Ninjutso Katana Review – A Modern Intellimouse

Ninjutso made a splash on the scene with their first release, the popular ergo wireless OOX. The Katana is a more traditional approach, a wired design with an excellent ambi shape that will appeal to larger hands who still want a lighter weight.

Measurements (L x W x H)

125 x 60.5 x 39mm

Weight

59g

Unboxing and Extras

There isn’t anything too special about the unboxing with just a simple box and documentation included.

Design and Build Quality

The shape of the Kitano might feel instantly familiar to those who’ve tried the Microsoft Intellimouse Optical but for most it’s going to feel like a departure from the recent competition on the market. The shell is solid and light at 58g but it’s almost deceptive as the shape is tailored to medium to large hands. After reviewing lots of smaller ambis this year, it’s refreshing to see an approach for those who prefer a thicker design.

The minimalist design offers up a PBT-style coating and minimal branding with just a logo hit on the bottom of the mouse. The shell feels very solid and offered up no flex, creaks or any signs of weakness. There’s no bottom flex present on my copy and the stress relief at the front of the mouse nicely keeps the cable out of the way.

The weight comes in at just 58g but it doesn’t seem that light just playing with this mouse and that’s not a bad thing. The larger shape and solid frame gives this mouse a lot of stability so it allows players to maintain steady aim and grip while still throwing this thing around the mousepad.

The shape itself lends itself to a claw or palm grip thought larger hands might be able to still fingertip this as well. I was able to find a comfortable grip pretty easily although it was on the longer side for my claw grip. The polling rate and DPI can be switched on the bottom of the mouse which makes it easy to use this mouse on the go without having to install the optional software.

The bottom of the mouse features two larger mouse skates and a sensor ring around the 3389 optical sensor.

Buttons & Scroll Wheel

The Kitano uses some of my favorite mouse switches, the Kailh GM 8.0s. The inclusion of these switches results in satisfying tactile clicks. Mouse 1 and 2 have very little pre-travel with a bit of noticeable post travel. There is minimal button wobble and the clicks don’t have a lot of side play in use. The clicks feel crisp, satisfying and accurate and you can easily spam the buttons without having to worry about accidental clicks as they do require a medium amount of actuation force.

The scroll wheel is the same design as found on the Origin One X and it uses a TTC-encoder. The wheel has nice grip and tactility and you can feel the individual steps easily as there’s some light tensioning present. The middle click feels especially nice with a satisfying feel and medium amount of travel.

The side buttons are well placed and I found them easily to activate without changing my grip. Well positioned on the left side they have a similar shape to the ones found on the G Pro Wireless. They have a loud crispy response and have good tactility but there is some post-travel that is noticeable in use. I didn’t like that they feel a bit loose and hollow. The side buttons are quite good but don’t excel like the main clicks on the mouse do.

Shape, Performance and Software

It’s been some time since I’ve placed my hands on an Microsoft Intellimouse Optical but the Katana feels familiar and new at the same time. The shape is really comfy over time once you get used to the longer length and center-hump. The shape feels great in hand combined with the light weight as it’s rare to get a larger mouse like this that is just THIS light. I will say that this isn’t the safest shape that’s going to work for everyone, I really do recommend it for those with medium to large hands who DO NOT like ergo shapes. One thing that I did miss here were some fingertip grooves that would have helped with both grip and comfort.

In terms of performance, I have no issues with tracking, latency or the LOD on the mouse. It was well tuned right out of the box and I found my performance to be consistent and stable. While this isn’t my top performing shape by any means, it did meet my expectations and offer up a comfortable platform for me to focus on the game. I’d say this mouse is especially well suited for tactical shooters where crosshair placement and holding angles is important.

The Katana has optional software if you want to adjust the LOD, debounce time and custom macros but it works just fine out the box for most users. You can find the software through the Ninjutso site.

Cable, Sensor and Skates

The Katana uses a paracord style cable that is named the ‘assassin’ paracord. The cable is nicely angled up at 8 degrees with the built in stress relief. The cable is light and feels good in a bungee. While it’s not the most flexible cable on the market it’s definitely above average when it comes to stock cables and it’s good enough to where I wouldn’t rush out to get an aftermarket replacement.

The sensor is the PMW 3389 and as expected for a top of the line sensor it performs flawlessly. It’s set out of the box to a 1mm LOD so it was well tuned for me right away. The mouse comes with 2 larger PTFE feet and a sensor ring. The feet have decent glide out of the box and feel fast and smooth. They are well rounded and not too scratchy out the box. I would like to replace these with Tiger Arcs at some point in the future but they feel decent enough for now.

Conclusions

While some may be disappointed that this mouse is not wireless like the Origin One X, the Katano still serves up a really great well designed mouse. This Katana is no nonsense and all business.

Pros

Top of the line sensor

Great buiild Quality

Great main mouse switches and scroll wheel

Cons

Side buttons feel a bit hollow

RatingĀ 

9/10

Bottom Line

The Katana offers up a unique shape that’s underserved in the market currently. The mouse checks a lot of boxes and doesn’t really cut corners where it matters with good switches, cable and a top of the line sensor.

Where to buy the Ninjutso Kitano

Ninjutso

Amazon US

Amazon CA

Addice Inc