Along with the COUGAR 200K keyboard we recently reviewed here at FoS, we also got our hands on the COUGAR 200M gaming mouse. As with the 200K, the 200M also falls within the budget gaming range, something that COUGAR has found some success with here in our local markets. Whereas most gaming mouses these days have pricing starting around the R500 mark and upwards, way upwards, the 200M has an RRP of R220, although if you search for a better deal, you could potentially find one for a sub-R200 price.
Build and Design
The 200M has a very minimalistic design as opposed to your typical gaming mouse. While it is very basic, there are some added features geared towards enhancing your game experience. The unit has a rubber coating for anti-slip grip, especially useful during extended gaming periods. The unit is not what you’d consider as ambidextrous, as it designed more toward right handed users, but that isn’t to say that if you’re left handed the mouse will be unusable. Since the unit is quite small, measuring 120x74x41mm and weighing just 110g, the suggested grip style would be Tip Grip. If, however, you have small to medium sized hands, you should still be comfortable using it with Palm Grip.
There are two colour variants to choose from, the Orange and Black Editions. The Black Edition, as the name suggests, is almost all black. There are a few orange traces on the wheel, and the COUGAR logo that lights up once connected. As for the Orange Edition, the side grips are also both luminous orange, along with the frames, which extends in some level to the bottom of the device. The bottom of the unit has three “low friction” feet, two smaller towards the front, and one larger piece at the rear. COUGAR make use of a 1.5m braided cable to prevent tangling, and removes the stickiness factor that always seems to creep in when using rubber cables. The buttons use Omron switches for better clicking speed and longevity, with up to 5 million clicks. Apart from the standard left/right buttons, there is also a DPI toggle button behind the wheel, which also double as a button itself, with two more thumb buttons on the left of the unit, set to back and forward keys by default. Overall, the design and comfort are fairly reasonable, and I had no real difficulty using it for prolonged use.
Performance and Features
As with the 200K, the 200M is also a true plug-and-play device, with no client software to control any features of the mouse. Instead, users are required to use the default settings until such time as the software does become available in the future. There aren’t all that many buttons that need to be configured in any case. That being said, the defaults are set reasonably, for average usage. The 2000 DPI sensor offers 125Hz, 8ms polling, and can be switched using the DPI toggle, choosing from either 800, 1600 or 2000dpi. For day-to-day usage, I preferred using the 1600dpi setting, and bumped it up to 2000dpi whenever I jumped into gaming mode.
While the COUGAR 200M is considered a budget mouse at just R220, it comes across as more than just that. With its braided cabling, gold-plated USB connector, logo LEDs, and Omron switches, the unit has much more value than it suggests it would, especially considering that your standard run-of-the-mill mouse can fetch around R100. Although this is a gaming mouse, the 200M cannot be compared to more seasoned professionals like Razer, Logitech, Mad Catz (R.A.T.), or SteelSeries, who all provide higher-end devices, well above this price bracket. There’s no doubting why COUGAR has slowly started building a reputation amongst gamers on a budget (and even those who aren’t, with high end products of their own) with some good products, and really competitive prices.
[It is worth noting that some viewers have complained about some of their devices having physical defects, but I cannot imagine that this is a pandemic across their range of devices.]