TteSPORTS Talon X Gaming Gear Combo Review

Cheap gaming peripheral bundles, for the most part, are very risky purchases since either one product is terrible and the other is alright or they’re both quite terrible. TteSPORTS thinks they’ve changed that with their Talon X Gaming Gear Combo, featuring a mouse and a mousepad for gamers on an extremely strict budget. At €30, it has a lot to prove and expectations are low. Perhaps a pleasant surprise awaits us. Again, before we continue with the review, I’d like to emphasise on the term “low expectations”. Moving forward, the packaging is the first point of discussion. Utilising a smart flap and a window, both products are visible and even available to touch and feel. There is a plastic mould to grip the mouse. Both products have their specifications spread evenly across the red and black package. To free the peripherals, a top flap needs to be lifted and the two will easily fall out . Included is a quick-start guide for the mouse and a warranty document which should cover the whole bundle. Overall, the unboxing experience is impressive and the architecture is unique allowing consumers to really establish a confidence in what they’re buying. The box seems sturdy enough to withstand hits and bumps possible during transportation. As we dive into the two products, please note that we’ll try to keep it short for both peripherals. Starting with the mousepad, the “Dasher Mini”, this is the smallest size available of the well-known Dasher mousepads from TteSPORTS. These products are used in top-tier competition, so the little brother had something to prove and we can confirm that it does so excitingly.  Sporting a cloth weave across the surface, it’s a smooth cloth experience which should be felt by high-end mice. Encompassed by a gentle braid, the mat wears the dragon logo in pride along with its product name and branding at the bottom in a subtle manner. Mapping an area of 250 by 210 by 2mm, it will surely stay in place thanks to a non-slip polyurethane base. Overall, it’s a fantastic surface at the smallest of sizes which will surely compliment the gaming mouse that accompanies it along with any other high-performance mouse. This corresponds to superb portability. Obviously, the lack of area is not ideal for low-dpi gaming.  Just like that, the Dasher Mini holds up the pride name which many professionals refer to. With a little more to talk about, the Talon X Gaming Mouse makes up the rest of the deal which so far, looks quite promising. Speaking of looks, the product certainly has a unique look to it as shown in the images. With an ambidextrous design, the symmetrical mouse rocks a wide and short profile. My favourite part of the aesthetic is definitely the scroll wheel with everything hanging out. No colours except a matte black appear on the product, that is until you plug it in. Suddenly, the Ttesports Dragon shines and a chunk of light separates the face and the side areas along with the dpi toggle button. The RGB lighting is exceptional on this device, for the price. Using the quick guide, it’s quickly understood how to toggle the dpi between 400/800/1600 and 3200 dpi along with some effects for the lighting limited to spectrum cycling and static. Simple but executed well, the lights are a welcome addition. The only minor problem is that the red optical sensor light is visible at some angles through the translucent areas. Speaking of the sensor, performance is our next topic for the Talon X. The PIXART AVAGO 3050 optical sensor does a great job at tracking moderately precise movement at average speeds. Very high speeds and slow speeds is where you’ll find it struggle to keep up. Anywhow, it’s a great companion to the other features. These include OMRON switches rated at 10,000,000 clicks along with a sizeable weight of 140g. For serious gamers, this is a little on the hefty side, but the grip does make up for it. Ergonomics are better than you’d expect, thanks to defined finger grooves, well-defined rubber areas with the only obstacle at times being the line down the middle. Materials used include hard plastic and a rubbery scroll wheel.  Palming is recommended while clawing may be a struggle.  Back to the texturized area, only two side buttons on the right side are available, sadly for the left-handed. These cannot be programmed through software but only through in-game assignment. As for the scroll wheel, it's rubbery, grooved and has a pleasant feel. Performance is pretty much amazing for the price point.  Other details of the mouse include a 1.8m braided cable, non-gold plated connection and dimensions of 122 by 71.25 by 42.25 mm. Nowhere on the manual or product page was an ultrapolling rate shown, if there is any. One other noticeable detail which requires attention is the footing. This is provided by four “rubbery” feet which feel more like plastic which give a passable glide but quite subpar when compared to that of the Razer DeathAdder Chroma for example, which we reviewed here. So, what’s it like to use the two included products together? Well, I’m delighted to admit that it’s a great budget setup. For average use, the small mat and mouse combo are perfect for certain FPS and MOBA; anything that doesn’t require low dpi movement. Separating the two products is possible, perhaps giving the mouse more breathing room and pairing the mat with a laptop due to its portability. To conclude, stating that you’re getting a “bang for your buck” is a slight understatement. For €30, one gets an impressive mousemat along with an equally delightful mouse which pairs RGB lighting to decent functionality. If you’re on a tight budget, or you’d love to save money to build your low-tier setup, than this bundle is a must-buy. Right now, it’s available at the Gamers Lounge for the €30; hurry while stock lasts!

Ozone Strike Battle Spectra Gaming Keyboard Review

Ozone’s initial attempt at creating the best tenkeyless gaming experience through the Strike Battle was excellent. From its physical durability and minimalistic look to its simple and fast software, it’s definitely a favourite for However, Ozone thinks they’ve managed to further improve their great product through the Strike Battle Spectra for an increased price tag. Is it worth the investment? First of all, we recommend that you familiarise yourself with the original product here, since we reviewed it a while back and it’s safe to say that the names are similar for a reason. With the addition of “Spectra”, Ozone Gaming has added RGB effects to the product as they’ve countless times for their products – and we’re not complaining. Apart from that, not much else is different, but we’ll still break it down for you. Starting from the unboxing experience, Ozone has managed to take it to the next level. Now rocking a “box-in-a-box” packaging, it gives the product an appreciated premium feel. Styrofoam on the keyboard along with a quick-guide, manual and warranty information is nostalgic of the original. An improved packaging shows that Ozone has re-thought everything, while maintaining the same package dimensions. Also, the design on the outside of the box feels more professional, using less information without hiding any of the important specifications. Releasing it from its packaging, the identical weight of 685g and volume of 34 by 350 by 123mm is kept to the delight of consumers. Until now, it’s practically the same product, with the familiar aluminium plate and brushed plastic keys. On further inspection, there are a few differences. First off all, the function row keys have been modified; trading the previous functionality with a new one. This is an understandable change as before, having a polling rate and delay time toggle was neat but not exactly functional. Therefore, Ozone has redecorated with its modern design, having white highlights, which we’ve also seen on the Strike Pro Spectra which we reviewed here: What the functions do exactly is what we’ll leave for later. This change in function aesthetic also moves to the 6 key patch and the arrow keys. Another physical difference is the fact that there is a transparent casing on each key, which as you could guess accentuates the RGB festival which awaits us. Yet, before that, a pleasant surprise awaits us down under. It’s great to see that Ozone has added internal cable routing towards the same direction. The 1.5 m braided cable couldn’t be happier, as it also maintains its gold connection. The rubber feet at the bottom also take a deep breath as the packaging now includes 4 spare rubber feet. Overall, I’m glad that it retains the same black and sleek look, though now the type of switch you use will be visible through the casing whether its MX Cherry Red, Black, Brown or Blue. On a side note, it’s great to see that the type of key is labelled correctly, since last time it said MX Cherry Red when it was Brown. Moving on to gaming features, the 64kb of onboard is ready to take on more settings. Full anti-ghosting is enjoyed on all keys along with a Gaming Mode as like before. Honestly, that’s is when it comes to adjusting performance as Ozone has denied access to polling rates and delay time which is fine by me.  So without further delay, let’s dive right into the software. As with many other aspects of the product, it’s improved. Greater spacing avoids the cramped feeling which when gets from the previous iteration and helps make it look friendlier. The “Customize Layout” page replaces “Main Control without trading its function. Keys may be reassigned here to shortcuts, application, macros and whatever else you can think of. Then there’s “Macro Lab” which in turn takes a different approach to the “Macro Settings”. Creating them remains an easy enough process once you get the hang of it, this time distinguishing between keypress and text macros for ease of use-30 of which may be made over the 5 profiles.  And yes, we did deliberately skip the “Lighting FX” page because we’ve got a whole paragraph dedicated to it below. Before we get down into the lights, however, we must first describe the colours themselves. Excellent is the only word that can describe the brightness, vibrancy and accuracy of the colours with an especially pretty white backlight. The transparent casing was a fantastic choice by Ozone as it embraces the new upgrades phenomenally as it shines over the aluminium faceplate. Lock functions glow white when used and enabling Game mode turns the button red. Now after that’s been discussed, onto the features we go.  With a list consisting of Static, Breathe, Wave, Ripple and Reactive, it has it all except for a Spectrum Cycling function which is available only through using the shortcuts on the keyboard. Speaking of the functions, they play a heavy roll when it comes to RGB effects.  All effects are adjustable through speed and brightness and that’s it. The software isn’t cohesive and doesn’t compile all the possible effects. For example, the Wave effect can be done right to left or diagonally or as a spiral through the keyboard only. There are a lot more exclusive effects which will take some playing around with the newly added white function keys. This doesn’t exactly take anything away from the product since all the effects are still there, but it would be appreciated if all the possibilities were compiled together- this can be added through a software update. Also, three preset colour spaces are available for whatever game type you happen to be playing which are extremely easy to adjust. For features on this bad boy, we recommend a thorough read through the quick start manual to esnure you dont miss out on the potential fun. That's probably the only negative to the newly added RGB effects.  So, is the €20 increase from €90 worth it? The Ozone Strike Pro Spectra is a prime example of how Ozone has matured over time and we’ve had the exciting opportunity of comparing it with its predecessor. Again you ask, but is it worth it? If we can put it this way, Ozone’s new updated product is so incredible that buying the previous iteration for just a little less makes no sense unless one has an incredible fetish for black and red. The Ozone Strike Pro Spectra is one hell of a product for a reasonable €110. If had one of those “Choice Awards”, it would go right here. Like what you see? Get yours now while stocks last: 

FIFA18 Top 100 Player Ratings

With FIFA 18's release date drawing closer and closer everyday, EA revealed how will the players be reated along with the top 100 list.  Check out the complete FIFA 18 player ratings for the top 100 players. Rank Player Rating 1 Cristiano Ronaldo 94 2 Lionel Messi 93 3 Neymar 92 4 Luis Suárez 92 5 Manuel Neuer 92 6 Robert Lewandowski 91 7 Sergio Ramos 90 8 Eden Hazard 90 9 Toni Kroos 90 10 Gonzalo Higuaín 90 11 David De Gea 89 12 Luka Modrić 89 13 Gianluigi Buffon 89 14 Alexis Sánchez 89 15 Kevin De Bryune 89 16 Giorgio Chiellini 89 17 Gareth Bale 89 18 Sergio Agüero 89 19 Thibaut Courtois 89 20 Antoine Griezmann 89 21 Paulo Dybala 88 22 Thiago 88 23 Leonardo Bonucci 88 24 Arjen Robben 88 25 Thiago Silva 88 26 Mats Hummels 88 27 Diego Godín 88 28 Hugo Lloris 88 29 Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang 88 30 Zlatan Ibrahimović 88 31 Jan Oblak 88 32 Mesut Özil 88 33 Jérôme Boateng 88 34 Marco Verratti 87 35 N’Golo Kanté 87 36 Paul Pogba 87 37 Edinson Cavani 87 38 Marcelo 87 39 Arturo Vidal 87 40 Christian Eriksen 87 41 Marek Hamšik 87 42 Gerard Piqué 87 43 David Silva 87 44 Ivan Rakitić 87 45 Andres Iniesta 87 46 Samir Handanovič 87 47 Thomas Müller 86 48 Romelu Lukaku 86 49 Dries Mertens 86 50 Radja Nainggolan 86 51 Phillipe Countinho 86 52 Alex Sandro 86 53 Harry Kane 86 54 Isco 86 55 Cesc Fàbregas 86 56 Karim Benzema 86 57 Toby Alderweireld 86 58 James Rodríguez 86 59 Sergio Busquets 86 60 David Luiz 86 61 Franck Ribery 86 62 Sokratis 86 63 Diego Costa 86 64 Marco Reus 86 65 Javi Martínez 86 66 Peter Čech 86 67 David Alaba 86 68 Pepe 86 69 Miranda 86 70 Alexandre Lacazette 85 71 Casemiro 85 72 Blaise Matuidi 85 73 Keylor Navas 85 74 Jordi Alba 85 75 Miralem Pjanić 85 76 César Azpilicueta 85 77 Lorenzo Insigne 85 78 Filipe Luís 85 79 Ángel Di María 85 80 Jan Vertonghen 85 81 Marc-André ter Stegen 85 82 Yannick Carrasco 85 83 Henrikh Mkhitaryan 85 84 Vincent Kompany 85 85 Andrea Barzagli 85 86 Kamil Glik 83 87 Raphaël Varane 85 88 Danijel Subašić 85 89 Ilkay Gündoğan 85 90 Stéphane Ruffier 85 91 Claudio Marchisio 85 92 Bernd Leno 85 92 Mauro Icardi 84 94 Dele Alli 84 95 Falcao 84 96 Marco Asensio 84 97 Dani Alves 84 98 Sadio Mané 84 99 Sami Khedira 84 100 Bernardo Silva 84 Some may argue that the number 1 and 2 spots should be reversed but oh well, it's up for you to discuss! FIFA 18 will be available this September 29 for the PS4, PS3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, Nintendo Switch and PC.

Razer DeathAdder Chroma Mouse Review

When one thinks of a mouse reputable for its performance and quality, the term “DeathAdder” quickly joins the conversation. Razer has produced multiple iterations following the original DeathAdder from 2013. Their first attempt at improvement was the DeathAdder Chroma, just a year later, and looks to keep what was great while adding some minor upgrades. After three years, has the DeathAdder Chroma died out, or is it still the best gaming mouse in the world as some may say? Keep the age in mind as we progress through this review. Moving forward, let’s begin from the start; the unboxing experience. As expected, Razer green and black reigns supreme on the outside, alongside a white font which states all the specifications. On the side of the box are also some quoted thoughts on the product from pros; we’ll mention one of them at the end of the review.  Lifting the flap reveals the green plastic which gives way to what you’ve bought with a tug. The unboxing experience isn’t as premium as we’re used to from today’s Razer, yet remains adequate. In the package is a product information guide and two slips of documentation with thanks from the company alongside, of course, the Razer DeathAdder Chroma itself. It’s ready to prove itself on the mousepad. However, we’re first going to take a little peek around the product. Face up, we can see that it’s rocking a plain aesthetic mainly due to the lack of a dpi toggle which we’ve grown familiar with today. Needless to say, the three snakes sit at the palm waiting to be filled in with RGB colour. To the left are a couple of programmable buttons above a rubberised grip. Flipping the mouse over reveals three small TEFL feet with the sensor centrally placed. From the looks of it, the Razer DeathAdder Chroma isn’t experimenting too much, keeping a familiar look with no surprises. Playing it safe could pay off. So, let’s find out how it feels in the hand. User experience is a tremendous strongpoint on this mouse, that is, if you’re right handed. Firstly, the aggressively hard plastic compound on the face does an excellent job at repelling finger oils while improving grip. Speaking of grip, the rubberised section underneath the programmable buttons is perfectly texturised to support you at all times. Also, well defined grooves on the main switches reward the user with a great ergonomic experience.  This mouse is built for those long high-paced gaming sessions for whatever game. Sweeping across a mousepad, whether it’s hard or cloth, is an elegant dance across the ice as the TEFL feet get the job done. The effortless movement is thanks to the cable too, its immense quality braid prevents it from brushing surfaces too much and it’s 2 m long. This leads to the point that it recovers well from the fatigue brought about from packaging. Perhaps the only drawback to the user experience is that the materials could be improved a tad, but that’s nitpicking at its finest. Such an experience is derivative from the performance, which is our next point of discussion. If you’re looking at this review, it’s probable that you’re in search of a peripheral to satisfy competitive needs. Allow me to go through the specifications which will surely quench your thirst. The most important feature, the powerful sensor, is a 10,000 dpi 4G sensor which is capable of registering movements of up to 300 inches per second at 50G acceleration. Everything is sent to the connection at a staple 1000Hz. Flick shots will be nicely facilitated. Moving on to buttons, Razer’s “hyper response” buttons are practically hair-triggers-actuating thought seamlessly. The company has improved on the original’s overly sensitive actuation forces, perfect for MOBAs. Side-buttons are just as fine, needing a tad more pressure to carry out the programmed action. By the way, every single button is available for adjustment of function. Another feature which professionals will especially love, is the weight of the product. At 105g, it strikes a lovely balance between a flimsy feel and clunky movement to provide a super experience. Apart from the mentioned, the scroll wheel is average, rumbling when the rubber grooves are pushed against the moderate resistance.   Those interested in the mouse are advised that the product’s architecture favours larger hands, while having preference for a palm and fingertips style. Continuing to the software, here is where further features may be toggled, such as the RGB lights. Downloadable through Razer Synapse, the software allows one to create as many profiles as needed since everything is saved on the cloud. In these profiles, acceleration, dpi, lighting, surface calibaration and macros may be created. Sadly, this was done since there is no internal storage. To note, dpi may only be set in 100s. Lighting effects on the DeathAdder “Chroma” is rather limited, having only spectrum cycling and static for both areas of the mouse being the palm and scroll wheel. Strangely enough, a breathing effect is also available, but only for the palm area. Colours are great and standard to Razer Chroma. Onto macros, setting one up is self-explanatory and quite simple. After you’re done creating one, it may be assigned at the “customize” page to a desired button. Something created for enthusiasts, Razer has created a “STATS” AND “HEATMAPS” page which show off what you’d expect- clicks, distance, movement patterns, wheel rotations and that sort of thing. The ordinary consumer won’t exactly care too much about it, but it’s there for whoever wants it. All the statistics can be shared too. The Razer DeathAdder Chroma is definitely an upgrade from the original title holder of “the world’s greatest mouse”. The product does a fine job of upholding the title, even now, after three years of opposition. Yet, some modern features such as dpi profiles and toggles haven’t made their way onto the machine. At a price of €80, the performance, build quality and aged features succeed at creating quite the persuasive purchase. If you fancy a professional opinion, here’s what Yiliang “Doublelift” Peng of CLG (at the time) had to say: “The rubber side-grips coupled with the Razer DeathAdder’s comfortable shape allow me to make precision movements with ease so I can focus on the game as a whole. If you’re playing League of Legends at the highest level you need a mouse that does the work for you.” Check out the link to learn more:    

Zowie EC2-A Gaming Mouse Review

Are you sick of the RGB craze and perhaps childish look of modern day peripherals? Is it just pure performance and ergonomics which you prioritise? In that case, familiarise yourself with Benq’s Zowie line of mice which are especially for professional gamers who don’t care for more flashy options.  Today we’ll be reviewing one of their mice, the EC2-A worth €65, to see if it’s worth the price. Even from the packaging, you can feel a sense of solemnity. The empty box maintains a black and red colour scheme with essentially, just the product name on the package. However, this may be quite a downfall because I doubt anyone’s going to purchase this product straight off the shelf, since not a single specification is shown on the outside regarding the mouse. Unboxing is a nothing too premium although the package is notable sturdy, but the smell of premium materials is so satisfying upon opening it. Included in the box is an extra set of replacement feet, a branded sticker and warranty information.  At the bottom is an intense black and white “Competitive Gaming Mouse User Guide” which is basically a set of instructions in a multitude of languages on how to toggle dpi and polling rate. Perhaps the most surprising thing one can see straight out of the box, is the rubber cable connection. We’ve become so accustomed to seeing a braid on most gaming mice that it’s quite refreshing. At 2 metres long, it’s very flexible and will not get in the way of movements. Needless to say, the USB is gold-plated. Continuing with the appearance of the mouse, this could be considered an uglier design than usual. It’s not because of the extremely plain and subtle design, but because the white translucent scroll wheel feels out of place; compared to the black finish and red Zowie logo. To the left face are a couple side buttons. There are no rubberised areas on the sides- it seems that Zowie has immense faith in the materials that they’ve used. Flipping the mouse over reveals a feature which should be elsewhere, namely the dpi toggle. Placed to the side, it’s located in between two large rubbery feet. Something that the brand has overlooked when emphasising on professionalism is that placement for the dpi toggle which is essential for some competitors. Maybe there wasn’t enough space due to the fantastically designed architecture which leads to a top-notch ergonomic experience. For €65, the EC2-A is a more expensive mouse, which Zowie validates in their use of materials which go hand in hand with the user experience. When it comes to fingering, the medium sized mouse has been especially engineered to cater to all three easily, thanks to the dimensions of 61 by 120 by 40mm. Back to the materials, it’s debatable whether they were the best choice. Offering a delightfully soft touch due to its chemistry of rubber and plastic, it’s excitingly comfortable to hold. This may die down slightly after one realises that there isn’t much friction compared to other high end mice. Also, the materials attract finger oils and sweat immensely, so playing at room temperature or above will probably result in a little mess.  If they could have added texturised areas for at least the thumb area, it would make up for this downfall considerably. With amazing ergonomics but not the best materials for long sessions, let’s dive into the performance. Due to the heavy emphasis on professionalism, this is surely the highlight of the product. Rocking an optical sensor, whose exact name we cannot specify, it provides an excellent tracking experience at the high and low speeds. This mouse is definitely favoured for FPS gameplay, helping you never miss a shot. The primary buttons on the mouse are powered by OMRON, having moderate to low resistance and a reliable click every time. Very usable for MOBAs. Unfortunately, no information is given on the click lifespan either. Moving on to the other buttons, the side ones are not as crisp as the primary ones. These sink into their mould irregularly and caution should be taken when pressing them to not do so too hard because it’s likely that the button will become jammed. Then there’s the sensor’s compliment in the rubbery TEFL feet. Two large areas at the front and back make for a smooth experience like no other.  The scroll wheel on the EC2-A is extremely tactile and requires more force than usual. Speaking of the scroll wheel, the translucent material lights up in four different colours to signify the dpi setting. We’ll discuss this further below. Features are purely performance related on this product, lacking any RGB novelty as the lights are used solely as being the only way to display the dpi. The four settings and their corresponding colours are in this order; 400/red, 800/pink, 1600/blue, 3200/green. Colours are bright and well-defined, but don’t make up for the inconvenience of having to turn over the mouse. The only other thing available for toggle is the polling rate, which may only be done as you are plugging it into the computer. Holding button 5 or 4 or both while connecting will give the mouse a certain polling rate, either 125,500 or 1000Hz. Functionality in a mouse is definitely the most important aspect of the peripheral. To see that Benq’s brand Zowie prioritise functionality and performance over anything else is very refreshing and a gift to the market. The EC2-A is one of these mice, high-performing, superbly ergonomic and functional for the price of €65. Not the prettiest mouse, but one can rely on it heavily to get the job done. Get yours now from The Gamers Lounge ;  

The Malta Cyber Series#3 - Back to Basics - Recap

The third edition of the Malta Cyber Series was assigned a specific theme - a nostalgic one. Not only did it see the return of the classic FPS game, Call of Duty 2, but it also brought with it tons of old school gamers. Entitled The Malta Cyber Series #3 - Back to Basics, the event also held a League of Legends tournament. With over 120 participants brought together for one purpose - a weekend of fun, laughter and competition! Hosted at the Luzzu Conference Hall at Seashells Resort, all participating teams were given a schedule to follow, having games to play with different opponents at different times of the days. Through teamwork, will and determination, different teams climbed to the top until they were to play the final game that would decide the winner of the event. With Paradigm6 earning first place in The Call of Duty 2 Gold Tournament after their tough grand final against their rivals dOUBTFUL with a score of 3:2. The Call of Duty 2 Silver Tournament was won by Team Xploze who overcame Xynoptic in the grand final. EVH held on to their streak and title once again after winning against Raving Raptors in The KFC League of Legends Tournament. On Saturday we saw Christian Spiteri winning yet another FIFA tournament after beating Gianluca Sant and racking up an impressive total of 9 tournament wins to date! All winners and runner-ups were given great prizes for their effort and show of skill. Once again, this event portrayed the ampful talent of the local players within the esports scenario. Judging from the positive behaviour of all the participants as well as the staff during the event (with some of the latter also having the opportunity to participate once again in the Call of Duty 2 tournament), as well as the constructive and optimistic feedback right after, the event was an incredible success. Not only could participants start the day with a delicious breakfast offered at the same location, but also enjoy an impressive BBQ on Saturday night. All this made the event special and one to remember, while also leaving all the participants eager and excited for the next one!  A full list of standings can be found here:

Ozone Strike X30 Keyboard Review

If you’re looking for a mechanical keyboard under €100, Ozone gives you two choices in either the Tenkeyless Strike Battle which we reviewed here or the full-sized X30 which we’re to discuss now.  Sporting the nickname of “the unbeatable one”, is the Ozone X30’s performance actually unbeatable at this price point? Time to find out. Things don’t start out too well when it comes to packaging and unboxing. The box is very much sturdy and inside hides another box which holds the keyboard, a technique used to let the consumer feel the premium of it all. Packaged with a styrofoam cover as are all Ozone keyboards, the only other thing that’s included is the manual- quite a bare package. However, there is a little something hidden on the product. Yet, you may be asking if I forgot about my comment regarding “not starting too well”-I haven’t. It does so due to the way it labels its switch at the front flap; a sticker ticks either mechanical red/blue or brown switch. Many customers could fall for the assumption that Cherry MX keys await them, only to find out that the switches are Kailh type. The ambiguity of “mechanical switch” isn’t appreciated and Ozone really should specify. Hopefully this minor gripe when it comes to labelling can be easily overshadowed by the performance. Before performing, the Ozone X30 bravely experiments with the aesthetics. The first thing one notices is the width-wise bar of brushed steel. It’s not trying to act as a wrist rest as Ozone never specifies that it does, but it does give off a fresh tone of formality. Identical materials are then used above the number pad, etching the ozone name and logo beside the lock switch signals. Such a brushed metallic look isn’t exactly popular among gaming keyboards, these highlights definitely stand out. Then there’s the rest of the keyboard. Rocking the usual font, Ozone places its keys like any other keyboard but switches it up when it comes to the function keys and the “Ozone” button as we’ll discuss later on. Above the scroll lock area is a confusing design which serves no purpose except to reveal some glossy plastic, reducing the symmetry of it all. As we turn the keyboard over, all 1.3kg of it, more surprises await us below. When kept flat, two rubber feet and a couple plastic feet try to fix the keyboard in place. It’s not that much of a worry due to the design flaw being that the keyboard is tilting away from the user if no legs are used; the keyboard is quite ergonomically challenging if the standing legs aren't used.  There are two sets of legs on this keyboard, a first for me as a reviewer, which make the keyboard flat or as expected, raise the keys further.  All legs have rubber feet to accompany those at the front. Perhaps more interesting is what Ozone hides in between the legs- an integrated key puller. A nuisance to pull out, it sits tightly and does its job well whenever you need it to. One last thing to point out on the back is the design; although rather futile since it’s out of sight, it’s great to see Ozone approaching every detail. That’s enough about the looks. Moving on to user experience and performance, not many risks are taken to ensure a high quality experience. Plastic key caps and a brushed plastic finish do a surprisingly great job at repelling finger oils and sweat. Pressing down on each key s is different to a pedigree MX Cherry experience. Here’s a breakdown on Kailh switches. Firstly, their colours correspond to those of MX Cherry when it comes to switch profiles and whatnot. Yet, the Chinese switches consistently need more force as they don’t make use of gold-plated contacts-that’s it really. Do they feel cheap? Not really, so much so that they boast a 55 million keystroke lifespan. Switches are accompanied with an extremely solid build quality resulting in practically no flex which one would expect at this hefty weight. At “up to 1000Hz” ultra-polling, response time is as fast as it gets thanks to a gold-plated connection at the end of a 1.8m braided cable. Interestingly enough, the USB 2.0 is covered by a plastic casing which is always hanging around for use when it isn’t connected. This will come in handy when you’re swapping connection from Windows to Mac, Linus or Android since the peripheral is compatible with all of them. Anti-ghosting and 6-key rollover is also provided and easily toggled alongside a standard Game Mode which simply disables Windows key functions. Overall, performance is great whether you’re gaming or typing, but this does depend on which type of Kailh you choose. All of this is packed at the reasonable dimensions of 455x161x37mm.    Onto the RGB features then. Again, Ozone has produced a fantastic representation of all  the colours with beautiful vibrancy and adequate brightness. Yet this time, enjoying the lights is done through unique effects which unfortunately can become quite the cumbersome to manage. Effects go as follows; Wave, Pinwheel, Breathing, Static, Rain drop reactive, Explosion, Extension, Cyclone, Scanning and None.  Innovation and creativity went into these, creating a one of a kind experience.  None of the glory is spoiled by lock functions as these trigger red signals to the top right, but it must be said that white lighting was slightly red due to the nature of the switch of the hardware unit. However, all this potential fun is drawn down by two words- no software. This wouldn’t be a problem if there wasn’t such a complicated system; so get your reading glasses ready for the manual. If you’d like to change the speed, direction and colour of your keyboard effects, it’s recommended that you keep this manual nearby. Through the funcitons, one can dance through the five multi-coloured preset layouts while creating your own five. Macros are also a possibility; an experience which resembles that of taking a school test.  Setting hues is likewise. To conclude, the effects and lighting are fantastic, hut configuring them could be an improved experience. Ozone is clearly taking a lot of risks and experimenting with new ideas through the Ozone X30. While the fundamental function of typing is untouched, apart from the use of a less popular switch, other aspects such as the looks and features are quite unique and give this product its own personality. For €90, it’s a great investment if you appreciate Ozone’s creativity and if you don’t mind taking a minute to read the instructions.    Like what you see? Buy it now while stocks last at the Gamers Lounge:

Preparing for the Malta Cyber Series #3

Esports is constantly receiving a supply of new faces looking to stamp their name onto whatever competitive scene they choose. This isn't as easy as it sounds, and for many competitors there will always be that first LAN event which they weren't quite ready for. understands exponentially that for a number of people, the Malta Cyber Series #3 is their first taste at local connection performance and we've got your back thanks to our experience over the years as organisers and gamers. Below is a form of list which includes our recommended items for the weekend along with some restrictions which must be respected. Failure to correspond with the requirements could lead to an uncomfortable experience which we'd like to avoid at all costs.  Hardware PC with all the necessary cables. Screen with all the necessary cables Keyboard, mouse and mousepad Headset Cable tie to keep your cables together Screwdriver Tape. It can fix anything! Console and gamepad. Make sure you can connect them to your screen. Mobile phone and charger. Your parents will want to know if you've had dinner. Camera. If you don't share your experience on social media, what are you doing? Flashlight to locate items in the dark.  Your own office chair. We will provide you with one, but maybe you prefer your own. Chains and locks. You want to protect your valuables. Software CD or USB drive with your OS and drivers Games and other software Antivirus software. Make sure it is updated and ready to work. Clothes Comfortable clothes and shoes. You NEED to change your clothes. It is NOT optional. A sleeping-bag and a pillow. You need somewhere to sleep if you haven't booked at the hotel or if you aren't going home either.  Personal care Deodorant Aspirines Any other medication you need to take. BANNED OBJECTS Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) Electric Kettle Extension Portable Fan Fridge Projectile toys/weapons Food and drinks; we have a BBQ for a reason Drugs, alcohol and any illegal substances Speakers Showers will be available for use at particular times at a €2.50 charge which includes liquid soap and towel so remember it's nice to smell fresh. Also, please ensure that all personal equipment needed to compete is functioning, so that no delays may occur.  Remember that to have fun, we've first got to follow the rules to ensure that everything is fair and professional. prides itself with the best local events that emulate those on an international level.  See you all this weekend at the AX Hotels SeaShells Resort at Suncrest, Qawra from 4pm onwards!

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