Logitech G502 HERO review

Matt Sayer 6 November 2018 NEWS

Quick Verdict
The Logitech G502 HERO is an excellent high-end mouse that stands shoulder-to-shoulder with the best in the business.

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The Good

  • Supremely comfortable.
  • Precise sensor and responsive buttons.
  • Removable weights for tweaking momentum.

The Bad

  • Customisation software needs work.
  • Right-handed orientation only.

Precise, comfortable and responsive, the Logitech G502 HERO is a shining example of a high-end mouse that justifies its price tag.

It's striking the impact a good mouse can have on the simple act of using a computer. Where a run-of-the-mill optical mouse is just a tool for issuing commands, a high-end mouse can feel like a weapon that empowers you to accomplish more with speed and precision. This applies to computer users of all stripes, whether you're a keen gamer looking for an advantage over the competition or an office worker interested in improving your efficiency.

No matter which category you fall into, Logitech's latest premium mouse has a whole lot to offer. Dubbed the Logitech G502 HERO, it combines a high-precision optical sensor with a comfortable and ergonomic design plus plenty of customisable features for maximising your performance. There's certainly no shortage of competition in the premium mouse space from the likes of Razer's Lancehead Tournament mouse and HyperX's Pulsefire Surge RGB, but with the G502 HERO, Logitech proves it's every bit as capable of producing a high-quality device at a competitive price.

Design

As soon as I wrapped my hand around the G502 HERO, I could tell Logitech had built it with comfort in mind. Its smooth contours describe a natural profile that feels like it moulds to the shape of my hand, providing support as well as convenient access to the many buttons arrayed across its surface.

That comfort is accentuated by the textured grips on either side of the G502 HERO. These not only help with maintaining control over the mouse, they simply feel good to the touch, reinforcing the sense that the G502 HERO truly is a premium product.

One of the paradoxical challenges high-end mice face is positioning their extra buttons such that they're easy to access without being so easy that they're frequently mispressed. The Logitech G502 HERO strikes a smart balance here, placing three extra buttons within reach of your thumb while maintaining enough of a buffer that you're not going to hit any of them in the heat of the moment. The buttons themselves are nice and firm, too, so the occasional bump isn't going to accidentally trigger them.

While the G502 HERO's design is top-notch from a functional perspective, its visual appeal isn't quite as flawless. Logitech has opted for a sharp, angular aesthetic that calls to mind a sci-fi starship or piece of alien technology. While that's a common approach across gaming-focused hardware, it impacts the G502 HERO's attractiveness to the wider, non-gamer audience. Typically, the average computer user gravitates towards a smoother, more organic design, which is one of the reasons Apple's products tend to be so popular.

Of course, aesthetics are highly subjective and only you can decide whether the pointed design of the G502 HERO fits your style.

Performance

As comfortable as the G502 HERO is, its performance is what sells it as a premium device. Packing an optical sensor capable of spanning a super-precise 100 DPI all the way up to an ultra-sensitive 16,000 DPI, it is both versatile and responsive no matter how much force you like to put into your mouse movements.

As you'd expect from a high-end mouse, you can adjust DPI settings on the fly using dedicated up and down buttons next to the regular left mouse button. Three LEDs highlight your current DPI setting, a handy feature that ensures you don't inadvertently select the wrong setting in the heat of battle. Then there's the "Sniper" button at the end of the thumb grip that you can hold in to temporarily switch to a specific DPI setting. As you can probably guess, this button is particularly helpful when competing in online first-person shooters as it allows you to quickly increase your precision for as long as you hold it down, reverting back to your regular DPI settings as soon as you let it go.

Just as critically, all the G502 HERO's buttons feel tough and responsive. Clicks register immediately and accurately, while the tactile feedback from each button ensures you're never left confused about whether you actually pressed it or not. While I can't personally verify Logitech's claim of a 50-million-click lifespan for the G502 HERO's primary buttons, I can say that they feel resilient enough to survive their fair share of high-intensity gaming sessions and general thrashings.

I also want to call out the G502 HERO's scroll wheel for being one of the most satisfying scroll wheels I've ever used. It's springy and light, with a level of responsiveness most mice lack. A button just below the wheel allows you to quickly switch between step-by-step scrolling and unlocked rotation, making it easy to go from swiftly scrolling through massive web pages to precisely cycling between zoom levels on the fly.

Features

A premium mouse requires plenty of premium features and the Logitech G502 HERO delivers here. All told, it includes 11 "buttons", each of which can be reprogrammed to perform any function or macro you so desire. I say "buttons" because two of the 11 correspond to flicking the scroll wheel left or right. A pedantic clarification, to be sure, but the practical difference between clicking a button and flicking the scroll wheel could be significant in high-pressure situations like competitive gaming.

Since the G502 HERO is ostensibly a "gaming mouse", it's contractually obliged to include some form of RGB lighting. Logitech plays it fairly tame here, incorporating an illuminated Logitech logo onto the palm rest. It's a relatively small and subtle addition compared to many other gaming mice out there, but it supports the full 16.8 million colours of the RGB spectrum along with three lighting patterns: breathing, colour cycling and static colour.

As with the DPI settings, you can define several lighting profiles and switch between them at the press of a button. The G502 HERO can store up to five profiles on its built-in memory, ensuring you have access to them even when using the mouse on different computers.

Unfortunately, customising the G502 HERO isn't as simple as it should be. Logitech's LGS app is confusingly designed, with a distinct lack of labels explaining the various sections and their functions. The software doesn't like 4K resolutions, either: on my 4K monitor, the window maxes out at roughly 1/10th of the screen size, with text so tiny I had to squint to read it.

Questionable interface aside, configuring lighting and DPI profiles is simple enough, as is recording and assigning macros to the G502 HERO's buttons. One nice but niche feature is the ability to record your mouse activity over a single session and examine it in the form of a heat map highlighting how often you press each key. This probably won't be much use to the average computer user, but for competitive gamers looking to optimise their performance, it could provide valuable insight into areas of potential improvement.

Customisation isn't limited to the software, either. Logitech includes five 3.5g weights with the G502 HERO and these can be fitted into the underside of the mouse to change its weight profile. By shifting weights between the centre, front, sides or rear orientations, you can tweak the momentum and resistance of the mouse to best suit the strength of your arm and wrist movements.

Verdict

The days of Logitech focusing exclusively on budget PC hardware are over. With the G502 HERO, the Swiss company proves that it is more than capable of producing a high-end mouse that goes toe-to-toe with flagship devices from industry heavyweights like Razer and Steelseries. Ignore the "gaming mouse" classification; the G502 HERO is an excellent mouse with plenty to offer computer users of all persuasions.

Pricing and availability

The Logitech G502 HERO retails for $129.95 and is available now from retailers like eBay, Scorptec and PC Case Gear.

Logitech G502 HERO Gaming Mouse

Logitech G502 HERO Gaming Mouse from eBay

The Logitech G502 HERO combines a precise 16K optical sensor, 11 programmable buttons and adjustable weights to deliver high-end performance for gamers and non-gamers alike.

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