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Everglide Giganta Mouse Surface


When I had heard that Ratpadz had been released I quipped to a friend that I thought the mousepad wars had started. Little did I know how true that was at the time. Kyle Bennet had seen an idea and improved on it in a linear fashion. There was no exponential explosion in technology here, just recognition that an idea could be improved on. Obviously the folks at Everglide took his challenge seriously. Previously they had their original pad and what was then the new "Attack Pad". The second volley of this war has been fired and Everglide has answered to Kyle's shot across their bow and released the "Giganta".

Features:

  • 9.5 inches tall x 11.5 inches wide
  • Durable hard plastic construction
  • Several rubber feet to hold it in place
  • Easy Maintenance

First Impressions:

The "Limited Edition Giganta" was shipped to me for evaluation. The only thing that distinguishes the normal version from the reviewed unit is color. The normal pad is shipped in black with the same graphic on the pad as the blue unit I evaluated. Other than the less than rectangular shape the other major identifier of this pad is its cutout at the bottom. The Ratpad cutout extends throughout the bottom of the board while the Giganta cutout is the same as the older Attack Pad cutout. I'll be quite honest and state that I prefer the cutout on the Ratpad. I found it more comfortable with extended game play. But the cutout comparison isn't quite complete. Here's where Everglide scores a point in this department too. They offer a padded wrist rest for $7.95 at their site that fits the shape of the cutout on their boards. While I didn't have the wrist rest for testing someone with chronic wrist pain may find that a great help for him or her.

A quick look at my Ratpad review shows the Ratpad and Everglide share identical measurements. That's on paper. Look at my pictures and you'll see the Giganta laying in its glory on top of the Ratpad. This clearly demonstrates that the rectangular shape of the Ratpad extends past the Giganta in a few areas. I won't argue with the shape of the Giganta as it is aesthetically pleasing, but couldn't it be just a little larger?

Not being one to sit idly on this subject I spent countless hours without sleep thinking about this very problem and then the solution hit me like a ton of bricks. 11.5" x 9.5" fits in a legal sized envelope that can be shipped through the Postal Service. That's right folks, the size of your precision mousing surface was determined long ago by what a mailman can fit easily in his bag and the cost of $3.20 in postage. Before I incite a riot keep in mind that those dimensions are actually large and very adequate for the job.

Very close visual inspection reveals that the grain on the Giganta isn't as rough as on the Ratpad. That would probably account for my sensation that it was easier to play games using the Ratpad than the Giganta. Another interesting note - both pads have been through equal washes in the kitchen sink - the Giganta developed a couple of scratches on its surface while the Ratpad continues to look brand new. This has not affected the use of the Giganta in any way but it is a concern for long time use. I noticed the Giganta only features 5 rubber feet on its bottom while the Ratpad is equipped with 8. The Giganta didn't move at all for me in testing, but it seems that would be a great place not to economize.

The Test:

Whenever I evaluate a product like this the problem occurs to me: How will I explain the sensations I feel through my fingertips adequately to someone who is reading a review? My answer is to frag away for a few hours and descrive my experience. I found the Giganta to be comfortable in Quake III and a vast improvement over a normal cloth mousepad. The surface is excellent, but I think the Ratpad and its coarser grain is slightly better. A strange problem I experienced involved the shape of the pad. I just couldn't get over those two points sticking out the bottom of the Giganta. My wrist could not comfortably "float" over this area. A strange bonus to the weird cutout is that I learned to anchor my wrist to those points while using a railgun. That improved my stability quite a bit and helped me to score some impressive railgun scores. I'll say it now clearly: If you are an avid railgunner then go with the Giganta, everyone else will prefer the Ratpad. I didn't have the optional wrist rest so I can't comment if that would make a significant difference in gaming performance.

Pros:

  • It's big!
  • A railgunner's delight
  • Stayed absolutely still even after a couple of hours of heated battle
  • They offer an optional wrist rest pad

Cons:

  • The cutout shape is not for everyone
  • The surface appears to be less sturdy than the Ratpad

This is a good product and when compared to a regular mousepad it is a fantastic one. Unfortunately for Everglide the Ratpad pulls ahead in a few areas. The cutout probably won't change, and it may actually be superior if you are willing to spend the extra cash for the optional wrist rest. Initially I thought I would have experienced identical surfaces with these pads but there is indeed a small, but noticable, difference. The regular Giganta retails for $18.95 at their site, which is identical to the Ratpad. The limited edition unit is $21.95. I don't have a problem with recommending this product, especially to someone who is using a regular mousepad. However, for my purposes I preferred the Ratpad.

Reference: Everglide

Victor Oshiro
Victor@Targetpc.com
02/25/00




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