Best good and cheap gaming mouse of 2021: Buying Guide

We all know that gaming can be very expensive. From components to accessories like the keyboard, mouse or headset, the whole rig can cost you an arm and a leg if you're fairly serious about it.

But if you know how to make the right choice, it doesn't always have to be that way.

This is the case with gaming mice. Many brands offer high quality models for a more than affordable price, among them the big names in the industry such as Razer, Corsair, Logitech and SteelSeries, which have also entered the battle to conquer the low-mid range of the market.

This is great news for gamers, who can enjoy great performance and comfort in play games without having to spend a fortune.

But as we know that the choice can be complicated with so many options available, in this article we have selected the best cheap gaming mouse on the market. So you can find the most suitable option for you, whatever your preferences are.

 

The best cheap gaming mouse at a glance:

SteelSeries Rival 3: The best overall cheap gaming mouse.

Logitech G305 Lightspeed: The best wireless mouse.

Razer Viper Mini: The best cheap and compact gamer mouse.

Logitech G203: The best value for money.

Corsair Harpoon RGB Pro: Simple but complete gaming mouse.

Piktec Gaming Mouse: The cheapest.

 

SteelSeries Rival 3

SteelSeries Rival 3

CPI: 8,500 | Sensor: TrueMove Core Optic (Optical) | Buttons: 6 | Weight: 77g | Connectivity: Wired | RGB: Yes | Grip: Gripper/tip

 

The SteelSeries Rival 3 is the best budget gaming mouse you can buy today. It is a wired model (no wireless version) with a right-handed design that is well suited for small to medium sized hands with a claw grip.

Despite its low price it is very well built, with high quality plastic. It is not as light as others with honeycomb design, but it is still quite light.

It features low click latency and is very responsive during game play.

Its wide CPI or DPI range (8,500) can be adjusted in increments of 100, and its TrueMove Core Optical sensor is reliable in both fast and slow movements, with 35G acceleration and being able to detect movements up to 750 centimeters per second. More than enough for anyone who is not a professional.

It is very light (77 g.) and its design is a trademark of the house: discreet but elegant. Except for the LED lights, it could pass for an office mouse.

It has a classic 6-button layout: the two main buttons, two side buttons, the scroll wheel and the CPI button. The switches, although a bit hard, are the same as the much more expensive SteelSeriesRival 650, so quality is assured.

SteelSeries puts its durability at 60 million clicks, so you can be sure it will retire you before you retire it.

Logitech G305 Lightspeed

Logitech G305 Lightspeed

CPI: 12,000 | Sensor: Logitech Hero (optical) | Buttons: 6 | Weight: 99g. | Connectivity: Wireless | RGB: No | Grip: Gripper/tips/palm

 

The Logitech G305 Lightspeed is our top choice if you're looking for an inexpensive wireless mouse.

With an impressive 12,000 CPI and low latency, it's a perfect model for shooters, as it provides great speed over the mousepad.

The truth is that mice with such a good response are usually wired and cost considerably more, so we can consider this mouse an exception in the market. If we add to that the Logitech Hero sensor with which it is equipped, we are facing a bargain hard to miss.

Its design is no slouch either. It is one of the most comfortable mice you can find, with an ambidextrous design and smooth lines that adapt to almost any type of hand and grip.

The only downside is that it is not rechargeable, but runs on a single AA battery.

Nor does it have RGB lighting, but that depends on the tastes of each person. Some people have lights that are turned off by the mouse software so that they do not distract them. In addition, the battery lasts longer (up to 250 hours of gameplay).

Even with the battery, it weighs less than 100 grams.

 

Razer Viper Mini

Razer Viper Mini

CPI: 8,500 | Sensor: PixArt PMW3359 (optical) | Buttons: 6 | Weight: 61 g. | Connectivity: Wired | RGB: Yes | Grip: Pointed/gripper

 

If you want an ultra-lightweight gaming mouse, the Razer Viper Mini is the best you can find under 50 euros. It weighs just 61 grams, less than any other model made by Razer (and virtually any other brand).

This is especially surprising because it doesn't resort to a honeycomb design (with the typical hexagonal holes in the casing). It is very similar in quality and design to the standard Razer Viper, just at a smaller price and size.

Due to its size, it is recommended mostly for a tip grip, although if you have small hands you may be comfortable with a tip or even palm grip as well.

The Razer Viper Mini is equipped with an optical sensor capable of tracking up to 8,500 CPI. It also provides a high polling rate and acceleration of up to 35G, providing smooth pointer movement.

It has 6 buttons with optical switches for faster activation and longer durability.

And if you're left-handed, you can use it too, thanks to its ambidextrous design. However, you will lose access to the side thumb buttons.

All buttons can be remapped using the Razer Synapse 3 software. The illumination of the rear LED strip and logo is also customizable from this app.

Thanks to its built-in memory, you can save all these settings and keep them if you ever use it on another device.

Unfortunately, the sensor is not among the best on the market. The sensitivity may vary slightly depending on the speed at which you move it, and the take-off distance (the point at which the mouse stops tracking when you pick it up) is a bit high, so it may track some unintentional movements.

 

Logitech G203

Logitech G203

CPI: 8,000 | Sensor: Optical (model not confirmed) | Buttons: 6 | Weight: 85g | Connectivity: Wired | RGB: Yes | Grip: Pointed/Gripper

 

This Logitech model is designed with budget gamers in mind, proving that anyone can get a decent gaming rig for an affordable price.

The Logitech G203 Prodigy is a surprisingly agile and accurate performance mouse.

Sure, it doesn't have the brand's fastest sensor, but it's consistent enough that 99% of users won't miss anything better.

In addition, it offers a very low click latency, matching that of much more expensive mice, along with an extensive CPI range from 200 to 8,000.

Its build quality is also more than remarkable, especially considering its low price, with highly durable plastic materials.

It is a small mouse, so those with small to medium sized hands are the ones who will feel most comfortable with it. And if you have a spiky grip, even a large size will suit you well.

It has 6 buttons of good quality and satisfactory response. All of them are programmable with the G HUB software, which also allows you to customize many other mouse parameters.

It is also very light to handle at 85 grams. It doesn't fit into the category of ultra-light mice, but if you're simply looking for a model that doesn't weigh too much, this is a good choice.

 

Corsair Harpoon RGB Pro

Corsair Harpoon RGB Pro

CPI: 8,000 | Sensor: Optical (model not confirmed) | Buttons: 6 | Weight: 85g | Connectivity: Wired | RGB: Yes | Grip: Pointed/Gripper

 

This Logitech model is designed with budget gamers in mind, proving that anyone can get a decent gaming rig for an affordable price.

The Logitech G203 Prodigy is a surprisingly agile and accurate performance mouse.

Sure, it doesn't have the brand's fastest sensor, but it's consistent enough that 99% of users won't miss anything better.

In addition, it offers a very low click latency, matching that of much more expensive mice, along with an extensive CPI range from 200 to 8,000.

Its build quality is also more than remarkable, especially considering its low price, with highly durable plastic materials.

It is a small mouse, so those with small to medium sized hands are the ones who will feel most comfortable with it. And if you have a spiky grip, even a large size will suit you well.

It has 6 buttons of good quality and satisfactory response. All of them are programmable with the G HUB software, which also allows you to customize many other mouse parameters.

It is also very light to handle at 85 grams. It doesn't fit into the category of ultra-light mice, but if you're simply looking for a model that doesn't weigh too much, this is a good choice.

Pictek – Ratón Gaming Programable

Pictek – Ratón Gaming Programable

CPI: 7,200 | Sensor: Optical | Buttons: 8 | Weight: 160 g. | Connectivity: Wired | RGB: Yes | Grip: Claw/tip

 

Unlike the other models on our list, this mouse is not manufactured by any well-known brand in the gaming world. This may put many gamers off, but don't make that mistake yourself. Surprising as it may seem, this is an extremely reliable mouse!

This gaming mouse from Pictek provides most of the functionality that any gamer needs, and at a much lower price than other more popular options.

For starters, it features an ambidextrous ergonomic design, which fits nicely in the palm of your hand thanks to its slim shape and smooth curves. On both sides it has rough rubber bands for easy grip.

In addition, the materials are pleasant to the touch and resistant. Although it is mostly made of plastic, it is of more than acceptable quality. It is not the best in the world, but not the worst either, for a mouse costing just over 20 euros.

In fact, the buttons have an estimated lifespan of 20 million clicks.

And speaking of buttons, it has 8 programmable buttons. That is, two extra buttons in addition to the typical 6 that most gaming mice come with. There is a second button to adjust the CPI and a "fire button" that activates a triple shot with a single click, which is very useful in FPS games.

But it is also surprising for its performance. It provides very fluid movement, and its sensor features a maximum CPI of 7,200 and four levels of polling rate to choose from: 125 Hz, 250 Hz, 500 Hz and 1,000 Hz.

Its main weakness is the cable, which is somewhat stiff and fragile. It is also a bit heavy compared to other options. But it is clear that at this price you have to make some sacrifices.

 

Buying guide: How to choose the best gaming mouse at a bargain price

To find out if that model you found at a bargain price is really worth it and you won't have to change it after a few months, there are certain aspects to look out for.

 

The most important are these:

Price

If you are reading this guide, it is clear that you are looking for a cheap mouse, but how much can be considered cheap?

To give you an idea, between 60 and 80 euros is considered mid-range in the gaming world, while the best wireless mice move in the range of 150-160 euros.

Of course, if you want to save as much as possible and, like most users, you're just looking to play a few games for fun, you don't need to go that high.

Therefore, we believe that between 25 and 50 euros is the best value for money: you neither pay for features that you won't get the most out of, nor will you find major shortcomings in fundamental aspects such as resistance or sensor quality.

 

Sensor

A mouse sensor works as if it were a small camera that takes successive snapshots of the surface on which you move the mouse. By comparing one image with the previous ones, the mouse interprets the exact position and trajectory of the cursor.

When choosing a mouse you will find two types of sensors depending on the light they use to map the surface: optical (with LED light) and laser (with laser light).

In general, optical sensors offer greater precision.

The only case where laser mice win out is when used on a smooth, transparent surface such as glass. Here they are more accurate than optical mice.

 

CPI or DPI

Mouse sensitivity is measured in CPI (counts per inch) or DPI (dots per inch). In the specifications you can find either of these two terms, but they are really the same thing.

CPI determines how fast the pointer will move; the higher the CPI, the more sensitive to movement the mouse will be, and therefore the faster it will move, and vice versa.

A good gaming mouse should offer a wide range of CPI, so you can adjust it to your liking. Most have a button at the top, behind the scroll wheel, that allows you to raise or lower the CPI without having to access the Windows options or the mouse software.

However, don't get carried away by the siren songs of an extremely high CPI, as in practice this is not useful. You will always end up setting a lower CPI, otherwise the pointer will look like a runaway horse.

But there is always a certain satisfaction in buying a cheap mouse with a higher CPI than more expensive models - we can't help it!

Quality gaming mice offer at least 8,000 CPI at the high end of the range.

 

Polling or refresh rate

This feature is closely related to CPI. In this case, the polling rate indicates how many frames per second the mouse sensor picks up, measured in Hertz (Hz). In other words, how often it informs the computer of its position.

The higher it is, the shorter the delay between when you move the mouse and the cursor on the screen follows your movement.

For optimal performance, look for a rate of at least 1,000 Hz. And if it's adjustable, all the better.

 

Acceleration

Acceleration causes the cursor to travel more or less distance depending on how fast you move the mouse.

For example, let's say you move the mouse 5 centimeters over your mouse pad. Without acceleration, this would translate to the cursor traveling 300 px on the screen. With acceleration enabled, however, that 300 px becomes 800 px. But the mouse travel has been the same!

Many advanced gamers, especially shooters, prefer to disable this feature. In these games it is vital to aim well, so acceleration will cause you to have a more unstable and unpredictable movement.

Acceleration can be disabled from the Windows settings or from the mouse manufacturer's software.

However, we like the fact that the mouse incorporates this feature, so it is up to you to experiment and modify the settings as you wish.

 

Shape

Comfort is vital when it comes to playing your games. And that's where the shape of the mouse comes into play.

Mouse can be divided into two types according to their shape:

Ergonomic: their contour is designed to better adapt to the natural position your hand adopts when resting on the mouse. Most (if not all) are designed for right-handed use.

Ambidextrous: they have a symmetrical shape that allows them to be held with either the left or right hand. However, the side buttons are located on the left, so you can only use them if you are right-handed.

It might seem that right-handed users should choose ergonomic mice and left-handed users should choose ambidextrous mice, but this does not have to be the case. It also matters what your preferences are and how you hold the mouse.

That's why it's ideal to be able to try the mouse before you buy it.

 

Size

You should also take into account the size of your hand. There are small, medium and large gaming mice.

If you need guidance, Razer offers a table with the different hand dimensions. Just measure it from the base to the end of your middle finger and see which category it falls into:

Small: Less than 17 centimeters.

Medium: 17-20 centimeters.

Large: More than 20 centimeters.

 

Weight

Again, this varies depending on your tastes and the type of games you spend the most time with.

Lighter mice provide faster movement speed, so they are especially suited for shooters.

Heavier mice offer more precision and control feel, making them ideal for slower-paced games.

As a general rule, we can say that from 100 grams a mouse is too heavy, so you should look for a lighter one.

The most advanced models allow you to increase or decrease the weight by means of a series of small metal weights that you can insert or remove from the mouse.

 

Type of grip

Everyone is used to holding the mouse in a different way, even if we are not aware of it on a daily basis.

This is known as the grip type.

The three classic grips are:

  • Palm grip: the fingers and palm of the hand are relaxed, resting completely on the mouse.
  • Claw grip: the fingers are arched and only come into contact with the mouse from the top. The palm only partially rests on the back of the mouse.
  • Tip grip: Here the fingers are arched even more, so that only the tip comes into contact with the mouse. The palm is suspended in the air completely.

Although this classification is useful to get an idea of your grip style, it is a simplification. Most players employ a mixed grip, with elements of two or even all three styles.

It is also possible that you hold the mouse one way for everyday tasks (while surfing the Internet or editing documents) and during your games you go into "game mode" and adopt a different grip.

 

Buttons

Most gaming mice come with 6 buttons: the two main buttons, two side buttons, a scroll wheel that can also be pressed and a button to quickly adjust the DPI.

That's the minimum you should demand from your gaming mouse. But you can go further if you wish, as others also feature extra buttons, such as a second CPI button or a rapid-fire button.

But without a doubt, MMO mice take the cake.

These devices have a side full of additional programmable buttons (usually 12) that can be used as macros. That is, as shortcuts for key combinations. 

 

Final verdict: ready to choose your cheap gaming mouse?

 

When choosing a cheap mouse, you don't just have to consider its price. It's also about what it offers for the money.

Can it be considered cheap for the prices that prevail in the gaming world? Does it offer ridiculous features that aren't necessary, such as lots of LED lights or a ridiculously high CPI? Does it make major sacrifices in order to sell at such a low price? And if so, are you willing to take it?

These are just some of the questions you should ask yourself before you hit the "Buy" button.

As you have seen in this article, there are many good options available to you.  There is no single mouse that can be considered the best, as each user has his or her own needs.

That said, if we had to recommend just one, we think the SteelSeries Rival 3 offers the best value for money on this list. It is sturdy, comfortable and in many ways feels like a high-end mouse, despite the fact that it can usually be found for less than 30 euros. Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)