Slay your rivals
A look at the newest gaming mice from Steelseries
Steelseries is one of the leading accessory makers in the world. Today, we have a pair of their highest-end gaming mice in for review with the Rival 650 Wireless and Rival 710. The Rival 650 Wireless is the more exciting refresh of the two models, severing the cord while still offering wired-like performance. The Rival 710 has its own unique set of features to excite gamers, including the new TrueMove 3+ sensor, an OLED screen, and haptic feedback. Retailing for $119 and $99 respectively, let’s see what these two mice have to offer.
⦁ Design: Right handed
⦁ Core Construction: Fiber Reinforced Plastic
⦁ Sensor System: Steelseries TrueMove3
⦁ Tracking Accuracy: 1:1
⦁ Sensitivity: 12,000 CPI
⦁ Maximum Speed: 350+ IPS
⦁ Maximum Acceleration: 50G
⦁ Polling Rate: 1000Hz (1ms)
⦁ Buttons: 7 programmable
⦁ Switch: Steelseries, 60-million click rated
⦁ Finish: Black soft touch
⦁ Cable Length: 2m/6.5ft
⦁ MSRP: $119.99
⦁ Lift-off Distance: 0.5 – 2.0mm
⦁ Connectivity: 2.4GHz Wireless/Wired USB
⦁ Battery Life: 24+ hours
⦁ Fast Charge: 15 min = 10+ hours
⦁ Lighting: 8-zone RGB
⦁ Dimensions (mm): 124.8 (H) x 68.5 (W) x 42 (D)
⦁ Adjustable Weight: 121g – 153g
⦁ MSRP: $99.99
⦁ Modular Design: Swappable cover plate, sensor, and cable
⦁ Lighting: 2-zone RGB
⦁ Dimensions (mm): 124.8 (H) x 68.5 (W) x 42 (D)
⦁ Short Cable: non-braided, 1m/3.3ft
⦁ Weight: 136g
Beginning with packaging, it’s clear which is the flashier of the two mice. In both cases, I feel like the packaging is an excellent example of Steelseries’ sense of style.
Inside, the box features a little inspirational message that could be summed up as “by gamers, for gamers” but a bit oddly goes on about gamers rewriting reality. Okay then. The mice are well packaged inside a plastic tray. The accessories are included in a box below the mouse that one the Rival 650 was lodged in so badly I had to tear the box to remove it. The Rival 710 came out perfectly.
Left: Rival 650 Wireless, Right: Rival 710
Each mouse comes with some accessories. The Rival 650 Wireless includes a non-braided USB cable, a wireless dongle that can be used with the cord as a range extender, documentation, and a set of eight 4g weights for the modular adjustment system. The Rival 710 comes with a 1m/3ft “notebook cable” (non-braided) and a longer, 2m/6.5ft braided cable for your desktop, as well as documentation.
Taking a closer look at the Rival 650 Wireless first, we can see that it’s a larger mouse, definitely suited to palm or claw grip users. It features a soft touch coating on all of the contact surfaces for your palm and fingers. On the left side, we have three programmable buttons whereas the right remains just for your grip. All told, there are seven buttons.
The mouse looks just great. The RGB light bars are vivid and bright, and the diffuser makes for smooth transitions between colors. It’s an eye-catching peripheral to accent your desk, to be sure.
On the bottom, we have our sensor, on and off switch, a button for pairing and high-quality Teflon feet.
One of the more unique features of this mouse is the ability to modify its weight. Out of the box, it comes in at 121 grams but can be bulked up by adding up to eight 4g weights behind each magnetic side panel.
The Rival 710, on the other hand, appears on the surface to be a much more straightforward affair. It also features three left-side buttons for a total of seven but does away with the fancy RGB light strips, contenting itself with an illuminating mouse ring and palm logo. Instead, we have an OLED screen that can be configured to show in-game information, like your health or ammo, Discord alerts, or display custom text and graphics. It can even display gifs loaded onto the Steelseries Engine software.
The shape of the mouse is slightly different, featuring a right-side flange and a slightly more contoured rear. The grips have also been textured to prevent slippage in intense situations.
Most interestingly, the Rival 710 is modular. The TrueMove3 optical sensor is removable with four screws and can be swapped out with future sensors Steelseries plans for the future. The cable is also detachable (and features a unique locking clasp), and the rear “RIVAL” nameplate can also be swapped out using 3D printing files available for free on the website.
Side by side we can see the shape differences between the two mice.
Despite their shape, I found myself using an identical palm grip with both. While it’s possible to claw grip, I found that my smaller hands made “palming” more comfortable and natural.
Steelseries Engine Software and Haptic Feedback (Rival 710)
Steelseries Engine is one of the most intuitive, prettiest interfaces I’ve encountered. Here you’ll be able to customize the specifics of each mouse, including the CPI, polling rate, and, in the case of the Rival 650, lift-off distance. This is particularly special as it features a second sensor specifically for lift-off detection to prevent movement when you’re tipping or lifting your mouse.
Both mice also allow you to customize the RGB lighting in place here. Each zone can be customized independently from every other. You can choose from some preset effects, like blinking or pulsing, and easily sync them up with your other Steelseries devices.
This is also where we can begin customizing the unique features on the Rival 710. Here you can see that I’ve loaded in our logo. It works well. GIFs even display at 10 frames a second.
The problem here really comes down to resolution. To make the logo legible, it had to be resized all the way down to 128×38. Creating your own logos or text is a lot like using the pencil tool in paint. In short, it’s a cool idea but needs a better screen.
Haptic feedback, on the other hand, comes in the form of timers. You can set an action – say, pressing A or middle-mouse clicking – and trigger a countdown timer. When the timer expires, one of ten patterns can vibrate through the mouse. Think “touch screen” over “rumble back” for how this feels.
In concept, I love this idea. In practice, it works well but is limited in its application. Since it’s entirely timer based, you can’t tie it to a specific game event, like losing a flag in Battlefield. Likewise, you’re not able to bind more than a single key as a trigger. So, if you fire your ultimate with Alt+2, sorry, that can’t start the countdown. If you’re playing MMORPGs or MOBAs, I could see it being beneficial. For everyone else, the utility is neat but limited.
Usage Impressions and Conclusions
Both of the mice feel great to use. Between the two, I like the shape and design of the Rival 650 best. Being free from the wire is also a major bonus, and I wasn’t able to notice any difference whatsoever when compared directly with my wired gaming mice. The click feedback is a touch softer than I’m used to, but they both glide easily on both hard and soft surfaces. The Rival 650’s dual sensor system also works very well for cutting off tracking on lift-off, though I personally never found this to be much of a problem.
The Rival 710 is a fine mouse, but it’s understandable why, despite naming, it’s taking a backseat to the 650 Wireless. Despite offering excellent pixel-for-pixel tracking, it’s core features are less meaningful than the adjustable weight and wireless connectivity of the 650. Both mice need to drop this brand of soft-touch finish, however. It shows finger oils far too easily which makes both mice look grimy after even moderate use.
Overall, however, no matter which you choose, you’re getting at least a single unique feature not found elsewhere. For gaming, they work perfectly and deliver on their promises of accuracy and pixel-perfect tracking. I wouldn’t say they’re the best on the market, Logitech still has a death grip on that spot with their excellent HERO sensor and lightweight G Pro series. Still, for Steelseries loyalists and gamers who just want a little bit of flash with their function, the Rival 650 Wireless and Rival 710 will more than deliver.
|Review Terms and Disclosure
All Information as of the Date of Publication
|How product was obtained:||The product is on loan from Steelseries for the purpose of this review.|
|What happens to the product after review:||The product remains the property of Steelseries but is on extended loan for future testing and product comparisons.|
|Company involvement:||Steelseries had no control over the content of the review and was not consulted prior to publication.|
|PC Perspective Compensation:||Neither PC Perspective nor any of its staff were paid or compensated in any way by Steelseries for this review.|
|Advertising Disclosure:||Steelseries has not purchased advertising at PC Perspective during the past twelve months.|
|Affiliate links:||This article contains affiliate links to online retailers. PC Perspective may receive compensation for purchases through those links.|