XTracGear Ripper Mouse Pad Review
By Julian Duque
Full Disclosure: The product sample used in this article has been provided by XTracGear.
XTracGear (formerly XTracPads) is a company dedicated solemnly to manufacture the best mousing surfaces and accessories for gamers and professionals. Since 2002, they have brought along many successful products including their Ripper model, which has been a very strong contender among the big mouse pad market. This year XTracPads decided to refine many things including their name as well as many of their products. They have gladly sent Benchmark Reviews a sample of their new XTracGear Ripper mouse pad which we will evaluate to see if upholds to it’s predecessor.
With the introduction of the optical and laser mouse sensors we have seen a big decay in the mouse pad market as people do not generally need one because new sensors are compatible with almost all surfaces. So why do companies keep making better Mouse Pads? There are many reasons, many mainstream users use them because they have a sentimental value, but we are not here to talk about mainstream users. Us gamers and professionals who spend hours using a mouse really find a good mouse pad a need to achieve better mouse accuracy as well as for comfort.
Features & Specifications
- Size: 432 mm x 280 mm x 3.175 mm (17″ x 11″ x 1/8″)
- Surface: Polished Textile
- Base: Sure Grip enhanced rubber backing
- Edge: Laser Cut, Fray Resistant
Surface material is probably the most important feature of a mouse pad as it defines what type of user they accommodate to. For example, a user with sensitive hands will most likely enjoy a soft surface mouse, if you are more of a heavy handed person that uses low DPI settings, then you will find a hard surface mouse better. Like the XTracGear Carbonic, the Ripper is made of Polished Textile, however there is a small difference in texture that makes the Ripper a bit more soft. It feels a lot like cloth, making it really comfortable to just glide your fingers across.
On the back we find the same rubber backing that is used in other XTracGear products. We had already tested this in many possible surfaces and it does make the XTracGear Ripper practically unmovable even on glass.
Looking at the edges from the XTracGear Ripper Mouse Pad we find no overlaps and a very clean finish, the clear signs of a laser cut. We find this really important as it guarantees that the mouse pad will last longer than most components in your desktop. XTracGear has also singed and cauterized which leaves no room for stray fibers to fray.
XTracGear Ripper Mouse Pad Test & Results
Mouse pad testing is subjective, since quantified performance results cannot be obtained from a benchmark. For this reason we are only going to compare it to other mouse pads at the same price range. We will be using a Mad Catz R.A.T. 3 Optical mouse which features an Avago 3090 sensor which is compatible with all the mouse pad surfaces we will be testing. We will be giving our opinion based on which mouse pad gives the best feedback, friction, and comfort.
- XTracGear Ripper (Semi – Soft)
- Razer Goliathus 2014 (Hard)
- Corsair Vengeance MM200 (Soft)
Each person has a different experience with each mouse pad. I am a more heavy user that prefers low DPI settings and more friction for better accuracy, others might prefer a slicker surface for better movement; this means that not all mouse pads are suitable for one person.
The XTracGear Ripper mouse pad’s semi-soft texture does not feel rough to the touch, but when you actually place your mouse on it, you suddenly have sense of the friction that was not there with your fingers. Comparing it to the Razer Goliathus, the XTracGear Ripper delivers a lot less feedback but it can be argued that the Goliathus itself brings a lot more than needed and it’s actually uncomfortable for most people, thus placing the ripper in a “good section” regarding feedback. On the other hand, after using the Corsair Vengeance MM200 the pointer itself felt a lot more accurate on the XTracGear Ripper without sacrificing the feedback the Ripper brings along.
During the game-play friction is a key factor for accuracy but also for the ability to move your pointer across the screen. Too little friction and you might be slipping your mouse all over the place, and too much and you might feel like your mouse is on sand paper. The Ripper is semi-soft because it makes the mouse glide smoothly but it has a texture that also provides some opposing force, not a lot but once you use a soft mouse like the MM200 it is really noticeable.
For everyday users both the XTracGear Ripper and the Corsair Vegeance MM200 feel relatively the same, however the Ripper is a bit thicker making it easier to rest hands upon. The Razer Goliathus has a more rough texture that was not suitable for comfort, making the Ripper the primary contender in our comfort tests.
XTracGear Ripper Surface Mouse Pad Conclusion
XTracGear has done it again, bringing the Ripper to life with more enhanced features. The XTracGear is a strong contender in performance, bringing feedback and smooth traction without much compromise. Regarding it’s shape and size it is wider than most mouse pads and XTracGear’s response to this is “if your screen is wide why isn’t your mouse pad wide”? However being so big does have some disadvantages such as being too heavy and making it impossible to carry around. If you are looking for something more travel friendly we suggest you look at the XTracGear Carbonic. Available online for $13.98 (Amazon l Newegg), the Ripper delivers well, it does not rip apart it’s contenders but it does have a slight advantage over them.
+ 1/8″ Thickness for better comfort
+ Wide enough for low DPI users
+ Anti-Fray edges
+ Rubber grip prevents it from moving
+ Low-Friction surface still delivers feedback
– Too Heavy for traveling
– Not enough feedback for high DPI users