Table of Contents
- Explaining the Difference: DPI vs Sensitivity
- How Does a High or Low DPI Setting Affect Gaming?
- How Do I Check Mouse DPI?
- What is the best DPI setting? Is a higher DPI always the best?
Are you investing your money in buying a good mouse? Before investing you better know about mouse DPI so that you can choose the best mouse which works well. Here in this article, we are going to reveal the 3 best ways to check mouse dpi or sensitivity step-by-step.
Explaining the Difference: DPI vs Sensitivity
There are a lot of people who think that DPI and Sensitivity both are the same things. DPI and Sensitivity both have different definitions and concepts. So Let’s dig in!
What is DPI (Dots-Per-Inch)
DPI generally stands for dots per inch. As you know display on your screen is counted in resolution so, DPI is calculated on how many pixels the crosshair moves on the screen. A higher DPI mouse can be able to detect the movements more precisely than a lower DPI mouse, that’s why most gamers are advised to buy a high DPI mouse.
Understanding DPI with an example. Let’s suppose you’re playing an FPS (first-person shooting) game and you want to aim the object with the sniper. While zooming in and aiming to a small object, a mouse with higher DPI mouse could be able to detect minor movement and you’ll be able to aim smoothly.
Whereas, a mouse with lower DPI could not be able to detect the small movements and so you’ll have to increase the sensitivity which may bother you some times.
That’s why most of the gaming mouse has DPI buttons to quickly adjust between DPIs for smooth gameplay.
How Does a High or Low DPI Setting Affect Gaming?
A very high DPI setting means that your mouse will travel long distances even with the slightest hand movements. On the other hand, you have to use the mouse again and again at very low DPI settings, for example, to turn in-game around its own axis.
What is Sensitivity?
Sensitivity is a software-based tool to increase the speed of your cursor. You can change the sensitivity setting of your mouse in your Windows. Otherwise, every game provides in-game settings to change the sensitivity which will detect small movements of your mouse and you don’t have to drag the mouse all the way on your desk.
Understanding Sensitivity with an example. Let’s talk about the above example considering the sensitivity. Suppose you bought a cheap mouse with lower DPI, the mouse could not be able to aim at the small objects. Therefore, you’ll have to increase the sensitivity.
By increasing the sensitivity on your Windows, the software moves the cursor whenever it detects a movement of your mouse, which may bother you sometimes by continuous movement while your mouse stays still.
Since the hardware is not sensitive enough, it will simply not register the small movements. Your operating system compensates for this low sensitivity by moving the cursor further away as soon as it detects a movement. This makes precise movements very imprecise and not as smooth as you might wish.
You might be interested in: How to Choose the Best Headphones For Gaming?
How Do I Check Mouse DPI?
A lower DPI mouse may not be the best choice for most gamers. Most of the gaming mouse comes with dedicated software where you can change the DPI, whereas some have a button to switch between different DPIs which makes them very reliable for playing games. It can be tricky for most of the mouse that doesn’t have any software or DPI buttons, but here are some ways to check mouse DPI.
Explore the Documentation
Every mouse you buy comes with a user manual which will help you to find all the features of the mouse along with DPI rates. Otherwise, if your mouse doesn’t have any documents the thing you can do is search your mouse model and make online and get the spec sheet. There’s a chance that you find all the features along with the DPI figure.
If you have a non branded mouse, that only relies on Windows stock mouse driver then it’s a bit hard to find but you will not get the accurate figure.
Install the Drivers
Reminding that if you have any non-branded mouse, you’ll not be able to download the drivers from its manufacture website, because that mouse can keep working with Windows default mouse drivers.
Other than that, Branded mouse have their own dedicated software and drivers which gives you great grip over buttons and macros along with DPI. Every mouse manufacture’s software has a different interface, so you’ll have to look around and play with options to find out where you can change the DPI settings.
Checking Mouse DPI with DPI Analyzer
If you have a gaming mouse, simply install the associated software. This allows you to display and read out your mouse DPI as soon as the software is set up. This is the easiest way to find out your mouse’s DPI.
If you want to find out how much DPI your gaming mouse has without software, then try DPI Analyzer. We have tested it with different DPI levels and it delivers very precise values! Really recommended if your mouse does not have any software
The whole thing looks something like this:
How does the tool work? Simply follow the steps below:
- Make sure your browser window is at 100% zoom.
- Leaving the unit in inches is easier. Enter “1” in the “Target Distance” field. You don’t need the rest.
- Left-click on the red crosshair and hold the left mouse button.
- Now you have to move/pull your mouse on your pad exactly 2.5 cm to the right.
- Then you can read your current DPI value in the “Actual DPI” field.
What is the best DPI setting? Is a higher DPI always the best?
A higher DPI value is not always better. You don’t want the cursor to fly across the screen just because you tapped the mouse lightly. On the other hand, a higher DPI value helps you to turn faster in shooters or simply surf “more comfortably”.
Test it yourself and set your DPI extremely up or down. Too low a DPI is just extremely annoying because the cursor barely moves and you really have to row (some like it). If the DPI is too high, you lose control of the cursor and aiming in shooters becomes almost impossible.
Therefore, many high-quality gaming mice have built buttons, on which you can change various DPI settings directly at the push of a button, without having to switch to the driver menu.
Nevertheless: You have to find the DPI that suits you best. Values up to 1600 DPI are not uncommon, but you shouldn’t go over this, as it will eventually become too uncontrolled.