Mechanical Mouse Vs Optical Mouse: Differences & Advantages

Check out the comparison between two different types of mouse

by Sagar Naresh
Sagar Naresh
Sagar Naresh
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Sagar is a web developer and technology journalist. Currently associated with WindowsReport and SamMobile. When not writing, he is either at the gym sweating it out or playing... read more
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Alex Serban
Alex Serban
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Affiliate Disclosure
  • While a mechanical mouse is a thing of the past, some people still want to know whether that is a good mouse.
  • Optical mice are available in different shapes and sizes.
  • This guide explains the differences between a mechanical mouse and an optical mouse.
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If you got yourself a new high-end PC or a laptop, and all you want is a brilliant mouse for it, then it could be a tough ask to decide between a mechanical mouse and an optical mouse. While mechanical mice are devices of the good old days, people still use them to get that retro feel.

However, you wouldn’t want your setup ruined just because you got yourself a mechanical or optical mouse. Didn’t you? In this guide, we will share a complete comparison between a mechanical mouse and an optical mouse. Reading this, you will be able to choose between either of them.

What is a mechanical mouse?

In this article

Before going ahead with the comparison, let us first understand what a mechanical mouse is. A mechanical mouse uses mechanical parts such as a ball that rolls on the surface.

The sensors then detect the ball’s movement on the surface and move the cursor on your PC’s screen accordingly.

As you move the mechanical mouse, the sensors constantly track the movement and move the cursor. You should note optical mice almost replace mechanical mice.

A mechanical mouse is wired and sends the signal of the ball’s movement on the surface using the wires to the PC.

Mechanical mice are a bit heavy and contain parts that can easily get damaged and ruin your experience. This is the reason lightweight and less fragile optical mice replace them.

What is an optical mouse?

An optical mouse is an advanced mouse and does not use any tracking ball for it to work. Instead, it uses a light, which reflects on the surface and then is read by the sensors to move the cursor on your screen.

The sensors take thousands of microscopic snapshots of the working surface to move the cursor on the PC screen precisely.

However, some surfaces, such as glass, do not allow the light reflected by the LED to be read by the DSG (Digital Signal Processing) sensors.

Since there isn’t any moving part on an optical mouse, it is easy to manage and does not require any cleaning. In addition, sensing is more precise in an optical mouse than in a mechanical mouse.

Differences between a mechanical mouse and an optical mouse

Mechanical mouseOptical mouse
Uses a trackball that is used to move the cursor.Uses LED to move the cursor.
Heavier than an optical mouse.Lightweight and are available in different shapes and sizes.
Mechanical mice are wired.Optical mice can be wired and wireless.
Require cleaning to protect it from wear and tear.Require almost no cleaning and have a better life.
Works even on a rougher surface.Require a flat surface to work without any issues.
Outdated and are only used as a novelty products.Replaced mechanical mice because of their advantages.
Mechanical mice are pricey.Optical mice are cheap.

Advantages of a mechanical mouse

Here are some of the advantages of a mechanical mouse:

  • Better build quality.
  • More accuracy.
  • Can run on a bit rough surface.
  • A bit more durable as compared to an optical mouse.

That is it from us in this guide. However, if you are a gamer, we have a guide explaining why you should disable the mouse smoothing feature on your PC.

If you have lost your wireless mouse’s receiver and are looking for ways to connect to your PC without it, do not worry. You can check out our guide and easily connect wireless mouse without a USB receiver.

Has your mouse’s cursor disappeared from your PC’s home screen. If so, you can apply the solutions in our guide to easily resolve the problem.

We hope that this guide clairifed the confusion if you had any regarding a mechanical mouse and a optical mouse.

Feel free to drop a comment down in the comments section below and let us know if you liked this guide and want more such comparison.

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