Home » SteelSeries Aerox 5 Wireless Gaming Mouse Review

SteelSeries Aerox 5 Wireless Gaming Mouse Review

Observant readers of our {hardware} critiques will recall that the final time I tangled with a MetalSeries product, it was for a evaluate of the MetalSeries Prime Pro Series Gaming Mouse, and so they’ll additionally possible do not forget that I got here away from that evaluate not solely raving in regards to the product but in addition about my newfound respect for wired M+KB setups regardless of my desire for wi-fi. 

So, to now discover myself reviewing the MetalSeries Aerox 5 Wireless gaming mouse virtually a yr later is a type of “coming full circle” second, as MetalSeries’ newest product boasts to ship the most effective of each worlds, with two totally different flavours of wi-fi in addition, MetalSeries’ personal proprietary Quantum 2.0 Wireless 2.4 GHz tech and Bluetooth 5.0.

Similar to the Prime, the MetalSeries Aerox 5 comes filled with a removable, super-mesh knowledge/charging cable that could be a beneficiant 2.0 metres in size, besides this time, MetalSeries was form sufficient to swap out the Prime’s antiquated USB-A to Micro-USB cable with a extra trendy USB-A to USB-C model. Also included within the field, after all, is the USB-C dongle for two.4GHz wi-fi connectivity in addition to a Female-to-Female USB-C Extension Adapter which can be utilized along side an non-compulsory cable to additional develop the size of the included one, or alternatively mix it with the cable and dongle to offer a “wired wi-fi resolution” for particular eventualities, which I’ll get into later.

In sharp distinction to the Prime’s easy stylings, nevertheless, the Aerox 5 is far more of an extrovert. The mouse options an ethereal, diamond honeycomb-like mesh alongside the highest and backside of the gadget that reveals its inside workings so unabashedly that it’s virtually not possible to imagine that it additionally has an IP54 water resistance score. Of course, the true motive for Aerox’s flirtatious design is to indicate off the varied illumination modes of its Prism RBG lighting, which together with different settings will be personalized to at least one’s tastes by way of the MetalSeries GG PC app.

With all the sunshine emanating from the underside of the gadget, there are three zones of the mouse to which lighting patterns will be assigned, which may make for some fairly fancy patterns when you’ve discovered the considerably advanced means of organising and saving your picks to them. The Xbox console jockey that I’m, I simply set all three zones to the closest color I might discover to a pulsating inexperienced and known as it a day.

In phrases of favor, the Aerox 5 doesn’t actually maintain a candle to its futuristic cousin, the Rival 650 and its much more distinguished RGB structure. Surprisingly, it doesn’t even function the mouse wheel RGB trim that each the Rival and the Prime have, which is a bit disappointing in case you are in search of a gaming mouse the place the illumination takes centre stage always. But to be sincere, most gaming mice are solely observed visually once they’re sitting off to the aspect not getting used, and when the MetalSeries Aerox 5 is stationary and never obscured by one’s hand, its glowing inside base is pleasantly reminiscent of a big, mechanical, wingless firefly, which is reasonably cool.

“One factor the Aerox 5 positively doesn’t skimp on is button choice.”

One factor the Aerox 5 positively doesn’t skimp on is button choice. Beyond the usual Left, Right, Mouse Wheel and devoted CPI settings buttons (the latter button now conveniently discovered just under the Mouse Wheel on the highest of the gadget reasonably than on the underside), there are 5 further buttons on the left aspect which will be personalized, making this mouse an incredible selection to be used with a number of sport genres.

That being stated, as somebody who usually prefers to play shooters when gaming on PC, not all of these buttons really feel naturally inside attain of my thumb. More particularly, Side Button 1, the gray button positioned the furthest ahead on the gadget, requires me to push my thumb to date to relaxation on it that it takes me a full second to slip it again to press any of the opposite buttons, and I can’t keep away from shifting the mouse pointer erratically whereas doing so.

This makes the button virtually not possible for me to make use of in a fast-paced, FPS sport. Perhaps it might work as a devoted button for much less essential capabilities, resembling opening and shutting a world-map, and I’m positive it might be high quality to make use of for main instructions on the exclusion of all the opposite aspect buttons, however in any other case, it’s a write-off for me. Conversely, Side Buttons 2 by means of 5 are bunched collectively reasonably carefully and, though it’d require some psychological gymnastics to inform them aside at first, with apply I can see switching my thumb between them changing into completely pure.

As we’re with reference to ergonomics, it ought to be famous that at 74 grams (solely 5 grams heavier than the Prime), the MetalSeries Aerox 5 is extraordinarily mild and its 100% Virgin grade PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene) skates make it simple to slip the mouse easily alongside nearly any flat floor, permitting correct actions in each broad strokes and exact, miniscule actions. Like the Prime, nevertheless, its textured matte-black floor coating is reasonably slippery and would possibly show extra vulnerable to drops when it’s not hooked up by cable, so it won’t make the most effective journey mouse. Overall although, the Aerox 5 feels amazingly snug in hand.

Steelseries Aerox 5 Wireless Gaming Mouse Revie 2

Sadly, there are two perplexing flaws of the MetalSeries Aerox 5 that maintain it again from being the best gaming mouse, and the primary is one which I’ve already personally encountered with one other MetalSeries product, the Arctis 1 Wireless Headset for Xbox. Like with the Arctis, MetalSeries for some motive, has determined to saddle the Aerox 5 with an oddly-shaped dongle that’s too huge on the connector finish to suit comfortably right into a USB row or hub when the ports are tightly spaced on the horizontal and different units are plugged in.

Case in level, on my laptop computer, the perimeters of the Aerox 5’s dongle encroach simply far sufficient on either side that they virtually block entry to each the HDMI port and one in all its two USB-A ports. Even worse, for the reason that dongle’s connector is USB-C, it could’t be immediately plugged into the remoted USB-A port discovered on most laptops that’s often devoted to mouse use with a purpose to skirt round the issue. In my case, I used to be nonetheless capable of make it work, however relying on how the ports of your laptop computer are laid out and the way a lot house is given to the USB-C port, I can positively see this being a possible drawback.

“I can affirm that the MetalSeries Aerox 5 was not solely acknowledged by the Xbox console, nevertheless it additionally labored flawlessly and was lag-free throughout a number of rounds of Halo Infinite.

Thankfully, there are workarounds should you completely should use wi-fi and occur to be in such a decent spot (pun supposed). The first choice is to attach the MetalSeries Aerox 5’s provided USB-A-to-USB-C cable and Extension Adapter to at least one one other after which connect the wi-fi dongle to that. Alternatively, if that lone open port occurs to be a USB-C port just like the one on my laptop computer, you may swap out the USB-A cable for a male-to-male USB-C cable (not included) to realize the identical outcome.

It’s not a sublime resolution, and it form of contradicts the entire level of utilizing a wi-fi mouse within the first place, nevertheless it does no less than get across the port spacing concern and likewise probably permits the mouse for use wirelessly from a better distance away. This is ideal for setups the place sitting proper up shut to at least one’s monitor isn’t sensible, like when gaming on a PC or console by way of the big-screen TV in the lounge.

I’ve truly examined the USB-A Cable + Extension Adapter + Wireless dongle combo with my Xbox Series X. I can affirm that the MetalSeries Aerox 5 was not solely acknowledged by the Xbox console, nevertheless it additionally labored flawlessly and was lag-free throughout a number of rounds of Halo Infinite.

The different wi-fi resolution, after all, is to ditch the dongle totally and put one’s eggs within the Aerox 5’s Bluetooth basket. After all, the marquee promoting level of MetalSeries’ Aerox line of gaming mice is the choice to make use of Bluetooth as an alternative choice to MetalSeries’ Quantum 2.0 tech (persevering with the custom from the Aerox 3), and never needing to sacrifice a precious USB port to function the Aerox 5 is an enormous upside. 

Steelseries Aerox 5 Wireless Gaming Mouse Revie 6

As hinted at earlier, nevertheless, there’s additionally a big draw back. Firstly, it might seem that a lot of the customization choices for the MetalSeries Aerox 5 which are accessible in wired and a pair of.4GHz mode don’t come alongside for the experience when Bluetooth is turned on, regardless of having on-board reminiscence for retaining these settings. According to the MetalSeries GG software program, “settings for Angle Snapping, Acceleration/Deceleration, Illumination and button bindings (besides keyboard button and mouse bindings) will return to defaults whereas your gadget is in Bluetooth mode.”

The Polling Rate (the setting which determines how usually the mouse communicates together with your laptop) will probably be set to 125 HZ (each eight milliseconds). By comparability, the Polling Rate in each wired and a pair of.4GHz modes maxes out at 1000 Hz, or one millisecond. As one would possibly anticipate then, this Bluetooth efficiency hole ends in cursor motion that feels choppier general and offers off a barely extra “framey” look when controlling the digital camera in first-person video games resembling Halo Infinite, Quake, Quake 2 and Portal 2. It doesn’t render these video games unplayable by any means, nevertheless it does really feel a contact much less correct and aesthetically pleasing.

“For slower shifting, point-and-and click on video games or purposes like word-processing, video modifying and the like, nevertheless, Bluetooth Mode ought to just do high quality.”

Another caveat is the lack of one’s lovingly created illumination settings whereas in Bluetooth mode, that are as a substitute changed by a generic, multi-coloured shift cycle. Coupled with the low polling price, this mode could also be a dealbreaker for content material creators aiming for a particular setup the place on-camera color coordination and 100% dongle-free utilization are each musts, however that state of affairs is unlikely to be the favored use case for most individuals.

Competitive PC avid gamers who swear by wired play will all the time be sure that they’ve a USB port devoted to their gaming mouse anyway, whereas much less picky-users can merely alternate and solely reap the benefits of the MetalSeries Aerox 5’s Bluetooth mode to unencumber a USB port when the necessity arises. It’s nice to all the time have choices, proper?

That stated, the noticeable distinction in efficiency between Bluetooth and the opposite modes makes it arduous for me to advocate it for fast-moving, twitch-based gaming purposes the place gamers have full management of the sport digital camera. For slower shifting, point-and-and click on video games or purposes like word-processing, video modifying and the like, nevertheless, Bluetooth Mode ought to just do high quality.

Steelseries Aerox 5 Wireless Gaming Mouse Revie 1

One ultimate saving grace of the MetalSeries Aerox 5’s Bluetooth Mode is that the aforementioned CPI (Counts Per Inch) button behaves precisely because it does in wired or 2.4GHz mode, permitting the person to cycle between 5 of the commonest presets for mouse sensitivity, with every preset assigned an simply recognizable color code that flashes briefly upon choice (Purple = 400 CPI, Blue = 800 CPI, Green = 1200 CPI, Yellow = 2400 CPI, and Red = 3200 CPI).

“The MetalSeries Aerox 5 is a stable, snug and visually interesting gaming mouse…”

It’s an particularly helpful function for energy customers who usually have a tendency to change between totally different sorts of purposes or function the identical laptop with panels of various sizes. It shortly facilitates adjustment of the mouse pointer’s pace of journey with out the necessity to open an on-screen menu (particularly on PlayStation or Xbox, the place there aren’t any).

All in all, the MetalSeries Aerox 5 is a stable, snug and visually interesting gaming mouse that falls simply wanting perfection resulting from some baffling design decisions that in the end impression the attraction of its versatility. For most would-be patrons on the market, the Aerox 5 is the Swiss Army Knife of gaming mice that energy customers have been ready for, however the bodily design of its dongle can current points for some computer systems and its Bluetooth Mode works greatest when regarded primarily as a non-competitive, “good to have” wi-fi gaming choice.