It’s easy to think about the humble mouse as an afterthought alongside expensive monitors, keyboards and chairs, but it’s vital to get the right rodent when you’re putting together kit for your working day – whether you’re at the office or still at home.
There’s a lot to think about when considering a mouse, too: the shape, the number of buttons, the connectivity and the level of precision on offer all play a part. We’re serious. You may only need a budget mouse if you’re tackling tasks in Microsoft Office, for instance, but it’s worth spending more if you require the features and precision demanded by creative workloads – or if you want an accessory that you can easily switch between multiple devices.
We’ve rounded up six of the best office mice on the market right now, and we’ve covered all bases: if you need an affordable option or a high-end, do-it-all peripheral we’ve got you covered, and we’ve also picked out the best options for Apple and Surface users.
What are the best office mice in 2020?
The best office mouse you can buy today is the Logitech MX Master 3 (£93). It’s got a fantastic range of features, including an innovative electromagnetic scroll-wheel. Elsewhere it has great core quality, ample sensitivity and versatile wireless abilities. It’s well-balanced and almost flawless.
View the Logitech MX Master 3 for £93 on Amazon The best affordable mouse is the Microsoft Intellimouse Classic (£27). It’s cheap, accurate, well-built and has five buttons, with a comfortable shape that’ll suit most people. If you need a no-nonsense peripheral for everyday work, this is the one.
View the Microsoft Intellimouse Classic for £27 on Amazon The best ergonomic office mouse is the Logitech MX Vertical (£76). It’s a cleverly designed peripheral that orients your hand in a vertical, handshake-style position to improve comfort and ease the pain of RSI sufferers – and it’s paired with great build quality and solid button and sensitivity options.
View the Logitech MX Vertical for £76 on Amazon
Logitech MX Master 3
WIRED Recommends: The Logitech MX Master 3 is a robust, well-made office mouse with innovative features
Weight: 141g | Dimensions: 84 x 51 x 125mm (WxDxH) | Hand orientation: Right-handed | Connectivity: 2.4GHz wireless, Bluetooth, wired | Buttons: 7 | Sensor: Darkfield 200-4000dpi | Extras: n/a
The MX Master 3 (£93) is our favourite office mouse thanks to an unbeatable combination of superb quality, top-notch design and a broad range of features.
It’s a tall, curved design that’s very comfortable to use for hours at a time, and the core functionality is fantastic. The 4,000dpi optical sensor has the precision required for the fiddliest professional tasks and it works on virtually every surface, the two main buttons are snappy, and the MX Master has two scroll wheels – one on the top, and another on the side.
The buttons are bolstered with clever features. The main scroll wheel is electromagnetic, which means that it provides smooth or ratcheted scrolling options, differing resistance levels, improved precision and even dynamic speed adjustments. A button on the left-hand side of the unit can deploy gesture-specific functionality when the mouse is being moved.
Build quality is robust, the matte finish is comfortable, and this Logitech mouse has superb wireless ability too – it connects over three wireless channels and Bluetooth. The MX Master can also effortlessly switch between different devices, even if they use different operating systems – it can flow between Windows, macOS and Android hardware, for instance.
The MX has a battery that lasts for more than two months, it charges in a couple of hours thanks to super-fast USB-C, and its charging port is positioned at the front to you can keep using the mouse while the battery is being replenished.
The software is good, too: Logitech’s app has pre-made button configurations for tools like Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft Office and loads of popular browsers.
The MX Master doesn’t really put a foot wrong. It’s packed with clever features that work well, it’s extremely versatile, and its core functionality is precise, smooth and rock-solid. There’s no better all-rounder for any sort of work – from creative projects to more conventional office tasks.
Pros: Superb, innovative features; great core quality for any kind of work; robust body; great wireless options
Cons: No on-board dongle storage
Price: £93 | Check price on Amazon | Logitech | John Lewis
Microsoft Intellimouse Classic
An affordable, mainstream mouse
Weight: 100g | Dimensions: 69 x 43 x 132mm (WxDxH) | Hand orientation: Right-handed | Connectivity: USB | Buttons: 5 | Sensor: BlueTrack 400-3200dpi | Extras: n/a
Many people will have used an Intellimouse in the dim and distant past, and Microsoft’s iconic office peripheral has made a surprise return in the last couple of years – a Classic version has been released.
This £28 rodent is affordable and effective for many of the reasons that made the original so successful. It’s got a comfortable, ergonomic shape that’s a little sleeker and more compact than the Intellimouse you may remember, and its button layout is straightforward. The two main buttons sit on either side of a scroll-wheel with secondary buttons on the side.
The buttons are crisp, the scroll-wheel works effectively and the body is robust. On the inside is a sensor with a peak sensitivity of 3,200dpi, which is easily good enough for any work scenario, and this mouse worked flawlessly on wood, metal, glass and other materials.
It’s an affordable mouse, though, so expect some inevitable compromises. It’s wired rather than wireless, and it’s not ambidextrous. You’ll certainly find more buttons elsewhere alongside a more precise sensor.
That said, lots of people just won’t need those features, and the Intellimouse Classic delivers comfortable, precise and reliable performance without breaking the bank.
Pros: Comfortable, iconic shape; solid mainstream performance; affordable
Cons: No wireless options; not ambidextrous
Price: £28 | Check price on Amazon | Microsoft | Overclockers
Apple Magic Mouse 2
The best mouse for Apple users
Weight: 99g | Dimensions: 57 x 22 x 114mm (WxDxH) | Hand orientation: Ambidextrous | Connectivity: 2.4GHz wireless, Bluetooth | Buttons: 2 | Sensor: Apple optical 1300dpi | Extras: Gesture support
Apple’s Magic Mouse 2 (£79) has been around for a few years, but there’s no denying that it’s the best option for people who work on Apple hardware – especially if you use creative apps.
The Magic Mouse 2 supports a broad range of multi-touch gestures that allow you to whizz around macOS easily, its optical sensor tops out at 1,300dpi which is good enough for creative work, and it looks the part – its sleek, squat design is typical of the hardware we expect from Cupertino. Build quality is fantastic, too, and the Magic Mouse is wireless. It only weighs 99g, the flat shape helps keep it portable, and it’s ambidextrous. It’s also available in two colours – the original silver and darker space grey.
Apple’s rodent is certainly not perfect. Some people won’t like the flat, minimal shape, and having to turn the unit upside down to connect the charging cable remains an irritation. It’s been several years without an update to this device, too, which means no new gestures have been added.
Still, the gestures that are included cover basically everything you’d need to work in macOS, and the smart, small and responsive Magic Mouse 2 is typically sleek and effective. If you want your mouse to pair its functionality with unmatched style, it’s a neat option.
Pros: Sleek and stylish; multi-touch support; ambidextrousCons: Few new features; fiddly charging port
Price: £79 | Check price on Amazon | Apple | Argos
Logitech MX Ergo Wireless
The best trackball mouse for ergonomics
Weight: 259g | Dimensions: 100 x 51 x 133mm (WxDxH) | Hand orientation: Right-handed | Connectivity: 2.4GHz wireless, Bluetooth, wired | Buttons: 8 | Sensor: Optical 50-1150dpi | Extras: Trackball
Logitech’s MX Ergo Wireless (£100) is something of a throwback – because it uses a trackball. Even in 2020, though, a thumb-operated trackball like this makes plenty of sense: they’re far more comfortable than conventional mice if you suffer with RSI, and they can also be useful for older people and those with disabilities. And they’re just handy for tight spaces because you don’t have to move the mouse to move the cursor.
This Logitech device is the best example going right now. The trackball itself is smooth and easy to use, and comes with a button to toggle a mode that delivers extra precision. The mouse itself is well-designed too. It’s a large, right-handed, slanted unit that feels extremely comfortable – your hand almost relaxes across it – and a plate on the base can be adjusted so the angle can be fine-tuned for a more ergonomic experience.
Elsewhere, the Ergo serves up wireless, wired and Bluetooth connectivity, its buttons are responsive, build quality is exceptional and the software is straightforward. It’s extremely heavy for a mouse, at 259g, but it doesn’t need to move – so that weight is instantly negated.
A trackball device won’t be for everyone, and conventional mice do offer a little more precision. But Logitech’s MX Ergo Wireless is the best trackball product around – the ball itself is large and responsive, the rest of the buttons are solid and build quality is top-notch. If you’re an RSI sufferer or if you’d benefit from a static, ergonomic mouse for any other reason, this is WIRED’s top recommendation.
Pros: Solid trackball performance; great wireless options; large, robust body; angle alteration optionsCons: Heavy; more precision available elsewhere
Price: £83 | Check price on Amazon | Currys | Scan
Logitech MX Vertical
The best vertical ergonomic mouse
Weight: 135g | Dimensions: 79 x 79 x 120mm (WxDxH) | Hand orientation: Right-handed | Connectivity: 2.4GHz wireless, Bluetooth, wired | Buttons: 4 | Sensor: Optical 400-4000dpi | Extras: n/a
The Logitech MX Vertical (£76) is an odd-looking device that takes a bold approach to ergonomic design. The MX has a conventional, oval-shape base, but it’s dominated by a taller vertical section. This narrowing central strut is where your hand goes – in essence, you hold this unit with your hand perpendicular to the desk, as if you were going to shake someone’s hand.
If you’re used to a conventional, flat and horizontal mouse grip, it’s a big change – but it makes loads of sense. The two main buttons and the scroll wheel sit on the right-hand side of the unit, where your fingers can rest on them comfortably, and the other side features two thumb buttons. A third customisable button sits on the top for thumb access. It works brilliantly well: if you have RSI, muscle pain or any other condition where a traditional mouse grip is uncomfortable, the MX Vertical is a revelation.
The rest of the specification is solid. The 135g weight is fine, the 4,000dpi maximum sensitivity level is easily good enough for precise, creative work, and it can use wireless, Bluetooth and wired connections. As with other Logitech MX products, the Vertical can be used with three different devices and can quickly switch between them, no matter their underlying operating systems.
The MX does have a slightly different centre of gravity, which takes some getting used to when zipping the Vertical around your desk, and conventional mice will have more buttons and features. But if you need maximum comfort and the best ergonomic design around – without compromising on your ability to handle work – then there’s nothing better.
Also consider: Anker’s Vertical Ergonomic Mouse (£18) serves up the same comfortable shape as the Logitech for a fraction of the price. It’s not quite as sturdy, it doesn’t have the wireless versatility and its buttons aren’t as well-placed, but this delivers the same underlying comfort at a lower cost.
Pros: Comfortable, ergonomic design; impressive buttons; good precision; ample wireless optionsCons: Initially unusual design; altered centre of gravity; missing some features
Price: £76 | Check price on Amazon | Logitech | John Lewis
Microsoft Surface Mouse
The best mouse for Surface users – and other laptop owners
Weight: 90g | Dimensions: 60 x 26 x 107mm (WxDxH) | Hand orientation: Ambidextrous | Connectivity: 2.4GHz wireless, Bluetooth | Buttons: 4 | Sensor: Optical 400-1800dpi | Extras: n/a
Microsoft’s Surface Mouse (£45) is designed to be used alongside Surface tablets and laptops, but restricting this accessory to those devices does it a disservice: this is the best mouse for any kind of portable use.
It weighs just 90g, it’s only 26mm tall and 60mm wide, and it has a smart, minimal shape alongside sturdy build quality. Combine that with the wireless and Bluetooth connectivity options and you’ve got a mouse that’s great for tossing into a bag, using with your laptop and not having to worry about.
The laser tracking is accurate and consistent on any surface and the 1,800dpi sensitivity level is good enough for handling mobile workloads. The main buttons are snappy, the metal scroll-wheel is sturdy, the Surface unit is ambidextrous and it connects quickly using Microsoft’s Swift Pair feature. It uses a pair of triple-A batteries with Microsoft claiming that they only need to be changed once a year.
You don’t get the option to use this unit with a wired connection, but that’s beside the point. If you’ve got larger hands the smaller dimensions and lack of palm support on the Surface Mouse may prove annoying, but that’s the price to be paid for having something so portable. Also bear in mind that it has no side buttons.
We reckon they are more than acceptable compromises if you’re looking for a portable mouse, and this accessory is still vastly preferable to the average laptop trackpad. The Surface Mouse is stylish, small and effective – an ideal travel companion.
Also consider: Microsoft’s Bluetooth Mobile Mouse 3600 (£23) doesn’t have the polished design of the Surface Mouse, but it’s compact, comfortable and ambidextrous. It only weighs 63g, it has solid buttons and a scroll wheel, and only needs charging twice a year. A great budget option.
Pros: Slim and light; robust, effective design; easy connectivity; ambidextrous
Cons: No side buttons; little palm support
Price: £45 | Check price on Amazon | Microsoft