Thin mouse - What Makes a Good Computer Mouse

What Makes a Good Computer Mouse

Nowadays, almost everyone uses a computer on a daily basis. A big part of that time is spent with a hand on top of a computer mouse. Nothing is more frustrating than when the mouse fails us, some of them have such light buttons that you can’t have your fingers resting on top of them without clicking everywhere, others have such a horrible middle wheel that we think it’s going to brake each time we use it!

TurtleATech rates mice based on Design and DimensionsPerformanceBuild Quality and Extras (each category is explained below).

When it comes to gaming, the mouse is, most of the times, our greatest weapon. We can even say that the mouse is the basis weapon for all other weapons, what I mean is: if you buy an incredible item in-game that gives you just the extra advantage you needed, and then when time of battle comes, you miss-click… It’s the worst thing ever! We can’t let that happen!

That’s why we always try to find the best mouse on the market, considering the budget we have. Talking about budget, I heard someone once say that “mice are like earbuds, they always have some problem after a while, so there is no point in spending more than 20$ in one” … Well, I don’t know what type of mice this person is buying, but I remember that my first “non-garbage mouse” – Razer Abyssus Essential – didn’t fail me at all what so ever for almost 5 YEARS! I remember going to the store and being very tempted to spend only 20$ in a cool mouse with “for gaming” highlighted in the box, but then landing my eyes on a pretty green box that was on sale! Instead of buying the 20$ mouse that would probably brake after a couple of months, I paid 50$ for that Razer Abyssus Essential, which still worked perfectly well after 5 years.

But what makes some Mice worth 150$, others 60$ and others 20$?

When looking for a good mouse, you need to make sure you look only to what really matters:

Design and Dimensions – The first thing you should consider is the design/shape and dimensions of the mouse. As you may know, there are 3 types of grip (way we grab and move the mouse around), the most popular being the palm grip, which consists in using the fingers and a big part of the palm of the hand to handle the mouse; the most popular amongst gamers being the claw grip, which consists in having the hand arched up on top of the mouse, still using the fingers and sometimes a part of the palm but with less contact points than the palm grip; and the tip grip, which consists in using only the tip of the fingers to move the mouse around, without any palm at all.

Most of the mice in the market right now are made for both palm and claw grips (the most popular ones), but if you have a tip grip, don’t force yourself to change it! The medium size light mice, like the one I’m using right now (Logitech G403), are still very good for tip grip users, but if you want a mouse perfect for your grip, you should look for a smaller and lighter mouse.

Just like your grip type, the size of your hand also matters a lot, someone with huge hands should never buy a small mouse, even if it is on 70% sale and is from the most prestigious brand you know of, because it simply won’t be comfortable. The ergonomically designed mice are being more and more explored by many companies, some are even experimenting with vertical mice! And that is not complete non-sense, it is simply to find the most comfortable shape for a mouse that still gives us the speed and precision we need for daily business and especially for gaming. The Logitech g403 is an example of an ergonomically designed mouse, I have used it for a long time now and I have to say I’ve never felt discomfort related to the position my hand is in when gaming. You can find more about the Logitech g403 mouse in our detailed honest review.

Performance – This category includes the resolution of the mouse, also known as DPI (Dots Per Inch), as well as the type and quality of the sensor in the mouse. DPI is the measurement for how much your cursor moves on your screen related to the distance you move your mouse in real life. The higher your mouse’s DPI is, the farther and faster the cursor on your screen will move. Something to always have in mind is that for a bigger screen or monitor (per example, if you want to connect your computer to your TV), you will need to use a higher DPI than you would for a smaller monitor. Not to worry though, as most mice come with a “DPI button”, which you can press to immediately change your DPI from one setting to another.

A lot of people think a higher DPI is always better, but this is actually not true. With a super high DPI, you will most likely lose on precision, meaning it will be harder for you to direct the cursor to the place you want. This is the reason why most professional gaming players use a DPI setting in the range of 400 to 800. What is really important when it comes to performance is the type and quality of the sensor in the mouse. The sensor is what influences precision the most. One of the latest technologies in sensors can be found in the top mice in Best Budget Gaming Mice. You will always see the type of sensor mentioned in every mouse review in TurtleATech, as we know it is a very important feature.

Build Quality – Build quality is something you can’t tell by just looking at the case or photo of a mouse. It’s also the main dictator of how long the lifespan of the mouse is.

For wired mice, the first thing to notice is the quality of the cable. Some cables are made of cheap rubber that gets stuck in everything and gets kinks easily; others are made of quality rubber that doesn’t get stuck in everything and makes the cable quite light; the most popular type of cables in the gaming industry are the braided cables, these are much less likely to brake or get kinks, but can sometimes be a bit heavier than the ones made of good quality rubber. In order to sell their mice at a cheap price, some companies use bad quality braided cables in some of their mice, just to say their mice has braided cable, the problem is that braided cables of bad quality tend to fray easily. We will always take this into account when rating the build quality of a mouse.

Another important factor to determine the build quality of a mouse is the quality of the materials used to build the mouse, this includes the quality of all the materials of the mouse’s outer shell and the quality of the wheel, the quality and lifespan of the buttons. This is what distinguishes most of the more expensive mice from the cheaper ones. Some mice are made with cheap plastic that might look good on the photos, but then feels really bad in your hand, especially after some hours of use, as your hand is bound to get a little sweaty. The buttons and wheel of a mouse are, without a doubt, one of the most important things that people forget to look to when choosing a mouse. I had a cheap mouse once that, after only 2 weeks, had the right click button and the wheel completely broken. There is no point in getting a cheap mouse that brakes and becomes unusable after two weeks, so it’s very important to look at the quality and lifespan of the buttons and wheel.

Extras – Nowadays, almost every mouse in the market comes with great “extras”. The problem is that most people tend to get amused by how many colours and lights the mouse has, and then don’t focus on the “extras” that are actually useful. This category includes: number of buttons (programmable or not); existence of software and onboard memory – most mice have programmable buttons and lights that can be personalized in a computer program, some also have onboard memory, which means that the settings you choose for your mouse will be stored in your mouse, this way, if you plug in your mouse to another computer, it will automatically assume the settings you chose; adjustable weight, shape and click resistance – great if you want to change between gaming mode and office mode; colours, lights and many others.

You will also find an Overall score in our articles, which is the mean between Design and DimensionsPerformanceBuild Quality and Extras.