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Competitive gaming is, well, competitive. And that competition gets heated. With every gamer looking to ensure they have the edge, it’s perhaps more important now than ever to win in this proverbial arms race if you want to win in-game.
Having the best gaming mouse means your inputs will be more accurately reproduced and with less latency. And having the right amount of properly placed buttons can make playing easier; this also largely determines what the best MOBA mouse, MMO mouse, and FPS mouse are. So, if you’re looking for the best mouse, you’ll find our gaming mouse reviews of the best gaming mice, as well as the short guide afterward, useful while shopping.
What to Look for in a Gaming Mouse
When shopping for a gaming mouse there are a number of things to take into consideration. Even when looking at a lot of good gaming mice, like in this list, it can be hard to find the right mouse for you. The most important things to look at when shopping for a new gaming mouse are the sensitivity, the ergonomics, and the number of buttons.
DPI, or Dots Per Inch
The first thing most people are going to want to consider is the sensitivity, which is usually measured in dots per inch, or DPI. This is a measurement of how sensitive the sensor on the mouse is to small movements, and in some ways also measures how accurately it can detect these movements.
DPI roughly translates to how many pixels the cursor will move across on your screen if your mouse is moved one inch. So, a mouse with 16000 DPI will move the cursor 16000 pixels with a single inch of movement. This much sensitivity is far too much for most people, but having a sensor that can read movement with such precision allows your movements to be registered more accurately when it is turned down.
Many people will play games with DPIs sitting somewhere between 400 and 1000. Some mice can change their DPI on the fly, while for some mice like the Razer Deathadder it must be changed in an accompanying software.
The Corsair M65 Pro even has a button that can be held down to shift into a less sensitive DPI, and then returns the mouse to its normal sensitivity when the button is released. Ultimately, the higher the DPI of the sensor the more precisely it will be able to register movement, and the higher you can take the sensitivity.
If you’re really unsure about whether a mouse with “only” 10000 DPI is going to work compared to the true 16000 DPI of the DeathAdder, it’s worth noting that many pros use mice like the BenQ Zowie EC2-A that top out at 3200.
Next, you’ll want to take the ergonomics of the mouse you’re looking to purchase into consideration. Having a comfortable mouse can be the difference between playing for hours on end, and getting a repetitive strain injury, or RSI.
If you already have an RSI, then consider taking a look at the Logitech MX Vertical. This mouse boasts a unique angled design that takes stress off the bones and tendons in your arms and can help people who are prone to carpal tunnel and the like. Everything about the design of this mouse is intended to put your hand into a more comfortable and natural position that allows your bones and tendons to move normally.
If you’re left-handed, then getting a mouse with ergonomics that will work for you is even more important. Most gaming mice have many more buttons than typical mice, and most of them are placed in such a way that they only accommodate right-handed players. If you’re looking for an ambidextrous mouse, then check out the Logitech G900.
Number of Buttons
Finally, many people will want to consider the number of buttons and how easy it is to configure them. Different types of games often require different button layouts.
Shooters will usually only require a few buttons and relatively plain mice are often preferred for these games. This is why mice like the Razer Deathadder and BenQ Zowie are so popular amongst pros in these games. The smaller number of buttons present on these mice means that there is less to get in the way while aiming and shooting, and reduces the chances of accidentally clicking something at an inopportune moment.
On the other hand, MOBAs and MMOs require players to quickly trigger abilities or even set up custom macros. For these games, mice like the Razer Naga Trinity or Logitech G502 Hero are ideal. These mice have 11 or more buttons that can be programmed to do just about anything you need them to. This allows you to set up tons of macros, or even play MOBAs without using a keyboard at all.