7 Ways Gaming Mice Have Improved Over the YearsReading Time: 5 minutes
Gaming mice have come a long way and it’s worth understanding just how much they’ve improved over the years. Let’s dive in.
The gaming mouse is probably the most important accessory for PC gaming. It has the critical responsibility of accurately translating your analog hand movements into in-game movements.
The precise nature of gaming mice has led to incredible innovations by mouse manufacturers to make the best one. Here are some of the ways gaming mice have evolved and improved to enhance our gaming experience and performance.
1. Gaming Mice Sensors Are Now Practically Flawless
The sensor on a mouse is practically 75% of a functional gaming mouse, you only need buttons and a scroll wheel for the other 25%. Modern gaming mice sensors are a precision beast. They can sense down to just a few microns of movement, we’re talking less than one-tenth the width of a human hair.
While you may never need to move the mouse that precisely, having a sensor with that precision is still to your benefit as you get fewer errors. If a mouse sensor is not precise enough, those imprecision errors will compound with big movements, leading to you potentially missing a headshot.
Nowadays that isn’t a worry so long as the sensor of your mouse is from a reputable brand like Logitech, Avago, or Pixart. Even really cheap mice can house these amazing sensors. Gone are the days of unreliable laser sensors, for decent brands, at least.
You should check out the key characteristics of a gaming mouse you should be looking out for if you’re looking to buy a new one. This will help you make an informed buying decision and make sure you get the right one.
2. Wireless Technology Is as Good as Wired
Almost 10 years ago, people were constantly looking down on wireless mice for gaming. They just weren’t that good back then. The delay is massive and the signal is often easily disrupted by a ringing phone, WiFi signals, microwaves, etc.
However, in 2014, Logitech set out to destroy the bad reputation that wireless mice had with its Lightspeed wireless technology. While it took a few years to convince the masses that it is indeed just as good as wired, it eventually became the norm and now even professional players use wireless mice, with 46% of CS:GO players using the Logitech G Pro X Superlight.
This wireless technology is now widespread and you can even find budget wireless mice that have wired-performance wireless technology too.
3. Gaming Mice Today Have Better Button Switches and Scroll Wheels
Mouse buttons and scroll wheels didn’t have much attention paid to them until after wireless technology and mice enthusiasts started to proliferate. The performance of a mouse was mostly judged by the accuracy of its sensor and its shape.
However, after wireless technology and flawless sensors became the norm, gaming mice needed to improve somewhere else. That’s when customization went on the rise. People wanted more out of their mice, and one way you could achieve that is by having button switches and scroll wheels that feel better and last longer.
Mouse button switch and scroll wheel encoder manufacturers could now sell their products to consumers instead of just mouse manufacturers as people are opening up their mice and changing things out. Some mouse brands even come with extra switches that you could swap out without needing to do any soldering.
4. Gaming Mice Today Are Engineered to Be Lightweight
A few years ago, some gaming mice used to feature weights like the legendary Logitech G502. A heavier mouse just felt more premium and prestigious to use. While it felt amazing to hold, it ironically hindered gaming performance.
Now gaming mice manufacturers are racing to put out the lightest gaming mouse possible without compromising the integrity of the shell. There are mice as extreme as the Zaunkoenig M2K which is made of carbon fiber and only has a scroll wheel and the main buttons, weighing in at only 0.8oz (23g).
A lighter weight means less inertia to get the mouse moving or to stop the mouse from a flick, and we wonder how light these companies and modders could actually go.
5. Modern Gaming Mice Have Better Ergonomics
The longer the existence of the computer mouse, the better our understanding of what shapes feel and perform better. Funnily enough, the feel and performance of a mouse in terms of shape don’t actually coincide.
While there is no one-size-fits-all solution to mouse shapes, what’s understood is that people prefer different shapes. People hold mice in different ways, some hold mice with their whole hand on the mouse, some with just their fingertips, and most hold their mice in a hybrid of the two.
Mouse brands are catering to this by offering all sorts of shapes, like the Pulsar Xlite series which is an ultralight ergonomic wireless mouse. Mouse brands like to go with the safe option of a symmetrical shape that isn’t perfect for any one person, but feels great for almost everyone.
There are also mouse brands that cater to the small, but growing market of fingertip grip users. The aforementioned Zaunkoenig M2K or G-Wolves HSK mice are very small mice that are made for people who hold their mice with only their fingertips and, honestly, they’re pretty awesome (and expensive).
6. Gaming Mice Can Glide Better With Modern Mouse Feet
One of the things that started to be modified in the rise of mouse modding is the humble mouse feet, also called ‘skates.’ Often disregarded until enthusiasts started to pay more attention to it, the mouse feet contribute quite a lot to a mouse’s performance. Only a few brands, like Zowie, had their own replacement mouse feet at the time.
The mouse feet are what make your mouse move easily, and because of the modding and enthusiast scene, you could now easily buy aftermarket mouse skates from different brands like Corepadz and Tiger ICE that sell Teflon mouse skates pre-cut into different shapes for different models of mice.
As with the trend of extremes, there are mouse skates that come in bizarre materials like metal, glass, ceramic, and the like. Looking at the Pulsar Xlite image above, it is fitted with the Pulsar Superglide glass mouse skates that glide incredibly smoothly and will probably outlast the mouse itself.
7. Modern Gaming Mice Have Better Aesthetic Features
It’s hard to deny that gaming mice now just look really cool compared to the gaudy designs gaming products used to have before the market understood what gamers really wanted.
Slapping RGB lights onto everything doesn’t necessarily make it look better, and some of the best-looking mice don’t even have RGB lights on them. Take the Finalmouse Starlight 12 series with its incredible sculpted surface and metallic colors, it’s beautiful and is sadly unobtainable at RRP.
If you don’t agree, that’s okay—aesthetics are subjective. However, with the abundance of gaming mice out there, we’re sure you’ll easily be able to find one that fits your aesthetic standard. If not, then you might want to check out these easy gaming mouse modifications you can do yourself. The grip tape section will show you a few things you could try to improve its aesthetics and even performance.
Gaming Mice Are Only Getting Better
Gaming mice won’t stop getting better and we’re excited to see where we’re headed. 4,000 and 8,000Hz polling rates are definitely going to be the next norm.
And, hopefully, we’ll get a few customization options like exposed screws as opening up a mouse requires you to remove and most likely replace the mouse feet.
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