For passionate gamers, a gaming mouse is not just a device. It is the difference between the ecstasy of laser-sharp precision and the agony of missed shooting targets. The perfect mouse with a proper mix of sensitivity and accuracy is a dream for every passionate gamer. Whether building your Valorant game account or exploring different competitions in GTAV, both require accurate gaming equipment for flawless execution. The stakes are always in competitive gaming or streaming online to viewers, and an inaccurate mouse could be the difference between success or failure.
The market mainly has two types of mice: Laser Mouse and Optical Mouse. These terms refer to the mechanism through which they detect mouse movements over a surface. Which is the best for you, and how do you decide to buy one for your gaming needs? This article will discuss the differences between a Laser and an Optical Mouse, their pros and cons, and the factors you must consider before choosing.
What is the Difference Between a Laser and an Optical Mouse?
Before we find out some key differences between Laser and Optical mice, let us discuss the working process of a mouse. All mice work with the help of a CMOS sensor installed within them. It detects mice’s movement by detecting the light reflected by the surface they glide on. It is just like capturing thousands of photos per second and estimating the precise position of the peripheral based on these images. This data is transmitted to the PC every milli second for an accurate cursor placement. In this context, every mouse is technically an optical mouse.
However, the Optical mouse uses red LED light or infrared as the illumination source. In comparison, a laser mouse illuminates the surface with the help of a laser. Since the laser is a more accurate light, laser mice are more sensitive than their optical counterparts.
So, the basic working process only differs by the source of illumination, which is enough to give rise to their own sets of pros and cons.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Laser Mouse
Advantages of Laser Mouse
As a passionate gamer, you yearn for laser-sharp accuracy to help you nail those nasty targets. In this context, a laser mouse is your best choice as it is more accurate than an optical mouse. The laser light can penetrate the surface more than LED light. It can analyze the surface in great detail. So, even the minimal movements are detected, giving you pinpoint accuracy.
Moreover, a laser mouse can be placed on any surface, whether reflecting or glossy. It will continue to work correctly everywhere.
Disadvantages of Laser Mouse
The accuracy of laser light is the reason for its disadvantage as well. Since it is too accurate, it can continuously transmit useless or unwanted information to the PC, leading to over-analyzing the surface. So, when working at slow speeds, you may experience jitter or undesirable acceleration.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Optical Mouse
Advantages of Optical Mouse
Optical mice are generally more budget-friendly than their laser counterparts. For similar features and specs, you will find the price of laser mice on the higher side. Moreover, optical mice provide a smoother experience at slower speeds and relatively no acceleration problems.
Disadvantages of Optical Mouse
Since an optical mouse employs LED light to illuminate the surface, it may work on limited options. You will need to place a mouse mat beneath for the proper functioning of an LED mouse.
Which Type of Gaming Mouse is Right for You?
If your gaming setup consists of a proper table and a mouse mat, you are good to go for an LED mouse. It will work well in your gaming space, not cause unwanted jitters, and won’t be heavy on your pocket. On the other hand, a laser mouse is prone to acceleration issues, and you may get frustrated by uncontrollable cursor movements on the screen. Although users may encounter acceleration issues on LED mice, the chances are minimal unless the hardware is of inferior quality. We can summarize the discussion as follows:
- Laser Mouse
A laser mouse is best for you if you are not mobile and always have your mouse working on a fixed surface, like for streamers and online gamers. However, you must invest in a high-end gaming mouse pad to avoid acceleration issues and erratic mouse movements.
- Optical Mouse
Go for an optical mouse if you are into gaming LAN parties, competitive gaming, or casual gaming. Manufacturers and designers have drastically improved the accuracy of optical mice, making them go head-to-head with laser mice in precision.
Factors to consider when choosing a Gaming Mouse
A general rule of thumb when buying your gaming mouse is to always go for a mouse that offers a low DPI and a higher polling rate. A lower DPI means less data for the mouse to process, which means minimal errors due to overanalyzing. On the other hand, a higher polling rate indicates that the mouse communicates its position with the PC more often, leading to accurate cursor movements. Generally, here are the factors a gamer should consider when selecting a mouse:
- Size & Built Quality
- Mouse Feet Material
- Mouse Sensor Technology
- Flexibility of Cable
- High Polling Rate in Wired/Wireless Mouse
- High-End Switches
- Programmable Buttons
- RGB Lighting
Recommendations for Laser and Optical Gaming Mouse
Best Laser Sensor Gaming Mouse
- Razer DeathAdder Pro V2 X Hyperspeed
It is a Razer gaming series’s flagship mouse with high ergonomics and limitless control. The connection type is dual wireless 2.4GHz and Bluetooth. Whether competing against players to build/sell your Counter-Strike: Global Offensive account or mining away in a Sandbox game like Minecraft, this mouse can improve your gaming experience and satisfaction. The customizable options are also great, as it offers 7 programmable buttons, including 2 quick-access edge buttons.
- Low Latency and High Performance
- Dual Wireless and Bluetooth Connectivity
- 5G Advanced Optical Sensor
- 100% PTFE Mouse Feet
- ASUS ROG Chakram X
This ASUS ROG Chakram X is a sensational gaming mouse with incredible tri-mode connectivity, including RF 2.4 GHz, wired, and Bluetooth. Moreover, it has the best ROG AimPoint optical sensor, offering 36,000 dpi and an 8000 Hz polling rate for exceptional precision.
- Seven buttons and a four-way directional joystick for 11 programmable buttons
- ROG Paracord and 100% PTFE mouse feet
- Officially verified for NVIDIA Reflex Latency Analyzer
Best Optical Sensor Gaming Mouse
- Logitech G Pro X Superlight
Advertised as the lightest and fastest mouse ever, this gaming mouse is a must-have. The hardware can deliver a 2000 Hz polling rate at 32000 dpi. It weighs only 63 grams and is a low-latency wireless mouse with a 25K sensor.
- Weighing less than 63 grams with frictionless glide
- Responsive and robust
- Extreme accuracy and ultra-fine control with PRO X SUPERLIGHT
- Zero additive PTFE feet
- SteelSeries Aerox 9 Wireless
This optical gaming mouse is also very lightweight, weighing 89g. It has handy customizable options such as 18 programmable buttons. Moreover, the optical gaming sensor has true 1-to-1 tracking, 18000 CPI, 400 IPS, and less than 40G acceleration.
- Aqua Barrier technology IP54 rated for waterproof protection
- Quantum 2.0 wireless transfer at 2.4 GHz or Bluetooth 5.0
- Ultra-lightweight for a comfortable and ergonomic experience
Need help deciding which type of mouse to buy for your gaming needs? If you are comfortable using your mouse on a mouse pad and can not afford jitters and acceleration while gaming, you should opt for an LED Optical mouse. On the other hand, if you want to use your mouse on a glass surface or multiple surfaces and demand precise control, you should then go for a laser mouse.
Remember that the technology is rapidly progressing for both types of mice. The differences between the two types are decreasing. However, generally, both sensor mechanisms have pros and cons. We aim to help our readers make an informed decision so their investment does not go to waste. Which mouse did you find worth purchasing?