As far as mouse bungee systems go, every gaming peripheral maker worth their salt has some sort of offering to match the styling of their mice. Most of the entries I have seen also usually do one thing, and that is to maintain the cable of the mouse for a few reasons. These are pretty simple to understand the advantages. First, it allows for better cable management on the desktop. Secondly, it keeps the mouse cable up in the air so it won't fray the edges or get caught on the edges of the mouse pads. The last reason to use a mouse bungee system is to keep the mouse from falling off the desk. Since these bungees are typically weighted, and it only allows so much usable cable, you won't accidentally be yanking the cable as it heads for the floor, or it keeps the mouse from actually hitting that floor.
So with all the versions already out on the market, why should you choose the ROCCAT version, even if you don't already own one of their mice? Well on top of being just the basic bungee stand with ROCCAT emblazoned the top of it with their logo, it also adds three blue LEDs to the top, and it also offers a blue under glow effect. Taking things one step further, ROCCAT also incorporated four USB 2.0 ports into the sides of this device to allow users the ability to plug in mice, keyboard, USB drives, and charging cables. The traffic is taken from the hub via a UAB2.0 cable, but the hub is also actively powered from a wall outlet to deliver the power needs for all the various devices.
The Apuri that ROCCAT has delivered for us to test today has us intrigued. With the various solutions I have tested previously, they offered very little past the obvious functionality of tending to the mouse cable, and since have all been removed from daily use.
If wiring on the desktop is an issue, or if you are constantly having issues with braided cables on the edge of cloth pads, a mouse bungee is definitely the answer. For those of you who have no real need for a standalone bungee offering, the addition of LED lighting and the multi-port hub are reasons to make it worth your while to try this one out over all the rest.
Specifications, Availability and Pricing
The top section of the chart covers all the features found in and on the Apuri. First thing to cover is the four fully powered USB 2.0 ports found on the front and right sides, that are powered via an AC power adapter. It also covers that any USB device will work with the Apuri. The device can be used passively via USB cable, but backlighting or other high power devices may not function properly. The bungee on top lifts the cable so it will not cause drag when moving the mouse around. It also covers the fact that it will clean up the wiring on the desk, that it is part of the ROCCAT SDMS system, and that it looks good with the blue glow of the LEDs.
The second list is the technical specifications for this Apuri. They list that all four ports are USB 2.0, they cover that the power output with the power adapter is 2A, and without it there is only 500mA. They also state that both the USB 2.0 cable for the connection of the device to the PC, and the power adapter that goes to a wall outlet, are both 1.5 meters in length. The rubber top, or the bungee, is removable to make it easier to get the cable in, or so you can use the Apuri as just a powered hub. It also covers the three LEDs at the top, and the glow at the bottom, as well as finishing with its sturdy tripod design.
Looking around, there are very few big named outlets currently showing stock of the Apuri while shopping via Google. There prices range from $35 on the low-end of the spectrum, and go on up to the $60 U.S. dollar range. Looking at the usual haunts, Newegg is offering the Apuri at $51.99 plus an additional $7.99 for shipping. As I mentioned, there is a flipside to this coin. If you look at Amazon, you will find the Apuri listed at $34.99 with free shipping.
It is pretty obvious that if you do choose to grab the Apuri, go to Amazon because they have the best current deal to be had. Considering we have seen $20 to $30 dollar variations before, and they did not offer lighting or the four port USB-hub. Those features, on top of the basic bungee design, make the Apuri from ROCCAT an even more obvious choice.
Excuse my reflection; from the plastic that protects the Apuri that is packaged on an angle, both for a better view of the product, but it is also the only way it fits in this packaging. Three tabs to the left cover the actively powered hub, the zero-drag bungee, and that it will clean up cabling. The naming is placed at the bottom with what it is, and has two icons at the right to signify the powered hub and the LED lighting.
The right side of the packaging starts with a rendering of the typical PC user's layout. Below this is an explanation of the ROCCAT Smart Desktop Management System, and why it should appeal to you. At the bottom there is also a list of the package contents next to the system requirements and tech specs.
The back of the box offers a large image at the top that shows the Apuri with the power and transfer cable in place along with a cable through the bungee, all of which being surrounded with features being pointed out. There is also a full list of six features under the image that are translated in nine other languages at the bottom.
The left side offers four images that show off the 480MB/s ports, the flexibility of the bungee, the secure and stable stand, and also show the ROCCAT logo glowing under the stand. At the bottom is a short story from Robert "rtom" Shultz and his feelings of the Apuri.
ROCCAT Apuri Active USB-Hub with Mouse Bungee
Right out of the box, the box, the mix of grey for the logo, the blue sections that will become illuminated, and the rubberized coating of the base makes the Apuri a very attractive choice in these devices. So not only will it perform as intended, it looks darn good doing it.
The top of the bungee obviously has the ROCCAT logo and naming across the top, but slightly less visible in the last image was the deep recesses that the plastic covering the LEDs is sent into. Along with the angled sides, it gives this product a very industrial feel.
The front edge of the Apuri offers a pair of the USB 2.0 ports to connect devices to. The recommendation here is to leave these open for use with chargers or thumb drives.
Since there are two more USB 2.0 ports on the right side, this is where you should connect the mouse and keyboard. This keeps the more permanent plugs out of the way, and lends to hiding the wires under the Apuri.
The last side of the three contains the jack for the AC power adapter on the left, and to the right is the connection for the Mini-USB end of the transfer cable that ROCCAT provides.
From this angle it is much easier to see the angle of the bungee and just how high it keeps the cable for the mouse off the top of the desk. The Bungee is made of rubber and will also bend as an anti-strain measure. You can feel that tension to let you know you either need more cable, or need to move the mouse away from the edge.
ROCCAT Apuri Continued
Removing it from the base, it is now much easier to get the idea of how it works. The bungee has a groove that runs down its back that grabs onto the cable in two sections. Also the side of it is where ROCCAT applied the Apuri naming.
Under the Apuri there is a plate that holds the backlit logo section in the center of the base to cover the wiring for the lighting and USB connectivity. If for some reason, it needs to be torn apart, you need to also remove the screws from the legs to remove the bottom section of the frame. On the sticker you will find the product name, a QR code, and the serial number for each Apuri.
Each of the three legs has half round feet attached to the ends. On each of these rounded feet there is this textured rubber pad that make the Apuri stand its ground, even on glass. The fact that there is a steel weight inside also helps to keep the Apuri planted.
Adding the cables is simple enough, and as soon as the power cord goes in the lights will go on, and the same is said for the USB cable. This device can be run either way, but the under glow and the LEDs on top definitely spices up the appearance level.
Of course you would tend more of the cable near or under the Apuri, but for this demonstration, this will work. Simply plug into one of the ports with the mouse cable, and then run it through the back of the bungee to hold on to it.
Accessories and Documentation
The USB 2.0 cable provided to take all the signals from the multiple devices to the PC is what is shown here. The mini-USB end will plug into the Apuri and the standard end then goes in the PC, and is clearly marked ROCCAT so it is easy to find later in the rear I/O.
This is the supplied power inverter that takes AC current from the wall and steps it down to 12V input to the Apuri. Without this connected, anything that takes more than 500mA to run may fail, and with it, you have four times the power capability with a full 2A of power.
The assumption is that when ordering from another country, the adapters will change to suit the power requirements of the area, but I wanted to show the sticker to show the input, output, and UL number in case there is a desire to check up on the device there.
There is also a fold-out pamphlet that comes with the Apuri to show how to connect and use this properly.
Once unfolded, this side of the paperwork offers a six step process on connection and removal of the bungee to get the cable into it. Those six steps have the text portion repeated at the bottom in ten languages to cover their market.
Flipping the paperwork over, you are first congratulated on your purchase of the Apuri, and an explanation why this is a great addition to the desktop. Below that is covers features with an illustration, and offers the specifications, requirements, contents, and a notification of the SDMS system just like the box has.
After a couple of weeks with the Apuri, I can say this product has found a new home on my desktop and is going nowhere any time soon. Not only is it an attractive bungee with the flat black, rubberized, surfaces, and the trio of lights at the top and the glow it delivers to the top of the desk. No doubt about it, the Apuri is the best looking solution to tending to my mouse cable that we have yet to test in my tenure here. As a bungee, it works great to help with the cabling from my mouse as well as my keyboard, now instead of running out in the open to the left, they run straight ahead of my devices and into the Apuri. This is the best feature to me, since my PC sets a good distance off to my left, and the front is the furthest from me, when connecting my phone, camera, USB drives, a headset, or any combination of four devices, essentially making it so you shouldn't have to go to the front or rear I/O panel for most of your connectivity.
While testing there were some obvious limitations. With just the USB cable to power the hub, I could run my Keyboard, and even use the little dongle for the Logitech G700s mouse, but when I tried to charge the mouse via the hub, there is a message that pops up explaining the hub does not have enough power to achieve charging as well. This is because with just the USB cable for power, the specifications tell us there is only 500mA to attempt this.
With the AC power adapter in the Apuri, there was no issues populating the four ports and getting my needs met. I was able to have one mouse in use, another charging, my phone charging, and the keyboard all plugged in and there were no issues doing so. In some instances where the office or desktop is spread out a bit, like with my chassis to the far left and the mouse on my right, I could have used a few more inches of the provided USB cable to hide that wire some. As it sits, it is running across the middle of my desk, but at least now it is only one cable rather than three or four.
For what it is, a light for the desktop in complete darkness, a 4-port USB 2.0 hub where the ports are also illuminated from the LEDs inside, and the bungee on top to tend to the mouse wiring, it checks the box in all categories for delivering a solid and very user friendly product. With no lights on in the room, it is still easy to swap drives, devices, or just sit and bask in the attractiveness of the Apuri as it sits ready for battle on the desk top.
As I addressed, previous to this offering, I was not a fan of the bungee systems, they just took up space to me. With the ROCCAT Apuri Active USB-Hub with Mouse Bungee, they have delivered something very worthy of the space required, and it is a product that I can see using with my PC, indefinitely. When you throw in the fact that all of this sexiness and convenience can be had for just less than $35, it is easy to see that the Apuri is the bungee system to buy if you are in the market for such a device. At this price it even makes for an outstanding gift idea for the tech-heads in your life.