T-Dagger T-TGM303 Major Gaming Mouse Review

REVIEW

T-Dagger is a fairly recent brand we’ve been having a look at recently, with an offering of peripherals aimed at the budget gamer. Some have offered brilliant value for money, such as the … keyboard, so we’re hoping that the T-Dagger T-TGM303 MAJOR Gaming Mouse will impress us, too. Based in Guangdong, China, Eastern Times Technology is the company behind the brand that is attempting to break into the international market with an increasingly large range of headphones, mice and keyboards, all of which carry attractive prices.

Specifications
Buttons 11
DPI 200 to 8,000 DPI
Maximum Acceleration 20Gs
Polling Rate 1000Hz/500Hz/250Hz/125Hz
Backlighting RGB, 1 zone
Cable 1.8 m braided
Interface USB
Warranty 1 Year

Unboxing

The first thing you notice about the MAJOR when removing it from its box is the device’s width. This is mostly due to the thumb and finger rests on each side of the mouse. The contours for these rests as well as button placement mean that it’s a strictly right-handed mouse, and while it could be used to move the cursor around with the left hand you will find it extremely uncomfortable and most buttons will be out of reach.

The mouse has no shortage of buttons, with a total of 11 available. This comes in the form of the standard left and right clicks, middle click on the scroll wheel, a duo of DPI adjustment buttons below the scroll wheel, a trigger button (which we’ll cover later), and no less than five thumb buttons. Other than the scroll wheel and buttons, there are RGB LEDs in the wheel and at the back of the palm rest as well as a series of LEDs which indicate the current DPI.

The RGB lighting is well spaced for maximum visibility, with the palm rest having vertical bars and a T-Dagger logo which light up. On our sample the left vertical strip bled into the gap between the top and side of the shell in both directions, which was a bit disappointing as it ruined the otherwise neat appearance. The wheel was a better story, with a ring to either side of the middle rubberized strip lighting up. Some mice hide the wheel LEDs at the base of the wheel, so having the wheel itself illuminated was refreshing. The colour transitions were smooth, but not completely uniform. Some shades of green would be slightly more yellow on one side of the mouse than the other. Overall, it’s not a major issue and only visible with certain hues.

The Feel of the Mouse

Once your hand is on the mouse you will find it very comfortable thanks to the contours for all five digits. The shell of the mouse has a matte plastic finish, with the thumb, trigger and DPI adjustment buttons having a rubberized finish to them. The thumb buttons are arranged in a sort of rotated C pattern, where the opening of the C would be facing down. The forward three buttons are easily reached, but the remaining two are very far back and require you to adjust the grip on the mouse in order to be reached. The trigger button is placed at the top left corner of the left click button, and is a sort of cheat button. It activates a triple click with a single press of the button, allowing for controlled burst fire in FPS games. It is worth noting, however, that such buttons are usually banned from eSports and you would therefore not be able to use the MAJOR in a competition.

Next up is the adjustable DPI, which is controlled by the two buttons below the scroll wheel. Each press doubles or halves the DPI, which is indicated by four green LEDs just to the right of the buttons. The don’t light up progressively as with most mice, but rather individually. Only the bottom light being illuminated means you’re running the lowest DPI, only the second from the bottom means second lowest, and so on. The one exception to this is the highest DPI, where all four are illuminated. One thing which might be an annoyance to some is that the DPI doesn’t wrap around, meaning that once you’re at the lowest DPI the lower DPI button doesn’t do anything, and likewise with the highest DPI. I found this was actually not the worst idea, as I could simply mash the DPI up/down button without worrying about overshooting to the highest DPI when trying to select the lowest.

One problem with the mouse is that the surface, while matte, is still quite slippery. Not slippery in the glossy sense, but rather the contours are such that you cannot comfortably squeeze the mouse without losing grip on the right side. This actually goes away with extended gaming sessions, as the sweat from your hand improves your grip. It’s an unusual oddity, as sweaty hands are normally more likely to slip.

The Flip-Side

Flipping the mouse over you will find another button which isn’t featured or documented anywhere, but it allows you to change between two profiles. Due to its placement you won’t be using it for on-the-fly changes as you normally would when, for example, changing between an assault rifle and sniper rifle, but rather for different games or applications altogether.

In addition to this you will find the adjustable weights, which are also not mentioned elsewhere. This seems like a critical omission, as weight is one of the larger deciding factors when picking a comfortable mouse. A twist of the ring removes the weights from the mouse, and you will find eight metal bullets that can be removed individually to get the mouse to the exact weight you’re after. Personally, I prefer a heavier mouse and left all eight in place, but you can lighten the mouse down as much as to about half its shipping weight by removing the bullets.

Software

T-Dagger has done a good job with the software, which has an intuitive layout and the installer weighs in at just over 2 MB. Multiple profiles can be configured, of which two can be selected using the button underneath the mouse. Buttons can be reconfigured, DPI and polling rate can be adjusted, the RGB lighting can be configured using a multitude of effects, the scrolling speed can be adjusted and you can even configure macros. That’s a lot for a mouse that costs little more than many basic office mice.

The DPI can be adjusted between 200 and 8,000 DPI in steps of 100 DPI until you reach 5,000 DPI, after which the steps become 500 DPI increments. Tracking accuracy did suffer a bit at the higher settings, although you’re highly unlikely to use more than around 3,200.

A downside here is that the software is only provided on a mini CD and not downloadable from T-Dagger’s website, meaning that if you don’t have an optical drive or lose the disc you’re out of luck. An email to their support or your retailer will probably get you the software, but it seems a critical omission that you can’t download it directly from their site.

Using the Mouse

When it comes to using the mouse, the accuracy is respectable but not the best. In general Windows use the mouse performed without a hitch, but then it’s a place where minor tracking issues goes mostly unnoticed. Firing up Quake III Arena told a similar but different story, however. It might be an older game, but Quake III Arena is one where mouse accuracy is absolutely critical.

For the majority of the time the mouse performed flawlessly, but over the hours I had one or two situations where the crosshair would jump about 40 degrees in a seemingly random direction. I’d like to put it down to the mousepad, but it is the same mousepad used for all other reviews where I didn’t experience this at all.

Conclusion

The T-Dagger MAJOR is not a perfect mouse, but when one considers the retail price you have to be a little less critical of its flaws. For the price you will be very hard priced to find a mouse that offers RGB lighting, as many buttons and half decent tracking performance. If you’re a gamer with a small budget and after a large feature set, the MAJOR is one of the only contenders. If it weren’t for the occasional tracking issue or QC issues with the body of the mouse it would be a solid contender even when compared to mice double the price.

Pros and Cons

Possibly the best entry to gaming mice Not the easiest to grip with dry hands
Adjustable weight Poor thumb button placement
Plenty of programmable buttons Quality control issues lead to light bleed
Thumb and finger rests built in As good as unusable for left-handed gamers
Very respectable feature set for the price Some quality control issues
Intuitively laid out software Software is not available from T-Dagger’s website

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