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What’s Inside?

You shouldn’t worry about the DeathAdder’s lacking a laser sensor – the new mouse has something to offer instead. And I say it’s going to eat any laser mouse for breakfast!

The DeathAdder is based on the Razer Precision 3G Infrared optical sensor with infrared highlighting and a resolution of 1800dpi. It is more than with the Diamondback (1600dpi) but less than with the laser Copperhead (2000dpi) and some competing products like the OCZ Equalizer with its 2500dpi. Yes, the maximum sensitivity of the DeathAdder subjectively feels as increased over the Diamondback, but not too much. Razer’s ambition goes farther, though.

The 3G index in the sensor name stands for 3rd Generation and Razer claims their technology to be a new generations of sensors, after the release of the first generation of optical mice in 1999 and after the arrival (in 2004) of the second generation of 1600dpi mice like the Diamondback. Razer claims their technology is superior to laser sensors and they have something to base that claim upon!

According to the specification, this sensor brings about the following improvements over the second-generation sensor employed in the Diamondback:

  • Resolution is increased from 1600 to 1800dpi
  • Maximum movement speed without clipping is increased from 40 to 60 inches per second
  • Max acceleration is increased from 15G to 19G
  • Height sensitivity is reduced from 2.4mm to 2.1mm

The last parameter is important for precise positioning when the mouse is lifted above the surface and then put down again. Ideally, if you lift the mouse up and put it down exactly vertically, the pointer will continue moving from the point it has been at the take-off moment. However, it is virtually impossible to move your hand up along a perfect vertical, especially when you are moving your mouse with sudden jerks in games. Thus, the smaller the height at which the lifted-up mouse still reacts to movement, the better. The DeathAdder is claimed to have 12.5% smaller height sensitivity than products with previous-generation sensors.

The classical fetish of all mouse manufacturers – the sensor resolution parameter measured in dots per inch (like in printers) – has long become a somewhat confused subject, especially as its true nature is not always clear for the user.

Supposing you have a monitor with a resolution of 1600x1200 pixels and a mouse with a resolution of 1600dpi. Then, you have to move the mouse by 1 inch (or about 2.5cm) for the mouse pointer to move across the screen from one edge to the other. If the mouse had a resolution of 400dpi, like most inexpensive models do, you’d have to move it by 4 inches (about 10cm). Of course, you can increase or lower the pointer movement speed in Windows or in the game interface, but this speed should not exceed the sensor’s physical capabilities, specified above, to keep the same accuracy of movement. On the other hand, if you are used to low mouse sensitivity, you don’t need the opportunity to send the pointer through the entire screen by moving the mouse by 3cm, do you? Well, not exactly. If you take a larger screen resolution, like the epic 2560x1600 of today’s top-end 30” LCDs, these 3cm will transform into 5cm.

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