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Today it seems that most every company that makes anything computer related is coming out with a gaming mouse, you’ve just got so many choices if you’re looking to buy a mouse. Since there are so many mice out there, companies are adding special features to their mice to make them stand out from the rest, and sometimes these features are great and other times they’re rather pointless.

Silverstone is known for excellent quality products, especially their PC cases, but they’ve decided to venture into the gaming mouse market. Their first entry is the Raven Gaming Mouse, it features an OLED display to let you know the DPI settings of your mouse, a laser sensor up to 3200DPI, Macros and a very unique feature called a Flip 3D Thumb Scroll.

The Raven mouse is a very unique gaming mouse, in fact I’ve never seen anything like it, or least one with this scroll wheel sticking out of the side, and it’s also one of the heaviest mice I’ve had the chance to review. So, continue on to learn more about the Raven…


As usual please check out the unboxing video first and then continue on for the rest of the review:

Specifications:
Silverstone RVM01B Raven Gaming Mouse SST-RVM01B

Features:

-3D shaped carbon fiber palm rest surface
-Independent X & Y axis adjustments in 100 dpi increments
-Precision twin-eye laser sensor with 3200dpi accuracy
-RVM01B can maintain perfect accuracy during fast acceleration change movements
-Dedicated flip 3D thumb scroll for rapid switching capability
-Up to 5 sets of programmable profiles
-OLED with setting and dpi display
-Clear OLED to display operation mode and DPI value
-50-50 weight balance for perfect feel and control
-The RVM01B has optimal weight balance from left to right and from top to bottom
-Dual mode switch
-A "mode switch" on the bottom of the RVM01B allows quick change without using software
-In normal mode, an animated RAVEN logo is displayed
-In gaming mode, X & Y axis DPI value is displayed at all times
-Multiple Key stroke commands can be recorded to one mouse button
-Single key command can also be programmed

Specs:

Material: High-strength plastic with carbon fiber surfacing Teflon feet
Dimension: 128mm x 85mm x 45mm
Application: Windows 2000, XP, Vista
Connectivity: USB 2.0 (16-bit data format)
Cable length: 180cm
Buttons: 11 total, including scroll wheels
Profiles: 5
OLED Pixel Size: 128 x 32
Controller: FreescaleMCU MC68H908JW32
Sensor: Philips PLN2030 twin-eye laser
DPI Range: 400 ~ 3200
Max. Acceleration: 50G
Weight: 182g

Price: $75.00 (Approx, depending where you look)

Here’s a quick comparison shot of the Raven and my current favorite mouse, the NZXT Avatar:

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The Raven is large, much wider that other mice, and it fills your hand.

Included with the Raven is software that helps you adjust the DPI settings and change the buttons if you wish. On the bottom of the Raven is a switch labeled ‘Normal’ and ‘Game’, depending which mode you’re in is the screen that will appear, only in gaming mode can you adjust or change the settings though.

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The whole Flip3d thing with Windows Vista is just eye candy and it’s something that I never even use, so for me the flip wheel on the side really just gets in the way while I’m using the mouse. The wheel sticks are very far, and actually gets in the way of the side set of buttons, at least the back button. To me it’s just a gimmick as is the while Flip3d thing with Vista, but the center of it is useful for switching between DPIs while gaming. The OLED display screen is useful to let you know the status of your mouse, but it’s location isn’t the greatest, your hand completely covers it so unless you take your hand off of the mouse you won’t know what DPI setting you’re in or on.  With the Avatar and other mice there are LEDs on the side to indicate the DPI settings and you don’t have to remove your hand from the mouse to see them either, the LEDs are a much better system than a screen I have to read.

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Using the mouse for every day use is something for me that I just couldn’t get accustomed to, it just feels big and bulky in my hand, and it’s a fairly heavy mouse, I’ve turned my tastes towards lighter mice these days, and I just don’t prefer such a heavy mouse.

Overall though using it for everyday tasks is fine, but as I mentioned the wheel can get in the way of the side button, you almost have to contort your finger to reach the back button.

Tracking though was fine with any surface, glass, plastic, cloth or even wood, it performed just the same on every surface I tried.

For gaming I found the Raven to work fine, but for me it’s just to heavy, it doesn’t allow for quick reactions, but it could be because the NZXT Avatar is a very light mouse and that’s what I’m accustomed to. Even so I gave the Raven a few weeks of testing and I’m back with the Avatar as the Raven is just too large, bulky and heavy for my preferences.

I think if the side wheel wasn’t there I’d like the Raven a lot more, but as it stands it just gets in the way for me.


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Conclusion:
The Silverstone Raven is competing with the top gaming mice manufacturers out there today, and for a first attempt at it, Silvestone has done an admirable job overall.

The Raven though isn’t without it’s faults, and it’s certainly one of those mice that you’re going to either love or hate. There are some things that need to be addressed with this mouse and it’s design before it can become any real competition for companies like Razer, Logitech and the others out there that have been designing gaming mice for a long time.

On a personal note I think the Raven is just too big, but that’s my own opinion, others might be more than happy with the size. I’m currently very happy using the small NZXT Avatar that some have said was too small, so to each his own I guess, everyone has their own preferences…

Pros:
Well made
Sensitive, works on any surface
Easy to use
Tracks very well

Cons:
Large and heavy mouse
Scroll wheel on side can be annoying and get in the way
Display covered by hand when using

Grades:  
Overall score-8-10
Design score-8-10
Performance score-9-10