Roccat Kova 2016 Edition Review

Roccat Kova 2016 Edition Review


Such is the consistently excellent designs that come from the Roccat factory it isn’t easy for them to release new products that change the game. After all the original Kova was excellent, the Kova [+] was too, and so is the Kova 2016. It’s definitely the situation whereby if you want a Kova then you might as well get the most modern one, although if you already own one then it’s more difficult to justify the move up the ladder.

However, most of you don’t already have a Kova so what does it bring to the party?

Firstly the ergonomics are outstanding. Supporting both left and right handed users it’s important to have symmetry and the Kova, logo aside, is mirrored nicely. It’s supremely comfortable, capable of being used for far longer than any health and safety brigade would want you to do without causing fatigue or discomfort. The positioning of the buttons are all well within easy reach without getting in the way. If you’re the type of gamer who has your fingers splayed then it’ll take a little adjustment to not catch the front side buttons, but otherwise you have six buttons in addition to the LMB/RMB, scroll wheel (which is beautifully smooth in action) and the profile/DPI switch button.

Lighting is perhaps the most understated element of the Kova. The side portion of the scroll wheel, white in the above photo, and a small bar at the base of the rear are the only elements that light up and they’re not staggeringly bright as you could see from the preceding page. The colours are good as long as you don’t stray too far from the regular hues.

Although we were unable at time of review to test the smartphone app portion of the Roccat Swarm driver, the main driver itself is extremely powerful and easy to use. You can tweak everything your heart desires, from profiles, multiple DPI stages, lighting and even have automatic profile switching when loading a certain title. Speaking of titles the Swarm comes complete with plenty of macros designed for the most popular titles, saving valuable time getting up and running.

The only slight negative we have is the move to the 3500DPI optical sensor. Not because the sensor is bad, it is smooth and responsive with the accuracy you would expect. Rather we’re confused as to why Roccat have taken the decision to go with interpolation up to 7000DPI – the sensor is 3500DPI natively – rather than just install an optical sensor with a higher native resolution. The interpolation is some of the best we’ve ever seen, but we’d always rather the sensor do it itself rather than rely on software, particularly when pixel-perfect accuracy is so important.

The Roccat Kova 2016 Edition is built like a tank, supremely comfortable in use and comes with a raft of features without becoming complicated or losing the ease of use. Keep the sensor within the native DPI and it unhesitatingly wins our OC3D Gold Award.

Thanks to Roccat for supplying the Kova 2016 for review. Discuss in in our OC3D Forums.