Every year or so I like to do a roundup of gaming keyboards and mice. Sometimes I look at the cheap side of things and sometimes I go a little more premium as I am this year. This year we are starting with mice and today we have the Razer Deathadder Essential in it’s white flavour.

First, I picked the white mouse as it was cheaper though at the time of actually writing the review the black version is even more on sale (is that even a real thing?) but typically these both sell for an MSRP of $69.99 CAD. I was able to snag my white model for $39.99 CAD.

I am pretty particular about the mice I use as I have short fingers and for some reason I am most comfortable in an even more compact claw grip. So typically the smaller the mouse the better. That has made me a big fan of mice like the Logitech G203, the Steelseries Rival 3 and the Zowie EC2-A.

The Deathadder Essential is not a small mouse. It’s not big either. I does feel nice in the hand though it would fit better in a hand with larger fingers. It feels like a higher profile Zowie EC2-A.

Lets talk about the buttons. I really am not a fan. The actuation force on the Omron switches is far too light for my liking and it promotes accidental clicks left and right clicks. The side buttons are actually quite nice though and the scroll wheel spins nicely with smooth detents.

The cord is braided in white to match the mouse and it doesn’t feel too stiff.

The mouse floats around the pad pretty nicely and the lift off distance being around 1.5mm is fine. With the Razer software you can customise the DPI on the mouse from 400 to 6400. I have mine set firmly in the centre at 3200 which to me is the sweet spot though performance at all the default DPI’s are fine.

In Razer’s Synapse software, which I may add is pretty damn well made, you can also control the lighting on the mouse. The Deathadder Essentials don’t have RGB on board but you can control the brightness and whether the lighting is static or breathing.  Static works well but the breathing effect is quite choppy and not impressive.

I played of bit of World of Warships with the Deathadder Essential and it performed okay. The light actuation of the left and right mouse buttons turned out to be fine as long as my fingers didn’t get too twitchy. There is no way I could use this in a first person shooter but I don’t play those much at all.

Overall, I think this mouse has a lot of good points but a couple major flaws that make this a no-go. The shape of the mouse is very comfortable if a bit high profile for myself. The scroll wheel and side buttons are great. The optical sensor works very well. The lighting is fine and simple to configure in the easy to use Razer Synapse software. What lets this mouse down is the light actuation on the left and right mouse buttons. They were okay in World of Warships but I can’t see them being very great during a fast action first person shooter.

For the sale price I purchased this at, I can recommend the mouse. I think for those with a bit larger hands than I would possibly be able to use the mouse a bit more effectively and perhaps even the light actuating left and right mouse buttons wouldn’t be much of a problem.