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Case, Power Supply, Fan Reviews
  Product:     X-Trac Monster Mats & Accessories  
  Price:     $18.95-$29.95 (CAN) / $14-$22 (U.S)  
  Supplied By:     ADPmods
  Author:     Shennon
  Date:     January 31st, 2004
  Rating:     star star star star star star star star star

MODTHEBOX would like to thank Anand from ADPmods for sending the X-Trac Monster Mats & Accessories for review.

Introduction:

The gaming landscape has changed over the last several years catering to enthusiasts with a wide variety of accessories and products. There are currently specialized products designed specifically for the gaming community which cover everything from transporting a rig to a LAN party as well as improving gaming performance. Mouse pads have always been a small key component for most computer users, whether the principal use is for gaming or for standard desktop applications. X-TracPads has been developing a series of mouse pads based on its patent hexagonal print design. The hexagonal print design improves mouse tracking capabilities by eliminating cursor fade and jitter. Today in the MTB Labs, we will be evaluating the new X-Track Monster Mats as well as a selection of X-Trac gaming accessories.

Specifications:

The X-Trac Monster Mats are the latest product to be developed by X-TracPads.com and have been designed exactly like the Zoom, HS and HS Pro versions. The Monster Mats utilize a hexagonal pattern printed on the surface of the product at a resolution of 1200 dpi. Here are some specifications taken from the ADPmods and X-TracPads website:

X-Trac Hammer - Key Specifications:
X-Trac Hammer: Manufactured by X-TracPads
Size: 11" X 17"
Thickness: Credit card thin
Surface: Hard plastic, slightly textured to provide some feedback
Pattern: Hexagonal with random dot configuration to ensure precise control (patent pending)
Backing: Sure Grip IIô ultra thin rubber compound
Durability: Extremely durable if properly taken care of

X-Trac Ripper - Key Specifications:
X-Trac Ripper: Manufactured by X-TracPads
Size: 11" X 17"
Thickness: 1/8"
Surface: Smooth cloth and extremely flexible
Pattern: Hexagonal with random dot configuration to ensure precise control (patent pending)
Backing: Sure Gripô rubber compound
Durability: Extremely durable if properly taken care of

X-Trac Mouse Bungee, X-Trac DGel Wrist Rest, X-Trac Mad Dotz - Key Specifications:
X-Trac Mouse Bungee, X-Trac DGel Wrist Rest, X-Trac Mad Dotz: Manufactured by X-TracPads
X-Trac Bungee Size: 4.5" (H) x 3.25" (W) x 4 5/8" (D)
X-Trac Bungee Color: Black
X-Trac Bungee Surface: Hard plastic
X-Trac Bungee Backing: Clear plastic feet
X-Trac DGel Wrist Rest: Shaped perfectly for most computer gamers
X-Trac DGel Wrist Rest: "Sticky" rubber compound that will grip almost any desktop surface
X-Trac Mad Dotz Size: Approx. 5" in length surface
X-Trac Mad Dotz Size: Slick high grade and Semi-Teflon coated bronzed tape backing

X-Trac Monster Mats & Accessories
Click image for larger view
X-Trac Monster Mats & Accessories
Click image for larger view
 

The X-Trac Ripper Monster Mat is a massive foam back cloth mouse pad measuring 11" X 17". The product is larger than most mouse pads currently on the market and should give most consumers plenty of pad to freely move the mouse around on. Due to the size of the X-Trac Ripper, this means that the product will also occupy a fair amount of real estate on your desk. The foam and cloth combination provides the Ripper with a thickness of 1/8" and adds a level of flexibility. The X-Trac Hammer measures the same size as the X-Trac Ripper but is designed with an ultra thin thickness of a credit card. The X-Trac Hammer is comprised of hard plastic that has been slightly textured to provide some feedback. Consumers should note that anything located underneath the X-Trac Hammer will be felt through the surface of the mouse pad.

X-Trac Monster Mats & Accessories
Click image for larger view
X-Trac Monster Mats & Accessories
Click image for larger view
 
Like all of the previously released X-Trac mouse pads, the Monster Mats also have the logo and model name in the lower right corner. The surface of both the Ripper and Hammer feature a hexagonal pattern that has been has printed at a 1200 dpi resolution. The design inside each of the hexagons has been printed in a random dot pattern to eliminate cursor fade and jitter. The back of the Ripper consists of a foam type rubber glued to a printed cloth sheet. The foam type rubber adds a level of padding and prevents the mat from slipping during use. The X-Trac Ripper can also be easily rolled up for transport and thrown into a bag. The back of the X-Trac Hammer uses an ultra thin rubber compound called the Sure Grip II which prevents it from slipping while maintaining a thin profile.

X-Trac Monster Mats & Accessories
Click image for larger view
X-Trac Monster Mats & Accessories
Click image for larger view
 
To give you an idea of how large the Monster Mats are, I have placed each one next to the original Ratpadz Mousing Surface designed by Kyle Bennett of [H]ardOCP fame. The original Ratpadz is small in comparison measuring at 9.25" by 11.5" which re-enforces my previous comments that you need plenty of desk space to accommodate the Monster Mats.

One of the best ways to test out any new mouse pad is to game. I will be comparing performance in a few games against Compadís Speed-Pad, the Ratpadz Mousing Surface and a generic well used cloth mouse pad that are usually given out with a new computer. Before testing on the various surfaces with my Microsoft USB IntelliMouse Explorer and Logitech OEM USB Pilot Wheel Optical, I cleaned off both bottom feet using some lighter fluid. The important part of the test is to feel of the surface and gauge the accuracy of the mouse pads. In the popular Half-Life mod, Counterstrike using the popular Podbot, I found that the Ripper didnít have the same glide that the Hammer has, in fact, the glide on the Hammer was so smooth, that it seemed almost effortless to move.

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