From my point of view, the line of gaming mice ROG Gladius is the most successful among the current series of peripherals from ASUS. The improved version of the Gladius II already has several variations, and the appearance of the Wireless variant among them was only a matter of time. After all, ROG Spatha, for all its merits, was more like an exhibition copy than a mouse for daily games or work. And in the middle class, there was simply no decent wireless mouse in the ROG series. Luckily, that gap has now been filled by the Gladius II Wireless, which we’ll take a closer look at in this review.
|Model||ASUS ROG Gladius II Wireless|
|Interface||Wired / Wireless (USB / 2.4GHz / Bluetooth)|
|Type||Gaming (FPS/MMO/RTS games)|
|Sensor Model||PixArt PMW3390|
|Permission, cpi||100 – 16 000|
|Number of buttons||6 buttons + scroll (left, middle, right, resolution button, two side buttons)|
|Maximum acceleration, g||50|
|Lift-off height (LOD), mm||1–3|
|Maximum speed, m/s||10,16|
|USB port polling rate, Hz||125 / 250 / 500 /1000|
|Frame rate, fps||12 000|
|Internal memory, KB||+ (3 profiles)|
|Wireless receiver type||Nano receiver|
|Power, battery life||Built-in lithium battery, up to 24 hours (36 without backlight) in 2.4GHz mode, 25 hours (57 without backlight) via Bluetooth.|
|Protocol (GHz) / range (m) of wireless communication||2.4 GHz / Bluetooth, up to 10 m|
|Ability to change weight||–|
|Possibility to adjust the body shape||–|
|Cord length, m||2|
|Cable material||Nylon braid|
|Housing surface material||Plastic|
|Backlight||+ (RGB, 16.8M colors)|
|Illumination zones||Scroll wheel, logo|
|Leg material||Teflon (PTFE)|
|Software||+ (ASUS ROG Armoury II)|
|Dimensions, (L x W x H) mm||126 x 67 x 45|
|OS Compatibility||Windows 7 / 8 / 10|
|Additionally||Replacement main key switches, two spare switches, detachable cable, carrying case included|
|Average cost, $||100|
Contents of delivery
The packaging is designed in traditional colors for the ROG series – black and red. The mouse with the receiver is depicted on its front part, on the reverse side the advantages of the product are listed and the main technical characteristics are given. If you flip aside the front cover, which is held on with Velcro, you can read a little more about the advantages of Gladius II Wireless, and even try on its size by placing your hand on the transparent pad.
The package included a carrying bag, a detachable braided cable, an adhesive ROG logo, a USB receiver, and two interchangeable switches. Theoretically, somewhere else there should have been documentation, but in our case it was clearly lost along the way.
Visual differences of this mouse in comparison with the wired version of Gladius II are almost imperceptible. The top panel is made of the same matte tenacious plastic, the main keys are made separate. They are pressed with less than average force and a soft click. The insert between the keys is now made in the color of the rest of the panel. The resolution button remains unchanged, it works quietly and gently. The middle key is tight to press and has a muffled activation sound.
From the remarkable on the left side panel there was a rubber pad with ornate triangular patterns and two glossy side buttons. The keys have a small margin of free play, they work quietly and softly. The third side button in the middle has disappeared and in this respect the mouse is more similar to the first version of Gladius.
There are no changes ahead. The same decorative diagonal stripes and cable connection port. The scroll wheel is rubberized, with a characteristic pattern. It rotates with a slight crackle, clearly practicing each fixation position.
The mouse has three connection options and in this regard it is extremely versatile. The first way is classic – by cable. It always takes precedence over the others when used. At the same time, the battery is charged, and the manipulator operates at a high polling rate and supports all commands. The second connection method is via a 2.4 GHz radio channel, via the bundled USB receiver. The mouse also works at maximum settings. And the third alternative is the Bluetooth protocol. Here the polling rate is reset to a minimum of 125 Hz, macro commands and external software are not supported, but power consumption is significantly reduced
The signal cable is 2 meters long, all covered with a nylon braid and has Velcro to adjust the length. It is not very flexible, although this is not particularly important for a wireless mouse. But the microUSB connector here is of a specific shape and it can be problematic to find a replacement for it.
And this is what the USB receiver looks like. It uses FHSS (Frequency-Hopping Spread Spectrum) technology to avoid interference and delays.
On the right side of the mouse, the rubber embossed finger pad remained in place.
There is an illuminated ROG logo on the stern. Strictly speaking, for a wireless mouse, this is an overkill that wastes a valuable supply of energy. But after all, this model can also work on a wire, and the backlight can be set to turn off when running on battery power.
Due to the built-in battery, the mouse has noticeably become heavier from 110 to 124 grams (130 grams is officially stated). There was a slight imbalance towards the stern, which is felt if you take your fingers further than the line of the rear side button. Apart from this moment, the asymmetric right-hand ergonomics remained the same as they were. The mouse lies well in the hand in any of the main types of grip.
Four small oval Teflon legs are glued to the corners of the mouse base. The cable lock slider disappeared, but a connection selection switch appeared – to the left via Bluetooth, the middle position is “off” (only cable operation is possible), and to the right is the 2.4 GHz channel. The round window of the PixArt PMW3390 optical sensor is exactly in the center.
The two backlight zones look good, but are clinically unable to show white, showing a soft blue tint instead. All other colors of the rainbow are displayed correctly.
The main feature of the Gladius series has been preserved in the wireless model. The mouse can be easily disassembled to replace switches. To do this, at the bottom you need to remove the rubber plugs and unscrew the four Phillips screws.
The cover is completely separated from the base, where all the electronic components are located.
For the left and right mouse buttons, special sockets are provided, in which standard Omron switches and their copies are installed and removed without soldering. By default, there are D2FC-FK (50M) with blue bumpers and an activation force of 60 grams. Kailh with red tongues are installed under the side buttons. The scroll wheel encoder uses a mechanism from Alps.
As an alternative replacement for LMB and RMB, the kit includes Japanese Omron D2F-01F with gray buttons and a pressing force of 75 grams. Especially for those who like it harder.
The built-in lithium battery has a capacity of 800 mAh, a power of 2.96 Wh and outputs a voltage of 3.7 V
ASUS ROG Gladius II Wireless works with the ROG Armory II Generic Driver (current version 3.00.28), which needs to be downloaded from the official website and installed. After installation, the program will be permanently active, unless otherwise specified in its settings. Automatic and forced check for updates is available. There are 12 interface languages to choose from, including Russian.
On the basic Mouse/Buttons tab, you can remap commands on six keys and two scroll directions. All settings are stored in one of three on-board profiles, which can be quickly switched by holding down the permission button and the middle button at the same time, or one of the two side ones. Basic mouse and keyboard commands, macros, several common Windows shell commands, and media buttons are available for assignment.
The sensor has a wide range of settings. There are two levels of resolution, each of which can be set in the range from 100 to 16,000 cpi in 100 cpi increments. There is no separate adjustment for the X and Y axes. You can enable or disable angular snapping, set cursor acceleration and deacceleration levels, adjust the horizontal reading angle of the sensor (if you are used to holding the mouse not straight), set the polling rate to 125, 250, 500 or 1000 Hz. In addition, the response time of the keys is adjustable from 4 to 32 ms in 4 ms steps. It can be set to the minimum value at which there is no double pressing due to the effect of the “bounce” of the contacts when closing.
In the “Lighting” tab, you can separately or simultaneously control the illumination of the logo and the scroll wheel. Brightness and saturation settings are available to choose from, there is an entire RGB color palette and five backlight effects – static, slow blinking, color cycle, reactive and the most useful “battery”. The last mode shows green when the charge level is more than 75%, blue when the level is from 25 to 75% and red when less than 25% of energy is left.
The mouse has a surface calibration, or rather, the height of the separation of the sensor. If you turn it on, then in the first option it is proposed to choose one of the preset settings for ASUS branded mats, or the type of surface – metal, plastic, fabric and glass. In the second option, the height is set manually to low, medium and high values, after which you need to move the mouse until the cursor starts moving.
In the “Power” tab, you can configure the power saving mode. You can either set the idle interval (from 1 to 10 minutes) after which the sensor will go to sleep, or make it be constantly active if there is no need to save battery. To wake up from sleep, just move the mouse. There is also an indicator of the current charge level and it is possible to set up a visual alert for a charge level of 0, 25, 50, 75 or 100%.
In the macro editor, you can create an unlimited number of macros, assign them names, delete, modify, import and export. Keyboard commands and basic mouse functions (not counting scrolling) are available for recording. Delays can be recorded as is, with a fixed time, or without a delay. Playback can be scheduled once, for a certain period of time, or until the command key is released.
The driver has a function to synchronize the backlight with other ASUS devices. But since there were no others at hand, the tab remained inaccessible.
In the statistics tab, after pressing the Record button, the number of clicks on the left and right buttons is registered and the distance traveled is calculated. Upon completion of the recording, the APM line will also be filled – the number of clicks per minute. It is likely that this information only applies to the left button.
Ergonomics and testing
The ASUS ROG Gladius II Wireless mouse was tested on a monotonous black Mionix Alioth M fabric mat. The receiver was located at a distance of 50 cm from the mouse, in the line of sight. The ergonomics of this manipulator can be called very good. It sits nicely in the hand in any type of grip, the rubber sidewalls do not allow the fingers to slip, the hand on the top panel does not fog up. By the way, the coating of the mouse is quite resistant to dirt. However, the relief sidewalls take a long time to clean. The increased weight is well distributed throughout the body and the mouse does not feel heavy. A slight bias towards the stern when taking off from the surface can only occur if you take your fingers further than the conventional middle of the manipulator. All keys and the scroll wheel work well and informatively, there are no complaints about them. But a childhood disease – a small backlash of the LKM and PKM panels, has remained since the time of the first Gladius. I would also like to see larger legs here.
The main questions that future owners of wireless mice are always keenly interested in are usually related to their autonomy and performance, especially since these parameters are closely related. For this model, it is stated that when working without illumination via a 2.4 GHz radio channel, it lasts for 36 hours. In fact, this is approximately the way it is – I managed to completely discharge it in only a week of use for 6-8 hours a day. When working via Bluetooth, autonomy increases to almost 57 hours, but here the secret is that the sensor polling rate is only 125 Hz instead of the “gaming” 1000 Hz. In general, even hardcore gamers won’t have to charge the Gladius II Wireless every other day, unless they’re too into light music. Regarding the difference in working on a wire and without – without special devices, it will not be possible to fix it subjectively. Especially if the transmitter is close to the device. The half-second delay only occurs when the mouse exits a low power state. But this function can be turned off completely if it is not needed.
The backlight, fortunately, can perform an informative function and there is not much point in turning it on in wireless mode. As mentioned above, white color cannot be seen on local LEDs. The driver as a whole is convenient and understandable, however, in the current revision there is a bug, which means that the mouse receiver is not detected if it is enabled at the time the software starts. You have to either rearrange it, or restart the driver.
The PixArt PMW3390 optical sensor in this mouse is another variation on the 3360/3389 theme and, in principle, belongs to the best gaming sensors in its class. Nothing new in it, except for the horizontal rotation angle of the sensor, could not be found, but the 3360 also had such a function. Maybe the modification is better adapted to the wireless use case, but this is not certain. Everything else, as always, is at a decent level. The sensor maintains a very high speed and acceleration of movement, it is impossible to cause a stall, parasitic moments in the operation of the sensor were not detected.
Gladius II Wireless is a good wireless option for the best gaming mouse in ASUS ROG’s current range. It organically filled the vacancy in its product line and provided a symmetrical response to similar offerings from the leading manufacturers of gaming peripherals on the market. Essentially, for $100, the buyer gets a universal gamepad that can be wired or wirelessly connected to multiple separate devices. This is complemented by good ergonomics, the best sensor in its class and a long-lasting battery. In addition, there is a unique feature, namely, the ability to easily replace the main switches without a visit to the service. This not only prolongs the life of the device as a whole, but also allows you to individually select buttons for tactile sensations.
Among the shortcomings, one can note the inability of the mouse to reproduce the white color of the LEDs, a small backlash of the PKM and LKM panels, small legs and a slight imbalance in weight towards the stern. In general, nothing critical.
Even if you’re not a fan of the ASUS ROG line, if you’re looking for a wireless gamepad, I highly recommend taking the Gladius II Wireless into consideration. If only because its analogues from other manufacturers – Logitech G703, Razer Mamba Wireless, SteelSeries Rival 650, Roccat Leadr Wireless and a pair of Corsair mice cost quite immodest money.