Best Gaming Mouse 2018: 12 awesome wired and wireless mice

We’ve thoroughly tested a heap of gaming mice to see which offer the best player experience, no matter your budget. Here’s our pick for the greatest mouse, whatever genre you're into.

If you’re serious about game time, then you’ll need the right equipment to give you a fighting chance against AI and human opponents. Sure, you’ll want a tasty rig that can handle the latest titles, not to mention a crisp and responsive display for a clear view of the battlefield. But a quality gaming mouse can make a real difference too – the difference between pulling off a killer headshot or ending up with a bullet-sized hole through your own cranium.

That’s why we’ve rounded up the very best PC peripherals to give you a serious advantage, no matter what genre you’re into. The following mice cover pretty much any budget, from safely under £50 to well over £100. You’re bound to find something you like, whether you fancy a healthy dose of LEDs or some ergonomic design work. Big or small, wired or wireless – we’ve got you covered.

At the top end of the price scale, there’s the Logitech G903. This beast delivers incredible Bluetooth performance, with some seriously impressive customisation on offer too. And if you stump up for Logitech’s wireless charging mouse mat, you’ll never need plug it in. Of course, this kind of smarts certainly doesn’t come cheap. The G903 alone costs £150, making it one for the truly dedicated (or minted) gaming connoisseur.

If that’s a bit rich for your tastes, the more affordable Logitech G703 offers many of the same benefits with a more subtle design. All for ‘just’ £99. The Corsair Dark Core RGB SE is a similar price and also boasts Qi wireless charging, so your gaming sessions can stay cable free.

If you’re after a lot of programmable buttons to give you an edge over your online buddies, the Roccat Kone Aimo is a good fit. Or if you’re properly skint and need the best budget gaming mouse, we’d point you towards the excellent value Corsair Harpoon instead.

Related: Best gaming keyboard

How we pick the best gaming mouse

As with every product that we review, we put these PC peripherals through their paces with lots of real-world testing. In other words, we locked ourselves away in a cool, dark room with a sufficient supply of snacks and caffeine drinks and played all kinds of games – strategy, FPS, RPG and beyond – until our fingers were little more than withered stumps.

We made sure to test each gaming mouse thoroughly across a range of criteria. Is it comfortable to use for extended periods, and responsive enough for precision play? Can you customise the look and the feel? How many bonus buttons do you get and are they easy to reach? And if the mouse is wireless, how quickly and accurately does it respond to your clicks and nudges?

Only when we’re completely satisfied do we complete our reviews, so you know exactly which mouse is best for you.

Related: The best gaming PC build guide

Best gaming mouse: Logitech G903

Logitech G903

Pros:

  • Stellar wireless performance
  • Powerplay wireless charging support
  • Wealth of customisation options

Cons:

  • It’s really expensive

If money is no object, then the Logitech G903 is a fantastic gaming mouse. It’s a near-peerless performer in the wireless space thanks to its support for Logitech’s custom ‘Lightspeed’ technology.

What’s more, if you’re super flush and can afford to spend an extra hundred pounds or so, it’s also compatible with Logitech’s PowerPlay wireless charging mat.

Add to this its ergonomic, customisable design, which feature up to eight programmable keys, and the G903 earns its place as one of the best wireless mice for serious gamers.

At the time of review the Logitech G903 cost £149.99.

Corsair Dark Core RGB SE

Pros:

  • Excellent price
  • Solid construction
  • Responsive tracking

Cons:

  • Limited customisation
  • Will be too heavy for some
  • Awkward button placement

Corsair’s first wireless mouse is good value for money, despite costing the best part of £100. For that price you get full wireless charging support (Special Edition only), plus pretty much every gaming feature your little heart could desire.

As well as nine programmable buttons, the Corsair Dark Core RGB SE serves up an excellent 16,000 DPI sensor. You have full control over the sensitivity and those funky LEDs via Corsair’s excellent PC software. However, the Dark Core’s heavy and rather bulky design won’t suit all tastes, so you might want to try before you buy. Don’t forget, you’ll need to save some cash for that wireless charging mat too, if you don’t want to resort to cables when the battery eventually dies.

Best gaming mouse: Corsair Harpoon 2

Corsair Harpoon

Pros:

  • Great value for money
  • Lightweight
  • Grips well

Cons:

  • Tracking not up there with the best
  • Small size won’t please everyone
  • Non-braided cable

Thirty pounds doesn’t always get you a lot when it comes to peripherals, but the Corsair Harpoon is an exception. It’s one of the lightest mice we’ve come across, with a light and nimble shape that excels in FPS titles.

The rubber finish is super-grippy, and each of the six buttons can be reprogrammed. Tracking performance is surprisingly accurate for a budget-friendly mouse too, with the 6000 DPI sensor allowing for precision in games that demand it.

While it’s certainly the baby of Corsair’s range, the Harpoon neatly lights up with a small helping of RGB lighting too, and can be synchronised with any other Corsair RGB product you already own.

It isn’t the most feature-rich mouse in this list, but the Corsair Harpoon excels in every area that counts.

At the time of review the Corsair Harpoon cost £30. You can now find it for a little less from some retailers.

Best gaming mouse: Logitech G703

Logitech G703

Pros:

  • Highly responsive sensor
  • Great wireless performance
  • Can be wirelessly charged

Cons:

  • Fairly expensive
  • Design is a little bland
  • PowerPlay is a pricey extra

If you want super-fast response times coupled with the benefits of wireless tech then the Logitech G703 is an excellent option.

Featuring a 12,000 DPI sensor, Lightspeed wireless technology and optional wireless charging, the G703 is a zero-compromise peripheral.

As well as being lighting-fast, the optional PowerPlay wireless charging mouse pad ensures the G703 never runs out of juice, even during heated gaming sessions, which is a constant annoyance when using most wireless mice.

The only downside is that with the basic mouse costing £99 and PowerPlay mouse pad adding a further £100-plus to the cost, taking full advantage of the G703’s capabilities is seriously expensive. Still – if money is no object then this wireless mouse is a sound investment.

At the time of review the Logitech G703 cost £99.99. You can grab it now for £75 from Currys/PC World, or less from Amazon.

Roccat Kone Aimo

Pros:

  • Accurate tracking performance
  • Smooth gliding
  • Bright RGB lighting
  • Excellent ergonomics

Cons:

  • May be too bulky for some
  • Not weight adjustable
  • Non-removable cable
  • Feels a tad plasticky

German brand Roccat is well versed when it comes to crafting satisfying gaming peripherals, be it keyboards, headsets or this rather good (and not too expensive) mouse. The Kone Aimo is quite bulky and a little plasticky, but we can’t fault the comfort levels during lengthy online sessions. And if you like LEDs, Roccat hasn’t disappointed there either. You can make the Kone glow all kinds of funky hues from every crack and pore.

That Owl Eye optical sensor peaks at 12,000 DPI, with the ability to fine tune until it’s just as sensitive as you like. You get plenty of buttons which can be customised to your heart’s content, while the overall responsiveness and performance definitely won our approval. As long as you don’t have dinky hands, chances are you’ll get on spiffingly with the Kone Aimo.

Best gaming mouse: SteelSeries Sensei 310 2

SteelSeries Sensei 310

Pros:

  • Great performance
  • Comfortable
  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • Plasticky
  • No weight adjustment
  • So-so software

The SteelSeries Sensei 310 is a solid choice for aspiring pro gamers. Featuring a lightweight, ergonomic design, the Sensei 310 is exquisitely comfortable to use and offers class-leading performance. This, plus its super-responsive controls, means the Sensei 310 works excellently for a variety of genres and is another great all-rounder.

The only slight downsides are that the plastic chassis doesn’t have quite the premium feel you’d expect from a £60 gaming mouse, and that the SteelSeries customisation software isn’t quite as developed as competitors’ offerings.

At the time of review the SteelSeries Sensei 310 cost £60.

Best gaming mouse: Corsair Glaive RGB

Corsair Glaive RGB

Pros:

  • Smooth tracking
  • Highly responsive
  • RGB looks great
  • Excellent software

Cons:

  • Limited customisability
  • No weight adjustment
  • Relatively expensive

Featuring hot-swappable sides for easy customisation, the Glaive RGB is a fantastic all-rounder that works with a variety of different genres. Its appeal is further aided by smooth tracking, high responsivity, and excellent software that makes it quick and easy to take advantage of the Glaive’s three-zone RGB lighting.

The only downside is that, by trying to do everything, it could feel too much like a master of none to more focused gamers – which is a bit of a pain considering its high price. Still, if money is no object and you’re after a mouse that’ll work for everything from hardcore FPS shooters to casual Rocket League matches, this is it.

At the time of review, the Corsair Glaive RGB cost £69.99.

Best gaming mouse: SteelSeries Rival 310

SteelSeries Rival 700

Pros:

  • Fantastic gaming performance
  • Glides very smoothly
  • Highly customisable
  • Grippy design

Cons:

  • OLED screen isn’t very useful
  • No weight adjustment
  • Expensive

The SteelSeries Rival 700 isn’t your average gaming mouse. While you’ll find an accurate 16,000 DPI sensor, a comfortable design and RGB lighting, the Rival is actually equipped with a vibrating motor and OLED screen. This allows the Rival 700 to integrate with games such as Dota 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, providing feedback to the user that may otherwise go unnoticed.

While the selection of games supported is limited, the vibrating alerts can really help keep you in the loop in intense encounters. In fact, of the devices we’ve tested to date, the Rival 700 is our favourite mouse for Counter-Strike.

If you play one of the supported games and crave slick performance then the Rival 700 is an excellent choice.

At the time of review, the SteelSeries Rival 700 cost £90.

Best gaming mouse: Corsair M65 Pro RGB

Corsair M65 Pro RGB

Pros:

  • Responsive sensor
  • Useful sniper button
  • Great build quality
  • Looks great

Cons:

  • Not ideal for flick shots
  • Non-removable cable
  • Surface can build up sweat

The Corsair M65 is one of the best gaming mice you can buy, and with a DPI lowering thumb button, it’s aimed at those with a taste for first-person shooters. If you’re the sort of player that carefully lines up that long-range headshot, having a quick and easy way to adjust the sensitivity will prove useful.

It’s great in all other applications, too, with smooth and reliable tracking across the board, and a shape that fit in our hands very nicely indeed. You can even adjust an array of weights for a more tailored experience. There are three zones of RGB lighting that shine bright and vividly, with effects that can be synced across the vast library of Corsair peripherals.

If you want an excellent mouse for first-person shooters – and have no quarrel with wires – then look no further than the Corsair M65 Pro.

At the time of review, the Corsair M65 Pro RGB cost £62.

Best gaming mouse: Corsair Scimitar Pro RGB

Corsair Scimitar Pro RGB

Pros:

  • Ergonomic shape
  • Accurate tracking
  • Very customisable

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • Possibly too big for some
  • No weight adjustment or detachable cable

If you play a lot of games that require complex button presses, then you should consider buying a mouse that reduces the strain. Corsair’s Scimitar Pro is a device that’s geared towards MMO and MOBA players, since it  houses 12 customisable buttons beneath your left thumb – making it incredibly easy to activate weapon combos without taking your hand off your movement keys.

It isn’t just a one-trick pony, though, with its 16,000 DPI sensor allowing for pinpoint accuracy, and a shape that slots neatly under your hand. If RGB is your thing, you’ll also be pleased to find four zones of customisable lighting.

Most won’t need such a generous number of buttons, but those who learn to utilise the Scimitar Pro will find themselves very happy campers indeed.

At the time of review, the Corsair Scimitar Pro RGB cost £80.

Best gaming mouse: Asus ROG Gladius ii

Asus ROG Gladius II

Pros:

  • Accurate tracking
  • Gorgeous RGB lighting
  • Good weighting
  • Highly customisable
  • Great build quality

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Clunky software
  • No weight adjustment

In the market for a wired gaming mouse that does it all? Then you should check out the Gladius II – Asus’ flagship wired mouse.

There’s a lot to like here, with a slick 12,000 DPI sensor that excels in all scenarios – and, arguably, the best-looking RGB implementation on any mouse. Like Corsair’s M65, you’ll find a DPI-lowering toggle button; however, the build quality appears better here, with replaceable switches and cables aiding customisability and longevity.

It’s a little on the expensive side for a wired mouse, but the Gladius II offers gamers an extremely compelling package.

At the time of review, the Asus ROG Gladius II cost £80.

Best gaming mouse: Mionix Naos QG

Mionix Naos QG

Pros:

  • Brilliant ergonomics
  • Interesting biometric data graphs
  • Sublime tracking performance

Cons:

  • Limited RGB lighting
  • Expensive for a wired mouse
  • Elements of the software in beta

Have you ever been disappointed to find that your mouse doesn’t monitor your beating heart? Us neither. But that doesn’t mean that it’s a bad idea, as Mionix proves with the Naos QG.

The device monitors heart rate and ‘galvanic skin response’, with real-time statistics overlaid in-game and stored long-term through Mionix’s software. It enables you to accurately monitor your body’s reaction to certain titles, which could be useful if you’re trying to reduce stress levels, for instance.

It doesn’t offer the best value with an RRP exceeding £100, but it’s remarkably comfortable to use, with tracking performance up there with some of the best. This makes it highly suitable for fast-paced twitch-shooters and MOBAs.

If you’re after something a little different, the Naos QG is certainly worthy of consideration.

At the time of review, the Mionix Naos QG cost £110.

Best gaming mouse: Razer lancehead

Razer Lancehead

Pros:

  • High DPI sensor
  • Great design and build
  • Useful on-board profiles

Cons:

  • Software isn’t perfect
  • Limited wireless range
  • Expensive

The Razer Lancehead is certainly not cheap, but it gets a lot right. It’s a beautiful piece of grown-up design with enough buttons for most needs. RGB lighting is unsurprisingly on the list of features, as is a massive 16,000dpi sensor.

We were mostly very pleased with its performance, although we’d definitely recommend keeping the USB receiver as close to the mouse as possible, as we had a few signal hiccoughs in during our testing time. Nothing crazy, but enough for us to reach for the provided extension cable.

Software is decent, and you can setup macros to your heart’s content.

All in all, this is a top-notch premium mouse, but certainly not the best value on this list.

At the time of review, the Razer Lancehead cost £140.


Gaming mouse buyer’s guide

Here we take you gently by the hand (in a purely platonic fashion) and run through some of the common jargon that you’re bound to encounter when researching the best gaming mice.

DPI

DPI stands for dots-per-inch. It’s one of the first things you’ll see mouse makers shouting about when they launch a new product.

It’s shorthand for how sensitive your mouse is. A high DPI means your cursor will move further relative to your hand movement. A low DPI, by contrast, will move a shorter distance.

Each gaming mouse will have a DPI range (e.g. 200 – 8,000), and the user can select a point in between that feels comfortable. A very high DPI would be something like 16,000. Most office mice will have a DPI of well below 1,000, by comparison. The majority of gamers will find 800 to 3,000 comfortable, but you can train yourself to cope with higher sensitivities over time.

The advantage of having a high DPI is that you can perform reactive actions quicker, because your cursor is moving faster. The disadvantage is that the higher sensitivity you choose, the harder the mouse is to control because the cursor is moving so quickly.

Most people won’t venture to lofty heights like 12,000, so beware of falling into the trap of assuming a high DPI equals a better mouse.

However, if you have a high-resolution (think 1440p QHD or 4K) monitor, buying a high DPI mouse can be advantageous. That’s because your cursor has more pixels to travel across, so higher DPI settings won’t seem as fast when compared to using a 1080p Full HD display.

Polling Rate

The polling rate is how often your mouse will report its position to the computer.

A high polling rate means your mouse is telling your computer where it is more often. That’s good, because it means your cursor will be more accurately reflecting your mouse movements.

However, a high polling rate also means your computer is having to work harder to understand where you mouse is, because it’s receiving more data per second.

Most high-end mice cap out at 1,000Hz, which means they’re reporting their position 1,000 times each second. Fortunately, companies like Razer and Logitech let you change polling rate on the fly, so you don’t have to settle for the maximum if you’re using a low-end computer.

It’s generally accepted that it’s hard to tell the difference between 500Hz and 1,000Hz. But you’ll definitely notice the difference between 125Hz and 1,000Hz, because the mouse will jutter a little more. That’s why polling rate is important but, as with DPI, don’t assume that a higher number is always better.

Wired vs Wireless

For the longest time, it was generally accepted that wireless gaming mice simply weren’t good enough for professional gaming.

That’s because of latency, or ‘lag’. A wireless connection is generally slower than a wired connection, due to the nature of the medium. So if a wired mouse reports to your computer in 1ms, and a wireless mouse reports to your computer in 5ms, it’s obvious that you should choose the wired device.

But thanks to advances in wireless technology, many wireless mice now claim 1ms – basically instantaneous – connections, including the Logitech G900 and Razer Mamba (2015).

As such, it’s not really fair to ward users off wireless mice anymore, at least because of latency anyway. In fact, Cloud9’s CounterStrike: Global Offensive team is using the wireless Logitech G900 in tournaments, which speaks to its speed.

But there are also other things to consider. Wireless mice tend to be heavier, due to the onboard battery. But then they’re good because you don’t have cables getting in the way.

Wired mice, on the other hand, will always be low-latency, irrespective of quality. They’re also typically lighter, generally cost less than wireless mice, and are more widely available.

These trade-offs are something you’ll have to make up your own mind on.

RGB lighting

Gaming mice aren’t just about performance, though, with seemingly every gaming mouse now coming equipped with multi-coloured lighting that can be adjusted to suit the player’s preference.

It’s worth paying attention to how many individually lit zones the mouse has, since this will determine the size and scope for RGB customisation. If you want to synchronise lighting effects between other peripherals, you’ll need to buy into the same brand ecosystem.

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