What Does The CPI Button Do On A Mouse?

What Does The CPI Button Do On A Mouse

Whether you want a high-end gaming mouse or a basic model, being familiar with the technical aspect of a mouse will always help you choose the right one. And if you’re trying to upgrade your mouse, you’ll probably come across the term CPI button. 

  • So what is CPI in a mouse?

Well, CPI stands for “count per inch” and represents the distance a mouse cursor travels on a screen when the mouse is moved by one inch.

For example: if you keep the CPI setting of your mouse at 800, moving your mouse by one inch will move the cursor 800 pixels. In short, the CPI measures the sensitivity of the mouse. The higher the number, the more sensitive your mouse is. 

In this article, we’re going to focus on the mouse CPI button, what does it do, how to test the CPI of your mouse and many more.

What Does The CPI Button Do On A Mouse?

The CPI Button of your mouse is situated just below the scroll wheel and it controls how fast the mouse cursor on your screen moves when you move your mouse physically.

The short answer is – “By clicking the CPI button you can adjust the cursor speed which consequently affects the sensitivity of your mouse. Moreover, if you caught your CPI button on the wireless mouse flashing, and you’re not even changing the CPI, then that seems to be a low battery indicator. Changing the battery will fix this blinking.”

mouse setting

Is Higher CPI Better?

What happens when you choose a higher CPI for a mouse? Well, a higher CPI number means you’ll have to move less. Conversely, a lower CPI means you need to physically move your mouse further to move the cursor from one side of the screen to the other. 

If you are playing a fast-paced game that need you to move quickly on the screen, a high CPI setting will work best for you. It will also work best for players that want quick and accurate movements. However, for normal tasks, increasing CPI to an extreme level makes it difficult to manage the cursor.

What Is A Good CPI For Gaming Mouse?

The CPI button on a gaming mouse is a pretty cool feature that most gamers enjoy, as it provides them some advantage over their rivals. Since many gamers play their games with a high level of sensitivity, the CPI button tends to offer a very quick response time. As they can play the game more precisely because of the mouse’s great flexibility, it allows the gamers to have more control over how their mouse moves, which helps to aim precisely when firing or changing directions.

Different mice will come with different CPI levels. The most common CPI levels are 500, 1000, 1500, 2000, 2500, 3000, and 4000, but it all depends on the mouse you are using. For example- the CPI button on Rival 3 comes with a range from 200 to 8,500 CPI (counts per inch), which offers stunning accuracy, speed, and consistency. However, there’s not a single answer to what the ideal CPI for a gaming mouse should be. But a generic mouse should offer at least 400 CPI, while gaming models should be around 800 to 1200 CPI.

Mouse CPI vs DPI

Even though CPI and DPI is a term that is used interchangeably and they both indicate mouse sensitivity, they are not the same. There are a few differences.

  • On a basic level, dots per inch, or DPI, is more closely tied to display resolutions as it refers to how many pixels your computer can discern on your screen when you move the mouse.
  • On the other hand, CPI, or count per inch, relates directly to the sensitivity of a mouse as it refers to the pixels that a mouse will detect when moving an inch.

In terms of sensitivity, whether you use a DPI-rated mouse or a CPI-rated mouse, a higher number will make the mouse more sensitive. However, since CPI takes into account signals from the hardware, it provides a more accurate measurement of mouse cursor sensitivity.

DPI, on the other hand, is also used to evaluate mouse sensitivity, but you must also consider your display resolution for an accurate result.

“So, the main difference between CPI vs DPI is that – CPI focuses on the movement detected by the mouse sensor itself, whereas DPI is concerned with how the mouse pointer responds to movement on the display screen.”

Mouse CPI Test

Although there isn’t a program or setting that will let you know the precise value of your mouse’s CPI, here are two ways to measure the CPI number:

Manufacture’s Specification:

Examining the manufacturer’s specs is the most accurate way to find out the CPI. Go to the manufacturer’s website and check for the mouse model there. Find the part that provides all the information about the mouse where CPI is likely to appear before the tag Resolution.

Testing CPI Manually:

You can try manually checking the CPI if you can’t locate it online. However, this approach won’t be very precise, therefore you must get the averages.

  • Press Windows + S and open the application. On the top-left side of your screen you’ll find Additional Mouse Settings, click on it.
  • Select Pointer options and proceed to uncheck the option Enhance pointer precision.
  • Take a piece of paper, measure it approximately 2-3 inches, then mark it with the marker. Next, hover your cursor over the 2-3 inches on the CPI analyzer page.
  • After positioning the mouse pointer to the paper’s starting point. Then, move the mouse in a straight line from the beginning position to the finishing point. After doing this, take note of the CPI as displayed on the website.
  • Repeat the procedure a few times and note the readings. Calculate the average and that would be the approximate CPI of your mouse.

How To Reset Mouse CPI?

  • Using CPI Button: Many mice have a CPI button next to the scroll wheel on the top of the device. You can use the CPI button to choose between higher and lower CPI depending on the settings you want. 
  • Using Mouse Profiling: Your mouse profiles can be configured with several sets of CPI, and you can switch between them and use them by selecting the right profile for your CPI requirements.
  • Using Mouse Configuration Software: There are several mouse configuration software, compatible with the specific brand of a mouse, such as Logitech G Hub Razer Synapse. You can use it to reset the CPI of your mouse and set it to the CPI you like for your gaming.
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Nafiul Haque

Nafiul Haque has grown up playing on all the major gaming platforms. And he got his start as a journalist covering all the latest gaming news, reviews, leaks, etc. As he grew as a person, he became deeply involved with gaming hardware and equipment. Now, he spends his days writing about everything from reviewing the latest gaming laptops to comparing the performance of the latest GPUs and consoles.