Best gaming mouse 2018: the best gaming mice we've tested

 techradar.com  12/6/2018 9:55:00 PM  14  Kane Fulton

We get it, you just dropped a lot of cash on the best gaming PC you could muster, so you just want a cheap mouse to get your game on. However, we think you should go out there and find the best gaming mouse money can buy – everything attached to your rig should be of comparable quality. You should pick up one of the best mouse pads while you’re at it, too.

When you go out looking for the top gaming mouse, you should consider any mouse that can balance price and performance effectively. Don’t fall for the myth that the best mouse is the most expensive one on the shelf. Note the SteelSeries Rival 600 – at the price of a new AAA game, it has plenty of high-end features and awesome performance.

So, we gathered together the best gaming mice we’ve used – all of which have been reviewed and tested by us. No matter what kind of games you're into, you'll find the best gaming mouse for your needs right here on this list.

1. SteelSeries Rival 600

DPI: 12,000 | Features: Lift off distance detection, customizable weight, 60-million click mechanical switches

Customizable weight

Depth sensor

A little bit expensive

SteelSeries is experiencing a sort of renaissance in 2018, and there is no greater evidence of that than the SteelSeries Rival 600. Featuring customizable weight, the perfect amount of side buttons, and true RGB spectrum lighting the Rival 600 will be the centerpiece of your desk. But, even beyond the aesthetics, the Rival 600 performs far better than a mouse in its price range has any right to. Not only does it feature a 12,000 DPI sensor and satisfying mechanical switches, but the Rival 600 goes above and beyond and features a depth sensor that will all but eliminate cursor sway when you lift your mouse off of the mouse pad. This is truly the best gaming mouse you can buy today.

Read the full review: SteelSeries Rival 600 

2. SteelSeries Sensei 310

DPI: Up to 12,000 | Features: Ambidextrous design, one-to-one tracking up to 3,500 CPI, 50-million click life span

Reasonably priced

Comfortable for claw and palm grips

No braided cable

Lacks sensor calibration support

The SteelSeries Sensei 310 is a gaming mouse like no other, both in terms of price and performance. The low cost of admission keeps it on the same level that you’d expect to pay for a new game, while its out-of-this-world TrueMove 3 optical sensor makes it almost impossible to compete with. This mouse, with no preference when it comes to dexterity, is unparalleled when it comes to real-world sensitivity. You can even pick up the SteelSeries Rival 310 if you want similar performance, but a more right-handed approach to dexterity. 

Read the full review: SteelSeries Sensei 310 

3. Corsair Dark Core RGB SE

DPI: Up to 16,000 | Features: Qi wireless charging, Interchangeable side grip, Omron switches, Fully programmable buttons, Dynamic multi-color 3-zone backlighting

Qi wireless charging

Affordable

Can't use while charging

Wireless gaming mice don’t have the best reputation, due to their losses in latency and reliability – but the Corsair Dark Core RGB SE changes everything. With 1ms latency and a maximum DPI of 16,000, the Dark Core exemplifies what the best gaming mice should strive for in 2018 – delivering performance that’s on par with its wired brethren. It even supports Qi wireless charging, which means if you pick up the Corsair MM1000 Qi mouse pad, you can charge your phone while playing, then charge your mouse when you’re ready to call it a night.

Read the full review: Corsair Dark Core RGB SE 

4. Logitech G903

DPI: 12,000 | Features: Wireless charging via Logitech PowerPlay mouse mat, up to 24 hours of battery life (up to 32 with LEDs turned off), PMW3366 optical sensor, LightSpeed Wireless technology

Solid build quality

Accurate and reliable wireless

Exorbitantly expensive

Undeterred by years of ridicule for their comparatively higher latency, the Logitech G900 of yesteryear proved once and for all that wireless gaming mice don’t have to suck. Though it’s merely a slight upgrade to that model, the Logitech G903 only reassures us of that conviction. Gracing a slightly altered G900 design with Logitech’s on PowerPlay mouse pad that doubles as a wireless charger, the Logitech G903 is a pricey, yet rewarding investment. 

Read the full review: Logitech G903

5. Roccat Kone Aimo

DPI: 12,000 | Features: Multi-zone RGB lighting, 10 programmable macro keys, 4D Titan Wheel

Ergonomic buttons

Customizable

Dated pre-programmed macros

At first glance, you’d be forgiven for assuming the Roccat Kone Aimo would be an unwieldy hardcore-only gaming mouse. You’d be wrong. Even with the plethora of buttons and mouse furniture sticking out, the Roccat Kone Aimo is a surprisingly ergonomic peripheral, which means more comfort shouldn’t be an issue for even the longest gaming sessions. Packed with one of the most in-your-face RGB lighting setups we’ve ever seen in a pointing device, along with 10-programmable buttons, this is one of the best gaming mice on the market right now. 

Read the full review: Roccat Kone Aimo

Cooler Master MasterMouse MM520

6. Cooler Master MasterMouse MM520

DPI: 12,000 | Features: Customised for claw grip, Customizable DPI settings, Three-zone RGB lighting

 Good switches 

 Affordable 

 Questionable build quality 

If you need one of the best gaming mice, but are looking to save some cash at the same time – the Cooler Master MasterMouse MM520 might be what you’re looking for. It won’t win any beauty contests, but packing quality Omron switches and a reasonably sensitive sensor capable of up to 12,000 DPI, it’s easy to look past the unappealing design – especially if you use a claw grip.

Read the full review: Cooler Master MasterMouse MM520 

7. Razer Naga Trinity

DPI: 16,000 | Features: Interchangeable side plates, Razer chroma support, 1000Hz Ultrapolling

 Smooth motion tracking 

 Interchangeable side plates 

Expensive

If you’re gearing up to represent either the Alliance or the Horde in World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth, you’re going to want to take a look at the Razer Naga Trinity. Razer’s Naga mice have always been aimed at MMO gamers, but the company wasn’t content to just appeal to that one niche. With the Naga Trinity, you’ll get 3 easily swappable side plates so that you can change your mouse to fit the game you’re playing. Aadd in the insane 16,000 DPI 5G Sensor and Razer Chroma RGB lighting, and you’ll top the DPS meters, and your gaming setup will look nice while you do it. 

Read the full review: Razer Naga Trinity 

8. HyperX Pulsefire Surge

DPI: 16,000 | Features: RGB Light Ring, 50 million click-rated Omron switches

 Gorgeous RGB lighting 

 Omron switches 

 No customizable weights 

If you find yourself snickering at some of the ridiculous gaming mice available in 2018, you should take a look at the HyperX Pulsefire Surge RGB. Featuring extremely reliable Omron switches and gorgeous RGB lighting – not to mention its unbelievable 16,000 DPI sensor – you’re getting one of the best gaming mice for a great price. Plus, it’ll fit into any office, at least once you turn down the lighting effects. 

Read the full review: HyperX Pulsefire Surge RGB 

9. Corsair Glaive RGB

DPI: Up to 16,000 | Features: Interchangeable thumb grips, three-zone backlighting, Pixart 3367 sensor, Omron switches, DPI status lights

Smooth motion and tracking

Glides like butter

Nearly all plastic

A bit pricey

From the moment you look at the price tag, it’ll be obvious that the Corsair Glaive RGB was meant to compete with the Razer DeathAdder Elite. And, while Corsair has had a ton of success with its PC cases, keyboards, RAM, power supplies and cooling systems, Corsairs mice have less of a history behind them. Luckily, the company’s latest gaming mouse effort is built for comfort, featuring a a coating of soft-touch paint and interchangeable thumb grips that enhance ergonomics even further. Additionally, the nearly perfect three-zone RGB lighting system and high-DPI Pixart sensor are just extra gravy. 

Read the full review: Corsair Glaive RGB

Creative Sound BlasterX Siege M04

10. Creative Sound BlasterX Siege M04

DPI: 12,000 | Features: 7 programmable buttons using Omron switches rated for 50 million clicks, PixArt PMW3360 sensor with 1000Hz polling rate, RGB lighting, ergonomic design

Excellent sensor

Stylish lighting

Could be lighter

Balance isn't perfect

You don’t see sound card manufacturers trying their hands at making the best gaming mouse every day – but that’s exactly what Creative did. The Creative Sound BlasterX M04 is actually one of the best gaming mice you can buy in 2018 – the 12,000 DPI rating means it’s quick and responsive. The RGB lighting scheme is great, too, controlled by Creative’s own Sound Blaster Connect software. The Creative Sound BlasterX Siege M04 is a winner in form and function.

Read the full review: Creative Sound BlasterX Siege M04

How to choose the best gaming mouse

Even though you’ll definitely find the best gaming mouse here, doing so will take some effort. There’s a ton of complicated technical jargon that goes into the best gaming mice – terms like polling rates and DPI ratings. You’ll want a higher number of both, but these two terms mean drastically different things.

For newcomers to the world of PC gaming, that DPI is shorthand for ‘dots per inch.’ The higher the number, the wider the range wherein you can specify your how sensitive your mouse is. If you don’t have a lot of desk space available and you want accuracy and precision, then opt for a gaming mouse featuring a higher DPI rating. Of course, you can always toggle a lower DPI too.

Meanwhile, a high polling rate gives you faster response times. The polling rate is measured in hertz, so 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 consider are ergonomics – particularly if you’re left-handed – and RGB lighting.

Gabe Carey has also contributed to this article

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