(Pocket-lint) - Gaming mice are the high-end devices of the mouse world. They are designed to be more accurate, offer a more comfortable experience and are built to last - as gamers are likely to spend more time with their mouse than anyone else.
Top-of-the-range gaming mice also have multiple buttons, highly adjustable dots per inch (DPI) accuracy and a mass of settings that include everything from custom lighting to macros for specific games.
However, finding the right mouse for you can be tricky. People hold their mouse in different ways and have different sized hands that make purchasing a tricky business. A wide mouse with thumb rests and grips might be perfect for someone with large hands, but others might find a small and sleek mouse preferable, both in terms of fit and agility.
We run through a variety of gaming mice to see which are the best around, taking into account all the things gamers love most - RGB, responsiveness, number of buttons and, of course, value for money.
Best overall gaming mouse
Corsair Dark Core RGB Pro
- 2.4GHz wireless, low-latency Bluetooth 4.0 or wired USB connection
- Swappable side grips and ergonomically textured design
- Nine individually customisable RGB lighting zones
- 1.8 metre braided USB cable
- Corsair Utility Engine (iCUE) compatible
- 18,000 max DPI, on-the-fly DPI switching via buttons and sniper mode
- Eight programmable buttons
- 2,000Hz polling rate
The Corsair Dark Core RGB Pro is a true work of art and gaming precision. This is an ergonomically designed mouse with a comfortable textured grip that fits perfectly in the hand. It comes with a swappable side grip which keeps your fingers and thumbs off the gaming surface and allows for accurate mouse movements.
It's wireless by design - capable of connecting either via wireless or low-latency Bluetooth. A USB wireless transceiver included in the box ensures an instant and responsive connection to your gaming machine via ultra-fast 1ms 2.4GHz wireless. But you can take the Dark Core RGB Pro with you and quickly connect to any other machine that supports Bluetooth in a flash.
As standard, this mouse can manage up to 50-hours of gaming on a single charge. If that doesn't sound like enough then there's also the Corsair Dark Core RGB Pro SE - a version that's compatible with the MM1000 Qi wireless charging mat meaning you can keep the mouse going and going by popping it on the charging zone when not in use. The Corsair Dark Core RGB Pro SE is Qi capable - so not only can it be charged on the mat, but also with any other Qi charging pad you happen to possess. The standard version is not.
Using Corsair's iCUE software you can do everything from changing the lighting to programming buttons and more. Here, you can customise the Dark Core's nine main lighting zones with a number of different effects that including static, rainbow, colour pulse and colour shift or choose instant lighting to set the same colour across multiple Corsair devices with a single click.
The Dark Core RGB Pro has been upgraded over the previous model, with more RGB zones including a lighting bar under the thumb buttons that is split into sections and can be individually tweaked.
This mouse supports up to 18,000 max DPI switchable on-the-fly with the buttons on the top. You can change between three main DPI modes which can be customised in the CUE software.
You can also add to your DPI options by changing one of the eight programmable buttons into a "Sniper" button. This is a fourth ultra-low DPI level for tiny and accurate movements. This needs to be pressed and held, but means you can quickly get back to your standard DPI much more easily too.
High-performance Omron switches provide a lightning-fast response and continue the theme of precision and accuracy. Easily accessible thumb buttons mean you can masterfully activate any setting or macro you want with a small movement of your hand too. Corsair has upped the polling rate of the new Dark Core RGB Pro too. So it's accurate, responsive and agile.
The Corsair Dark Core RGB Pro is a solid all-rounder. It's a multi-button mouse with great battery life, a comfortable design and brilliant specs too.
It's superbly agile, accurate and customisable too. The highlights of this mouse include wired, wireless and Bluetooth connectivity options that make it easy to use on multiple machines with ease. We also really like the dual side grip setup which means your fingers are very rarely interfering with movement and you can keep on gaming until your heart's content.
Best weight adjustable gaming mouse
Logitech G502 Lightspeed
- Ergonomically textured thumb rest
- 114-gram standard weight with extra adjustable weights
- Powerplay compatible
- Lightspeed wireless technology
- 11 programmable buttons with hyper-fast scroll wheel
- Logitech G Hub compatible for lighting controls, macros and various customisation options
- 25,600 max DPI, on-the-fly DPI switching via buttons with four custom settings and DPI shift mode
- 11 programmable buttons customisable with macros, actions and G-shift settings
- Up to 60 hours battery life, fast charge capable
This is a mouse that's not only crammed full of all the usual options, but also has a customisable weighting setup that allows you to adjust its heft to your personal preference.
Logitech's G502 Lightspeed is a real looker, but it's much more than that. It's very much a right-handed mouse, with a mass of easy-access buttons on the left side and very little catering to lefties.
It's incredibly light and nimble in the hand. It is also customisable in various ways. This mouse comes with 16 grams of extra weights that can be installed within the mouse via hidden flaps in the underside.
Lift the flap with the little G on it and you get access to a hidey-hole which is perfect for storing the USB wireless dongle when you need to travel with the mouse. The underneath of that flap also has room for some of the weights. You can install the two 4 gram weights here and the rest go under the other flap which surrounds the sensor.
The G502 uses Logitech's Lightspeed wireless technology to ensure it maintains a low-latency and reliable connection constantly and never lets you down. It also has fast charge capabilities which mean you can get around two and a half hours of battery life from a five-minute charge this way.
The G502 Lightspeed can manage as much as 60 hours of battery life and is also compatible with the Powerplay wireless charging system so it never needs plugging in if you splash out some extra cash.
One of our favourite features of this mouse is the mouse wheel. This is a hyper-fast scroll wheel similar to the one we saw on the Logitech G903. Click a button and you either have a tactile mouse wheel that gives a clicky feedback each time your scroll or an ultra-smooth, ultra-fast wheel that just spins and spins. This setup has a variety of potential uses, but is brilliant for just smashing through long webpages and documents in the blink of an eye. It's also incredibly satisfying to use.
The Logitech G502 Lightspeed is controlled by Logitech G-Hub - a free download for Windows and Mac that allows you to tweak the various settings on the mouse and customise to your liking.
From within it, you can control the lighting of the two main RGB capable zones, adjust DPI levels, report rates and customise the setup of the buttons. This mouse has 11 different buttons, two of which are sideways presses on the mouse wheel, and they can all be tweaked in here. You can set specific commands (like Windows shortcuts), individual keypresses, macros or actions within this software. It's possible to do things like assign a button press to start/stop OBS recordings for example. This system is incredibly flexible.
Then there's G-Shift mode. This lets you add an additional action, button customisation or macro to any button on the mouse. This is then accessible when you activate G-Shift mode (via a key or button press). Essentially you then have 22 buttons instead of 11. Though you will have to remember which is programmed with what.
The G502 Lightspeed is one of our favourite gaming mice when it comes to customisation options. We love many of the little design features of this mouse that make a big difference. The ultra-smooth scroll wheel, the mass of programmable buttons, the reliable wireless connection and the utterly incredible battery life.
This mouse does come with a hefty price tag and it is a tad smaller in the hand than other mice we've tested, but its almost certainly worth adding to your shortlist if you're shopping for a new gaming mouse. It's bound not to disappoint.
Best RGB gaming mouse
Corsair Nightsword RGB
- Customisable weight system
- Four RGB lighting zones controllable in the iCue software
- Six pre-set illumination effects
- Patterned rubber grips, ergonomic design and thumb rest
- Customised button mapping, surface calibration settings and macro settings
- 18,000 DPI max, 10 programmable buttons
- 1000Hz/500Hz/250Hz/125Hz report rates
We've seen a fair few gaming mice with RGB lighting, some are in-your-face, some are more subtle and understated.
The Corsair Nightsword verges on the latter, but with multiple lighting zones and numerous other features that make it appealing.
The Corsair Nightsword is a brilliantly designed feature-packed mouse that has plenty going for it. We've suggested that it's the best RGB mouse, but it's much more than that. This is an affordable gaming mouse with all the bells and whistles.
It sports a contoured shape, a rubberised textured finish and a design for palm grip specifically for right-handed FPS and MOBA players. Another highlight is the tunable weight system, with six weights (three 4.5g and three 2.8g) that can be placed in different layouts in the underside compartment.
Add to that a design that includes 10 programmable buttons, with DPI switching buttons and multiple easy-access thumb buttons too.
For RGB lighting lovers, there are four lighting zones on this mouse - the logo, the rear, front and mouse wheel. There's also a DPI indicator that can be tweaked in terms of colour too. All with the usual Corsair RGB goodness.
The Nightsword has 11 programmable buttons, as well as the ability to switch DPI on the fly. Set three different DPI levels to switch between, as well as custom level for "sniper" mode that can be engaged by pressing and holding one of the thumb buttons to drop into an uber low DPI level for precise movement.
The Corsair Nightsword is a fantastic little mouse that's packed full of features but without excessive cost which is refreshing.
It's comfortable to use all day, whether working or gaming or both. Customisable lighting, buttons and weight systems round off a brilliant package that anyone will love. Unless, of course, you're a lefty.
Best high-dpi multi-button mouse
Razer Basilisk Ultimate
- Customisable scroll wheel resistance
- Replaceable Multi-function paddle
- Gaming-grade tactile scroll wheel with customisable resistance
- Textured grips and an ergonomic grip
- 2.4 Ghz HyperSpeed Wireless technology
- Razer Synapse 3 compatible
- 20,000 max DPI adjustable in five different levels
- On-the-fly DPI switching via buttons with sensitivity clutch too
- 11 programmable buttons
The Basilisk Ultimate is a pinnacle of Razer's design - a wireless mouse with multiple buttons, a nifty charging base, some colourful RGB lighting and interesting features too.
This mouse is packed full of features including a removable multi-function paddle that doubles as an oh-so-satisfying thumb button. This paddle can be customised within the Synapse software, but as default works as a sensitivity clutch. Press and hold the paddle in the middle of a game and you get a temporary reduction in DPI levels for accurate sniping or tiny mouse movements. Once you let go again you're back to whatever level you were using before.
The other fun feature is the customisable scroll wheel. On the underside of the mouse, there's a tiny wheel you can roll to change the way the mouse wheel works. Roll it one way and the scroll wheel becomes smooth and fast, roll it the other and you get a clicky feedback with every tiny movement of the wheel. This is a nice little customisation option that we've not seen elsewhere.
That mouse wheel is also sideways clickable and this combination of buttons, along with things like the DPI buttons meaning you get a total of 11 programmable buttons with even more when you engage Hypershift.
This is a wireless gaming mouse with a focus on comfort and usability. When not in use you can pop it on the accompanying charging base to refill the juice. That dock also has a USB passthrough meaning you can plug the wireless dongle directly into it, removing the need for using two ports on your PC for one mouse.
Easy access DPI switching buttons, wonderfully contoured and textured thumb rest and brilliantly ergonomic design make this mouse incredibly comfortable and pleasant to use.
The Razer Basilisk Ultimate uses Razer's HyperSpeed Wireless technology that provides accurate, lag-free wireless gaming goodness. It's also designed to run for as much as 100 hours with the lighting turned off - though we feel that might be a little optimistic under normal use, but the dock makes it easy enough to charge anyway.
This mouse also has an insane 14 customisable lighting zones for you to play around within the software.
From Synapse you also get access to tweak the mouse buttons, adjust DPI levels and more. You can set up several different profiles, with five on-board memory profiles on the mouse you can switch between using a small button located underneath.
You can also choose levels of DPI switching in five varying levels up to 20,000 max. Set stages here and you can then switch between them using the two buttons on top near the mouse wheel.
We enjoyed this mouse, particularly for its thumb buttons and mass of customisable settings. The textured grips, ergonomic design and thumb rest make it comfortable and capable during gaming sessions too.
With found the Razer Basilisk to be fantastic for FPS sessions, but also great for everyday use, surfing, browsing and working too. It's really accurate and the wireless connection never let us down. Meaning we could never blame our tools when we failed to claim a Battle Royale victory or outshoot an opponent.
If you're looking for something with a mass of buttons, plenty of programmability options and a stylish design, then look no further.
The Razer Basilisk Ultimate is easily one of the most comfortable and flexible wireless gaming mice we've tried.
A ridiculous battery life, snazzy customisable lighting and a convenient charging dock certainly round off an awesome gaming package.
Most stylish gaming mouse
Roccat Kain 202 AIMO
- Roccat Owl-Eye optical sensor with 16000 DPI
- 1.8m micro USB cable
- 2.4GHz wireless
- 1000mAh inbuilt Li-Ion rechargeable battery with up to 50 hours charge
- Omron switches
If style and charm is something you need from your gaming mouse and you're just a tad bored of boring black mice, then this mouse from Roccat might be the answer.
The Roccat Kain 202 AIMO is not only a pleasantly affordable, feature-rich mouse, it's also a looker.
This is a compact gaming mouse with some pleasantly understated style. It's designed to be both ergonomic and durable with a dirt-resistant, anti-wear coating that should keep things clean even for the messiest gamer.
The Kain 202 AIMO has a number of things going for it. Firstly, a battery life that means it can last up to 50 hours before it needs plugging in. Then there are the eight programmable buttons, which can be doubled up with Roccat's Easy-Shift technology. Then a multitude of settings that include five customisable DPI levels up to 16,000, a tuneable click, scroll and pointer speed as well as adjustable lift-off distance.
Roccat claims the Kain 202 has ultra-fast Titan Click technology and an Owl-Eye optical sensor that make it agile, accurate and responsive. It shows too as this mouse is a real performer, both in game and out of it.
Although the Roccat Kain 202 AIMO isn't necessarily the most feature-packed mouse on our list, it is probably the most beautiful. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but we love the white colour of this mouse and the durable bodywork that should keep it clean for yonks.
Beauty is more than skin deep too and that shows with this gaming mouse. Backed by a variety of features that include high DPI settings, some funky lighting and neat Easy-Shift button customisation too.
At this price, the Kain 202 is a bargain.
Best large gaming mouse
Mad Catz R.A.T. PRO X3 Supreme
- Exoframe size adjustable structure with swappable grips and rests
- 16000 DPI
- On-board memory for up to 10 profiles
- 400 IPS, 50G acceleration, 3000 Hz report rate
- Omron switches
- 10 buttons
If your hands are slightly on the large side, then choosing the right gaming mouse can be tricky. Comfort is a problem and you might find that your thumb can get in the way, at least we do anyway. It's often hard to find a comfortable, suitably sized mouse that you can use without problem.
The Mad Catz R.A.T. PRO X3 Supreme may well be the weird-looking solution to that issue. We've seen Mad Catz mice in the past, but this is the all-singing, all-dancing, supreme version which not only boasts stylish looks but plenty of nifty features too.
It sports all the usual things you'd expect from a decent gaming mouse. 10 buttons, 16,000 max DPI, onboard memory for profiles and more. But the highlight is the design. Like other R.A.T. mice, this mouse is extendable and ergonomically crafted to be a great fit and one that can be customised to your needs.
It also comes with swappable rests for both sides of the mouse, extra palm rests, pinkie rests and thumb rests that can be swapped out in a matter of seconds. The feet can also be changed and there are even different scroll wheel covers included in the box as well, so you can change how that feels.
The result of all this is a highly customisable mouse that can be tweaked to fit your particular needs. A real eye-catcher with multiple buttons and a multitude of customisation options. Perfect for gamers who aren't sure what mouse is for them.
Best MOBA/MMO mouse
Razer Naga Pro
- 20,000 DPI
- 19 customisable buttons
- 2 RGB lighting zones
- 117g weight
- Swappable button sideplates
- 650 IPS, 50G acceleration
MMO and MOBA gamers are generally a different breed of player. They're often found trying to micromanage and pull off all sorts of moves with multiple macros and complex button presses. If you're that sort of gamer there are a few mice out there for you. But what if you like MMO gaming but also like shooters? Well, the Razer Naga Pro maybe just what you need.
This mouse seemingly tries to cater to all with an interesting design that not only has everything you'd expect from a gaming mouse, but also has swappable side buttons meaning you can change the thumb button access depending on what you're playing.
Two side buttons for FPS or 12 for MMO/MOBAs the choice is yours.
These side plates are held on with magnets, so they're easy to snap off and on at a whim, to suit your needs. You can then customise the buttons within the Razer Synapse software, setting macros, button presses, actions and more. With Razer's Hypershift tech, you can also assign a secondary button action when in that mode too, making the number of programmable buttons likely more than anyone would need.
The Naga Pro thrills in other areas too. One of those is its ability to connect in wired, Bluetooth or wireless mode. In Bluetooth, with RGB lighting off you can get as much as 150 hours of battery life out of it too.
Throw in five onboard memory profiles, five custom DPI levels, 100% PTFE feet and a Pixart Optical sensor and you've got a real gaming powerhouse.
The Razer Naga Pro is a fantastic option for gamers who need a different mouse setup for particular games but don't want to own multiple mice and the expense that comes with that. It's all-singing, all-dancing and generally fantastic.
Best lightweight gaming mouse
Glorious PC Gaming Race Model 0
- 12,000 max DPI
- 50 G Max acceleration
- 250 IPS Max Speed
- ~0.7mm Lift off Distance
- Up to, 1,000 Hz adjustable polling rate
- 67g weight
- 6 buttons
Professional gamers will tell you that weight is all that matters. A lightweight mouse is easier to move swiftly, even on lower (more accurate) DPI settings.
That's where the Glorious PC Gaming Race Model 0 comes in. This mouse weighs in at just 67 grams and delivers speed in other areas too.
It's designed with slick PTFE feet known as G-Skates and a lightweight flexible USB cable that makes the entire thing nimble and agile.
It sports a honeycomb design and some seriously snazzy RGB lighting thanks to the lighting strips on either side which send a satisfying glow through the inside of the mouse.
Simple software allows you to adjust DPI levels (switchable via the button underneath), adjust lighting, tweak polling rate, lift off distance and more.
The Model O is a surprisingly affordable gaming mouse with fantastic style and gaming prowess. The lightweight design makes it nimble and agile and it's incredible feature-rich for such an affordable mouse too. It might be tough to keep clean in the long run, but there's no denying it's a looker and a great bit of kit.
Others to consider
Roccat Burst Pro
- Lightweight 68g design
- 16,000 max DPI adjustable in five levels
- Roccat Titan Optical Switches
- Honeycomb design with outer shell
- Eight programmable button
The Roccat Burst Pro is the company's answer to the wave of lightweight honeycomb mice that have hit the market of late. With the benefits of a hollow mouse but without the danger of dirt and dust build-up on the internals. It's also affordable but doesn't skimp on quality. The Burst Pro has an accurate Owl-Eye optical sensor and Roccat's Titan Optical Switches making it accurate and robust - guaranteed upto 100 million clicks. This mouse won't burst your wallet, but it might make you pro.
Endgame Gear XM1
- 50 CPI to 16,000 CPI sensitivity
- 50 G Max acceleration
- 450 IPS Max Speed
- 2mm Lift off Distance
- 250 Hz, 500 Hz, 1,000 Hz adjustable polling rate
The Endgame Gear XM1 might not look like anything special, but don't let that fool you. It's understated in its gaming power but that doesn't mean it should be overlooked. It's accurate, responsive and swift too. Thought has clearly gone into the design and we love the simple touches like the ultra-flexible cable which doesn't tug or snag on the desk.
It's affordable and serious. If you don't care about the thrills of RGB and more premium mice and just want something that does the job, then you're in for treat.
SteelSeries Aerox 3 Wireless
- CPI 200–18,000 in 100 CPI Increments
- 66g ultra-lightweight design
- 400 IPS, 40G acceleration, 1000Hz polling rate
- 6 buttons
- Matte black finish
The SteelSeries Aerox 3 wireless is the company's answer to the lightweight, honeycomb mice out there. It's a nifty little mouse too, with IP54 dust resistance, up to 200 hours battery life and both 2.4Ghz and Bluetooth connectivity options.
The matt black ABS plastic finish makes it rougher in the hand meaning there's no danger of it slipping awkwardly if your hands are a bit sweaty in the heat of a good gaming session. All told, the Aerox 3 is a great mouse, especially if you take advantage of all the battery saving settings.