Tesoro Shrike Mouse Review
Hot on the heels of the first Tesoro headset that I’ve ever tested (Tesoro Kuven), we have the first Tesoro mouse that I’ve ever tested, enter the Tesoro Shrike. The Shrike (and that is right BTW, it’s Shrike not Strike) is a right-handed Laser Gaming mouse with a maximum 8200 DPI. In addition to this the Shrike features eight programmable buttons, a 1.8m braided cable and a weight management system. The Shrike has 128Kb of on-board memory, there’s five supported Profiles, user definable (via software) DPI levels, PC (hard-drive) Profile support with up to five mappings per Profile and Full Colour LED illumination (apparently!).
The Tesoro Shrike came in smart, odd shaped purple ‘n black (Tesoro colours) box with an image on the front showing you the colours that the Shrike’s available in. Starting with the original Shrike in grey at the top, we then have black, white, orange and yellow. The top left corner also highlights the Gaming Grade 8200 DPI Laser sensor with adjustable settings.
The back of the box lists the Shrike’s specifications and features in a multitude of languages (See Specifications/Features below for more detail). There’s also a QR code linking to the Tesoro website as well as an indication of where to obtain the Drivers for the Shrike.
As you can see the box features a lift up lid allowing us to see the Shrike hiding within, the mouse is well protected/packaged under a plastic bubble and well enough presented for you to see the design and the ergonomic shape. Here we also see a reference to Throwing Knives as that’s where the mouse gets its name from: ‘Shrike, a concealed weapon that is use for throwing and considered to be a secret weapon, so its proper use is connected with stealth techniques. Throwing at an opponent is meant to create confusion or a temporary nuisance, allowing you to assume a more assertive position in combat!‘
The inner side of the lid shows an image of the original Shrike at the top, with four images below highlighting the Anti-slip rubber Grip, DPI Button (800/1800/4000/6400/8200) DPI, Gaming Grade 8200 DPI Laser Sensor, Weight System (5g*2, 10g*2). Below this at the base of the lid there’s another six images highlighting the following:
On the left side of the box there’s another image of the original Shrike mouse and a list of specifications (see Specifications/Features below) and on the right side of the box (the same image) Tesoro lists the System Requirements and the Package Contents.
As you can see the Tesoro Shrike is packaged in a plastic tray and covered with a clear plastic bubble (removed for photographic purposes), overall the packaging is adequate for this price point, and it’s always nice to get a look at the product before you open the box!
Inside the box other than the mouse itself we find a Quick Start Guide, Tesoro brochure and a nifty little black box with a Tesoro logo, what could that be? 😉
At the time of writing the Tesoro Shrike is retailing on Amazon for approximately £46 and comes with a 1 year warranty.
courtesy of Tesoro
First impressions of the Tesoro Shrike are very good, helped of course by the fact that it’s orange (my favourite colour). But seriously the Shrike is one good looking mouse, it looks very sleek and purposeful, and immediately (for me) feels comfortable in the hand. The design and quality are of a high level too, from looks alone it would seems that Tesoro have a winner on their hands. Let’s take a look around shall we…
Looking at the left side of the Tesoro Shrike we can see the black rubberized ergonomic thumb grip that’s actually beautifully contoured and nice and grippy (bad word, soz) too. Above that we have two thumb buttons that are some of the best placed that I have seen (well for my bastardized Claw/Palm grip that is). The right side of the Shrike is the same as the left but without the buttons, suggesting that this could have been an ambidextrous mouse, but it isn’t!
Looking at the front of the Shrike we can see the different surface materials used, with a mat black base, a gloss black surround and that smart orange soft touch top. As you can see fit and finish is also very good. Attached in the centre of the mouse we have the captive 1.8m braided cable.
Looking at the back of the mouse we can appreciate the Shrike’s ergonomics and the smart looking Tesoro logo at the back. If you look carefully you can also see a small compartment at the base of the mouse, this is for the Shrike’s weight management system, described in full below.
The top of the Shrike is dominated by its orange soft-touch surface that’s really nice to the touch and offers a good degree of grip also. The central scroll wheel features a rubber tyre allowing for maximum grip, although it’s a little light in operation and the graduations are somewhat subtle. It’s certainly not what you would call a meaty scroll wheel… Behind this there’s a single button that be default alters the DPI levels, but there’s no indication as to what DPI level you have now selected.
Looking at the underside of the Tesoro Shrike we can see the Avago ADNS 9800 Laser sensor bang slap in the centre of the mouse. The mouse features three large glides one at the front and two at the back. But what’s that button for and that hatch…
Now all is revealed, that little black box that we saw in the un-boxing contains the weights (x3 10g & x1 5g) for the weight management system. This is at odds with the packaging that stated (x2 10g & x2 5g)! And that button on the bottom of the mouse allows a tray to pop out (it’s spring loaded BTW) of the back, allowing you to install your chosen weights. It’s a nice little set up to be honest, I installed two weights (x1 10g & x1 5g) in the front of the tray as I was after a little more weight towards the front/centre of the mouse.
|The Tesoro Shrike simply connects by way of its Gold plated USB plug found at the end of the 1.8m braided cable. From that point it’s just simple Plug ‘n Play!|
The Tesoro Shrike mouse was tested using our Test Rig, a fresh installation of Windows 7 64Bit (service pack 1) was installed along with all appropriate Drivers. As no software is supplied with the Shrike (and is required for full operation) version 1.0 of the software was downloaded from here and installed.
The following games were used during testing:
Good Gaming mice are not that hard to come by any more, with such a wide variety of Gaming mice available from a plethora of manufacturers, choosing a Gaming mouse at around £50 finds you spoilt for choice. Again we find ourselves asking the question, why the Tesoro Shrike?
Well let’s start with how the mouse looks; the Shrike is one good looking right-handed mouse IMHO (but then as some of you know I’m a sucker for orange!). But seriously the symmetrical shape and the general look of the mouse is very pleasing to the eye, it’s sleek yet looks purposeful. The top soft touch surface is very good as are the rubber side grips, the overall look is then enhanced by the gloss strip, and further by the thin braided cable.
It’s comfortable too, even with my bastardized claw/palm grip, I had no issues with comfort even over long periods of time (4+ hr Gaming sessions), just general finger fatigue set in. The buttons are also well placed, especially the two thumb buttons, even the two left finger buttons are easy to reach, yet out of the way enough to avoid accidental actuation. The mouse wheel works well enough but is a little light in operation and feel for my own personal taste. The inclusion of the DPI switch (five DPI settings are available) of course is always welcome as is the ability to dial in your own DPI settings. BUT, one thing is missing there’s no way of telling what DPI setting you have selected. There’s lighting (that’s frankly a waste of time as you cant really see it!) for what Mapping you may have selected but that’s pretty useless too! Bottom line is we need a DPI indicator of some sorts, please…
So the Shrike looks good, it’s comfortable and has great button placement, but first (before Gaming) I needed to get dialed in and find my preferred settings. I eventually settled on a 1600 DPI with a Polling Rate of 1000MHz. So, how does that 8200 DPI Laser sensor perform in Game?
The somewhat strange answer to that is, well ok! And I say Ok for a reason as in Game the Tesoro Shrike performed well enough, but I always had an underlying thought that the mouse and its associated sensor wasn’t as accurate as I THOUGHT I was being! There was that feeling that I was often off target on that initial shot and ended up dialing it back in the final seconds. This was also born out in general Windows use too, as I often went for fast clicks to close and item or check multiple items, and again I found that I would often overshoot! This smacks of some form of hardware/software interference between me and the Shrike’s tracking, maybe I’m wrong; but one thing I know is that I still have this feeling as I type this review after using the mouse for 10+ days…
Tesoro’s software has always been functional but often lacked a clean easy to use UI, and the same is still true of the Shrike’s software. It all works well enough but lacks the polish of say Logitech’s or Cougar’s software…
The first screen that pops up on launch shows a nice image of the Shrike mouse and its associated eight programmable buttons. These can then simply be selected and assigned, the usual functions can be assigned from simple keyboard presses to Media commands and Macros. Also note that there’s basic Profile management with each Profile supporting up to five Mappings.
Pressing the large arrow centrally located on the left of the main screen brings up another tab, here you can program Macros and adjust the sensitivity. The Advance section is where you can adjust the five DPI settings and associated lighting to the Mappings and also adjust the left mouse click repeat rate (Shooting Speed), the Polling Rate and the Liftoff Distance. DPI settings can be entered manually, but you will need to enter both X and Y settings. The lighting is a waste of time as the illumination takes place deep inside the body of the mouse and you just cant see it! This feels like it’s a left over setting from another design to me…
Macro recording is simple enough although there’s no support to record mouse functions. Macro timings can be entered manually but cannot record in real time, macros can then be edited allowing extra commands to be added if need be.
It’s all basic stuff and most of the functionality a Gamer needs is here, but I still think Tesoro need to update their UI to make it look a little more professional.
There’s a lot to like about the Tesoro Shrike, the aesthetics, the shape, the comfort and even the button positioning is good. But one of the concerns that I have is regarding its tracking, it’s not bad, but something feels wrong, and that’s not good…
The Tesoro Shrike arrived at pcG in the usual Tesoro coloured (purple) box, with the front of the box showing off a number of coloured Shrikes (Grey, Black, White, Orange & Yellow). Opening the lid of the box allowed us to take a look at our orange sample. And it looks good (ok so I like orange), but the Shrike is a good looking right-handed Gaming mouse for sure.
The shape of the mouse just looks right, it looks like a mouse should look, it’s comfortable too with great button positioning. The top surface treatment of the mouse and the rubber grip sides also help in overall feel. Then there’s the weight management system found at the back of the mouse, yes it’s basic but it’s present and it work’s well enough. Overall the design of the Shrike is very good, apart from the fact that it supports LED lighting that cant be seen, yes that’s right (can’t be seen), go figure!?
But what about the Shrike’s performance, how does the 8200 DPI sensor fare under the strain of non-stop Gaming? The answer is a little odd, as while in Game the tracking of the mouse (@ 1600 DPI) seemed ok, but I always had a feeling I was perhaps having an off day as my aim wasn’t as good as I thought it should be (but that could be just old age of course!). But this feeling remained throughout the ten days that I spent with the mouse, and to make matters worse the feeling was there in Windows too! The bottom line here is that I couldn’t get used to the tracking of the Shrike, it’s not bad by any stretch, but in my mind something wasn’t quite right.
The software provided for the Shrike was adequate, it works well enough and most of the options a gamer wants are there. But the general UI could do with an overhaul, and we’ve been saying that about Tesoro’s software for some time and it’s now long overdue.
The Tesoro Shrike could be a great Gaming mouse as out of the box and on face value, it has a great shape, design is good and the materials used are good. It’s comfortable too, even button placement is very good. But the tracking seems a little off to me, the software needs improvement and if Tesoro want to really promote the Full-Color LED Illumination, then we really should be able to see it! 😉
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Many thanks to Tesoro for providing this sample for review