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August 04, 2015

ASUS ROG Whetstone Gaming Mousepad Review


Since 2014, we've seen ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) attempts to further expand their brand with gaming peripherals such as the ROG Gladius Gaming Mice and ROG GR8 Console PC. Aside from the ROG branding, these products also have something else in common - the Mayan inspired detailing. 


In today's review, we're taking a closer look at the latest ROG gaming mouse pad that has the very same Mayan inspired detailing, the ROG Whetstone gaming mouse pad. A whetstone is a stone used for sharpening knives and other cutting tools. In the gaming world, deft, precise control often makes the difference between victory and defeat. Having a high performance gaming mouse isn't enough, ROG Whetstone is a gaming weapon that gives you the edge for ultimate performance.

This mouse pad is touted as the first ROG hybrid silicone-fabric mouse pad that was designed with inputs from Taipei Assassins, not the ones from the creed brotherhoods, but a professional eSports team. According to ASUS, the Whetstone incorporates solid-bonding and heat-sealing techniques for a durable, high-quality finish. 

(The SRP of the ROG Whetstone is yet to be decided while this review is being prepared and we'll update the final SRP when it's available)

Specifications

Unboxing

ASUS has taken the usual approach to keep things as simple as possible without losing the premium and elegant touch of ROG.


Brief introduction on the features of the ROG Whetstone printed on the side of the box.


The content of the box is rather simple as only the ROG Whetstone and a piece of ROG sticker is what you'd get from the box. 


At close range, we can see the laser-cut ROG logo as mentioned on the box but our concern is more onto the Mayan inspired detailing on the fabric which ASUS boasts for its pixel precise control. 


The bottom layer of the ROG Whetstone is made of silicon instead of rubber which ASUS claims to minimize the rubber smell that is commonly found on cloth type mouse pad with rubber base while being able to provide sufficient amount of grip to the surface you game on.


We take a closer look at the texture of the silicon base, certainly looks promising.

User Experience

Test is conducted with FPS games such as Crysis 3, Far Cry 4, Call of Duty : Advanced Warfare with one of ROG's latest gaming mice, the ROG Sica to see if the Mayan inspired detailing makes any difference when compared to the usual cloth mouse pads we normally use. After hours spent on the gaming test, we can conclude that the difference is barely noticeable. Though the gliding experience is pretty good in overall and no noticeable jitters nor skipping despite of its uneven surface.

Before we move to the conclusion, here's another finding that we think is what makes the ROG Whetstone a standout among other cloth mouse pads. Most cloth gaming mouse pads has a foamy rubber sheet as the base that somehow absorbs the sweat from your palms that penetrates through the fabric and by the end of the day, will leave behind some odor no matter how hard you try to wash it. The ROG Whetstone however, will not have such issue and it's all thanks to the silicone base. Unlike the foamy rubber sheet used on most cloth gaming mouse pad, the silicone sheet doesn't have those tiny spaces to trap the sweat that went through the fabric. Hence, all you need to do is clean up the fabric and the odor is definitely going to be a whole lot lesser (or none).  


Final Thoughts
Despite of its unique uneven surface, the ROG Whetstone has proven itself to be a pretty outstanding gaming mouse pad - The ROG Sica gaming mouse doesn't have any issue to glide smoothly on its surface and tracking was excellent with no visible jitters and the best part, easily washable and leaves behind minimal to no odor compared to most cloth mouse pads in the market.

Pros 
  • Heat treated edges that further enhance the durability against fraying edges
  • Slick and seamless surface that gives a very pleasant mouse glide experience
  • Excellent tracking, no skipping nor jitters noticed
  • Silicone base that doesn't absorbs sweat and leave behind almost no odor after giving it a wash
Cons

  • The Mayan inspired detailing is a little irritating to the touch over time
  • The silicone base is not as soft to the touch as the foamy rubber base that we all used to

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