With the new year comes a new generation of PC peripherals, including gaming mice. So, expect our gaming mouse guide to have a few changes in the coming months, especially as new offerings from our favorite products roll out.
While we aren't currently testing upcoming releases right now, we do have a new budget offering on the list. The Cooler Master MM311 is a cheap gaming mouse that punches above its weight when it comes to performance and rightly deserves a place here.
Michelle Rae Uy, Buying Guides Editor
The best gaming mouse is a vital part of any PC gamer's setup. While it might not make you a competitive esports player overnight, the features and functionality they offer will take your game to the next level and even help you get to the top of the leaderboards no matter what you play.
Even the best mouse around is going to fall far short of what most gamers need nowadays if it isn't specifically designed with gaming in mind. Things like low latency and precise sensors for better control aren't the kind of thing that your typical office worker is going to be all that concerned about, if they even notice. But the wrong mouse can often be the difference between making it to the top of the leaderboards and failing to make it at all.
If you've invested money in the best gaming PC that you can afford, you probably don't want to leave your gaming setup only half-finished. The right gaming mouse is a key part of that equation, along with the best gaming keyboard and best PC gaming headset.
Fortunately, we have tested all of the best gaming mice from major brands like Razer, Corsair, and SteelSeries, pulling together our top picks to help make your search a whole lot easier. And if you're looking to save some money while you're at it, we've also included the best cheap gaming mouse deals around to help you get what you want at the best price possible.
The best gaming mouse 2023
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Finding a gaming mouse that ticks off all the right stuff – or at least most of them – is no longer a tall order thanks to the Razer Basilisk V3 Pro. This wireless gaming mouse is apologetic in its features, stuffing in every single vital feature gamers can think of in a form factor that's both comfortable and reliable for gaming.
We found the Basilisk V3 Pro not only heavy on features, from RGB lighting and 10+1 programmable buttons to next-gen wireless charging capability, but also impressive in performance. It's actually fast and responsive, despite the fact it's a little on the heavy side. And, we also found it to be more comfortable to use than its rivals.
It is a little on the expensive side, and you have to pay extra for wireless charging. However, this gaming mouse is worth every penny, and is the best gaming mouse hands down.
Read our full Razer Basilisk V3 Pro review
The Cooler Master MM311 punches far above its weight, especially for a budget gaming mouse. It might not be the fastest or more feature-rich option on the market, but for something so cheap, it delivers a speedy, smooth, and accurate performance. It also boast with a DPI range that’s good for most gaming situations as well as a symmetrical, ergonomic shape that makes it comfortable to use, whether you’re a rightie or leftie.
It does compromise where it can. For one, it requires a mousepad for that great performance, as its feet struggles on some surfaces. It also isn't rechargeable. The good news is that it does make those AA batteries last a while. And, unless you need a lot of buttons or an extremely high DPI, it will more than keep up with your gaming needs.
Read our full Cooler Master MM311 review
Logitech revived its most beloved line in a massive way with the Logitech G502 X Plus. Impressive in its performance and its features, this modern version of the Logitech G502 Lightspeed Wireless replaces some older features with a few new ones as well as some new tech.
While some fans of the line might be disappointed that the one favorite feature – weight customization – is now gone, they'll be impressed with everything else they're getting. That includes a more lightweight body, a brand-new hybrid optical-mechanical switch, a Lightspeed wireless protocol that’s faster than the previous generation, and a battery life that's double its predecessor's.
We found the hybrid optical-mechanical switch to deliver the immediate response to presses and an extremely satisfying tactile feedback. Meanwhile, the HERO 25K sensor remains fast, smooth and accurate. This is one of the best gaming mice on the market, and the only thing that really holds it back is the fact that the Powerplay system for wireless charging costs a lot to get.
Read our full Logitech G502 X Plus review
Razer has outdone itself with the Razer DeathAdder V3 Pro, an incredibly lightweight gaming mouse that's just as impressive in performance and in battery life. Oh, and top-notch ergonomics as well, whether you've got a claw grip or a palm one.
The first couple of things that you'll notice about this gaming mouse release is that it is light as a feather and just as supportive as the best ergonomic mice, thanks to the painstaking attention to detail when it comes to its form. We found during out tests that all the bump, curves, dips, and button placements are strategically positioned to give users the best and most comfortable experience.
Naturally, its performance is no slouch either, keeping up with the fast-paced games we tested it on and its optical switches delivering those satisfying clicks. Finally, there's that battery life of 90 hours. We used it for a week for about 8 or more hours a day, and didn't charge the mouse once. It's a little on the pricier side, but wouldn't you rather invest on the best gaming mouse that does it all and lasts a lifetime than have to upgrade every year or so?
Read our full Razer DeathAdder V3 Pro review
The Roccat Kone XP Air may have some tough competition to beat with new releases from Razer and Logitech. However, while it can keep up with them in performance, it's in value where it really separates itself. It is an expensive gaming mouse, but it's also proving to be one of the best value premium gaming mice on the market, offering lots of features that the others can't quite rival.
Among those are the inclusion of 29 programmable actions from its 15 inputs and the Easy-Shift function that Roccat is known for, and a charging dock out of the box, which is something others charge gamers extra for. The 3D RGB lighting, which some people found to be a bit of an acquired taste in the wired Roccat Kone XP, is also more refined and appealing.
Of course, we found its performance to be smooth, accurate, and fast, and its impressive PTFE feet play a big role in that. This is the best gaming mouse to get if you have a flexible budget but still want the best bang for your buck.
Read our full Roccat Kone XP Air review
Years after the success of the Razer Naga and Naga Trinity comes the Razer Naga Pro, a stronger MMO-focused contender that takes everything great about its predecessors and hones them. What you get is the best gaming mouse that's refined for MMO but lends its prowess to FPS and Battle Royale titles as well.
We were impressed with its top-notch skill set during testing. Among those skills are its up to 150 battery life, three types of connectivity including 2.4GHz wireless, and an on-board memory than lets you store up to 5 profiles. The marquee feature here, however, is its swappable side plate, of which it comes with three: the typical 2-button side plate for FPS, a 6-button one for Battle Royale, and a 12-button one for MMO... because you shouldn't have to stick to just one genre.
Read our full Razer Naga Pro Wireless review
The unique shape of the Cooler Master MM720 may harken back to some of Cooler Master’s older designs but there’s more to this mouse than the way it looks. It’s incredibly light, thanks to its honeycomb posterior, and performs wonderfully since it has up to 16,000 DPI on tap.
Our testing really allowed its optical switches to showcase their prowess. We found that they only required a very light touch to deliver fast, accurate responses. This gaming mouse was speedy and responsive on testing, whether we were quickly switching weapons or blasting away demon hordes. It more than kept up with games like Doom Eternal and Cyberpunk 2077.
Its unusual shape and pancake-flat design might be a little weird, but it offers better ergonomics and a more comfortable gaming experience. Although it is better suited for gamers who have a claw grip and, with that ring finger rest, right-handed ones.
Read our full Cooler Master MM720 review
Competitive fast-paced games require a gaming mouse that can keep up, and for that, you’d want to take a look at the Razer Viper 8K. This is among the fastest and most responsive gaming mice out there, thanks to its 8,000Hz polling rate and <0.125ms click latency.
We put the Razer Viper 8K through a number of competitive FPS multiplayer matches during testing and saw a noticeable improvement in our game. We saw a statistically significant uptick in our kill-to-death ratio in games like In Destiny 2's Crucible playlist.
It’s also inherited the Razer Viper line’s impressive build as well as the ambidextrous design that some of its models come with. You'll need a speedy monitor to get the full benefit from the Viper 8K though, but if you need the best gaming mouse in terms of speed, this is the one for you.
Read our full Razer Viper 8K review
Some gaming mice claim to be the lightest, but the Asus TUF Gaming M4 Air actually delivers, thanks to its ultralight Air Shell design and pyramidal frame. This lightweight mouse is a mere 47 grams, making it the most lightweight mouse of all the best gaming mice we’ve tested in 2022.
That lightweight design contributes to its ergonomics. The M4 Air felt extremely comfortable and natural to use during our testing, and it should support most grip styles easily. In terms of performance, it got the job done, allowing us to go through a few matches of Halo Infinite effortlessly tracking our shots and picking off heads with the S7 Sniper Rifle.
A pandemic-era product, it comes with Asus’s new Antibacterial Guard that helps eliminate 99% of bacteria over a 24-hour period, as well as IPX6 water resistance for accidental spills. This lightweight option is also the best gaming mouse for you if you're particular about keeping things sanitary.
Read our full Asus TUF Gaming M4 Air review
The SteelSeries Aerox 9 is the one of the best you can get in terms of build quality and performance if you're looking for a premium quality gaming mouse that’s built specifically for MMO or MOBA gaming. But, while some MMO gaming mouse are built with heft, something that some gamers prefer we're sure, this offering from SteelSeries sets itself apart with an ultra-lightweight of 89g.
The SteelSeries Aerox 9’s design, which boasts a perforated body and an ultra-thin PCB to cut down weight, is made to be as light and as easy to move as possible for speed. And, while its button layout delivers an excellent experience while playing any game, especially MMOs, we found that its overall design also allows for multiple gripe types.
Adding to its versatility is the fact that you can completely customize the mouse. You can customize most things from its polling rates, DPI, and angle snapping to its acceleration and deceleration via the SteelSeries GG application.
Read our full SteelSeries Aerox 9 Wireless review
While we wish there was a little more to the Roccat Kone XP’S RGB lighting, we know that you can’t have it all, even in the best gaming mouse. But, considering everything else this mouse does, its simple RGB, not to mention its love-it-or-hate-it aesthetic, is a minor quibble because that’s where any negatives end.
We found the Roccat Kone XP a pleasure to use. It’s light with the kind of ergonomics that fit our hands perfectly when gaming and glides around like butter. Performance is on point with its 19,000 DPI Roccat-made optical sensor as well. Most importantly, especially for all those RPG and MMO fans, it has 15 completely customizable buttons that can be extended to a total of 29 actions thanks to Roccat’s Easy-Shift feature. If that doesn’t convince you, then the included optical switches that give you that clicky feel will.
Read our full Roccat Kone XP review
How to choose the best gaming mouse
While you’ll definitely find the best gaming mouse of your gaming dreams, doing so might take some time and effort. That’s expected; there’s a ton of complicated technical jargon that goes into the best gaming mice – terms like polling rates and DPI ratings that a regular buyer may not be familiar with. For the record, you’ll want a higher number of both, even though these two terms mean very different things.
For newcomers to the world of PC gaming, when you come across the term DPI, that is shorthand for ‘dots per inch.’ The higher the number, the wider the range wherein you can specify how sensitive your mouse is. If you don’t have a lot of desk space available, but you still want accuracy and precision, then opt for the best gaming mouse with a higher DPI rating that can toggle to a lower DPI, in case you get a bigger desk.
Meanwhile, a high polling rate means you’re getting faster response times. The polling rate is measured in hertz, and it usually ranges from around 125 to 1,000Hz. The latter means that your mouse’s position is reported to your computer 1,000 times per second.
Other key gaming mouse factors you’ll want to keep in mind are ergonomics – particularly if you’re left-handed – and RGB lighting.
How we test gaming mice
Gaming mice come in all shapes, sizes, and quality, so of course we test each one that lands on our desks. There’s a lot that we do to ensure that every mouse is up to gamers’ standards, but naturally, we start with the design. We take a look at its aesthetics as well as its ergonomics and ease of use, making sure that it feels as good as it looks. If there’s RGB lighting, we test that as well, checking to see if it works as it should.
Then we move on to its performance – from its responsiveness to its accuracy and speed. We use it extensively to play the latest and greatest games, ensuring that it delivers as promised. If it comes with software customizations for RGB lighting, macros, and key remapping, we check those too. If it’s a wireless gaming mouse (opens in new tab), we also test its connectivity, range, and battery life.
Finally, we gather all the information we’ve collected and decide if it’s worth the price and if it’s of great value to the target audience.
What is the best mouse brand for gaming
Most of the top gaming peripheral brands have top-notch offerings for gamers, so it's not so much the brand that's important as it is the gaming mouse itself. That said, Logitech, Razer, and SteelSeries are crowd-favorites. Zowie, BenQ's peripheral line, seems to have impressed gamers as well.
Do gaming mice make a difference?
Let us be the first to say that yes gaming mice make a tremendous difference in your gaming PC or gaming laptop experience. The best gaming mouse will feel like an extension of your hand, not just something you hold and click to get something done. It will make your gaming feel more fluid and in turn probably help boost your game performance - which is especially good for competitive multiplayer games.
Gaming mice often have a faster response time than regular mice, which you’ll notice immediately upon use. You’ll move faster and more accurately in your games, once again improving your gaming abilities in ways you may not have expected. You might not put much thought into what mouse you’re using, but a gaming mouse truly does make a difference.
One of the best things about gaming mice is that they don’t have to have an enormous price tag attached. It’s true that some gaming mice can be expensive, especially if you want one with brand recognition, but you don’t have to drop a lot of money to get the best gaming mouse and start improving your PC gaming experience.
Most PC gamers will swear by corded gaming mice, but ultimately the decision will be yours. Some say that the delay from using a wireless mouse is enough to lose a competitive game, but if you’re more of a narrative-driven gamer that won’t make a difference. If you do opt for a wireless gaming mouse, make sure you choose one with a long battery life so you can game uninterrupted for as long as possible.