If you’ve ever dabbled in eSports, you know how vital a wired mouse can be. Though not ideal for on the go, they bring the low latency required for razor sharp focus in gaming. Razer and SteelSeries have topped our list this year, battling it out against themselves for the top spot, with plenty more brands to come in the new year.
Here are CGMs nominees for Best Wired Mouse 2021/22:
Writer: Lane Martin
So Razer’s got a fancy new gamer mouse on the market, the Viper 8KHz, and it sure sounds like one swanky gizmo. It’s an ambidextrous, wired mouse with top of the line switches, two additional buttons on either side, a high end optical sensor, 5 DPI settings, and something called Hyperpolling. All of that stuff sounds very impressive. The DPI presets can be cycled with the press of a button on the mouse’s underside, signified by a small LED light near one of the three smooth raised glide pads.
The switches are extremely responsive, sometimes giving up a surprising click when I was resting a finger against one of the mouse panels, which wasn’t a problem but was definitely something to be aware of and get used to. Similarly the mouse wheel feels great with a tactile ridged surface and little to no dead zone when spinning it and pressing it. Some people might be turned off by the hardwire, but it’s tough and surrounded by a sleeve to deter any sort of snags as it glides wildly along your desk.
Razer’s Viper 8KHz is a lovely mouse but better suited to esports than home gaming rigs.
Writer: Chris de Hoog
It’s no surprise that Razer knows how to make a good mouse. The real focus of the Naga family is the collection of thumb buttons, intended specifically for use in MMOs, and the Naga X offers an affordable compromise. By default, the numbered buttons correspond to the same number on your keyboard. These can be reprogrammed for a wide variety of uses, from web browsing or media handling to macros or RGB control, and you can set several multiple profiles on-board. No need to cram your shortcuts for two wildly different games into the same mouse profile.
If you’re a committed MMO player grinding endgame content regularly, and you crave the utmost customization, the Naga X is an excellent compromise to its more expensive brethren. Otherwise the extra notches may be more of a hindrance.
The Naga X strips back the bells and whistles of its family line for the sake of a smaller price tag, but remains best suited for high-level play.
Writer: Khari Taylor
The SteelSeries Prime Pro Series Gaming Mouse has accomplished an impressive feat. Almost single-handedly (see what I did there) it has converted a wire-management-loathing, cord-free console gaming advocate like myself into a wired keyboard and mouse user, at least when it comes to the review workstation in my apartment den.
In any event, the SteelSeries Prime Pro Series Gaming Mouse is a light, well-built device that, while a bit tame in terms of presentation, still serves as a reliable wingman during fast-paced games as well as a versatile productivity tool. There are definitely flashier options out there, but if you are instead looking for more substance in place of the excessive bells, whistles and glowy bits that usually come part and parcel with gaming accessories, the Prime is an excellent choice.
If you’re looking for a gaming mouse that’s light on flash but built for serious performance, the SteelSeries Prime Pro Series Gaming Mouse is a great option.
Writer: Brendan Frye
At first glance, the new Prime+ could be mistaken for a standard office mouse, with SteelSeries delivering a subtle and understated design. But the mouse does hold some secrets, with programmable customization, a sneaky OLED screen on the bottom of the device, and an extremely fast sensor making this one of the more exciting offerings despite it’s simple look.
Delivering fantastic performance, a refined striking look, and a fantastic price, the SteelSeries Prime+ is one of the best eSports centric mice currently on the market. It delivers great features, an amazing sensor, and the OLED screen is a great addition to an already fantastic package. If you are looking for a wired mouse to take into battle, it is hard to beat what the Prime+ has to offer.
Simple design and a perfect balance between performance and price makes the Steelseries Prime+ one of the best eSports mice you can currently buy.
SteelSeries Rival 5 Mouse (Winner)
Writer: Chris de Hoog
At first glance, the Rival 5 is a simple, unassuming gaming mouse. It has a sleek, ergonomic design accented by four RGB zones—the logo and scroll wheel, plus two boomerang-shaped lines running down either side. It’s a tasteful aesthetic that might not look out of place in a normal office if you subdue the lighting through the SteelSeries GG software. At 85g, it’s light as air without feeling insubstantial, and tracks perfectly across a gaming mousepad. The TrueMove Air sensor keeps up with your hand with up to 18000 CPI, 400 IPS, and 40G acceleration.
All told, this is one of the best mice I’ve ever held. Unlike another MMO mouse I recently reviewed, the extra thumb buttons are placed in a natural way, using space that’s already there instead of putting a cluster of buttons tightly together. The “trigger”, for lack of a better term, and the toggle switch are there as natural extensions of where your thumb rests already. I do wish the switch inspired a little more confidence for me, but I eventually found some purposes for it, like summoning my mount in Final Fantasy XIV with the trickier downward motion.
The Rival 5 is a terrific mouse for its price range, offering an optimized and lightweight design, and just the right amount of buttons in the right places.