KLIM Aim Gaming Mouse (Hardware) Review

You can find this review in full at GBAtemp.net:

With gaming hardware all the rage in recent years, KLIM have stepped into an otherwise expensive and saturated market with their line of affordable tech for the masses. Offering customisable RGB lighting alongside a myriad of features and functionality, you’re probably wondering just what the catch is?

Coming in what I would call a fairly standard box, the mouse comes in at 128mm in length, making it the largest mouse I’ve owned in my less than fancy line of predecessors. Its size allows for my full hand to rest effortlessly on each button, with the textured grip on the side providing an ideal place to place my thumb. As well as your standard left button, right button, and scroll wheel, the Aim also features two buttons on the side, and one in the center just below the scroll wheel. Thanks to its largely symmetrical design, it feels comfortable to hold with either hand, though you’ll only have access to the side buttons on the left of the mouse. Considering its price, I really found myself surprised at the overall premium aesthetic and feel. Pair this with a quality-feeling braided cable and you have something you wouldn’t assume to be in the budget section. 

The configuration software is in a way the heart of the mouse. Through it, you’re given the power to customise your experience and really make it your own. KLIM’s driver gives you a fair amount to play with; between changing the DPI, report rate, and button bindings, you’re also able to create macros and setup the lighting exactly as you like. On the surface, it has a similar appearance to Razer’s similar utility software Synapse, but after only a short time with it, you’ll begin to realise where money was saved. The software is, in a word, awful, and it’s in how it’s awful I find the most frustration. Everything workseverything is functional, but everything expects you to know its small quirk. The easiest example of this to bring up is in the lighting menu, hidden behind the less than obvious ‘Marquee’ button. 

The menu above makes sense at first glance. You can click the drop-down to change the mode, brightness, and a few other things. You click on the colours to bring up the same kind of colour picker you find in MS Paint; it’s a dated and awkward look, but those aren’t things that’ll stop you from doing what you want to be doing. The quirk here is in the brightness drop-down, and its shown values of zero to seven. With it initially set to 50, something doesn’t look quite right. Where are the other 43 values? To access those, you click and drag down to scroll the menu. It’s absurd, unintuitive, and not communicated anywhere outside of the user manual—a manual I might add that is only available via KLIM’s store, the links on their actual site all broken. I was so ready to believe this software simply didn’t work to the point of downloading Cheat Engine to set the brightness manually.

Looking past this and onto other areas of the software, you run into the same issues. Macros are simple to set up, but cumbersome and frustrating all the same. You first name them to add them to the list, then start recording, enter your macro, then stop recording. It all makes sense. There are an unnecessary amount of confirmation prompts to go with it, but it makes sense. When you’re finished, you then need to hit the confirm button. If you forget that, moving to any other area of the software will erase your efforts. It’s small, but when you have unnecessary prompts littering every other action, you might have thought it wise to have one on leaving unsaved settings. When setting up a button as a key, you may also find some keys simply don’t work, Page Up and Down being two I’ve run into. For a short period of time, I had thought setting keys simply didn’t work, since these were the only things I was interested in binding. Communication is at the core of what this software lacks. The options on offer are quite fantastic for the price you’re paying, but that only makes it more of a shame to see them gated behind something so frustrating and poorly designed. Fortunately, any customisations made are saved to the mouse, meaning you’ll only have to set it up once and never open the driver again. The configurations carrying between machines, even to those without the driver installed, was a welcomed surprise. 

KLIM have made something really quite fantastic for its price point. From its premium aesthetic, to its braided cable, configurable lights, and customisable macro-programmable buttons, it really is one of the best mice I’ve owned to date. All of this only adds to how much of a shame it is to see it let down by its software. If you’re patient enough to work through its faults and perhaps don’t have much to spend, I recommend giving it a shot. Assuming you know what to expect, you’ll more than get your money’s worth.

Arozzi Arena Gaming Desk (Hardware) Review

You can find this review in full at GBAtemp.net:

What makes a desk a gaming desk? It’s a simple question, and one with an endless number of answers. In our previous reviews, we’ve seen RGBs, built-in outlets, and even height adjustment at the push of a button. For Arozzi however, their key selling point comes in the form of a full-surface mouse mat, as well as their take on a cable management solution.

As far as my knowledge of DIY can tell me, assembling the desk was a trivial, if not slightly time-consuming task. The instruction manual containing only a series of pictures and no written assistance, I found myself getting caught up in smaller details from time to time, but on the whole there was nothing complicated. Even if you do manage to get something wrong, it’s a simple case of unscrewing and trying again to correct it, and if you find yourself particularly stuck, Arozzi also have an assembly video you can check out (something I was amusingly unaware of at the time!). My biggest issue came in the tight space I had to assemble everything. Living in somewhat of a box, I was able to put together the legs and frame in a reasonably open area, but when it came to putting everything together, I found myself on my back attaching things from underneath instead of flipping the desk right at the end. Adjusting the height of the legs was a particular pain, having to rely on a friend to lift it as I locked the legs into position. This is by no means a fault of the desk, but should be kept in mind if you’re considering a purchase. With the surface of the desk being a huge 160x82cm, you’re going to need room for it, or at least an able-bodied friend to lend a hand. 

The top of the desk is made of three parts which are screwed together in the assembly process, and finally covered with the full-surface mouse mat when everything is ready to go. Despite being excited to have such a large desk, I can’t deny I had my doubts about Arozzi’s key offerings. A full-surface mouse mat is a good idea on paper, but felt like a gimmick that’d get in the way more than help. The cable management solution being nothing more than a mesh bag hung from the desk came across similarly; a nice idea but something I had no real expectations for. Having used the desk for a few weeks now, I’m surprised at just how much these have made a difference.

I think the mouse mat somewhat speaks for itself in its usefulness, providing a high quality surface suitable for any mouse. My main concern with it was the lack of anything to attach it to the desk, but with it gripping so well regardless these concerns were thankfully unfounded. With the mouse mat being water resistant and machine washable, it’s easy to keep everything looking fresh. The mesh bag was another surprising hit for me. I’ve never been a person to care about my tangled cables, just as long as they were kept out of sight. With this in mind, it’s been common to see an abhorrent entanglement of unknown wires lurking beneath. Now? Now everything is clear. It’s refreshing to be able to put my feet under a desk and not feel at risk of pulling a monitor or two down, not to mention the ease of cleaning with everything elevated from the ground. It’s a shockingly simple solution, but one I can’t deny is effective in doing what it sets out to do. 

While there isn’t much to complain about in such a simple desk, I do have a few minor gripes, the most significant of these coming from its two-legged design. Relying on two legs to maintain stability, I’ve found the desk to rock at times if leaned on too heavily. If you only have monitors and systems directly on the desk, this isn’t anything of an issue; the rocking never gets too much as for things to start moving, especially with the surface providing a suitable degree of grip. If however you’re stacking things, or like me use an adjustable monitor stand, it’s something you should be aware of. I’ve not had anything fall in my time with this desk, but I have been concerned from time to time. If you want a more stable way to elevate your monitors, the holes in the back of the desk to thread cables through also double as mounts if you have the right equipment. Sadly, it isn’t something I was able to test, but it’s worth mentioning nonetheless. 

Overall, Arozzi’s Arena gaming desk is one I find myself recommending. Presenting a high quality and well-built aesthetic, paired with its mouse mat and mesh bags, it is a simpler kind of desk. Putting attention on functionality over flashiness, it is a solid choice for anybody in the market for an upgrade.