclude that, while this is a great mouse, does not fulfil what was promised.