Article: Logitech G13 Gamepad Review

Article: Logitech G13 Gamepad Review

Quality – 5.0

Sound – N/A

Comfort – 4.5

Compatibility – 5.0

Software – 4.5

Battery – N/A

 

http://gaming.logitech.com/en-us/product/g13-advanced-gameboard

Retail Price: $79.99

I purchase on Amazon for $58.10

 

I really wasn’t in the market for one of these when I came across it on Logitech’s website.  After looking through the specs and the pictures and looked at a few reviews myself to see if it was something I would use I decided to buy one.  It’s pretty much 100% programmable so you can use it for any application or game, that, I feel is the best part of this gamepad.  It’s not just limited to games, you can create individual profiles for any application you want.  I have profiles for most of my games, and even one for just normal windows commands like copy, paste, volume, track control, etc.  You can even create macros to do a sequence of keys or open applications with the touch of a button.

The software is awesome too, it just works.  Logitech has created one piece of software that controls all their devices, there are a lot of advantages to this; my favorite part of this (especially for this gamepad) relies heavily on the application profile creation.  I also have a Logitech gaming mouse that has 6 side buttons which I will review later.  When I switch application profiles on the G13 gamepad it will also switch those 6 mouse keys if I have them programmed to do something different for that application.  For example, if I’m in my Windows profile the 6 buttons on the mouse are programmed to do cut, copy, paste and enter.  But if I switch the profile to Fallout 4, those 6 buttons change to in game commands to open doors, switch weapons, etc.  This is really nice because I only have to change the application profile on one device.

The G13 gamepad and all my other Logitech devices that have programmable keys will change as well when switching profiles.  Each profile also has 4 sub-profiles you can use, so if you had multiple characters you switch between in a game, you only have to switch the main profile once, and there are 4 dedicated sub-profile keys you can use to switch between them quickly.  You can also associate the backlit color to each profile so it’s easier for you to remember which one you’re on.  The gamepad has a little onboard memory to store your profiles so you can take the gamepad with you and use it on other computers.

There are a total of 25 keys you can program for each sub-profile.  4 of these keys have divots in them to help you find where you fingers should go for the WASD keys for movement in games.  I personally can’t use these the way they were designed, my fingers are too short and I noticed I was always straining to reach the “W”.  I ended up reprogramming the keys down 1 so I could reach them easier which made it a lot more comfortable for me.  That is the big advantage and main point of this gamepad, comfort.  

On normal keyboards my left hand will get tired much much faster than it does on the gamepad.  I’ll noticed my hand getting tired after 30 minutes of gameplay on the keyboard as to 2+ hours of gameplay on the gamepad with no soreness or tired hand muscles.  It’s a much more relaxed position for my hand, and I can program it according to what works for my hand, not just some preprogrammed set of keys my hand has to get used to.  I tried using the joystick for my first person shooter movement in some games instead of the WASD keys, but it felt too weird for me so I went back to the regular keys.  It is nice in StarCraft 2 for scrolling around the map without moving the mouse to the border of the screen, so it does have its purposes.

The last thing I want to cover is the display, it is extremely versatile.  Logitech has created a few applets you can use and there are loads of 3rd party ones available as well.  Some of the basic ones that Logitech has included is an analogue clock with date, profile list, CPU & Ram usage.  I have added numerous applets myself, including: Fraps, CPU Temp, Fan Speed, and GPUz.  Fraps gives me my frames per second when I’m in a game, which is great for optimizing graphics and making sure my frame rates don’t drop too low.  Just an FYI, Fraps will not display anything on the G13 screen while in Windows.  CPU Temp will give me data on my cpu core temps, Fan speed gives me the current speed of the fans in my computer and GPUz gives me data on my GPU like temp, clock speed, fan speed, etc.  Some games have built in support for the G13 Gamepad and will display things like character stats.  Logitech has a list of supported games on there website if you are curious.  The display is also multicolor backlit and switches color when you change profile or subprofiles.  Both the screen and key backlights will display the same color, there isn’t a way to make them different as far as I know.

After having this gamepad for a few months I honestly can say it wasn’t a waste of money by any means.  I don’t use it on a daily basis for the programmable keys, but the screen is very convenient to have and display my computer stats for me.  It is one of my favorite additions to my gaming setup and I will continue to use it for almost any game I play.

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