Cooler Master MasterMouse MM520 Review (Page 1 of 4)

By: Hai Wang
November 17, 2017

If you ask me what is the most useful course I have taken in graduate school, I would like to say it is Optimization Theory, which I have learned how to optimize one or multiple parameters of a complex system. It is easy to consider just one parameter, since there is no need to worry about sacrificing other parameters. However, optimization problems are not so easy to solve if there are several objectives. You cannot just focus on one objective. Often times, if one objective is satisfied, other objectives may get affected destructively. For example, in wireless communication systems design, there are two objectives: One is related with throughput; the other energy consumption. Yes, you can implement all the fancy technologies such as massive multiple-input and multiple-output antennas, high complexity coding schemes, and even machine learning algorithms. However, all of those technologies that can help increase the throughput will also increase the radio overhead, and consequently, energy consumption. Nobody wants a cell phone that only has five minutes battery lifetime; meanwhile, the phone will not be very useful if it can only transmit five bits per hour. You have to really balance the throughput performance and the cost of achieving the throughput. Therefore, at the end of the day, there is no single solution that can easily satisfy all objectives. Instead, trade-off must be made so the overall result is good for its application. To design a gaming mouse, at least two objectives should be considered, namely, the aesthetic perspective and the ergonomic perspective. In order to come with a good ergonomic design, the shape of the mouse should be determined according to the feeling of the operating hand, such that there will not be much room left for the aesthetic perspective. Now there comes the question: Does the design of today's review unit, the Cooler Master MasterMouse MM520, achieve the optimal point of both aesthetic and ergonomic perspectives? Let us find out.

The Cooler Master MasterMouse MM520 arrived via FedEx to us here in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. As you can see from the picture, the parcel is little bit big for just a mouse, because it is -- a few other things were in the box as well. The package was shipped from Chino, California, where the headquarters of Cooler Master are located. I was not the person who received this parcel in the first place, but the cardboard came with pretty good shape and there were very few dents on the surface.

Peel the shipping package off, we can see the retail packaging of the MasterMouse MM520. The background color is in accordance with the Cooler Master website’s theme color. In the middle of the cover lies the top view of the mouse. The company logo is at the top left of the box, while a "Make It Yours" motto sits right beside it. The name of the product, "MasterMouse MM520", is proudly located below the picture of the mouse, and it follows with a sentence that indicates the key feature of this product. The overall design of the package is simple, compact, and precise. It does not reveal too much of the mouse. The package is also sending a message. "Want to find out more? Just open the case and try it on!"

Before digging into details, let us take a look at the specifications of the MasterMouse MM520, as borrowed from the manufacturer's website:

Technical Specifications
Product Name: MasterMouse MM520
Product Model: SGM-2007-KLON1
Grip Type: Claw / Palm
Material: Plastic / Rubber
Color: M14 Black
LED Color: 16.7 Million RGB
Sensor: Pixart PMW-3360 Optical
CPI / DPI: 4 Levels (100~12,000dpi)
Tracking Speed: 250 ips / 50 g
Lift Off Distance: < ~2mm / Adjustable
Polling Rate: 1000 Hz / 1 ms
Angle Snapping: On / Off
Mouse acceleration: No
Programmable Profiles: 5
Processor: 32 bit ARM Cortex M0
On-board Memory: 512 KB
Switches, Lifespan: Omron, 20 million
Programmable buttons: 6
Body coating: Matte UV Coating
Connector: Gold-plated
Cable Length: Flexible Cable, 1.8 Meters
Dimensions (mm/inch): 78.5 x118 x 29.5mm
Weight: 135 g / 0.3 lbs
Weight (without USB Cable): 101 g / 0.23 lbs
Warranty: 2 years

You can either open the box from the top or just flip over the front cover to get access to the mouse. There is not a lot of stuff in there; just a mouse in a plastic plate and a small booklet. The booklet indicates the specifications of the MasterMouse MM520 and how much hazardous materials are contained in the mouse. I think the reason to provide such information is for regulatory compliance rather than to prevent people from putting it in their mouth. Unsurprisingly, the driver disc is not provided, since the mouse is plug-and-play and software that can change the macros is available online.

Page Index
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. A Closer Look - Hardware and Software
3. Subjective Performance Tests
4. Conclusion