When it comes to gaming, nothing beats having the right mouse for both your grip and your game. Getting a mouse that fits just perfect to your hand, includes the right feature set for you, and a super strong sensor, will inevitably improve the flow of your gameplay, the hits you land and the satisfaction you get from nailing that win.
Quick Shopping Tips
- Optical or Laser?: Both sensor types offer a great experience, but optical mice have slightly better accuracy while laser mice work on more surfaces. If you’re really picky, go for an optical sensor, preferably one either designed or developed with PixArt.
- Wireless or Wired?: Wireless mice have come a long way in the last few years, but they still have downsides which include limited battery life (particularly with RGB) and possible latency. If you do opt for a wireless, aim for one with 30 hours or more battery life. You’ll also need to decide if you want Bluetooth or 2.4 GHz or both. Bluetooth is handy for switching among multiple devices, but comes with a latency cost, but 2.4 GHz will requires a USB dongle that’s easy to lose.
- Palm, Claw or Fingertip Grip?: It’s a good idea to figure out just how you hold your mouse. There are three types of common mouse grip.
- Palm Grip - Where the base of your palm rests on the back of the mouse, with your fingers laying on top.
- Claw Grip - Where your wrist rests on the mouse mat, the palm doesn’t touch the mouse, and your fingertips grip the edges of it and the buttons.
- Fingertip Grip - Where your wrist and palm are both elevated off the mouse mat and the mouse, and it’s again gripped with just the finger tips at its edges and on the buttons.
Knowing your grip style will help you find a mouse that’s right for you, as each grip typically occurs due to the size of your hands, and therefore a mouse designed for a fingertip grip will likely be larger than one designed for a palm grip.
- DPI, CPI, IPS and Acceleration?: DPI and CPI are effectively the same marketing terms. Traditionally we used DPI in print to declare how many dots per inch something would be printed in, in regards to image clarity. CPI however stands for counts per inch, and that’s how many counts your mouse takes per inch it travels.
A higher CPI doesn’t necessarily mean a better mouse sensor either. It’s a combination of both CPI, and IPS. IPS or Inches Per Second, is the max velocity at which your sensor can still track those counts. The higher the IPS combined with the CPI, the better the sensor.
And then there’s acceleration, that’s how many G’s your mouse can handle and still track effectively, if you’re dashing the thing back and forth left and right in short sharp movements, some mice may flake once they reach a certain G rating.
Best Gaming Mice
1. Razer DeathAdder Elite
Best FPS/RTS Gaming Mouse
Rating: 4.5/5 (Editor's Choice)
Sensor: PixArt PMW 3389 | CPI: 16,000 | IPS: 450 (11.43 m/s) | Acceleration: 50 g | Interface: USB | Ergonomics: Right handed, palm and claw grip | Programmable Buttons: 7 | Weight: 105 g | Dimensions: 127 x 70 x 44 mm (LxWxH)
Pros: Simple consistent design • Exceptional sensor • Impressive omron switches
Cons: No weight customization
The Razer Deathadder has long been renowned as one of the world’s most famed eSports mice. Its simple, yet ergonomic design has seen little change since its conception back in 2006, and although some may gawk at the flared left and right click buttons, it’s hard to deny just how comfortable that non abrasive, sand-blasted black finish is when you finally rest your palm on the plucky pixel pointer.
That said, the showpiece of the Deathadder Elite is its sensor, which is a bespoke optical PixArt PMW 3389. Originally designed by PixArt in conjunction with Logitech, it’s also been followed up with some firmware tweaks by Razer itself. Thanks to that, it makes this mouse incredibly precise and direct in game. There’s zero lag, or jitter, and with a 16,000 CPI maximum, thanks to Razer’s Synapse software suite it’s impossible not to set this mouse up correctly for any and all of your gaming scenarios.
And then there’s the switches. Designed with Omron, these beauties feature a mechanical keyboard-esque clicky feel thanks to Razer incorporating a tactile notch in the switch itself. It’s not enough to slow you down, and doesn’t harm durability either, with up to 50 million clicks expected before failure.
Couple all of that with an epic price point, and a 2 year warranty, and the Deathadder Elite is our mouse of choice for anyone dabbling in today’s hyper-competitive world of multiplayer FPS or RTS gaming.
2. Razer Naga Trinity
Best MMO Mouse
Rating: 4.5/5 (Editor's Choice)
Sensor: PixArt PMW 3389 | CPI: 16,000 | IPS: 450 (11.43 m/s) | Acceleration: 50 g | Interface: USB | Ergonomics: Right handed, palm grip | Programmable Buttons: Up to 19 | Weight: 120 g | Dimensions: 119 x 74 x 43 mm (LxWxH)
Pros: Strong sensor • Hot-swappable button compliments • Ergonomic styling
Cons: Pricey • Quite heavy
In an MMO mouse versatility is key; The more buttons you have, the more you can allocate to macros, to push-to-talk keys for Discord and for other key actions.
The problem with big MMO mice, is that they often feature one very specific way of gripping, with a grid of keys littered on the left hand side and that’s about it. Razer looks to change that with its latest addition of its Naga, the Trinity, which gives you three separate left hand grips to choose from. A simple numpad, complete with 12 switches, a circular button pad, complete with 7 switches dotted around it, and your standard two button affair, as found on most gaming mice today.
On top of that you also get the same PixArt sensor as found in the Deathadder Elite, a nice helping of RGB, and an ergonomic pinky rest too. Sure it’s the heaviest of our mice on this list, even outing the wireless Logitech G502 Wireless Spectrum, but for MMOs and all those keybindings, it’s a great choice.
3. Corsair M65 RGB Elite
Best for Wide Grips
Sensor: PixArt PMW 3391 | CPI: 18,000 | IPS: 400 (10.16 m/s) | Acceleration: 50 g | Interface: USB | Ergonomics: Right handed, palm and claw grip | Programmable Buttons: 9 | Weight: 97 - 116 g | Dimensions: 116 x 76 x 39 mm (LxWxH)
Pros: Stylish design • Low price point • Impeccable sensor • Nice RGB
Cons: Ergonomics whilst comfortable may not suit small hands
Corsair’s M60 series of mice has made a name for itself over the years. Despite it’s rather obtuse design style, it’s a product line that’s cemented a thorough fan-base, including some of us here at Tom’s Hardware. Ok so it’s not the perfect first person shooter or moba device, but let’s face it, not everyone needs one of those.
An evolution of Corsair’s original M60 series, the M65 RGB Elite offers a strong wide design, coupled with a sleek button compliment, pleasing aesthetics, and a powerful sensor. Its wide angled, short body typically lends itself well to someone with small wide hands, as opposed to slim long ones. It favors palm or claw grips over fingertips, and its ergonomic styling has always been a bit hit and miss, depending on the shape and size of your hand.. This thing is as premium as it gets when it comes to mice sensors, and allows you to customize it in in 1 CPI increments if you so desire.
On top of all that, you also get some fairly subtle (for Corsair) RGB lighting, an adaptable weighting system, and a temporary CPI drop button located where your thumb rests. It’s a bit of an oddity. The overall ergonomic design suits RTS and RPG gamers, yet the general spec list of this thing screams FPS. It’s a very confident jack of all trades, albeit with a more premium price. It might not know exactly what it wants to be, but that doesn’t stop it from succeeding in whatever game you point it at.
4. Logitech G502 Lightspeed Wireless
Best Wireless Mouse
Sensor: Logitech HERO | CPI: 16,000 | IPS: 400 (10.16 m/s) | Acceleration: 40 g | Interface: USB/Wireless | Ergonomics: Right handed, palm and fingertip | Programmable Buttons: 11 | Weight: 97 - 116 g | Dimensions: 116 x 76 x 39 mm (LxWxH)
Pros: Unique sensor • Wireless charging on the fly
Cons: Pricey • Somewhat heavier
Battery life is the most important feature of any wireless gaming mouse. Losing power mid-way through a game is a huge buzz-kill There’s no greater frustration than frantically rushing around trying to find the USB cable, whilst your in-game character is repeatedly curb-stomped into the ground.
Logitech’s G502 Lightspeed wireless gaming mouse aims to change all that. It’s compatible with a massive wireless Qi pad/mouse mat, Logitech’s Powerplay, so it can maintain a continuous charge. . Couple that with a purely awesome sensor, and the G502 is a serious piece of kit.
Logitech’s HERO sensor features some seriously impressive tech. It has a variable frame rate detector to reduce or increase the mouse’s inherent latency depending on mouse movement. What this does is reduce power usage as it’ll fluctuate between a 1 and an 8 ms response time. It also features a 16,000 max CPI, and can track at well over 400 IPS (inches per second).
Downsides? his thing is heavy. weighing 114g total, not including the optional 16g of weight, and it’s tall. We mean seriously tall, so may take some getting used to for your wrist. Without the Powerplay mouse mat, you’re looking at 48 hours of charge (of continuous use, aka moving because of that variable sensor), and 60 hours if you turn off the lighting, which isn’t too shabby.
Read Review: Logitech G502 Lightspeed Wireless
5. HyperX Pulsefire FPS Pro
Best Budget Mouse
Sensor: PixArt PMW 3389 | CPI: 16,000 | IPS: 220 (5.58 m/s) | Acceleration: 30 g | Interface: USB | Ergonomics: Right handed, palm and claw grip | Programmable Buttons: 6 | Weight: 95 g | Dimensions: 128 x 71 x 42 mm (LxWxH)
Pros: Simple inspired design • Strong sensor • Great price
Cons: Braided cable • Not really a FPS mouse
Overall HyperX’s design here with the Pulsefire isn’t too dissimilar from that of our number one pick the Deathadder Elite as its long elegant shape, and splayed left and right buttons produce a very similar feel to that Razer staple. It’s lightweight too, coming in at 95g without the cable. Sure it’s not one of the super light 50g monstrosities, or a hefty 120g wireless battery powered juggernaut, but it sits happily in between, ideal for those who perhaps aren’t ready to commit to the full price of something a bit more premium.
The HyperX Pulsefire FPS Pro uses a PixArt PMW 3389, the exact same sensor as found in the Deathadder Elite, albeit without Razer’s firmware wizardry. You get that same 16,000 max CPI, limited to zero hardware acceleration or smoothing below 3000 CPI, and a comfortable feel to its tracking that you’ll struggle to find in another mouse at this price point. The only downsides are the lower IPS and acceleration ratings, but then for the price, that’s quite understandable.
Overall ergonomics are strong too, and it’s ideal for anyone looking to palm or claw grip their pixel pointer. Though it doesn’t have the super-low weight of a high-end FPS mouse, the FPS Pro gives gamers of any genre plenty of value.
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