Choosing a mouse to use has now become a demanding and “scary” activity. In fact, we often find ourselves in front of mice with numerous functions, buttons and various adjustments aimed at giving a more articulated experience of controlling our PC. Although many of these features are appreciated by many users, they are not strictly necessary for a good control experience. It is precisely for this reason that Asus, with its TUF Gaming M4 Air, has decided to go back to the foundations and present a simple and sober, ultra-light and solid mouse.
Ultralight and resistant
The Asus TUF Gaming M4 Air is an interesting looking mouse, even by modern standards. While made up of the usual hard plastics that make it look well made, it also features an open back with an intriguing triangular motif that allows you to see the underlying PCB. This detail, in my opinion, initially gives a sense of cheapness to the device, since the lightness of the mouse and the visible PCB make it seem l’Asus M4 Air almost like a toy.
In fact, the open design of the device, as pleasing to the eye, sometimes makes the mouse rough and “insecure” to the touch, but over time you will get used to it. The same triangular motif extends even on the sides of the M4 Air, making it comfortable to hold, but a nightmare to clean – good luck trying to get any dust or dead skin out of the inside of the mouse! Perhaps it is for this very reason that Asus has come up with one of its usual security features: the Bacterial Guarda special silver ion coating applied to the entire mouse, which inhibits the growth of bacteria by more than 99% over a 24-hour period.
In any case, what matters is comfort, and I can assure you that the Asus M4 Air adapts well to any type of grip and in general it is very pleasant to use, especially if you have large or medium hands, like mine. As for the weight, the M4 Air is the lightest mouse I’ve ever used, weighing in at just 47g. This practically cuts the mass of the competition in half and results in an incredibly fast gaming experience. Also, the device’s button selection is smaller than the competition, with a simple six-button setup, which makes it easier, because let’s face it: do we all really need 4 programmable side buttons in every mouse?
The Kailh GM 4.0 switches on the right and left keys they give satisfying and loud feedback; I couldn’t imagine a better click for me personally. Mice 1 and 2 have almost no preemptive travel, but have some subsequent travel, which didn’t bother me at all during gameplay. The side buttons are also supposed to be sort of Kailh switches, feeling extremely tactile, solid, and well-placed, albeit less sensitive than the face buttons. The mouse wheel, on the other hand, is a bit mushy, but does its job. But the most important part of a mouse is the sensor itself, which Asus decided to place horizontally under the M4 Air. Whether or not this strange decision had an impact, the sensor proved to be precise and smooth, sensitive to even the slightest and most precise movements.
For once in my life I was actually happy with the stock mouse feet. These skates are extremely smooth on the mat surfaces.
The only improvement that Asus could make would be to redesign the front of the mouse in order to transform the two smaller skates into a single large skate, in order to improve the stability and fluidity of the product.
There is no lighting on the mousewhich makes it rather ambiguous, given the external shell completely open, but this does not mean that it cannot be customized through the use of software.
As for the software, the Asus M4 Air uses Asus’ Armory Crate software, that allows you to conveniently reprogram mouse functions, change DPI in four steps and apply any firmware updates.
Compared to other companion software, Armory Crate isn’t intuitive to use and lacks several features that the competition has, such as numerous installable plugins.
As a 47g mouse made by ASUS, I expected the M4 Air to be cheap and creaky, the cable not flexible enough for my liking, lift distance or DPI drift to be an issue, and the skates were to be replaced. However, I was wrong on every single point I listed. The quality of the product is tangible: the M4 Air is a mouse that is worth all the 48 euros requested by ASUS and represents the standard for products in the same price range. With an attractive and comfortable design, the strength of this TUF product lies in its simplicity.
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