Is a wired mouse better than a high-quality wireless mouse for gaming purpose?
April 4, 2010 12:17 AM   Subscribe

Is a wired mouse better than a high-quality wireless mouse for gaming purpose?

In other words... in terms of responses... in First Person Shooters where 1/10th of a second can mean life and death... and I going to get better responsiveness with a wired mouse?
posted by Mr_Crazyhorse to Computers & Internet (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
From a purely personal point of view, yes. I've never used a wireless mouse that has the same response time (aka, instant) as a wired mouse. Wireless mice, for me, worked fine for general computing. But when it comes down to gaming, I wouldn't trade my wires for anything.
posted by Geppp at 12:29 AM on April 4, 2010

Pretty much always.
posted by christhelongtimelurker at 12:56 AM on April 4, 2010

I wouldn't say that the response rate for two identical mouses, one wireless, one wired was any different, however if you ever experience being killed or missing a kill purely because your wireless mouse skipped a beat due to the battery failing, interference or just the random skips that wireless mouses seem to experience - you will switch to wired and never go back. I did. It is bad enough getting when there is skill involved on the other player's part, but when your mouse is at fault is just frustrating.

In terms of responsiveness some of the Logitech mice, for example the G5 give you the ability to up the DPI (scan rate/sensitivity) of the sensor in the mouse. When you do this - you can reduce the mouse speed setting in game and get much more smooth and accurate pointing in game. A lot of gamers use these mice and swear by them. If you are looking for more responsiveness this is the way to get it.
posted by clarkie666 at 12:57 AM on April 4, 2010

I can definitely tell a difference between wired and wireless, but you should try both out first to see if you notice any latency. I believe bluetooth devices have 25-50ms latency.
posted by wongcorgi at 1:01 AM on April 4, 2010

It is possible to get a wireless gaming mouse, but I'm only aware of one that even comes close to pulling it off (the logitech G7 definitely didn't). The razer mamba has managed to get a 1ms response time while wireless, and also has a usb-plugin wired mode for when battery runs low, and comes with the usual DPI adjustments of a gaming mouse. It is obscenely expensive though.

Any bluetooth wireless mouse will suffer from significant latency, as wongcorgi points out, and wireless mice in general, even nice quality office ones, are simply not designed to tackle the latency that comes with wireless connections as it's not a primary concern for general purpose office mice; minor variations in tracking are not important for them, but are of prime importance for a twitch FPS gamer.

So basically; with one expensive exception; yes, wired gaming mice kick the ass of wireless mice, even nice ones.
posted by ArkhanJG at 1:22 AM on April 4, 2010 [1 favorite]

Wireless sucks. The battery dies and needs to be swapped out at the CRUCIAL MOMENT IN THE BATTLE, every time.
posted by Meatbomb at 4:26 AM on April 4, 2010 [1 favorite]

Absolutely. A wired mouse is much better
posted by Funky Claude at 6:49 AM on April 4, 2010

I have a dog-cheap Logitech wireless (220 think). I got it because I thought it would make a good travelling mouse. One less wire to tangle up. I didn't even like it as a regular mouse, it would drive me nuts if I was gaming. Not only is there latency (although it's not bad), but there is a "hitch" in it due to aggressive power saving. Every time it sits for a moment, it turns itself off. Then when you move it again, it wakes itself back up and there is a glitch in the expected movement.
posted by gjc at 6:52 AM on April 4, 2010

I don't know if they're that much better, but if I had a dollar for every time I've been playing WoW and in the middle of a fight someone goes "Dammit! My mouse died, I have to replace my batteries!" ... I could afford a really, really nice mouse.
posted by dagnyscott at 7:07 AM on April 4, 2010

While I can't speak to the latency issues (my reflexes are worse than the mouse's) not all wireless mice suffer from sudden battery death. My MX Laser has rechargable batteries which last an easy 16 hours on a charge, has a battery meter to give ample warning of imminent failure (on the mouse not with a popup), and recharges in about 20 minutes from totally dead to 80+% charged. Even my old G7 gave hours of warning to change the batteries, people getting caught out by sudden battery death are just pushing the limits of their battery life.
posted by Mitheral at 8:03 AM on April 4, 2010

Wireless mice have an issue of turning off/track more slowly if they are still for too long and then take a split second to turn back on. That can be a big problem and since it's a battery saving feature, wired mice are free from that problem. Also wired is a guaranteed connection which always helps.

I've gone through the mx1k, mx revolution, mx1100 (which are wireless) and just hit the g9 (which is wired) and it's the best by far. Granted there are other differences so take that how you may.
posted by Submiqent at 9:38 AM on April 4, 2010

Pro-gaming mice are all wired.
posted by meepmeow at 11:22 AM on April 4, 2010

I'm with Mitheral. I routinely forget to recharge my wireless mouse, because it will work for about a week of use without dying. I have occasionally had it get low during a game, but I usually just put it on the charger while I'm respawning, and it charges right back up quickly enough. If I remember to charge it overnight at least once a week, this doesn't happen at all.

I've used wireless mice with bad latency issues, but never experienced any latency with either my Logitech MX700, or the Logitech MX Revolution that replaced it. I think wireless mice get a bad rap from people who have only ever used cheap ones.
posted by !Jim at 2:07 PM on April 4, 2010

I have a Microsoft sidewinder x8 that i have gamed with for about a year and it works great. Battery lasts quite a long while (once a week i charge it overnight) and i have NEVER run out of juice, and even if i did i can always plug it in direct. The other thing I like is it is a great mouse for big hands as other mice made me cup my hands too much which cramped after long gaming sessions.
posted by dstopps at 6:37 PM on April 4, 2010

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