Recently, we took a good look at the Basilisk V2 – Razer’s spectacular mid-ranged gaming mouse that combined the excellent performance that the brand is known for with a striking aesthetic and high level of customization. It’s not the cheapest mid-ranged mouse around, but it does offer good value.
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Razer DeathAdder Elite Review
Design & Build - 8/10
Features - 7.9/10
Comfort - 8.5/10
Total Value - 8.2/10
The Razer DeathAdder Elite triumphantly withstands the test of time, packing pinpoint precision and an ageless design in a sleek and comfortable package that gamers can afford. Despite being four years old, it has no trouble keeping up with the young’uns and can still roll with today’s best, even with its lack of onboard memory and annoying cable build.
Unfortunately, it’s difficult to recommend the DeathAdder Elite over the overall better DeathAdder V2, especially when the latter is often on sale for just a few bucks extra. Nonetheless, it’s still an outstanding gaming mouse that’s worthy of consideration for those on a tighter budget.
✓ Fantastic performance
✓ Timeless design
✓ Comfortable for all hand sizes and grip styles
✓ Great for shooters and MOBAs
✓ Its age has made it a lot more affordable
✗ Pesky rigid cable design
✗ Lack of onboard memory makes switching computers a hassle
✗ Hard to recommend over the superior DeathAdder V2
If you’re looking to join the clan of the triple-headed snake but are keen on saving a few bucks, then you might want to consider the DeathAdder Elite – a follow-up to 2014’s beloved DeathAdder Chroma that came with a serious sensor upgrade while retaining all the good stuff that made its predecessor so great.
But it’s been a few years since it hit the market so we’ve decided to give it another look in this Razer DeathAdder Elite review just to see how well it stacks up against some of the newer generations of lower-priced gaming mice.
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What is the Razer DeathAdder Elite?
The Razer DeathAdder Elite made its debut in 2016 and was essentially the DeathAdder Chroma from two years back but with a significantly more precise sensor. It still maintains the same look of its predecessor, which isn’t a bad thing at all considering its low-profile, ergonomic design and sleek finish still look fantastic in this day and age, and its customizable RGB lighting gives its classy look some extra flair. Its slightly slanted design and stellar precision make it great for FPS games, though you’ll find it performs just as well while playing MOBAs thanks to its extra buttons.
The DeathAdder Elite utilizes the patented Razer 5G optical sensor that boasts a DPI of 16000 and polling rate of 1000 Hz which is great for types of games that require a high level of finesse, like FPS and MOBA titles. The 5G sensor may trail behind the newer 20000 DPI Razer Focus+, but it’s still a very impressive piece of tech that should have no trouble satisfying most gamers.
It is strictly a wired USB gaming mouse and features the same braided nylon cable that’s found in its older siblings which is quite rigid and can be kind of annoying especially when it has permanent bends due to the way it’s looped and stored in its packaging. This can cause unnecessary extra drag.
There are seven programmable buttons for you to fiddle around with which should be enough for most games, though MMO enthusiasts will likely be looking for a gaming mouse that has a few more controls.
The DeathAdder Elite includes subtle RGB lighting on the Razer logo found on the bottom part of the mouse and both sides of the scroll wheel. They sport 16.8 million colours, stylish presets, and the ability to sync with Razer Chroma supported devices and Philip Hue peripherals.
The Razer Synapse 3 software suite allows you to tweak the mouse’s sensitivity, buttons, and RGB lighting with relative ease. Unfortunately, the DeathAdder Elite doesn’t come with on-board memory so you won’t be able to maintain your settings if you switch computers.
Design & Comfort
Unlike the Basilisk V2 or Basilisk Pro that has a notable thumb rest, the DeathAdder Elite is more symmetrical in design save for the slight slanting curve from the left to the right side of the mouse. This along with the two extra buttons on the left side of the device ensure that it’s intended for right-handed users only. Its design really hasn’t changed much since the original DeathAdder was introduced 14 years ago.
Then again, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Its lowkey form factor, jet black coat of paint, and sleek matte texture combined with the tasteful hints of RGB from the Razer logo and mouse wheel come together beautifully for a timeless aesthetic that looks great at home or in the workplace.
Another reason Razer hasn’t tampered much with the design after all this time is because of how comfortable it is. There are latex grips on either side of the mouse that make it easier to hold and the DeathAdder Elite’s length and width make it effortless to use for hands of all sizes and grip styles. The buttons are all crisp and well-placed making them easy to reach and press and the notched mouse wheel gives a satisfying amount of tactile feedback.
What’s it like to use?
The DeathAdder Elite works perfectly right off the bat, requiring minimum tweaking except for when you want to fine-tune its sensitivity and play with the RGB lighting and programmable buttons. The Razer Synapse 3 is user-friendly and facilitates the mouse’s customizability very well, but the peripheral’s lack of onboard memory can be quite the hassle for people who switch computers regularly.
Performance-wise, the DeathAdder Elite lives up the brand’s lofty name thanks to its pinpoint sensor and tried-and-true DeathAdder design. During my round of Overwatch, the all-around camera movement was as delightfully smooth as it was precise and mapping DPI controls to the side buttons made sniping with Widowmaker an absolute joy.
Unfortunately, as with many of the older Razer gaming mice, the stiff braided cable came with a few permanent bends that brought about a hint of noticeable drag. This can grate your nerves quite a bit, especially during games that require sharp movements.
Despite its age, the DeathAdder Elite still excels in performance and precision, allowing it to keep up just fine with just about any of the newer gaming mice and it features a timeless aesthetic that will likely never go out of style. Aside from its pesky cable and lack of onboard memory, it is, by all means, a stellar peripheral even by today’s standards.
- The #1 Best-Selling Gaming Peripherals Manufacturer in the US: Source - The NPD Group, Inc., U.S. Retail Tracking Service, Gaming Designed: Keyboards, Mice, PC Headsets, and PC Microphones, Based on dollar sales, Jan. 2017- June 2020 combined
- High-Precision 16,000 DPI Optical Sensor: Offers on-the-fly sensitivity adjustment through dedicated DPI buttons (reprogrammable) for gaming and creative work
- Immersive, Customizable Chroma RGB Lighting: Includes 16.8 million colors w/ included preset profiles; syncs with gameplay and Razer Chroma-enabled peripherals and Philips Hue products
- 7 Programmable Buttons: Allows for button remapping and assignment of complex macro functions through Razer Synapse
Last update on 2021-04-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API