Fnatic Clutch 2
Esports or not, this is definitely, absolutely, a mouse
about Fnatic’s ethos (and our own frequently facetious nature) that really makes us want to make fun of the esports company at every possible opportunity. Indeed, we’ve done that before, much to the chagrin of our coffeeaddled legal eagles. But not today. Today we look at the Clutch 2, and we’re going to treat it dead seriously. Just you watch.
The human race has been blessed, in the majority of cases, with two hands. This is a mouse that, despite its otherwise reasonably balanced sculpting, is suited for the rightmost of those; a pair of thumb buttons has been placed on its left-hand side. These buttons are, at least in the context of mice, rather large and easy to press. Wider thumbs may press them more easily, perhaps even by accident; their action is rather soft and indistinct, but much of that action happens long after the click of their microswitches, so they are suitably quick to activate.
As befits a PC mouse, the Clutch 2 sports more buttons than just those. There is a mode-select button nestled in the upper ridge, deep-action and stiff to press, as such things should be. In front of that is a clickable scroll wheel, calibrated to depress with an actuation force that is balanced enough to prevent accidental central clicks, and engineered so that every stiff rolling action of one’s middle finger can only be deliberate. Astride the wheel sit two face buttons, their microswitches ( manufactured by Omron, and able to withstand 50 million clicks) positioned perfectly to allow them to be depressed, with very little force, anywhere from the front edge of the mouse to a point adjacent to that mode- select button. This will suit users with unusual hand shapes or interesting grips. There’s little depth to these buttons; where their side-mounted pals activate quickly and continue, these activate with no travel and stop dead.
Both the left and right edges of the Clutch 2 are adorned with a stippled silicon coating in an attempt to coddle one’s thumb and ring finger, and prevent slipping. The efficacy of this coating depends on the skin type of the user. We found it less than effective, certainly compared to the more texturized silicon coatings employed by other mouse manufacturers, but this will not be the case for those with a less relaxed style of holding. The top layer, we’re told, is coated in oleophobic paint, a layer designed to repel hand sweat in times of mousing intensity, which is a nice touch.
There’s a handful of configurable colored LED lights inside, for those whose hands need a little illumination, and a large area of slippery silicon beneath. As a mouse of very little weight—the Clutch 2 is identical in bulk as its slightly wider but otherwise identical counterpart, the Flick 2—this generous foot offers an extreme amount of maneuverability. Its sensor, a Pixart 3360, is regarded by many as one of the most accomplished optical sensors on the market, and only adds to that movement acumen. Through software, the sensor can be tweaked to increase its lift distance, or configure the resolutions assigned to the modeselect button, from sluggish slow to outrageously fast.
In summary, then, the Fnatic Clutch 2 is a computer mouse. It’s unlikely to offend anyone who puts their hands on it, and it can suit just about any style of grip. It is, perhaps, a little more expensive than it should be, considering the market it is in—there are devices that gamers will find more exciting, and there are mice with prettier designs and additional buttons—but the simplicity and stiffness of the Clutch 2 make it perfect for those who want to concentrate on what they’re doing without making mistakes. “It’s a rough road to the top,” says box-adorner “Rekkles.” “You need to trust your equipment no matter what.” Rekkles, as we can plainly see, is a sage.