Razer Vespula Gaming Mouse Pad Review: 2 Surfaces, 1 Pad

Illustration for article titled Razer Vespula Gaming Mouse Pad Review: 2 Surfaces, 1 Pad

The promise of a gaming mousepad is somewhat intangible—"more precise mousing." But can you really tell if it's letting you headshot more dudes? Razer's Vespula, however, offers something you can feel: Two completely different mousing surfaces in one.

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The Damage

Thirtee-five dollars, retail—meaning you'll probably be able to find it for cheaper.

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Illustration for article titled Razer Vespula Gaming Mouse Pad Review: 2 Surfaces, 1 Pad

The Verdict

An aggressively (m)angled rectangle, Vespula is hard mousepad with two distinct surfaces, one on each side: A "precision" surface, which is textured and bumpy, like the softer side of side of sandpaper, and a speed side, which is smooth, not unlike the glass trackpads on MacBooks. The difference between the two is immediately apparent—when applying the same amount of force to the mouse, it moves half the distance on the precision surface. So, if you're sniping, the precision side is better, since make more subtle movements by default. If you need zip all over the pad with quickness, the speed side is a better bet.

The large groove cut into the bottom of the pad is for a gel wrist rest, which is a nice idea in theory, but it's way too tall—no matter how I positioned my chair or wrist, it wasn't comfortable in the slightest. And I wish there was more mousing area, too.

There's also no way to dynamically switch between the different surfaces—believe it or not, it's annoying to flip the pad around mid-gun fight (stupid physics!).

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To me, what's most important about a pad beyond the fact that it works is how it feels, since the micron-level measurements companies bloviate about are beyond all but the most anal of gamers. The Vespula's a good mousepad. Tracking's undeniably accurate. But the question of exactly how much more precise Vespula is versus a regular pad for gaming is nearly rendered moot by the fact it offers the very tangible benefit of two very different mousing surfaces that each have a distinct feel. At least one of them, you're sure to like.

Illustration for article titled Razer Vespula Gaming Mouse Pad Review: 2 Surfaces, 1 Pad
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Two mousing surfaces, one pad

Illustration for article titled Razer Vespula Gaming Mouse Pad Review: 2 Surfaces, 1 Pad
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Average sized, but more tracking area would be nice

Illustration for article titled Razer Vespula Gaming Mouse Pad Review: 2 Surfaces, 1 Pad
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The wrist rest sucks

[Razer]

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DISCUSSION

fencesitter-old
fencesitter

If you really wanted a dynamically changing texture, use a mechanism like the [gizmodo.com] or the pixel lamp (post preview would be nice now). Just put a different texture on each side of the triangular slat.

If you really do it like those ideas, you wouldn't even need to lift your hand to change the surface texture, but to simplify things, make it like the billboards where it's one long triangular slat each (instead of segmented like the links above) and they're all tied together so they all change at once.

The gap between the slats might be an issue. Certainly, you'd want rounded feet on your mouse so they don't catch. The gaps between the slats might be small enough that an optical mouse could resolve around them.

edit:Like this, just mounted horizontally.