What Is The Best Mouse Polling Rate?

by | Jul 21, 2019 | Beginner Guides

So you’ve picked up your new gaming mouse, and started fiddling around with its software. You may have seen a setting called “Polling rate”, and you’re now wondering, “What is the best polling rate setting for my mouse”?

What Is Polling Rate?

The polling rate of your mouse is measured in Hz. The most common polling rates for gaming mice are 125, 500, and 1000. But what does this all mean?

The polling rate refers to how many times your mouse sensor updates its position per second. For example, if you have your mouse set to 125Hz polling rate, your mouse will update its position 125 times a second.

A higher polling rate means there will be less lag between when you move your mouse and the cursor update on your screen.

125 Vs 500 Vs 1000 Polling rates

You may be tempted to set your mouse to the highest polling rate possible. While a higher polling rate is better, it isn’t necessarily the best option in some¬†circumstances.

125Hz = 8 ms 250Hz = 4 ms 500Hz = 2 ms 1000Hz = 1 ms

Some games are built on old game engines and are not optimized for higher polling rates. an example of such a game is crossfire. crossfire only supports 125Hz polling, any higher will result in poor cursor movements.

Something that I have experienced with polling rate is that using the same DPI setting but lowering the polling rate can make the mouse seem like it moves faster. This is only noticeable in-game, and the effects are very minimal.

I have written an article explaining the best DPI settings for games.

500Hz Vs 1000 is a long-lasting debate, and there is very little difference between the two only a robot could tell the difference between 500 and 1000Hz. Higher polling rates use more CPU resources so there is very little reason to use 1000hz over 500hz.

500 Vs 1000 Polling Rate For Games

Gaming mouse software

This is the razer synapse software and you can see on this image that the polling rate is set to 1000 on the Razer DeathAdder Elite.

For FPS games such as CSGO, I recommend using 1000Hz over 500Hz. The reasoning behind this is that CSGO is very competitive, and any variable can be the difference between killing your enemy.

Even though the difference is essentially unnoticeable 500Hz being 2ms and 1000Hz being 1ms, that slight difference could make a big difference depending on the scenario.

Same with Fortnite and PUBG, I recommend using the highest polling rate to ensure you have every advantage over your enemy.

Does High Polling Rate Cause Lag?

Short answer, yes. The higher the polling rate the more lag it causes. But that is only if you have a CPU/Processor that cannot keep up with its constant updates. The difference between 500 and 1000Hz can be the difference between 60fps and 10fps.

In this case, I recommend lowering your polling rate so it doesn’t cause significant stress on your CPU.

Nowadays, these type of issues are rare, so if you’re looking for a 1000Hz mouse, you shouldn’t encounter any lag.

In case you suspect that you have polling rate lag, click here to test that theory, if you see inconsistencies then you should lower your polling rate.