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Rapoo 9900M review: A no-frills mouse and keyboard combo

James Archer
25 Feb 2020
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
80
Inc VAT

Richly featured in some places, basic in others, this is ultimately a respectable mouse and keyboard combo

Pros 
Multi-device connectivity
Comfortable design
Cons 
Keyboard lacks extras
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At £80, the Rapoo 9900M is on the expensive side for a mouse and keyboard set, especially one where the keyboard only uses simple scissor switches.

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Rapoo 9900M review: Design 

That said, it’s also a cut above the kinds of dull, black plastic boards you usually get in such bundles. Sheets of gorgeous anodised aluminium (grey on top, silver underneath) create a thoroughly modern look, while also being lighter and more flex-resistant than plastic. The bulge at the back –a necessity to contain the two AA batteries and other internals, rather than a lapse in its otherwise extreme thinness – is also put to practical use by angling the keyboard upward, resulting in a more comfortable typing position.

Both this and the strip of empty space at the bottom of the keyboard might contribute to a somewhat taller desk footprint than is strictly necessary, but the latter comes in handy, too: we ended up using it as a thumb rest, arguably the next best thing to a wrist rest.

The mouse, although lacking the sharp looks of the keyboard, is also comfortable and usable. It’s big enough to accommodate all grip types, is ergonomically shaped – it slopes quite hard down to the right-hand side, so you’re naturally guided to a less straining wrist angle than if it were flatter and has a good-sized thumb rest of its own. 

Despite being largely and obviously plastic, this rest area – as well as the main palm area – has a lovely matt, almost leathery finish. It’s very easy on the hands and, more importantly, aids with grip: although we held the mouse with our ring and little fingers dangling off the right side, they both sat right there instead of slipping on to the desk. It comes complete with a vertical scroll wheel, horizontal scroll wheel and four-speed DPI switch, too.

Rapoo 9900M review: Performance 

We were less enthused about how the horizontal scroll wheel displaces the two thumb buttons from the usual spot down towards the very top-left corner of the mouse: in other words, out of the reach of your thumb. These can be operated with your index finger instead, but this still feels relatively awkward and unintuitive. A dedicated wheel isn’t necessary for horizontal scrolling – many mice have a tilting vertical wheel that can do the job – so we’d rather have the thumb buttons in a more conventional position.

For the mouse, however, that’s our only complaint. It’s bigger and more comfortable than the Rapoo MT550, and also fixes one of its few design oversights. 

To explain this, we first need to explain the 9900M’s party trick. In addition to connecting to a PC or laptop via the 2.4GHz USB receiver, it can be simultaneously paired to up to three other Bluetooth sources, and by pressing a switching button (both the keyboard and mouse have their own), you can cycle through them in a near-instant. This is incredibly useful if you’re working with more than one device at once and it even works on handhelds like an Android smartphone the 2.4GHz

The MT550 can do this as well, but it kept its switching button on the underside, so in order to make a change, you had to pick it up every time. The 9900M’s mouse instead puts the switching button on top, right next to the DPI button, making it much more easily accessible. 

The keyboard, unfortunately, repeats the MT550’s error by keeping its own switching button on its underside, and a keyboard is a lot slower to flip around than a mouse. In fact, the keyboard as a whole is clearly the weaker component in this bundle, even with its sleek look. The low-profile keys feel springy and agile, but their plastic construction is humdrum at best, and many of them don’t quite line up evenly with their chassis cutouts, some being noticeably further to the right than dead in the middle. This doesn’t cause operational problems – the keycaps don’t rub against the metal or anything – but it looks off. 

There’s also no backlighting, no LED indicators for Caps Lock or Scroll lock, no dedicated media keys and no height adjustment. Device switching is a great feature, but otherwise, this is a very simple keyboard in a nice metal suit.

Fortunately, it’s still up to the job of everyday typing, lack of extras or not. We used it for hours without any tangible drop in speed or accuracy, and the lack of height-adjusting legs isn’t as important when it already sits at a comfortable enough angle.

READ NEXT: Cooler Master SK650 review

Rapoo 9900M review: Verdict 

Assuming a £40/£40 split for each peripheral, the 9900M manages to end up being surprisingly decent value. There are many sets costing £50 or less, but here you’re getting a particularly well-featured mouse and, of course, that distinct multi-device connectivity.

Buy now from John Lewis

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