|Epic Gear Meduza Gaming Mouse and Hybrid Pad|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Input Devices|
|Written by Dan Ferguson|
|Tuesday, 21 February 2012|
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Epic Gear Mouse Detailed Features
To get a real feel for why Epic Gear chose the name Meduza it helps to show the back of the box. That's one scary looking face, I guess it's supposed to scare the competition or just meant to be fun. I can only imagine the engineers trying to decide how to layout the sensors and switch and liking the design that looked like a face.
With the two sensors available, the Meduza is essentially two mice built into a single platform. In the image above it's more plain to see that both sensors are indeed optical (meaning they capture images rather than using another sensing technology), and the laser sensor uses only a single laser for tracking both vertical and horizontal tracking. This is in contrast to the current custom of using dual laser mice with doppler technology where one laser tracks horizontal motion and a second laser tracks vertical motion. I'm not sure how big a problem this presents and I haven't heard or seen much about it in forums, but gauging by the options embedded into mouse software it seems that having different X and Y sensitivities is either a problem or a commonly used feature.
I bring up the differences between tracking the two axes because this is one aspect that Epic Gear chose to design into the Hybrid Mouse Pad. I've never thought much about the way mouse surfaces are woven or the types of materials used. Epic Gear uses a special triangular fiber and an evenly spaced weave that supposedly provides consistent tracking in both horizontal and vertical directions. I tried to measure any differences between the two axes on different surfaces, but any differences were too small for me to measure using a common ruler.
Above is a cross-sectional view of the Hybrid Pad showing the uniformity of the surface weave and the porous rubber backing. You can tell that the weave is high quality and very uniform, but you can also see lots of variation in the light that's getting reflected off the surface. There are many local bright and dark spots which indicate tiny differences in surface orientation. If triangular fibers and a specific weave make that big of a difference in the sensitivity and accuracy then I would think these kind of small variations should also make a big difference. That should show up during the testing phase (or not).
Aside from functional features, the Meduza also has some style features. The letters on the back of the mouse light with a red LED purely for style. I think it adds a really nice touch, but it can be toggled on or off through the software.
The LED lighting on the front of the Meduza has two parts. The four indicator lights for the DPI mode also light only in red and indicate the current mode. The light for the scroll wheel is linked to the current software profile of which there are five. There is a unique color for each profile: red, yellow, blue, green and purple. This light can also be toggled using the software.
Before looking at the Meduza and Hybrid Pad performance we'll first take a look at the software that runs behind the scenes (or not at all if you please) and how it impacts the user experience.