Reviewed in the United States on November 11, 2019
Razer Viper Ultimate Review
This has been a killer year for Razer in their product lineup. From keypads, to keyboards, and now mice as well. The Viper Ultimate is Razer’s one-two punch answer to the Logitech G Pro wireless, which is now getting on over a year old, and it is quite the response. Featuring an incredibly comfortable and sleek ambidextrous design, the Viper Ultimate stands tall amongst its peers, offering one of the best gaming experiences you can have with a mouse.
Razer designed the original wired Viper with a key feature set in mind – creating a light, fast, wickedly responsive and premium gaming mouse and the Viper Ultimate adds to that with the addition of wireless connectivity. Long gone are the days of wireless mice being shunned by gamers and only being reserved for travel or general purpose use, wireless mice now stand at the forefront of gaming with offerings from Razer, Corsair, Logitech, Steelseries and other major manufacturers as upgrades to their wired siblings.
The Viper and Viper Ultimate offer an extremely comfortable shape and design that really shows how far Razer has come with their mouse design. Subtle comfort grooves in the buttons, crisp button presses, well-stepped mouse wheel, and extremely comfortable rubber sides really make the mouse feel premium. The Viper is ideal for medium to medium-large hands, offering comfortable grip options for both palm, claw, and hybrid grip styles. Fingertip grip is possible here, but not recommended as the mouse as a longer body that is not well suited to fingertip grip styles. Integrated firm rubber sides, textured matte plastic body, and super comfortable shape for left and right handed users really take the spotlight. The mouse has side buttons on both sides, but are cleverly designed so that you never have to worry about accidental presses on either side, and even if you are worried about still somehow hitting the side buttons on the opposite side of the mouse – it is a simple enough task to go into the software and disable them. The mouse is also extremely rigid and sturdy, having no flex or bowing at all, there is a slight rattle but I think it is either in the mouse wheel or lens of the sensor. Not sure though, but it is nothing to be worried about, pretty standard fare there, though I would like to see that eliminated in the future., Lighting is minimal, with the only RGB goodness being the classic Razer logo on the butt of the mouse being lit up, but the charging stand also has an RGB LED on its base and integrates seamlessly into the Razer Chroma ecosystem and works as expected.
Ultra low latency, long battery life, and ditching the cable drag are great bullet points for any wireless mouse manufacturer to have – but only a few have managed to add “under 100g” to that list. Logitech launched their G Pro wireless last year with a surprising 78g weight that was lighter than most wired mice, and now that smaller, lighter mice are in – it was the perfect time for Razer to fire back. The Viper Ultimate weighs in at a shockingly light and nimble 74g (2.6 ounces), beating out everything but the Glorious Model O series, the Finalmouse UItralight 2, and the Coolermaster MM710. And at 74g, I would gladly give up my Finalmouse’s ultra-feathery light weight for a better shape and wireless capabilities. I’d also be shocked if we didn’t see an even lighter Viper out next year with the ever popular honey comb design and even lighter materials, I’m almost positive that they could get the weight below 50g with relative ease.
So we have a masterful recipe for success here with a great weight and balance, wireless connectivity, and sleek design and shape, but what about the internals?
I am glad to say that the inside of the Viper and Viper Ultimate are just as well designed as the outside. The sensor is the result of the partnership between PixArt and Razer, and what they’ve brought with the 3399 is an incredibly fast, accurate, top-of-the line optical sensor that is near flawless in its execution. While the reported resolution of the sensor goes up to a true 20,000 cpi – we all know that none of us will ever even come close to using that level of granularity given that the overwhelming majority of gamers use 2000 dpi or lower. But it is nice to know that the option is there – in the event that we have 20K displays. The bottom is equipped with pure 100% PTFE feet without any dye positioned at the corners of the mouse and around the sensor itself. The absence of the black dye means there is zero grittiness to the glide of the mouse when moving it, and rivals that of aftermarket mouse feet like Hyperglides. The only reason you’ll ever need to replace these feet is if they ever wear out, they’re as good as mouse feet get. The clicks are satisfying and tactile, offering an instant response due to their opto-electric nature. Speaking of which, the opto-electric switches are great! Because there are no actual contacts, the switches have an incredibly long lifespan, over 50 million clicks and are immune to double-clicking that their mechanical microswitch brethren are notorious for.
Included with the mouse is a charging dock that functions both as a home for the wireless receiver if you so choose and as a convenient and fast way to charge the mouse when not in use. Simply plop the mouse on the dock when you walk away to get a drink or go to bed, it is as simple as that – not that you’ll need to do that very often. The Viper Ultimate sports a staggeringly impressive maximum battery life of 70+ hours on one charge, and can be charged from 0-80% in 90 minutes or less. The cable used to plug into the charging dock can be used to connect the mouse directly to the computer to be used in a wired state, if you for some reason should want to do that. It is very lightweight and flexible, only ever so slightly stiffer than the Viper wired cable. Let’s be real here though, if you’re buying a wireless mouse only to plug it in and use it wired, what are you doing?
At $150, it might be a tough purchase for some – but that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth it. If you are looking for the absolute best wireless gaming mouse out there right now, the Viper Ultimate is it. There is little room for debate on whether or not the Viper Ultimate is the king of gaming mice in 2019. Ultimately though, the best mouse for you is the one that feels best in your hand. So many mice have top optical sensors and similar specs, that it comes down to personal preference in regards to the shape. For me, the Viper Ultimate shape fits my hands extraordinarily well, whereas the Finalmouse Ultralight 2 and Logitech G Pro wireless exist at opposite ends of comfort for me. The Ultralight 2 is too small for my hands, and the G Pro feels too much like a semi-circular plastic dome, but the Viper Ultimate is just right.
If there’s anything I would consider changing it would be creating a honey-comb shell design that would further reduce the weight and possibly making the side buttons modular, similar to that of Logitech’s offerings so that if we so choose to could simply remove the side buttons for the side of the mouse that we are not using.
Razer, 2019 is the year you came back hard. I love what you’re offering and I really hope 2020 brings as much if not more innovation to your future product lines. You guys are champions, once more.