Mouse mats are one of the things many people overlook when using a PC. Whether it might be that mental image of the old tatty one from work with the damp wrist rest, or just being happy with using your desk and not seeing the point in investing in a decent one. It’s not hard to see why some people just don’t bother.
Many mouse mat makers have often used the ‘game performance enhancer’, or the desk ornament route to try sell them.
Well today we take a look at one that takes both of these selling points, and tries to take it to the next level. The Corsair MM800 RGB Polaris.
Keep in mind, these Specs are for the hard surface version, and not the cloth version.
- Width: 354mm
- Height: 283mm
- Depth: 5mm
- Material: Plastic
- Optimized For: Speed & Control
- 8m Braided Cable
- PC with a free USB 2.0/3.0 port
- Windows® 7, Windows® 8, Windows® 10
- An internet connection is required to download the Corsair Utility Engine (CUE) Software
- NOTE: USB devices connected through the USB.2.0 pass-through that require high power may not be supported. Please contact Corsair.com/support for further details.
So looking at the front of the box to start off with we get the Corsair sails logo, glad to see that return. A nice image of the mouse mat, with the Corsair Scimitar Pro mouse also being modelled. We also have information about the built in USB pass-though (nice touch), PWM lighting, 15 zones of customisation lighting, and lastly low friction textured surface – since this was the last thing on the list, I think we can see what corsair is pushing here.
Around the sides is mostly the same, so skipping to the back of the box we again of the mouse mat, and here we get the first mention of the non-slip rubber base, as well as the 1.8m braided cable. There is also a bit more detail specs wise and also a mention of Cue Software required to customise the lighting, as well as it linking up with other Corsair RBG products.
Inside the box we get the Corsair MM800 RGB Polaris mouse mat, User Guide, and a Warranty Guide which includes 2 years manufacturer’s warranty. Nice.
Pulling the mouse mat out of the box and we get a first touch of the textured surface. It is a very fine texture and in all honesty, I don’t like the feel of it. Sliding a hand over it just gives you a tickling sensation, which sends a shiver down my spine.
I should now point out that most hard surface mouse mats give me this shudder, which is personally why I prefer cloth mouse mats. That being said, actually using a mouse on the Corsair MM800, instead of sat strangely caressing it, I do feel that I have more control. Just a shame about the tickle.
Looking on the back and we get to see that non-slip rubber, that should keep your mouse mat solid in place.
And Lastly looking at the USB Pass-though we also see again that braided cable. Sadly, not removable, but being braided and not something that will get much abuse, it should last a long time.
Also, if you’re one of the many who hate the RGB craze, this is where your set up stops. Well done on your new mouse mat I guess.
Now showing off the Corsair MM800 RGB Polaris lighting in a written review is something that’s a little tricky without filling this whole page with just images of the lighting. So, I would suggest you check out our video review below, (Link Here)
But it does have 15 zones spread around the outside that can be configured in millions of ways, and not to mention different effects and custom profiles you can make. Which is all done in the Cue2 Software. Speaking of which…
Here we have the corsair software and the landing page where it shows you all the Corsair RGB Peripherals you have plugged in. As you see here, we have my own K65 and M65, along with our MM800.
I’m going to be brief with the software and stick to the MM800 features and try not roll in to other peripherals. After all, we have talked about this software a few times in previous reviews.
Clicking on the MM800 brings us to its own page, with a nice animated live view of the mouse mat. This is where you can edit its lighting profiles. Unlike other Corsair peripherals, this is all you can do with the MM800.
Clicking on default on the left-hand side brings down your saved lighting profiles. Where you can also import and export lighting designs, as well as copy, create new ones etc.
Clicking on Lighting Effects brings down the area where you edit the lighting. In normal mode you limited to premade lighting which you select from the drop down. If you’re wanting to link the lighting to other Corsair RGB peripherals, then select Lighting Link, and this will match up the lighting across all your RGB peripherals.
Advance is a whole other world however. This is where you can really customise your lighting effects. I won’t be going in to details here as it does go very deep, and half the fun is also linking it with other peripherals as well.
If you would be interested in a more detailed run though of the software, please leave a comment and I’ll get too it!
Performance & Testing
My day to day use on the MM800 mostly consisted of editing videos and general web browsing, other than my personal dislike for the feeling of the texture. After using the MM800 for around 2 weeks however, I’m slowly getting used to it.
I still very much stuck with PUBG at the moment, with my usual odd games of CS:GO, and League of Legend.
CS:GO was by far the most demanding for the quality of the surface on the MM800, myself trying my very best to pull of flick shots (to no avail). However since the surface is hard, rather than my usual cloth, it does help with moving the mouse quickly, and keeping the accuracy.
I must say that I have seen a slight increase in my mouse reactions. I’m mainly putting this down to the hard surface and the way to mouse slides over it, rather than the more grippy feel of my original cloth mouse mat.
Tracking on the mouse mat is great, the M65’s sensor tracks well, with no obvious skips that I ever noticed.
Obviously, the main part of the design is the RGB lighting around the outside, but Corsair didn’t forget about making the rest of the mouse mat look and feel good, little details like the glossy plastic at the top, just to make it pop a bit more.
However, how effective really is the RGB lighting? Obviously, it doesn’t add anything to the game or user experience. Other than making your desk shine a bit more. The lighting is bright, but I feel like there was still a missed opportunity here. The RGB is only on the edges of the mat, and I would have liked to see Corsair be a bit braver with the design. Maybe have cut-outs where the RGB shines through more.
Don’t get me wrong, I like how it looks, and I like how it works, but it could have been more, and to anyone saying, “That would be over the top,”… Well, it’s a RGB Mouse Mat, how more over the top could you really be?
At the time of writing, the Corsair MM800 RGB Polaris is going for around £50.00, which compared to some other large brands that make RGB mouse mats, it is a bit cheaper. With the likes of the Razer Firefly around £58.00, and the SteelSeries QcK Prism around £65.00.
However, to most people, this is a very expensive gimmick that won’t bring enough to the table to justify it. Yes, it’s a fantastic surface, but the RGB is not for everyone.
It has been fun playing with the MM800, and it is a great mouse mat. But looking at it as lighting effects for your desk. It just needs more flare to stand out from the rest.
It works great with other Corsair devices, and if you have a full desk of the Corsair Keyboard, mouse, headset, and the recently revealed headphone stand, this mouse mat will be a good addition if you have the rest.
I have awarded the Corsair MM800 RGB Polaris our Silver Award for it’s all-round performance and relative value. Thanks Corsair for sending it in for review.