When it comes to peripherals it’s a staple requirement that each brand has its very own flagship name under the belt. Razer has the Deathadder, Steelseries has the Sensei, Corsair the M65, and Roccat, well Roccat has the Kone. Emerging from obscurity back in 2007, the German manufacturer’s very first product was the now legendary Kone gaming mouse. Coming in on the budget side of the spectrum, this plucky underdog packed an impressive sensor, strong ergonomic design, and intuitive lighting. It was impressive enough that it flung Roccat into many a gamer’s domain, and 11 years on the company is still performing strongly, adding many of the best gaming mouse (opens in new tab) options to stores ever since.
Roccat Kone AIMO - Design
Since then however, Roccat has turned away from it’s gone gaming mad roots of cheap plastic, sharp pointy edges, and jagged cutthroat designs with concept-defying features, to something sleeker, something more professional. As the consumers get older, the desire for more premium looking hardware follows suit. This is something Roccat has been looking to capitalize on, and with the likes of the Vulcan 120 keyboard and its lesser specced siblings following that design ethos, it was inevitable that its other products would also get hit by the sleekness hammer too. Which is no bad thing.
The Kone AIMO then is a 2018 update to this legendary mouse. Available in both black and white, this wired right hander, ergonomically suits those with a palm grip style. It’s big, bulky, yet surprisingly light for the size. Under-touch, the plastics, although not rubberized, feel soft, almost satin under feel. There’s potential for greasy fingerprints to rue the day here, but certainly not without a challenge, and it won’t be difficult to clean either.
There’s a total of three additional bindable buttons on the new Kone, two located above the thumb, and one below it. All within reach, and all easily pressable in a sitch. Then of course you get the additional two DPI buttons, located above the mouse wheel, and that’s it.
Roccat Kone AIMO - Features
The real party piece however stems from the lighting. Roccat’s exceptionally proud of its AIMO lighting suite, and with good reason, they’ve put a serious amount of effort into getting it to work correctly. Not only does it do the usual plethora of RGB patterns and waves, along with syncing with your other products, but it also reacts dynamically to what you’re doing on your desktop. Whether that’s in a firefight in game, or casually browsing the web.
On top of that, with the Kone in particular the lighting looks exceptional, no individual LEDs are visible, the frosted plastic covering the multiple RGB zones, refract the light exceptionally well. It looks clean and sophisticated, and a lot better than any of the other outlandish RGB we’ve seen in the past. Combine that with the soft-satin plastic we mentioned early, and the crisp black accents thrown in from the buttons, scroll-wheel and remainder of the frame, really makes the whole thing pop.
Roccat Kone AIMO - Performance
As far as the sensor goes, what we’re looking at is Roccat’s Owl-Eye optical sensor. With the usual adjustable 12,000 DPI, lift-off distance configuration, 1ms response time and 1000 Hz adjustable polling rate as well, it’s a beauty of a thing. Officially it’s a Pixart 3361, a iteration on the already impressive (and currently regarded as the world’s best sensor), the 3360. What Roccat has done after the fact we can’t place, however with minimal jitter, and angle snapping it does feel like a very competent sensor, made all the more prominent by the overall price point Roccat has achieved with the Kone AIMO. We recommend keeping your DPI settings under 2,500 DPI, as the smoothing above that becomes fairly noticeable, and really hampers your precision, but otherwise it’s a solid bit of kit.
Overall - Should you buy it?
All in all, Roccat’s Kone AIMO is a fantastic iteration on the original design from back in 2007. Its design is clean, crisp and soft to the touch, the lighting solution is impressive, and the overall hardware bundled inside is am absolutely solid addition at this price point. It doesn’t quite meet the super-clean aesthetic Roccat is leaning towards at the minute, and the Roccat logo could use a bit of a revamp to bring it in line with that new style those Hamburg manufacturers are after, but otherwise it looks good, feels good, and performs impeccable.
So who is it for? Well when you consider the ergonomic styling, in conjunction with both the weight, and non swappable braided cable, this mouse is the absolute epitome of a jack of all trades mouse. It’s perfect for those that dive in and out of any and all genres, yet want a mouse that packs pixel perfect precision in the process. For the money it’s hard not to recommend it, with the only mitigating factor being whether or not you like the overall look and feel of it. If you do a bit of everything, and are a fan of the palm grip, the Kone AIMO is well worth a shout.