In this article we’ll be looking at a roundup of locally available gaming mice that give us the features we need for the cheapest possible price.
As much as a keyboard can make or break your gaming experience, I’d say its the mouse that matters the most for a lot of people. It sees a lot of use in first person shooters and RTS titles and can take quite a beating when you’re frantically aiming at your enemies while thumbing buttons to fire the grenades at the same time. Inevitably for most as well, its the first thing you slam when a hard-fought match in League of Legends doesn’t go your way.
The mouse is as much of a workhorse as any other component or peripheral we may own, but that doesn’t mean you have to settle for a cheap one. Even in the office the revolution created by mechanical keyboards is slowly bringing in mice that are suited to a whole range of things besides gaming.
In the table below we go through a roundup of several gaming mice that are not only cheap, but also have some great features. Preference will be given to mice that feature some easy way to control the DPI, thumbable side buttons and strong design. The lowest prices for the mice are highlighted in Bold. Our budget will be maxed out at R1,000.
|Steelseries Kinzu V2 Pro||242||358||279|
|Gigabyte M8000X Ghost||552||619||582||619|
|Steelseries Sensei RAW||552||642||584||612||636|
|Corsair Vengeance M65||556||636||584||571|
|Saitek Cyborg R.A.T. 3||526||583||583||510||596|
|Saitek Cyborg R.A.T. 7||967||1036||845||893|
Cheap, cheap: Steelseries Kinzu V2 Pro
Steelseries has grown to be a much-loved brand among gamers and the first Kinzu was a strong contender despite the lack of frills. While the Kinzu V2 Pro doesn’t have the side thumb buttons we were looking for, it does have solid build quality and on-the-fly DPI switching.
The price is also good considering that it has the same sensor found in the much more expensive Sensei RAW, along with the familiar glowing Steelseries logo on the palm rest that can be controlled through the drivers. If you want to save money but hate to lose out on quality, the Kinzu V2 Pro comes recommended.
All on its own: Logitech G400
Logitech’s entry-level G-series mouse does make a good case for itself, The G400 is well-equipped and sturdy and features a very adjustable 3600 DPI sensor, programmable buttons and a very comfortable curvy grip.
Its only failing, really, is the slightly weird-feeling rubber surface by the thumbrest that tends to feel greasy after a long gaming session. The design of the mouse is also very old-school and the black-and-brown colour scheme won’t appeal to everyone. What it offers to make up for this is legendary Logitech build quality and nice, stable and functional software.
Clusterfreak: Four mice out for your attention
The R550 price point is interesting because there are so many great mice out at this level clamouring for your attention. These are the ones that stand out.
The Gigabyte Ghost looks like a weapon and performs well, while the over-the-top R.A.T. 3 from Saitek impresses with good looks that can’t be found on any other brand. There’s some customisability here too.
Sensibility is the name of the game for the Sensei RAW and the Vengeance M65 and both mice are on par with each other and their two counterparts. The RAW’s advantage is its ambidextrous layout, while the Corsair has a design that’s understated enough to not be noticed, but just as functional as mice costing twice as much. Of note, the M65 and the R.A.T. 3 both feature a DPI switch for use when sniping in FPS games or when more accuracy and less movement are needed.
Just right: Logitech G500
Claw grip gamers may not agree so much here, but for overall use the G500 is arguably one of the best mice on the planet. The rock-solid design ensures it’ll last you years while the adjustable weights help you figure out if you like it light or heavy. Its been going on for some time now and Logitech is expected to finally retire it this year.
It has a 5700 DPI sensor, 10 programmable buttons including a “sniper mode” button, softly glowing status LEDs and a scroll and tilt wheel, which means it’s at home doing more than just gaming. Along with the G9x which is its baby brother, the G500 has been a stalwart for many years and a truly great piece of kit that promises to never let you down.
Insane in the membrane: Cyborg R.A.T. 7
Yes, it looks like a Transformer and that’s not the only thing I like about this mouse. It’s fully adjustable, allowing you to change the orientation of the palm and thumb rests, the weighting and the perfect way to grip it.
The R.A.T. 7 has a “sniper mode” button and a thumb wheel, up to seven programmable buttons and on-the-fly DPI switching and customisable palm and pinky finger rests for making the mouse more comfortable. Its base is also made of metal and its one of the most stable mice out there. If it’s performance you want mixed in with something that looks great and invites you to tinker with it, look no further.