Laser vs Optical Mouse for Gaming

One of the essential components in gaming is the mouse, without which a gamer cannot win a game with ease and comfort. However, mice are constantly going through innovations. There was a time when the mouse would have a ball under the surface and required cleaning every time it was not working correctly. 

But now, there are all kinds of mice that offer tons of really cool features for different tasks.  In this article, we will focus on laser and optical mice to figure out which is better for gaming.

When it comes to mice in the gaming industry, there is much dispute over which kind is superior – a laser sensor mouse or an optical sensor. What differentiates one from the other? Which one is the most suitable for gaming? 

We will provide you with all the information regarding these, and we will go through everything in detail. So, let’s get started.

1. About the Laser Mouse

Logitech MX Master Wireless Mouse

A laser mouse consists of some advanced features. The laser beam technology replaces the regular LED sensor and performs more precisely. It is more sensitive than other mice types and serves better as the laser beam is strong enough to penetrate different surfaces.

A laser mouse is quite solid and sturdy. It can glide smoothly and operate flawlessly, even on a shiny surface. The light reflected by the laser enters the surface and accurately detects the commands without any interruption of the reflected light. The CMOS (complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor) sensor is unconcerned by the brightness of the reflection and works perfectly over almost every surface. 

A laser is so powerful that it can detect the surface without trouble and transmit the signal precisely. Reflection assists the mouse in detecting surfaces with distinct light variations and making a simple method for laser mice to trace movement. Greater detail indeed implies greater accuracy.

It is an excellent mouse for gamers, graphical or technical designers, and other jobs where pinpoint precision is essential. But due to its high acceleration, some gamers try to avoid it. 

Sometimes, high acceleration increases the sensitivity, which is unsuitable for games that require controlled movements. For such games, the laser mouse does not perform too well because it becomes susceptible.

2. About Optical Mouse

Wireless Mouse with Nano USB Receiver

The optical mouse is widely used and readily available in every store. People who use a computer in their daily lives use an optical mouse. Some gamers and typists prefer optical mice because they fit their needs, are easy to use, and have appealing features.

The optical mouse contains an infrared LED sensor that tells the computer where the mouse is moving. The optical mouse has replaced the mechanical one because the latter needs a suitable mouse pad to function. However, optical mice do not require a mouse pad; they just need some paper to work as they do not perform well on shiny surfaces.

The optical mouse can identify thousands of pictures in a matter of seconds because they have a camera that easily detects them. In gaming, players use this mouse to pinpoint the actual place where they wish to shoot. The detection of the position is so precise that there is no possibility of error.

The optical mouse performs well in games that require extreme precision because it provides controlled movements. It is well under the gamer’s control because its acceleration is comparatively low, and the cursor does not jump uncontrollably.

Differences Between Laser Mouse and Optical Mouse

Since laser and optical mice employ different technologies, there are many differences between them. Among them are accuracy, resolution, and appearance. So, let’s take a look at how the two types of mice differ.

Accuracy and Resolution

The resolution of a laser mouse is slightly higher than that of an optical mouse. The average DPI (dots per inch) required for a decent resolution outcome ranges from 1100 to 2400 DPI. The DPI range of a laser mouse is 3000, whereas an optical mouse has 1200 DPI. Even though both mice have this range, a laser mouse still has a better range than an optical mouse.

Speed and accuracy are essential for gamers, typists, and graphic designers. The speed of the cursor and the rotation of the camera are key factors when it comes to accuracy. 

The high acceleration of the laser mice sometimes leads to uncontrolled accuracy, which is not suitable for gaming. In contrast, the optical mouse offers controlled accuracy.


In terms of structure, we can say that the laser mouse is far superior because it features a few additional buttons and RGB lighting. There are dark colors of LED light used in optical mice that are not comfortable for the eyes. The harsh light irritates some people.

Although a laser mouse has lights, it does not shine brightly and is not harmful to the eyes. However, both mice improve their models by adding more buttons and colors that attract buyers to invest their money in them.

Cost Effect

There is not much of a difference between laser and optical mice in terms of price. Makers just improve some aspects, such as button design and color, to appeal to customers. 

More significantly, they modify the features according to the advancements in the gaming industry. However, laser mice are slightly more expensive than optical ones. Despite being a bit more pricey, laser mice are still widely available on the market, so you will have no trouble finding one. 

Surface Compatibility

A laser mouse works well on all types of surfaces, including glass. It detects them with the help of the laser beam that enters the surface and transmits signals. In contrast, an optical mouse cannot work on glass or shiny surfaces. 

However, it does not require a mouse pad. A thin sheet of paper is enough for the optical mouse to function efficiently. 

Similarities Between the Laser Mouse and Optical Mouse

Although there are many differences between laser and optical mice, there are also quite a few similarities between them. Let’s take a look at what features these mice have in common. 


Both laser and optical mice have CMOS sensors and operate similar to a video camera. Due to these sensors, both can capture 1000 pictures per second, which is quite impressive as they study one image at a time.

Light Pattern

Another similarity is that neither the laser nor the optical mouse can distinguish the surface. Instead, they follow the light and carry out their instructions. The light reflects the surface and CMOS assists in capturing it. 

When we play images back to back, the mouse understands everything so well that the image pace remains constant even when the pointer is removed. This is a very helpful feature in gaming.

Which Mouse Is Better for Gaming – Laser or Optical? 

As we investigate the subject further, we discover several differences and similarities between these mice. However, identifying which one is superior is quite challenging. But since we are talking about video games here, we can claim that the optical mouse is the best choice for gaming.

A laser mouse may penetrate so deeply that it can pick up on every detail efficiently. It works quite well on very smooth surfaces, but it is not suitable for gaming. The laser mouse picks up many undesired things that affect its accuracy, which is terrible for gamers.

The accuracy and precision of optical mice are unmatched for gaming. Gamers worldwide like to play with an optical mouse because they usually sit on a desk with a mouse pad and use their extraordinary abilities to play and win. 

Many gamers prefer to play with an optical mouse for its high accuracy and controlled precision. But in the end, it is up to the individual gamer to decide which mouse better meets their needs better. 

The most important thing is to get a mouse that you feel comfortable using. We hope this review helped clarify the differences between laser and optical mice and helped you decide which one to pick. Happy shopping!

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