The HyperX Pulsefire Dart defines 'premium'; it's laced with a sense of quality that becomes obvious as soon as you get your hands on it. The shell is constructed from a luxurious, smooth rubber. It features padded leatherette grips running along either side. Matte black accents straddle each flank below a split-button design. In other words, the Dart works hard to earn its price-tag.
But what about performance? Appearances are only skin deep, after all. Fortunately, the HyperX Pulsefire Dart impresses in that regard as well. Although it stumbles here and there, this isn't a mouse you'll regret investing in.
That shouldn't come as a surprise. HyperX has a track-record with handsome pieces of kit that also perform admirably. For example, the HyperX Pulsefire Dart's more affordable cousin - the HyperX Pulsefire Surge - manages to give off an air of luxury despite its lower cost. If you're in North America, anyway. Despite being $99 in the US (around AU$150 for Australia), the HyperX Pulsefire Dart is £110 in the UK. That's an excessive markup when current conversion rates suggest that it should be hovering nearer the £80 mark.
Still, at least you're getting a quality gaming mouse for your trouble. Even though its 16,000 DPI sensor and six programmable buttons aren't out of the ordinary, Qi wireless charging, leatherette grips, and an ergonomic shape are. If anything, it's a shot across the bow of Razer's Mamba Wireless mouse; it has a similar shape, function, and design. And for my money, the HyperX Pulsefire Dart is more comfortable.
Taking cues from its predecessor (the HyperX Pulsefire Raid), the Dart has a slightly curved shell that's suitable for all grip-types. The leatherette grips are equally snug, firm enough to withstand wear and tear yet soft to the touch. Meanwhile, the rubber coating is engineered for maximum comfort. Honestly, it just feels nicer than normal matte plastic.
The HyperX Pulsefire Dart is pleasant to use, in other words, regardless of whether you're playing Fortnite or working in the office. Which you won't mind doing, by the way; a mature, classy design and the fact that it's not weighed down with RGB makes this a good choice for work as well as gaming.
When it comes to the latter, you won't be disappointed. Omron switches result in a firm click that's great in action. Right-clicking to direct my character around the map on DOTA 2 was oddly pleasing, while the left button added a comforting weight to sword swings as we wore down our enemy's guard in Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.
Even the side buttons passed with flying colors; they're tactile and satisfying. When combined with handy Qi wireless charging and a swift 2.4GHz connection that allows for that all-important 1ms response rate, it's clear that the HyperX Pulsefire Dart doesn't skimp on features.
Sure, the 50-hour battery life is average and we would have preferred a higher DPI rate to bring it in line with the competition. But realistically, 16,000 is more than enough. We barely had to move to get a bead on enemies in Apex Legends, for instance, allowing us to target foes with little more than a flick of a wrist.
Or at least, we were able to eventually. It's odd that the device is set to 800, 1,600, or 3,200 DPI increments out of the box. That's a fraction of what it's capable of, and far below what most gamers would want.
You can obviously change all this via the HyperX Ngenuity software, but having to boot it up and fiddle behind the scenes in the first place - no matter how easy that is - is something of a faff. Don't hide one of your selling points behind a settings screen, please.
The scroll wheel leaves something to be desired as well. In stark contrast to the main buttons, it feels somewhat hollow and light. The click is still fantastic, but spinning it can be distractingly noisy unless you're moving it in small increments. It's the one aspect of the HyperX Pulsefire Dart we weren't happy with. We couldn't help focusing on it when zooming in on units during Total War: Warhammer, for instance.
Fortunately, it's not a capital offence. The rest of the HyperX Pulsefire Dart is thoroughly excellent, and we put in hours of use at our offices and at home. In short, it's a fine gaming mouse with plenty to recommend it.
Buy it if...
You want a comfortable, premium mouse that doesn't cost the earth
The Pulsefire Dart is one of the nicer gaming mice I've had the pleasure of using; it's comfortable and satisfying in equal measure, regardless of whether you're gaming or working. Those leatherette sides really elevate it.
Your desk is a mess of wires
Naturally, one of the big selling points of the HyperX Pulsefire Dart is its wireless functionality. Many gamers will shy away from that, but rest assured that this pointer seems every bit as responsive as a wired alternative.
You want a good all-rounder
There's a lot to be said for a mouse that straddles the world of work and gaming - it's better value for money. Although the HyperX Pulsefire Dart doesn't pack features seen on more specialised gaming mice, it's perfect for the majority of users.
Don't buy it if...
You want a great scroll wheel
We're a bit gutted that the scroll wheel isn't better on the Dart; it feels too light and noisy in use. This lets down what is otherwise a great product.
You'd prefer loads of programmable buttons
Want to program lots of macros for an MMO? Forget it - the HyperX Pulsefire Dart simply isn't cut out for that. Which isn't a criticism, of course. It's not designed to target that audience.
You're in the UK and want a good deal
So, about that UK price-tag. It's almost offensively expensive compared to the US cost, and we're not entirely sure why.
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