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Roccat Kova[+] Optical USB Gaming Mouse E-mail
Reviews - Featured Reviews: Input Devices
Written by Joey Peng   
Tuesday, 29 November 2011
Table of Contents: Page Index
Roccat Kova[+] Optical USB Gaming Mouse
Features and Specifications
Closer Look: Roccat KOVA[ ]
Roccat KOVA[ ] Detailed Features
Testing and Results
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Testing & Results

Testing Methodology

This mouse was used as the primary mouse over a period of 3 weeks. In addition to producitivty software and everyday browsing, the mouse was tested in several games: Warcraft III - TFT, StarCraft 2, League of Legends, and Might & Magic VI.

Test System

  • Processor Intel i7-920
  • Video Card: Nvidia GTX 285
  • RAM: 16GB DDR3
  • Monitor resolution: 1920x1080 pixels

Test Software

  • Warcraft III - TFT
  • StarCraft II
  • League of Legends
  • Might & Magic VI
  • MouseRate


Upon taking up the Roccat Kova[+], there were two things I instantly noticed: the Kova[+] was light and glides with minimal resistance. I have used a wide variety of gaming mice from Razer, Steelseries, Logitech and Microsoft. So if there was one thing I was good at, it would be getting used to a new mice. The Kova[+] felt a little small for my hand but the positioning of the buttons are great. They do not interfere with normal use at all, but on the flip side they take an effort to actually press. Game-critical macros do not work well on the Kova[+]. For MMORPGs the Razer Naga is a better bet. That's not to say the Kova[+]'s programmable buttons are inferior. Roccat gives user the ability to customize the functionalities of the auxiliary buttons down to every detail. The buttons can be assigned to change mouse setting, enhance browsing experience, integrate with numerous applications like Skype and Xfire, or activate built-in timers. These are use cases that go extremely well with the Kova[+], and is often lacking in other gaming mice.

On paper the Roccat Kova[+] supports up to 18 different mouse functionalities. In reality, only the thumb buttons (2) and standardized buttons (4, right/left click and scroll up/down) can be easily used in game, and if one of those are dedicated to be the EasyShift[+] button, then there are, realistically, 6 additional button functions, which is still impressive. Other 7-button mice have, at best, 5 additional button functionalities. While the button positioning is superb, the actual design of the auxiliary buttons were too centered around the look than functionality. The inward slope where the 2 buttons meet is exactly where the thumb ends up for clicking. The buttons also offer too much resistance. These two facts together is another reason why it doesn't make sense to assign game-critical macros on the Kova[+].

Polling rate is also an extremely important feature for gaming mice, it measures how fast the mouse will respond when moving. The Roccat Kova[+] has a 1000Hz polling rate, or equivalently 1ms response time. That is essentially the fastest response time available these days. Using the MouseRate program, we found that while the mouse is moving the polling rate reaches 1000Hz without problem, the average depends on how much movement is going on. Without a doubt the response time is suitable for gaming.

The Roccat Kova[+]'s drivers have been optimized for functionality and in return takes an extremely long time (>40 seconds) to apply setting changes. Other than the above three potential drawbacks (button design, weight, and software lag), there is very little to complain about the Kova[+] in terms of performance and functionality

The optical sensor tracks accurately and smoothly, however to perform well, a rough surface or good mouse pad is required. The scroll-wheel and click feedback is well tuned and hits a sweet spot. After getting used to the grip, the Kova[+] becomes quite comfortable to work with for long durations. For competitive games, once you get over the initial "why is this so light" phase, the Roccat Kova[+] delivers everything you possibly need in a gaming mouse.



# Universally GenericSun Down 2011-11-30 03:26
Like the title said, it's getting too generic. I don't doubt that this mouse is good for gaming and designing, but there's nothing much of it the stands out of the crowd. Sure it's designed based on a Reventon, but somehow it doesn't stand out much. For example, Razer DeathAdder: organic predator. Cyborg Rat 3: complex mechanics. SteelSeries Kinzu: minimalistic design. Logitech and Microsoft already fills the 'generic' look gap IMO. This mouse, tries to fit everything, but it's just not strong enough. It won't have much appeal, but I'd still give it a consideration.
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# RE: Universally GenericWhyNotV2 2011-12-08 03:38
Your statement is probably why I've yet bought a newer generation "gaming" mouse prefering to stick with Logitech...nothing really sets anything apart as the must have. I have an original G5 that I've been wanting to replace for a couple of years now and I'm still waiting for that true game changer in the realm of the mouse before I make the switch/upgrade. Until then...
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# Hard Click ButtonsMergatroid 2011-12-08 17:54
"but the positioning of the buttons are great. They do not interfere with normal use at all, but on the flip side they take an effort to actually press"

I have found that the death knell for any mouse I have used, especially light easy to move mice, is hard to press buttons. Often when a fine movement is required just pressing the button can cause the mouse to move slightly, enough to make the system not register a double-click for instance. I really like the look, and the optical sensor is interesting (almost enough for me to buy it just to try it). I really like the software and the timer function too. I prefer a fairly heavy mouse myself, but I can get used to a really good light mouse too. Pity about the buttons.
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# RE: Roccat Kova[+] Optical USB Gaming MouseSun Down 2011-12-09 02:00
I have a lot of qualms with these ''gaming'' mouse. I mean, why can't the 'adjustable weight' system be finger/front and palm/rear oriented like a car? Why can't we set how sensitive the click is? Why can't they just put an almost full teflon feet for the mouse instead of 3 huge ones?
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# Roccatnuclear 2011-12-23 03:32
@Sun Down:
Because three feet will never wiggle, thats statics. A huge single feet could differ in attrition and start getting round or by glueing it on the plastic surface its not plane, or its just more expensive.
Well and an adjustable weight system for front and rear, who really needs that? I would say nobody.

But Roccat really needs to fix their quality. I bought the kova[+] half year ago. But already at start it was totally inaccurate, the arrow was jumping.... And that on all surfaces I tried (mousepad,wood,plast ic).
After that I bought Deathadder....
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# RE: RoccatSun Down 2011-12-27 08:30
You underestimate how much of a change weight distribution can make. My weight transfer idea comes from cars. My preferred weight distribution is palm heavy with light fingers. To be honest, saying 'nobody uses the weights' is a bold statement.
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# Roccatnuclear 2011-12-27 09:29
I don't say that nobody uses weights. Adjustable weight can make a mouse more comfortable (well I don't need it, but I agree that it can be an advantage because you don't need to get used to some other weight).
I just say that changing the weight balance between front/rear is more or less senseless. In the car the optimum is 50/50, same like in mouses, they just should put the weight in the center of your hand on the mouse. Regularly thats, like you described the tail (well not the side where the cable is, maybe a bit confusing where the tail is^^).

In a car other weight constellations can make sense, because you need more grip at the drive.
Other reasons are, that for more easy handling a understeer is prefferred, or for fun cars oversteer. But these are all effects you don't have in a mouse xD.

Well and don't forget the cable of your mouse. If I look at mine, the cable stiffness is a much bigger force, than the inertia of the front.

Well, but thats just my opinion, if someone thinks, he needs such a variable mouse I don't complain^^,. I think for companys it wouldn't be attractive. It's a small marked and cost-perfomance ratio is bad.
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# RE: RoccatSun Down 2011-12-27 15:45
''these are all effects you don't have in a mouse''. You're only looking at the mouse moving forward. On FPS games the mouse moves left and right a lot, assuming the mouse is wireless (R.A.T. 9/Mamba), difference in weight distribution can affect the comfort of the gamer where each has it's own tastes. Sure the mouse isn't moving forward, but that's not what I was referring to in a mouse, it's the movement towards left and right. Not everybody prefers a 50/50 distribution you know, just like how I prefer racing with a front-engine car rather than a mid-engine car. YMMV.
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# Depends on grip and hand sizeMergatroid 2011-12-28 16:10
Where you want the centre of gravity on a mouse depends on how you grip it and how large your hand is. If you have a smaller hand and use the "claw" grip you may want extra weight at the back so the mouse doesn't lean forward when you pick it up. If you use a palm grip and have a larger hand you may want more weight at the front.

Where the center of gravity should be depends on how you pick the mouse up, not on inertia. If you never picked the mouse up then it wouldn't make any difference where the centre of gravity is.

When I'm in the midst of a game and I pick my mouse up to move it over and put it back down without the pointer (or whatever) moving then I don't want the front or back weighing more, but again that depends on where you grip the mouse.

Saying the balance weight system doesn't make sense is just not true.
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# RE: Roccat Kova[+] Optical USB Gaming Mousenuclear 2011-12-28 02:56
a weight outside of the center would lead to, that your hand has to do an additional torque to hold the mouse straight. Desirable? And like you described, you prefer it in the center, like I think everyone.

Weightbalance in cars is like I already said something completely different, there are pros and cons in breaking, steering and safety (e.g. mid-engine car is hard to controle but fastest).
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# Sensor JUMPStransce 2012-02-18 21:50
Roccat Kova+ sensor JUMPS "google for mouse jumping". It is a manufacturing defect, there are good and bad batches. Buy at your own risk.

Mouse jumping is so bad that even the $10 mouse you grab from a bookstore can perform better.

Read more for more evidence:
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