Thermaltake’s Ventus R is a neat little mouse with no frills and no daft ideas of how a mouse should behave. That’s an odd way to start a review, for sure, but it’s one of the products that I’ve had the least hassle in reviewing. It lacks any restrictions in its use, and it just wants to do its job. But I must also point out that this isn’t a mouse for everyone, nor do I profess to know what market it targets, because I can’t figure that out either. It’s a very odd little thing.
Popping the Ventus R out of the box, you’ll notice that there’s nothing in the way of accessories, or even paraphernalia. Thermaltake does include some stickers, but otherwise it’s barebones. With a cable length of about two metres, the Ventus R can lie on almost any desktop and reach almost any USB port down below. The cable isn’t braided, and it does bend easily, but it isn’t likely to break inside the sheath if you take good care of it. The switches are Omron-designed, and feel solid and click in easily.
It is light – almost too light – at just 73 grams. It feels like it doesn’t really exist between my fingers sometimes. The chassis is a black plastic all-round with a diamond-patterned finish on the bottom and a hexagon-patterned texture for the thumb and pinky grips on the side of the mouse. The lack of rubber means this mouse is very easy to keep clean from grease and thumbprints, which I’m personally happy with. The palm area has ventilation holes to keep your hands from sweating, and there’s an RGB-lit Tt eSports dragon logo inside.
The top of the mouse also features black plastic, but now has a slightly rough finish for grip. The mouse’s overall profile is low with no substantial bulk in any direction. Although it still works for claw or palm grips in my testing, the fact that it’s so low means that almost everyone will be using a claw grip to be able to click the buttons faster. It measures 30mm at its highest point, tapering down to about 10mm at the front of the mouse.
The box details for the Ventus R claim that it has an ambidextrous design, but because it doesn’t have buttons on the right-hand side of the mouse, functionality is much reduced compared to mice which do have buttons on both sides of the mouse to accommodate lefties.
In use, the mouse’s lack of heft or bulk makes using it a little weird. Perhaps you get used to it, but I’ve owned heavier mouses for most of my life weighing 100g or more, and this makes using it in games slightly more difficult. While the Pixart PMW3310 sensor does add cursor acceleration, I’m moving the mouse further than intended because of a lack of any feedback, which means I’m missing my targets often.
Thermaltake’s drivers are very similar to the ones employed for the Poseidon Z that I reviewed recently, but this has its own set of quirks. Floating menus that pop up always get launched in the centre of whichever display the main menu has been moved to, even if the main menu is moved a little off centre. You can move these windows independently by clicking on the titlebar, but it’s just an odd quirk.
A neat addition is these red arrows that pop up when navigating through Explorer menus or web pages in a browser. However, they only show up on my secondary monitor, and remain locked in a X;Y position based on the virtual desktop. They don’t seem to show up on a single-monitor configuration, and resetting it requires that you switch from an extended display setup to a single monitor, and then go back again. Or, alternatively, uninstall and reinstall the drivers, because I’ve actually tried disabling my second screen and it sometimes doesn’t work.
Only after I handed the Ventus R back in did I realise that I could also try to disable the OSD notifications, and re-enabling them should move the arrow down towards the bottom of the second screen. Maybe that works.
The drivers are otherwise solid, and they’re universal as well, automatically resetting for all three of the mice Thermaltake sent in for review, no matter which one I plugged in. There’s no sign-up accounts needed either, except in the case of the performance data, which keeps a history of your performance over time synced to an online account. The RGB controller does not get picked up in the software for my Gigabyte motherboard to control RGB peripherals, so you’re always limited to using the driver software to control the colours and try to match up the lighting effects.
Overall, the Ventus R is an odd mouse that doesn’t seem to have a particular market it’s aimed at. The low weight and small profile seems to suggest that it’s suited more for laptop users who want to throw it in a bag, but Thermaltake bills it as a gaming mouse as well. I think that for a mouse this size, its audience is limited, even if it is built well. Personal preference will determine whether you like it or not.
70I think the Ventus R is a great little mouse, but it’s the little part that reduces its appeal for a mass market. For the same price, there are other models which are arguably better and more comfortable to use, including options from Thermaltake’s own stable.