Laser vs Optical Mouse

Remember the mouse with a metal or rubber ball at its bottom? Long gone are the days when everyone had fun fiddling...

Written by admin · 4 min read >
Laser vs Optical Mouse

Remember the mouse with a metal or rubber ball at its bottom? Long gone are the days when everyone had fun fiddling it around while lounging at the computer desk. Now is the era of the two mighty, more accurate ones, the laser, and optical mouse. 

Along with being accurate, both of them are pretty durable and perfectly reliable peripherals. Laser-based mice are more efficient in case of sensitivity and function smoothly on any surface, even transparent ones. Optical mice tend to be a bit less sensitive, hence accounting for a much more accurate movement. 

However, this certainly doesn’t conclude us a winner of the optical vs laser mouse duel. Choosing between the two is a little tougher, and this is what we are exactly here for.

This article will discuss everything about these two types of mice, including how they work, their capabilities, and ultimately, which is the best one out. 

How do Optical and Laser Mice Work?

It would not be wrong to say that optical and laser-based mice house low-resolution cameras, otherwise known as CMOS sensors.

The sensor is responsible for continuously capturing images of the surface beneath the mouse. CMOS combined with the illumination source then digitizes the image for tracking where the mouse currently is.

Thousands of such images captured helps the sensors evaluate the surface beneath and deduce the speed and extent of the mouse movement. So, what makes Optical mice different from laser-based ones?

Though both function with the same CMOS technology embedded within them, the way they illuminate the said surface is what stands them apart. As the name suggests, a laser mouse uses a laser beam while its opponent uses an LED.

The same illumination then further accounts for more differences.

Difference in Sensitivity

Mouse sensitivity refers to how fast the mouse pointer moves on the screen. With greater sensitivity, a mouse requires minimal effort to get across the screen.

This gadget’s efficiency, responsible for something as important as navigating on-screen, feels very nifty, but not until the sensitivity gets far too much. This is precisely the issue with a laser-based mouse. 

Though you will certainly admire the accuracy it has got, a laser mouse’s secure sensitiveness often proves to be overkill. The mouse ends up detecting unnecessary information such as minor bumps of a surface, constantly jittering the on-screen cursor. 

On the split hand, an optical mouse is far better in case of causing irritating cursor jitters on the screen. People involved in sketching detail on adobe illustrator are recommended not to go with a laser mouse. 

Optimal Surfaces

Optimal Surfaces

Coming to surfaces, both of the mice use irregularities of the surface beneath to keep track of the peripheral’s movement. But as laser technology has got more edge over optical in the case of sensitivity, an optical mouse goes slightly less deep into the surface’s texture. 

This means that the processor and CMOS sensors inside are provided with much less information to transfer to the patent PC. 

The capability is highly crucial in some situations, for instance, using a mouse on a glass surface. Although glass is very smooth, there are still extraordinarily tiny irregularities that can be picked by a laser illuminator. 

Meanwhile, if we try navigating on the same surface via an optical mouse, it won’t be able to detect any change in movement. An optical-based mouse imperfect for highly-lacquered surfaces or glass tubes, depending on what surface you have. 


Accuracy is what everyone longs for in a peripheral as significant as a mouse. 

Though laser-based mice are overly sensitive, this hindrance has got a treat for you. Being too sensitive makes a laser mouse exceptionally accurate. Unlike a LED beam, which cannot permeate the surface it strikes, a laser can.

Thanks to this power, a laser mouse is more effective in analyzing data. However, please don’t assume that it will eradicate the over-analyzing property of a laser. Unfortunately, you will still face unwanted jitters.

Which one is Better For Gaming

If you’re a lot into gaming on big desktop rigs, you might have heard some discussion about what mouse is excellent for gaming. If we talk about what the majority thinks, an optical mouse beats the laser one when it comes to gaming. Is that really true? 

While playing a favorite AAA title, everyone wants highly accurate results and definitely no cursor jitter. Though an optical mouse also causes jitter, it sits perfectly on the conditions that most gamers need. 

However, many still prefer a laser-based mouse because of its absolute sensitivity for lightning-quick movement in games. Also, laser mice are more precise on nearly every type of purchase you like to use them on. 

Hence, in the laser vs optical mouse debate, what’s better for gaming entirely depends on personal preference.


When laser mice first occupied the markets, there was a whole lot of price difference between them and the former optical ones. Back then, optical mice were known to be budget picks, and laser-based mice were top tier. 

Today, that gap has almost become nonexistent, especially since the new models in town come pre-equipped with a horde of different features, ergonomics, customizations, and so much more! 

Simply go ahead and check on only shopping platforms like Amazon. You will come across both laser and optical mice starting from a few bucks and going as high as a couple of hundreds. 

Getting a high-end one will surely cost you more than $50, irrespective of what sensor you want. On the flip side, the most inexpensive pick tends to cost between $5 to $15. 

Who Wins the Laser vs Optical Mouse Duel? 

its a draw

If you still haven’t decided on laser vs optical mouse, consider how you intend to utilize it. 

Keeping, all things considered, we think the optical mouse is a decent choice no matter what kind of usage you have. It is a more reliable and responsive choice, not just for on-screen illustrators who crave precision but also for casual and dedicated gamers. 

The only drawback is that you will require a mouse pad to accompany your LED-based optical mouse to ensure it works smoothly. 

On the other hand, a laser mouse is generally a better selection for big firms, as it’s versatile and functional across several surfaces. This adaptable nature also makes it ideal for people who like to move around a lot. 

Read Also

Mini ITX Vs Micro ATX

Mini ITX Vs Micro ATX

Humza Hussain in Comparisons
  ·   3 min read

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Show Buttons
Hide Buttons