Zowie EC2-A – Review
For years, Zowie esports mice have dominated the professional CS:GO scene with a variety of gaming peripherals. At the top, the Zowie EC2-A has made a name for itself as the most used CS:GO gaming mouse, with roughly 25% of pros using it.
Since this mouse is featured so heavily in many of our Pro Lists we thought we’d send it over to our staff for review and to find out just how good it is. Spoiler alert: it’s really good.
There is no better choice for our first gaming mouse review on ProSettings.net. Read our full Zowie EC2-A review to find out why.
Zowie EC2-A – Initial Impression
The first thing you notice about the EC2-A (like with all Zowie mice) is that it sports a particularly discrete design. It doesn’t have aggressive logos or wild patterns on the mouse and the only ‘gamer’ aspect on the mouse is the fact that the scroll wheel lights up.
Make no mistake. This mouse is designed for esports.
The mouse is finished with a small Zowie logo towards the back and an even smaller BenQ logo (which is barely visible) on the left side of the mouse. You definitely won’t attract a lot of moths when you use this mouse in the dark, but that is part of Zowie’s design philosophy.
One of the most important considerations when deciding on a mouse is the mouse size and weight. The EC2-A is considered “medium size” in Zowie’s size categories, and also falls into the middle of the pack when compared with other esports mice.
Weighing in at roughly 90 grams (3.2 ounces) it is one of the lighter esports mice, without sacrificing design shape and size. Comparatively, other brands with the same weight will have a much smaller top and side surface area for reduced grip flexibility and or be simply too square-shaped and “boxy”.
The packaging is the least important aspect of a gaming mouse, but I thought I’d mention it anyway because there’s a nice surprise in there. When you open the sleekly designed box you are greeted with the mouse, the usual user manual stuff, a sticker, and two spare mouse feet.
The inclusion of spare mouse feet is a particularly nice touch that most other mouse companies do not include, so bonus points to Zowie for that one.
Size & Dimensions
Shape and finish
One of the first things people talk about when they hear the name Zowie is the fact that their mice are just so damn comfortable, and I have to say that this reputation is in no way an undeserved one. Every little curve and bump on the mouse seems to have been carefully designed and tweaked throughout many iterations until they managed to come up with the perfect feeling.
Obviously there are many mice out there which feel comfortable, but there’s just something about the EC series which sets it apart from the others. It’s something you have to feel for yourself, and since the shape of the mouse is a pretty ‘safe’ (there’s no large humps anywhere and the mouse doesn’t ‘force you’ to hold it in a certain way) one I feel like most gamers looking for an ergonomic rodent will agree with me on this one.
This is easily one of the best shapes I’ve ever had the pleasure of holding and this is immediately something which sets Zowie apart from its competitors; when it comes to shape there’s no brand quite like Zowie.
The only minor downside I could find is that if you want to change your DPI (the color of the scroll wheel indicates what DPI setting the mouse is on) you’ll have to reach underneath the mouse, since the button for that is located on the bottom. This however is a strong consideration for competitive gamers. If the DPI button was located on the top there is a possibility that a misclick would change your DPI.
Zowie mice avoid all features that potentially restraint competitive ability.
The Zowie EC2-A is finished with a non-glossy plastic throughout, so no rubber grips anywhere or textured elements that can get sticky.
The EC2-A features two rather large mouse feet located on either end of the mouse. For me that’s perfect, since I like the feel of larger feet more than small feet, and I had no issues whatsoever with the mouse on my pad. It didn’t seem like the feet needed time to break in or anything so I was immediately able to smoothly glide the mouse around on my pad. I play with a pretty low sensitivity so I have to do big sweeps quite often and I had no problems with this mouse.
Buttons and scroll wheel
The Zowie EC2-A produce a heavy and accurate experience and both clicks sound and feel the same, so no issues there. I’m not personally a fan of super light clicks (for reference; I used the G403 on a daily basis and those clicks are borderline too light for me) so for me the clicks on the EC2-A are near perfect.
I didn’t find myself accidentally clicking a button or accidentally double clicking and the buttons have a pleasant tactile feel to them. The side buttons are located very conveniently (they do not get in the way whatsoever during gameplay) but it has to be said that they do have quite a bit of travel time and feel a bit mushy. When you press them you kind of go ‘in’ the shell of the mouse so I’d have liked to see a bit less travel time here.
The scroll wheel is rather loud (at least in comparison to some other gaming mice out there) but it does have pretty satisfying and easy to feel steps to it and it’s easy enough to press. People who bind important in-game actions to the mouse wheel (like jumping for bunny hopping) will be especially happy.
I use the scroll wheel to jump in games so the feel of a scroll wheel is actually quite important to me. I noticed no issues with this wheel at all; the steps are defined clearly and it’s a breeze to use. It does feel a bit more ‘rigid’ than some wheels but that’s no issue to me as it doesn’t affect the ease of use.
Quality and cable
There is no sensor rattle, nor is there anything moving or rattling when I’m moving the mouse or doing quick flicks. I also slammed it down on the desk a few times (gotta know if it stands up to raging gamers) and it handled that just fine without anything coming loose or making a sound.
I obviously haven’t been using it for years so I can’t comment on durability, but from what I can tell the mouse has a really solid build quality. I hate it when you can hear (or even worse: feel) a bunch of stuff moving around in a mouse when you’re out there doing quick flicks and what have you, so the fact that the EC2-A remained perfectly silent throughout my review process is a huge plus for me.
The thin rubber cable is 2 meters (6.6 feet) long, and I love it. It’s very lightweight and flexible and it doesn’t seem to get in the way at all, even if I don’t pop it in my mouse bungee. I’m not a fan of bulky or braided cables (though I don’t imagine that any competitive FPS players is a fan of bulky cables) so Zowie keeps building on their ‘it just feels so good’ reputation by opting for this type of cable.
Performance and sensor
I put the Avago 3310 through its paces (which means I scientifically tested it in Paint, Aim Hero and CS:GO) and it performed perfectly. It didn’t spin out on me once and tracked every target with pixel perfect precision. There’s no angle snapping or any other nonsense (which would be a cardinal sin for a gaming mouse).
We consider the Avago 3310 a flawless sensor.
The 3310 might be a slightly older sensor by now, but it’s still very, very capable. I and many other gamers and reviewers have never encountered any issues with the 3310 and it is implemented perfectly in the EC2-A. So, this one gets full marks from me.
No unnecessary frills; performance and feel are definitely Zowie’s priorities, and I couldn’t agree more with that approach.Lars, ProSettings.net
Key points of concern for grip type are often described in relation to hand size and comfort. Not unlike choosing the perfect shoe, a grip will tend to follow your playstyle and different scenarios you come across when playing. The standard palm, claw and fingertip grips all have advantages and can be utilized in various ways, during the course of a round.
Zowie mice are specifically designed for flexible use, with shape and ergonomic use being key focus points while playing. The ability to quickly adjust your grip type on the fly is where I get the most benefit when using the EC2-A.
Being able quickly alter how I grip the EC2-A and make small adjustments while in game allow me the greatest flexibility and comfort while grinding. The EC2-A’s shape and matte black surface gives me the best total control when playing. For swiping, clearing angles and rotating, the textured surface helps me precisely change grips.
The mouse has virtually no break in time and doesn’t need a lot of time to get used to its shape. It was an absolute pleasure all throughout my time with it. When you’re gaming and you kind of forget that you’re holding a mouse you know you’ve got a good one, and that is absolutely the case with the Zowie EC2-A.
Ingame and everyday use
In order to use the mouse you just have to plug it in, and that’s it. No need to mess around with software or make an account or any of those shenanigans. That’s also part of Zowie’s ‘let’s cut the talk and walk the walk’ philosophy: just plug in, set your DPI (you can choose between 400, 800, 1600, and 3200) and get to fragging.
This does mean that you can’t reprogram what the buttons on the mouse do and you also can’t choose which color the scroll wheel will be (as that is dependant on the DPI setting that you’ve chosen) but to me that is no problem at all.
The shape is so nicely done that I had no issues picking up the mouse whatsoever, even after a prolonged gaming session. The mouse is also very nicely balanced. It’s not top or bottom heavy, which is a definite plus. When it gets tense in games (and when doesn’t it get tense in competitive FPS games?) my hands tend to become rather sweaty which can cause problems with certain mouse coatings, but even after a few hours of gaming I had no problems with the EC2-A.
Everything about it just feels right. The shape is definitely the standout factor, but the mouse itself tracked my every movement with perfection and I didn’t have it fail on me once. When I’m testing mice I like to put them through a couple of rounds of aim maps because it gives me the ability to judge the tracking of the mouse as well as the comfort, since they can be pretty ‘hard on the hands’ due to the fast paced aiming you need to pull off.
If you’re using a mouse that’s not entirely comfortable for you, you’re certainly going to notice some fatigue. I’m happy to report that the EC2-A performed beautifully throughout and I even managed to break my personal record on a certain mode with it, so I think we can conclude that the ingame performance of the mouse is absolutely perfect.
Zowie EC-2A in CS:GO
Esports and especially CS:GO is what the Zowie EC2-A is made for. Let’s have a look how it performs in game.
Scenario: Getting rushed.
All of us know this scenario. Holding Arch on Inferno with an AWP. The mouse has to be able to react to quick repositioning movements and be precise on tight angles. Low lift-off distance and a firm grip for right-handed players help to get the job done. Lifting the mouse is super comfortable and even on low sensitivity with rapid movements the sensor performs perfectly.
Conclusion & Recommendation
The hype around this mouse has been insane in certain parts of the gaming community, and that, to me, is entirely justified. I’m usually pretty keen on finding flaws in hyped up products or shows (yes, I’m that kinda guy) but I can say with full confidence that this is one of the best mice I’ve ever had the pleasure of using.
The shape of the EC2-A is the best that I’ve ever had, the sensor didn’t trip up once, the clicks feel satisfying and consistent – it’s everything you need out of a competitive gaming mouse. The mouse fit perfectly for my style of grip, but I am pretty confident that all grip styles will work with this mouse (depending on the size of your hands) because of its pretty safe shape.
It’s not all perfect though; the side buttons can sometimes feel a bit mushy and cheap. The scroll wheel is also pretty loud and feels ‘just okay,’ though having an okay scroll wheel is by no means a downside.
In summary, if you are looking for a top tier gaming mouse the Zowie EC2-A definitely deserves a spot on the top of your list with its absolutely amazing shape, perfect feel, light weight, flawless sensor, precise buttons and top tier performance.
Please let us know what you think in the comments below. Cheers.