BenQ is a household name in the gaming hardware industry and I doubt that there is a gamer unfamiliar with the top quality monitors the company manufactures. However, BenQ has expanded its product offering beyond monitors and unleashed the Zowie series gaming mice that turned out to be a huge success.
The Zowie brand mice are designed especially for first person shooters. If you have ever searched for the best gaming mouse for CS: GO, you must have come across a whole lot of gamers speaking favorably of the brilliant performance of the Zowie mice. Now, I would like to introduce four mice from the Zowie series – FK1, FK2, EC1-A, and EC2-A, respectively. Although they differ slightly from one another, each of them has its unique features that can elevate your gameplay.
At a first glance, the BenQ Zowie mice look like no-frills devices, but the truth is that they are meant for serious gamers who compete at a tournament level. Don’t you think there must be a good reason why many renowned CS: GO pros use Zowie-branded peripherals?
All four Zowie mice included in the review are driverless meaning you can start playing as soon as you connect them to your PC. All of them have sensitivity adjustment switches on the bottom. By the way, some players consider the switch placement a bit inconvenient but I am going to discuss that matter below.
Table of Contents
- Zowie FK-2 Review
- Zowie FK1 Review
- EC1-A and EC2-A Review
Zowie FK-2 Review
When it comes to high precision, Zowie FK2 is the top choice of many renowned esports pros including GMX, hiko, neo, KQLY, and more. If you are looking for a stunning performance and you do not want to spend a small fortune on mediocre device, you should totally consider the FK2.
The Zowie FK2 is one of the best FPS gaming mice in terms of performance and overall comfort. It sports an Avago 3310 sensor, as well as a 3,200 max DPI and an adjustable polling rate of up to 1000Hz. The FK2 does not have acceleration or prediction, which speaks volumes of its performance in first person shooters. The lift off distance is in the range between 1.5mm and 1.8mm. Apparently, BenQ has gone an extra mile in designing a mouse that would meet the needed of every dedicated FPS player. The technical specs speak for themselves, but let’s see what makes it the ultimate weapon of every CS: GO enthusiast.
The FK2 mouse has a rubber coat, which is a slight disadvantage as it gets dirty pretty fast. The granular finish provides an excellent grip, though. The FK2 is a corded mouse that has a rubber cable. Before you condemn the rubber cables and say you prefer braided, I want to tell you that in fact, rubber ones are much more durable than the braided.
The Zowie FK2 gaming mouse tips the scales at 88 grams. It has an ambidextrous design and frankly, I cannot think of many high-quality FPS mice that are suitable for both lefties and righties.
Under the hood, the FK2 houses Huano switches. They are a bit stiffer than the Omrons and it might take you some time to get used to them, but the good news is that the chance of misclicks is considerably reduced.
The mouse also ships with an extra pair of mouse feet, which basically makes it a one-time purchase. I mean, the wear and tear will not be the reason why you will have to replace your FK2 Zowie mouse.
It seems that BenQ has adopted the rule “less is more” and probably that’s the reason why FK2’s design is so minimalistic. The mouse has a total of five buttons; the two thumb buttons are perfectly positioned for quick actuations and offer a great level of resistance.
There is nothing excessive, no extra buttons, no LEDs. Just a modest gaming mouse that would suit the playstyle of every CS: GO gamer, no matter if you load the game from time to time after work or you have ambitions to join the fnatic team.
Overall, the build quality is remarkably good and the plastic body feels solid. The scroll wheel offers good tactile feedback, and has a pleasant rubber surface.
Zowie FK2 Sensor and Polling Rate
The Avago optical sensor offers amazing accuracy. During my tests, I experienced minimal jitter even at high tracking speeds. No angle snapping or frustrating correction whatsoever. If you are a low dpi gamer, you will totally appreciate the fantastic lift off distance, too.
The polling rate as well as the left- and right hand modes can be switched by disconnecting the mouse and then reconnecting it while holding a certain button combination.
The FK2 is a plug and play affair, there is no need to install any software and fiddle with settings.
To wrap up, the Zowie FK2 is not the only game in town. The Corsair Raptor M45, the Mionix Avior 7000, and the SteelSeries Rival mice are also great FPS devices. Still, BenQ Zowie FK2 remains one of my favorite rodents that perform admirably without requiring you to break the bank.
Zowie FK1 Review
First of all, let’s clarify the difference between the FK1 and FK2 mice. The latter is a bit smaller as compared to the FK1. Once again BenQ targeted avid FPS players. Fk1 is an elegant, ambidextrous gaming mouse that comes with a reasonable DPI, decent number of buttons and an insanely accurate optical sensor.
Even if CS: GO is your favorite game I am sure that sometimes you are tempted to try another shooter or even switch to another genre. I assure you that FK1 is a super versatile mouse and apart from FPS, it performs admirably in strategies, RPGs and puzzlers. Well, fine, it might not be as sensitive as those offering a max DPI of 12,000 or even 16,000, but I doubt you will ever need anything close to that.
Zowie FK1 Button Layout
Zowie FK1 has a total of 7 buttons (two more than its FK2 counterpart). It has a right and left button, a scroll wheel, and two buttons from each side of the mouse. The side buttons have perfect travel time.
The scroll wheel is not perfect, though. It gives good feedback on each notch, but it makes a bit of an irritating noise when you scroll quickly. Comfortwise, FK1 is one of my favorites. Even if your hands get sweaty, the rough surface will help you maintain your grip.
The DPI changing switch is to be found on the mouse bottom, which can be a bit distracting for users as they have to flip over the mouse and adjust the settings to their liking.
It is not surprising why the Zowie FK1 and its cousin the Zowie EC1-A are among the most commonly used mice for CS: GO. The FK1 gliders are huge and ensure a smooth gliding on a variety of surfaces, which therefore contributes to your aim consistency in your favorite FPS game.
Zowie FK1 Sensor
You know that the high-quality sensor can make a huge difference. You may purchase the sturdiest gaming mouse but if you do not pay attention to the sensor, you should prepare for a huge disappointment.
The DPI switch is found on the mouse bottom and the LED indicator lets you know on which DPI setting the mouse is currently set at. I found the FK1 to be an exceptionally accurate rodent, but that’s not very surprising given the fact that it uses an Avago sensor.
As for the Avago 3310 sensor the FK1 features, I consider it the best sensor for CS: GO and FPS games, in general. When you combine the flawless sensor with the perfect design and the ambi shape, and the good switches, you get a great gaming mouse that can take your performance to a whole new level.
It is important to note that as an optical mouse, it works best with a mouse pad, preferably a cloth one. If you are wondering how to determine the best gaming mouse pad, take a look at these handpicked mats.
FK1 – Plug and Play
Zowie FK1 does not require software. You can start playing as soon as you take it out of the box. If you are primarily into FPS, you don’t actually need a whole lot of customization options. The simplicity, the comfort, and the sensor is all that counts. Still, if you prefer your gaming mouse to have some more advanced features, I would recommend the Razer DeathAdder Chroma or the all-time classics SteelSeries Rival 300.
To cut a long story short, the FK1 is just flawless in every aspect. The perfect tracking speed, the frictionless gliding and the brilliant switches response has cemented it a spot in my list of top 5 best gaming mice for first person shooters.
Is Zowie FK1 Worth the Purchase?
If you have read the FK1 review this far, you must be wondering is Zowie BenQ FK1 a really good mouse and how come I define it as the best mouse for FPS given the fact that there are so many products with better specs?
I don’t like spending money hand over fist and I believe you don’t like it either, but let’s stop bubbling about how budget conscious I am and go straight to the point. How good the FK1 is as compared to its fancy rivals?
The truth is that each mouse excels in a particular area. In the case with Zowie, you get exactly what you pay for. As the saying goes: “Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.”
In this respect, the FK1 is devoid of all distracting bells and whistles and provides you with exactly what you need for a smooth gaming session.
The year 2010 saw the release of the Zowie EC series and these mice have quickly become the favorite gaming weapons of casual players and fps pros alike. Back in 2015, BenQ improved its lineup and introduced the EC-A series … and the rest is history.
EC1-A and EC2-A Review
It would not be excessive to say that the EC-A mice have a special status in the e-sports gaming community. They are recognized as the best mice for CS: GO but I dare to define them as the best mice for shooters in general.
Technically speaking, the only difference between the EC1-A and the EC2-A is the size. The EC2-A is a bit smaller.
Unlike their FK siblings, the EC-A mice are designed for right-handed users only. They are so comfortable that they just act as a natural extension to your hand.
Once again, the DPI button is located on the bottom. For novice players that would be a bit inconvenient, but if you are an old hand at playing shooters, the DPI switch placement would not be a bother. As for the switches and the scroll wheel, they are just perfect. I could not find any fault with them.
EC1-A and EC2-A Sensor and Tracking Capabilities
The mice from the EC-A series are tailored to relieve your competitive gaming itch. They are equipped with an Avago A3310 sensor. If you have ever used a mouse with the same sensor, you must be familiar with its flawless performance. The sensor is the same used in the FK mice.
EC-1-A and EC2-A Button Layout and Build Quality
The EC-1-A and EC2-A mice are lightweight (93 grams on average) and yet sturdy. They employ Huano switches, which are a bit more difficult to press as compared to the Omrons, but as mentioned earlier, they reduce their stiffness reduces the chance of a mislick.
The EC-A mice have a total of five buttons each. During my tests, I noticed that BenQ has definitely handled the button lag of the main buttons.
The mice have a rubber cord, that is both super flexible and a bit thinner than the older cables.
Overall, the EC-1-A and EC2-A mice are among my personal favorites. They are very comfortable, the plug and play affair saves time; the lift off distance is low but can be changed if needed. The same applies to the polling rate and DPI.
In general, Zowie mice are associated with simplicity but what makes them stand out from the rest is the insane attention to detail designers have paid.
I wish the EC-1-A and EC2-A were suitable for other genres, too, but currently, they are strictly FPS mice. Frankly, I don’t have anything negative to say about the EC1-A series and the Zowie mice in general.
Zowie EC-A vs Razer Deathadder Chroma
If you are a diehard FPS gamer, you must be wondering how Zowie mice can be competitive to the well-known Deathadder Chroma. All models are suitable for FPS games but each of them excels in a particular area.
It is also important to note that Zowie’s popularity across the United States is not as vast as Razer’s and many gamers prefer to play it safe and get a Razer-branded rodent. I am not saying this is a wrong approach, though. Still, I am going to draw a parallel between the Zowies and the Razer mice and let you decide which one best fits your playstyle.
I have searched far and wide for players’ feedback and what I found just came to confirm my personal impressions.
The Razer Chroma is praised for the PMW3389 sensor. As a matter of fact, you may come across players who swear by the Chroma sensor, and you will also stumble upon people claiming that the 3310 Avago sensor has no rival.
The Chroma also has smoothing while the EC2-A mouse has more subtle curves. Some players consider the sharper edges of the Deathadder a bit uncomfortable.
The EC1-A mice have some minor issues on certain dpi settings and they also offer lower max DPI of 3200. In comparison, the Deathadder Chroma has a max dpi of 10,000. The Elite version offers the whopping 16,000 max DPI.
Razer peripherals are customizable via the Razer software, and you can save your settings to the cloud, while the Zowie buttons are non-programmable. The Deathadder also has 7 buttons but comes with 50g acceleration. The Chroma is slightly heavier than the Zowies. Other than that, the Chroma and the Zowie mice deliver the same performance. They also fall in the same price category, so it all comes down to your personal preferences.