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What DPI Should I Use For Gaming And Productivity?

DPI for Gaming

Over the past few years, we have witnessed a flurry of high DPI mice in the market. Gone are the days when mice used to have a 3200 limit. Now, even cheaper mice feature a 12000 DPI and it has become an industry standard. Some have gone even to 16,000 DPI, a case in point is the Logitech g502 Hero.  

Want to know which one is the highest dpi mouse? Razer introduced its new Focus+ optical sensor in the Viper Ultimate Wireless that can crank up the DPI all the way up to 20,000.

The price and weight of the mouse have nothing to do with the DPI limit. Inexpensive Honeycomb Mouse at $50 and expensive full-fledged MMO mouse at $150 can have the same DPI. It all depends on the sensor. 

Fun Fact: Pro Gamers don’t use a mouse at a 12000/16000 DPI setting, and such a high level of sensitivity doesn’t help in FPS Titles like Overwatch, CS: GO & COD. 

Let’s take the bull by the horns.

What is DPI/CPI?

DPI is an acronym for “dots per linear inch” and is measured by calculating how many pixels a cursor moves on screen when you move the mouse exactly 1 inch.

So, with a 12000 DPI mouse you can move from one edge of the screen to the other with minimal effort, whereas at the opposite end of the spectrum if the DPI is set to 10, you might have to move the mouse across the desk to achieve the same feat. 

There are other names for DPI such as “count per inches” or “ mickeys per second”. Though there are subtle differences between these terms, for end-users they are just a different name for mouse sensitivity. 

The average mouse these days comes with a DPI in 1600-2400, whereas for gaming mice, we have already mentioned the extremes above.

What Mouse Dpi Do I Really Need For FPS Gaming?

One grueling question that refuses to die on gaming forums is ‘High vs low dpi for fps?’ It is usually the counterstrike and overwatch fans that make the most fuss about the DPI (Pun intended). 

As described earlier, higher mouse DPI means that the cursor will cover more pixels with the slight movement of the hands, the opposite is true of the low DPI mouse. The gaming mouse at 200 DPI would take more physical effort to move the cursor than let’s say 2000 DPI.  

For FPS games, the character will turn faster at high DPI. As far as the character movement is concerned, a higher DPI is a plus. But the over sensitive cursor would have a hard time taking a precise aim.

In FPS games where there is a lot of movement and where taking tight turns gives a competitive advantage, a high DPI setting makes sense. However, the games where taking a steady and careful aim is all you need, a high DPI setting would defeat the whole purpose. Here, LOW DPI and speedy mouse movement do the job perfectly fine otherwise you risk moving your crosshair/reticle off of your enemy. 

Furthermore, you would have to deal with the sensitivity of the game. To find the perfect match, you can either ape the pros or do a simple 360 test. For this test, you will have to test the movement of the mouse for a full 360 turn of the in-game character. No matter what you opt for, ultimately you will have to find the best match of DPI and game sensitivity by the painful hit and trial method. 

Though most high DPI gaming mice already have it, you should always opt for a mouse that has an easily accessible DPI button to easily switch between two different DPI configurations. You can keep a high DPI as your default and switch to a lower setting whenever you need an accurate and steady aim.

Best Mouse DPI For MMO Games?

There is no one-size-fits-all situation when it comes to DPI settings for gaming. The following best practices would lead you in the right direction. 

  1. For MMOs and RPG games, any DPI setting between 1000 and 2000 would work for you. 
  2. For MOBA games, the DPI setting in the range of 400-800 DPI is sufficient.
  3. Lastly, for real-time strategy games, you would find the sweet spot between 1000 DPI to 1200 DPI.

Best DPI For 1080/1440p Resolution Monitor?

As most gamers have 1080p (1920 x 1080 pixels) or 1440p (2560 x 1440 pixels)display, this question often makes rounds on the internet. Sensitivity in the 400-1200 DPI range is enough for these displays. An 8000 DPI or even greater 12000 DPI mouse is too fast and sensitive and would make in-game accuracy almost impossible. 

What Is The Best DPI For A Mouse?

There has been widespread mis-information about the mouse DPI that a higher number is better by default. Pioneers like Logitech and Razer add to the confusion when with each passing year they release mice with successively higher DPI settings. 

The best DPI mouse depends on your desk space, the size of your hands, ultimate need, and a couple of other factors. Like we explained earlier, People who play FPS titles would be more than satisfied if their mouse’s DPI  falls between 800 and 2400 DPI. 

People who have multiple screen setups (dual/quad monitor users) have a hard time moving the cursor from the edge of one screen to the edge of another. A 12000/16000 DPI mouse can really shine above the rest in this scenario. It would significantly enhance your productivity if you happen to own such a setup. 

If the monitor screen is 4K or even 2K, or else if you have a small mouse pad, a high DPI mouse can make your life easier as you won’t have to drag across the table to get to a point. 

For everyday use, the normal DPI range falls between 800-1600, and even gaming mice have these settings by default. 

Why Does My Mouse Have 12000 Dpi?

A high DPI such as 12000 isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it is always a plus. Usually, you have the freedom to customize the DPI settings of such a high DPI. As far as the purpose of this extreme setting is concerned, we have already explained it in the section above. 

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