At a Glance: SteelSeries Rival 710 Review

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SteelSeries’ Rival 700 gaming mouse quickly became one of the company’s most noteworthy products when it launched in 2016 thanks to its high-performance and intriguing feature set. SteelSeries is now attempting to build on the success of the Rival 700 with its new Rival 710 gaming mouse, but this new product may not have much (or anything) to offer over its predecessor.

Design

The SteelSeries Rival 710 is essentially identical to the Rival 700 right down to the OLED display on the mouse’s side. This unique feature is one of the product’s highlights and helps make this mouse stand out against its competitors. The small OLED panel can display any image you would like, which gives it a special customized feeling.

I own and regularly use a SteelSeries Sensei mouse that also has a small built-in display, and I can say that I love these small screens. As a major tech enthusiast and hardware reviewer, I have numerous other mice that I could use, but having a peripheral with a display that shows your initials above an ASCII art sword is such a cool feature that I have continued to use it for many years.

Another key feature of the Rival 710 is that it can be disassembled and several of its parts replaced with alternative components. Notably optional components that can be purchased separately from SteelSeries include a more powerful optical sensor as well as alternative exterior casing.

The only significant difference between the Rival 700 and Rival 710 is the optical sensor, which was switched from a Pixart PMW 3360 in the Rival 700 to one of SteelSeries’ proprietary TrueMove3 sensors in the Rival 710. This arguably makes the Rival 710 the better mouse as this sensor is reportedly more accurate than the Pixart PMW3360, but the TrueMove3 also has a lower 12,000CPI rating compared with the Pixart’s 16,000DPI. (Steelseries prefers “counts per inch,” or CPI, over the usual “dots per inch,” or DPI.) The Rival 710 is able to operate at 16,000CPI using software to extrapolate the difference, but, according to Mike Epstein from PCMag, the mouse becomes noticeably less accurate when operating above 12,000CPI.

Conclusion

This creates a rather strange situation in which a succeeding product fails to completely surpass its predecessor. In his PCMag review, Mike noted that the Rival 710 did appear to be exceedingly accurate, but if you want to run with the DPI/CPI cranked over 12,000 then realistically the older Rival 700 would likely be a better solution due to its higher DPI rating. Unfortunately, SteelSeries opted to discontinue production of the Rival 700 and I couldn’t find it available anywhere online, but many competing products such as Gigabyte’s Aorus M5 and Corsair’s Ironclaw RGB Wireless feature DPI ratings of 16,000 or above and these are available at slightly lower price points than the Rival 710.

That is not to say that these competing products are necessarily superior to the Rival 710, but simply that they offer strong competition against the Rival 710 and its 12,000CPI sensor. Taking all of this information together and after considering its features, however, I’d still recommend the Rival 710. You can pick one up now from Amazon reduced from its MSRP of $ 99.99 to $ 79.99.

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