Review: Roccat Kone Pro and Kone Pro Air

Since being acquired by Turtle Beach, Roccat has become an increasingly-visible presence in the PC accessory market. Between keyboards, headsets and mice, they’re occupying more space at the tech stores, at the least the few that have open storefronts people can enter. The newest Roccat gaming mouse is the Kone Pro model, which comes in two variants. The Kone Pro is the wired mouse, while the Kone Pro Air is for those who prefer wireless mice. We’ll be covering both of them in this review to determine how good these mice are and if wired or wireless offers a distinct advantage over the other.

The Kone Pro mice are designed for right-handed use and have an ergonomic design. The design is more in line with traditional mice, using the classic mouse shape and without an overabundance of buttons. There’s a scroll wheel, the two standard right and left click buttons, and two thumb buttons on the side. There’s a button on the underside of the mouse that lets the user cycle through mouse profiles. The Kone Pro connects to the computer using a USB cable, and the Kone Pro Air connects wirelessly through a USB dongle. When the battery needs to be recharged, it can function as a wired mouse through its USB charging cable. The Kone Pro Air has a storage compartment for the USB dongle on the underside, which is a great feature for transporting the mouse.

Roccat uses a lot of proprietary hardware in their products and that works to the advantage of these mice. The Owl-Eye sensor tracks up to 19,000 DPI, which makes for a fast and accurate gameplay. The mice are equipped with Titan optical switches which are rated to last 100,000,000 clicks, which is about twice as long as traditional mechanical switches. The Kone Air Pro supports both Bluetooth and 2.4GHz WiFi wireless connectivity through the dongle and this is a pick your poison scenario. The WiFi route has less lag, but the Bluetooth setting consumers less power. Both mice are equipped with RGB lighting that looks nice, especially with the honeycomb design, but in all honestly how often do you actually look at your mouse while playing a game? It’s a feature that seems rather unnecessary, but at least it does look nice when the user is able to catch a glimpse of it. The Kone Pro Air is said to last 100 hours between charges if used in Bluetooth mode with the lighting disabled. Also, the quick charge system gives the player about five hours of gaming with a ten minute charge if the battery runs dry and you want to play in a hurry.

After using the mice for a couple weeks I can confidently say that the Kone Pro mice are exceptional gaming mice. They don’t have a DPI cycle function so to adjust DPI you need to hold the profile button, press the left click button and use the scroll wheel to cycle through the corresponding DPI colors. They are both straight forward, classic designed gaming mice but they excel at what they are designed to do. Both mice are extremely lightweight, though the Air felt a little heavier because of the battery but it’s still in the featherweight class. Even with the optical switch the clicks had the tactile sensation that’s familiar with mechanical switches. The Kone Air glides across the desk and responds quickly and accurately to whatever is going on in the game. They’re more expensive than something you’d find at Walmart for $15, but speaking as someone who has used wireless mice in that price point, the adage of getting what you pay for applies in this case.

To maximize the Kone Pro mice it’s recommended to use Roccat’s Swarm app for Windows. This allows users to remap the buttons and adjust the lightning and power settings. It can store up to five separate profiles, which seems to be the standard for high-end gaming mice. Both Kone Pro and Kone Pro Air are great mice, so it comes down to how much preference someone has for wireless over wired. The Kone Pro costs $79.99, and the Kone Pro Air is $129.99, which is a substantial price difference. Neither mouse performed substantially better than the other, so it’s up to consumer to decide if the wireless tax is worth it. The Kone Pro mice are available in Arctic White and Ash Black.

Closing Comments:

The Roccat Kone Pro series of gaming mice provide excellent performance when it comes to delivering accuracy and lightning fast response time. There aren’t any gimmicks or extraneous features; these are traditional mice that are optimized for gaming and excel at what they’re supposed to do. The lack of adjustable DPI buttons could be deal breakers for some as adjusting DPI midgame can be frustrating, and for fine tuning things and managing profiles, the Swarm software is almost essential. Neither the wired Kone Pro or wireless Kone Pro Air showed a distinct advantage over the other save for personal preference. But aside from those caveats, the Kone Pro series of mice are excellent. The clicks are responsive, the wheel is smooth and the mice glide across the surface. During the couple weeks when they were being tested there were no issues and the performance improvement over the cheaper mice that were being used previously was noticeable. The Kone Pro are simply great gaming mice.