[section_title title=”Real World Performance”]Real World Performance
As usual for mice, I will split the real world performance side of things into the three sections which I feel deserve an equal and thorough mention.
From a design point of view the Gladius is an ergonomic right handed mouse, with a low profile that feels more geared to a claw grip than anything else, though ASUS do claim it can be used in multiple grip types. Whilst trying to use the mouse in a palm grip I found it was nearly OK but the slim profile meant my little finger was dragging on the mouse mat, which instantly makes it such an unpleasant experience. Those with small to medium hands might have more success though.
It was indeed in a claw grip that the mouse felt most at home and I found it to be quite well sorted with the concave style M1/M2 buttons supporting my fingers nicely, aided by the curve in the right hand side grip. In this position the thumb buttons were easy to press thanks to their long and slim profile and the scroll wheel is nicely recessed into the body so as not to be too much of a strain to scroll in a claw grip.
If I had to make one complaint it would be that I didn’t find the textured grips to be amazingly grippy, not slippery by any means but it is surprising how smooth they are given the fact they are rubberised, I think the rubber needs to be a bit of a softer compound or the ridges in the textured need to be taller.
Another small nag would be that I would say the mouse could do with losing a little bit of weight, it’s not heavy to the point of being a major issue but for a claw grip mouse it could certainly benefit from a bit of shaved weight.
Overall though claw grip users should be happy with the mouse, it’s pretty well sorted ergonomically though I would say palm grippers with large hands should look elsewhere.
When it comes to buttons and of course switches for a mouse in this price point I expect good switches in the mouse buttons, nice clicky switches in all the ancillary buttons and also a good feeling scroll wheel.
The Gladius has all of these so a big thumbs up there, the longer travel D2F Omron switches are definitely nice for FPS games and the fact you can replace them is even better!
The scroll wheel is spot on too with a nice amount of resistance and just the right amount of notches. I can’t say the Gladius is anything other than spot on when it comes to buttons and switches.
So what a lot of people want to know is how does the S3988 stack up with the A3310 in Avago’s (Pixart’s) optical stable? Well in my testing I wouldn’t say there was an awful lot in it in fairness, I didn’t have the typical feeling of ‘I want my 3310 back’ as soon as I plugged it in which is more than can be said for any other mouse I’ve tested recently without a 3310!
The only major difference I noticed is that the lift off distance seems to be higher than all of the mice I’ve tested that have a 3310 so if like me you are particularly sensitive to lift of heights that could definitely be a factor. That could be down to implementation though so until I’ve tried a few mice with S3988s I can’t pass full judgement there.
Ultimately I’d say if you want an optical sensor but also (for some reason) need a high ish DPI the S3988 is a good option with nice tracking and no acceleration, but thanks to the higher lift off height it hasn’t dethroned the 3310 for me today.