Razer Naga 2014 Review
By now many of you are familiar with the Razer Naga mouse. If not, you've been missing out in your MMO gaming. Today we'll take a look at Razer's newest iteration of the mouse, the Naga 2014.
At its core, the Naga 2014 is what made the previous Naga mice a game changer. It comes with 12 fully programmable thumb buttons which allow easy access and execution of most MMO interfaces. The 2014 now has a total of 19 customizable buttons. As they are programmable, these buttons can be put to pretty much any use in any PC game to fully customize your gameplay. With the Naga 2014 the thumb buttons are mechanical which give a nicer, more tactile feel to pressing and the depressing of the buttons. They feel good and responsive, but something I would have liked to have seen on the Naga 2014 are the small ridges that are included on some of the previous Naga mice buttons, which allow you to navigate the 12-button pad by touch.
Ergonomically the mouse is a much better fit than any of the earlier generations of Naga mice. Your hand can rest comfortably on the mouse with proper support in all the right places, allowing your hand to rest naturally without slipping. The mouse almost seems to conform to the curves of your fingers and has a matte finish which not only allows a solid grip but is also fingerprint-proof. The 12-button pad uses a much flatter form factor, making the thumb buttons slightly easier to access. Southpaws can rejoice, too, as the Naga 2014 has a left-handed version available.
Perhaps the biggest improvement of the Naga 2014 over its predecessors is the upgraded Synapse 2.0 support. Typically packaged software isn't something that one should necessarily use to decide on a hardware purchase but the improvement is a notable one. All of your configurations can now be done in-game. The Naga 2014 is the first mouse that supports the in-game configuration allowing you to make those necessary changes on the fly without having to tab out of your game. This is a huge win as, personally, I jump in and out of Ventrilo and change the push-to-talk keys, or switch between characters and games and I'm constantly reprogramming my mouse buttons. Again, though, since the in-game configuration is technically a feature of Synapse 2.0 I'm not sure this is necessarily a key point for the Naga 2014, though I imagine it may be the only mouse to support it for the time being.
Synapse 2.0 also allows the handy saving of profiles which will allow you to take your profiles with you, no matter which computer you connect with as the profiles are saved in a cloud. Further to the in-game configuration is the ability to change the icon images on screen. This feature may not be useful to everyone but it certainly can come in handy to have an at-a-glance view of which buttons are assigned to which commands, particularly useful for quickly flipping through multiple profiles. The in-game configuration supports 15 of the most popular games at launch and Razer plans to keep adding more.
Jumping back to the actual hardware, the Naga 2014 comes with a tilting mouse wheel that allows even further customization (or side scrolling). It peaks out at 8200dpi which makes it a very accurate mouse which slides easily, but not to the point of slipping out of hand, on its Zero-acoustic Ultraslick feet.
The Naga 2014, of course, looks sleek. I say "of course" as Razer has never had a problem making a sharp-looking product and the Naga 2014 continues the trend of hotness. Its pulsing green Razer logo on its black matte finish has made an aesthetically gorgeous addition to my PC desk.
The Naga 2014 is currently only shipping in a wired format. Wired mice tend to be much more reliable than wireless, however with the growth of sales of large-screen 1080p television sets, more and more PC gamers find themselves further away from their PC tower than what was once the case. For this reason alone a wireless version would be welcome, or at the very least, a dual wired/wireless version.
The Razer Naga 2014 mouse has a MSRP of $79.99 USD/EUR. The quality of the product stands to warrant the price tag -- it's a beautiful mouse, highly responsive, and just feels great, but the question comes into how big of an upgrade the Naga 2014 really is over earlier Naga models. If you don't have a Naga yet, definitely get this one. Your MMO gaming in particular will improve as you will find you no longer stare at your hotbars and can focus on the action. If you already own a Naga product, only you can decide whether or not you wish to pay $79.99 for the new in-game configuration tools and improved form factor.