What Is Mouse DPI and Is It Important for Gaming

DPI is effectively your mouse sensitivity so it is important, but there are many misconceptions around mouse DPI. What’s far more important than the DPI itself is the DPI in relation to your in-game sensitivity, this creates what you would call your “effective DPI”. If you have your DPI set to 6000 which is considered high, but then also have your in-game sensitivity on CSGO set to 0.1, you’ll find that your in-game mouse speed is not very high at all. this is why your DPI alone has little relevance without considering your in-game sensitivity.

What you should be asking yourself is: Do I want high sensitivity or low sensitivity? From there you should experiment with your DPI and your in-game sensitivity to find the best feel for you. You can find great guides online to help you find the perfect combination to fit your needs.

Is higher DPI better for gaming?

Short answer: Nope! Most esports pros use between 400-800 DPI

You’ll find that most pro gamers play with low sensitivity. FPS games require extreme accuracy to hit those tricky headshots, low sensitivity can greatly improve your accuracy. Not all games require the same mouse precision that FPS games do, MMO games for example. Some gaming mice can go as high as 16,000 DPI which I think is unnecessary.

The most important thing is your mouse DPI in relation to your in-game sensitivity. In CSGO for example there is no major difference between 400 DPI with 2 in-game sensitivity compared to 800 DPI with 1 in-game sensitivity. There could be small differences between the two depending on what game you’re playing and what mouse you’re using, and that is why you’re encouraged to experiment.

How do you set your DPI?

Gaming mouse software

Most gaming mice come with software where you can fine tune the DPI to an exact number, how high that number can go depends on what mouse you have. You can also tweak your mouse sensitivity using the windows mouse settings, I recommend that you keep it halfway at either 5 or 6 out of 11. It’s better to experiment with your DPI in your mouse software rather than in the windows settings.

what is mouse dpi for gaming

Windows mouse settings

If you’re using a regular mouse with no software you will have to make do with the windows mouse settings, unfortunately it’s not very precise. It’s simply a bar with 11 levels to choose from, it won’t tell you the exact DPI number like the gaming mouse software would. You can find the pointer speed slider in the pointer options tab in the windows mouse settings.

In-game sensitivity settings

You should always experiment with your DPI settings on your gaming mouse software as well as the sensitivity settings on the in-game options. Fiddling with both of these settings will help you find your ideal sensitivity for your game of choice.

What DPI do regular mice have?

Mouse technology has seen a huge improvement over the years. Nowadays you can find regular mice with 1000 DPI for under $15, an example being this TeckNet mouse. Although just because the mouse has 1000 DPI does not mean it will feel as smooth as a gaming mouse. Other factors like sensor quality, build quality & weight can have a huge effect on performance. It’s also unlikely to include any software, this means you won’t be able to set the exact DPI.

What DPI do gaming mice have?

You will find that most new gaming mice have at least 6000 DPI, the highest DPI I’ve seen is 16,000 on the Corsair Scimitar Pro. Gaming mice often show off their super high DPI’s to impress customers. In reality, a very high DPI is not very important and is more of a marketing tactic than anything. You are better off comparing build quality between two mice than how high their DPI’s are!

How to check what DPI your mouse has

The easiest way to check what DPI your mouse has is to find the manufacturer details online. I usually search for the mouse on Amazon and 9 out of 10 times I will find the DPI in the product details. If you have a cheap or old mouse it may be harder to find the product details online, if you can’t find the answer anywhere then the mouse is probably no longer sold (a good sign to upgrade).

If you have a decent optical gaming mouse it probably has software you can download for it. With this software you will be able to check your exact DPI and change it to whatever you like.