Buyers' Guide: Computer Mouse
Along with keyboards, computer mice are often neglected when buying a new computer system; with laptops and tablets overtaking PCs in popularity, they’re more often than not nothing more than an afterthought. But, with a mouse often the most used input device it’s important to have one that’s comfortable and easy to use, as well as having all the latest specs, of course. What’s more, if you regularly use a laptop a mouse can make your life easier and more comfortable.
Douglas Englebart of Stanford University designed the first computer mouse in 1964, and they’ve come a long way since his primitive creation. Modern mice are ergonomically designed and comfortable as well as making controlling your cursor easier.
The best mouse will be responsive, comfortable and easy to use. 7Here’s our guide to buying a new computer or laptop mouse:
Type of computer mouse
Mechanical computer mice work using a rubber ball on the underside of the unit. When the rubber ball moves it activates two rollers with small holes at the end. An infrared beam then passes through the disks and a detector calculates the direction and speed of the mouse.
Mechanical computer mice are now quite dated and can become ‘clogged’, with dirt and food becoming wedged in between the rubber ball and sides. This can affect its performance and means having take apart the mouse to clean out the gunk regularly.
An optical computer mouse is much simpler and avoids the problem of being gunked up with dirt and food. In place of the rubber ball, a beam of light bounces onto the surface under the mouse and senses the speed and movement of the mouse.
The optical mouse doesn’t need to be cleaned on the same scale as a mechanical model but it does have the drawback of needing to be used on certain surfaces to work efficiently; overly shiny or reflective surfaces confuse the sensor and the mouse will oftentimes not work.
Modern optical mice have been upgraded to include a laser, making them far more sensitive and accurate. It also uses less power – what’s not to love? Well, the price for one. Manufacturers are producing laser mice aimed at creatives and avid gamers, but the cost can be almost double a standard mouse.
A cordless mouse connects with a computer using radio waves; it’s convenient and is the best mouse for avoiding annoying cables and cords.
Things to consider
- Scroll wheel Some mice come with a scroll wheel, usually positioned between the two buttons. It makes scrolling up and down pages quick and easy.
- Buttons Most computer mice have two or three buttons that allow you to do all functions needed. For something a little fancier you can get your hands on a mouse with programmable buttons.
- Ergonomics The best mouse will fit comfortably in your hand, making working with computers all day as comfortable as it can be. Most computer mice are designed with right-handed people in mind so getting a comfortable mouse is especially important if you use your left hand to write.
You’re in the perfect place to start comparing deals and offers over on our shopping and comparison pages.
Use the filters on the left hand side to narrow down your search, and if any prices take your fancy simply click the deal and you’ll be taken to the site of your selected independent retailer. Check out the specs and features on your selected computer mouse and click and buy, or continue perusing our huge array of deals and offers to make sure you get the best for your budget.