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Turtle Beach Grip 500 review

Tom Morgan
1 May 2015
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
55
inc VAT

A comfortable and responsive gaming mouse that isn't quite as customisable as its rivals

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Specifications

Mouse type: Laser, Resolution: 9,800dpi, Buttons: 7, Warranty: One year RTB, Details: www.turtlebeach.com, Part code: GRIP500,

Turtle Beach has had the console gaming market all but wrapped up with its range of wired and wireless headsets, but the company has so far avoided branching out into the PC gaming world. That is all set to change in 2015, with a complete range of mice, keyboards, mouse mats and PC headsets. The first model we got our hands on was the Grip 500, a 7-button gaming mouse with incredibly sensitive DPI levels and a macro editor to give you the edge in games.

The three buttons on the left side of the mouse suggest the Grip 500 is designed for right-handed users, as your thumb will naturally rest within reach of all three inputs. It has an ambidextrous shape, however, so lefties can use it without discomfort – they'll just have to use their little finger or forego the side buttons. There's a fourth button on the top of the mouse underneath the scroll wheel, which defaults to switching sensitivity levels. It's conveniently placed within reach of your index finger, but we didn't accidentally trigger it while gaming so there's little chance of dropping DPI mid-game.

The scroll wheel clicks inwards as a third mouse button, as you would expect, but it doesn't tilt sideways and can't freewheel. The Grip 500 is a gaming mouse, pure and simple, so graphic designers and artists hoping to squeeze in some play in their downtime will have to switch mice if horizontal scrolling is a must.

At the time of writing the Grip 500 had yet to go on sale in the UK, and Turtle Beach had confusingly hidden the driver download page – you had to manually change your location to the US (where the mouse was already available) in order to download it. Hopefully the links will be more obviously available when the Grip 500 arrives in shops here.

Once installed, the software suite lets you customise each mouse button, adjust the USB polling rate, reduce the lift-off distance to prevent accidental inputs when using the mouse on a small mouse mat, and adjust the double click speed. You can specify different DPI settings for the X and Y axes, which might come in handy for keeping your gun at head height in first person shooters. This isn't quite as comprehensive as Steelseries' Engine software, but covers most of the gaming essentials, so you're unlikely to miss angle snapping and deceleration controls unless you've been using them for years.

The Grip 500 has three separate lighting zones; the scroll wheel, the Turtle Beach logo on the palm rest and two 'headlights' at the front of the mouse. You can set the lighting mode to be always illuminated, to breathe at a slow pace, or switch the LEDs off completely. A fourth 'Battle mode' increases the brightness of the LEDs based on how quickly you press the buttons, meaning RTS and MOBA players will see brighter lights based on their performance levels. Unfortunately you can only change the colour of the scroll wheel, with the other lights limited to a distinct red colour. This is fine if the lights on your keyboard or headset are red, or can be customised, but nowhere near as flexible as gaming mice we've seen from Steelseries or Razer.

Performance is still the most important feature of any gaming mouse, though, and in this regard the Grip 500 excelled. We had no trouble keeping our KDA up in lunchtime games of Counter Strike, our mouse movements were precise and the macro features helped keep track of multiple squads of soldiers in RTS games like Command and Conquer. The rubberised coating helps create plenty of grip and didn't get too sweaty after several hours' use, unlike other grippy mice we've used in the past.

The Grip 500 is a well-balanced, comfortable gaming mouse with flexible sensitivity options and a macro editor that should keep MMO gamers happy, but unless you need the two extra buttons or quick access to DPI settings, the Razer Deathadder Chroma is slightly more sculpted to fit your hand and costs £5 less. It has a more in-depth software suite and complete customisation of all its LEDs.

HARDWARE
Mouse typeLaser
Resolution9,800dpi
Buttons7
Tilt wheelNo
Programmable parts7
ConnectionUSB
Mouse batteryN/A

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