How to reduce mouse lag in Windows 10

When it comes to games, we all want the fastest computer response. We want more frames per second, less latency from the GPU, a direct connection to the game server and, above all, the fastest and most precise mouse response. But and if the peripheral device itself shows delays in the Windows 10 interface, what should be done?

Today we’re going to show you the top causes and solutions for a mouse with delayed or inaccurate response. Although it is more common with wireless models, the problem due to interference may actually affect some wired models on the market. The cause can be anything from USB port failures to software incompatibilities.

If you have already encountered the problem, see below how to reduce possible mouse lag in Windows 10.

Step one: try to determine the cause of the problem

If your mouse is sluggish, dragging, inaccurate, and behaving erratically, the first thing you need to do is isolate the possible causes of the problem. The solution varies from case to case, especially between wired and wireless models. Therefore we will cover everything in separate sub-headings.

Our guide is structured as follows:

  • Wireless mouse specific tips
  • Specific wired mouse tips
  • Tips apply to all models

Ready to start? So let’s get to the tips!

Windows 10

Resolving delays in the wireless mouse

1. Check the battery

For wireless mice that are experiencing a lag, the first step is to look for the simplest problem: low battery or battery life. Many of these devices may not respond when not charged and try to conserve energy in every way possible to stay alive. The result is lag and inaccurate response of the pointer on the screen.

For battery-powered models, check that very sudden movements during play have not detached them and that they are making poor contact.

2. Check whether the signal range is sufficient

Wireless models have a manufacturer-defined range. Depending on the technology used (Bluetooth or radio in another standard), this distance can be very short. Testing to bring the mouse closer to the receiver improves performance. If you are feeling better, interference may be the cause of the delay.

Testing to bring the mouse closer to the receiver improves performance.

Always try to keep the distance between the mouse and the receiver as short as possible. That is why many manufacturers supply a USB extension with the kit.

3. Eliminate possible causes of interference

Another very common cause of the problem is interference. Internet routers and other wireless devices can interfere with a wireless mouse’s communication with the PC and, in many cases, reduce the range of the connection.

Test your peripheral device on other machines and other environments. If possible, turn off all waveform devices temporarily to see if the response improves.

Windows 10

Resolving Wired Mouse Delay (USB)

For wired mice, pointer lag and tracking issues are a red warning sign. In theory, there are no disruptive factors, as the connection is made directly by cable and is protected by insulation layers.

In this case, the only specific tip for wired models is to check the condition of the cable and splices. It is common for wires to make poor contact due to sudden movement in games. Some models with lighter wires and coated with fine mesh may be even more prone to breakage and solder joints.

It is common for wires to make poor contact due to sudden movement in games.

If the mouse shows no sign of falling when you handle the cord (and the lights stay on), it is a sign that everything is fine with this device. Your investigative work continues with the following tips!

Windows 10

Solutions to fix delays with all mouse types

1. Do a quick check

If you’re still having a lag, the next step is to briefly review a few items:

  • Make sure the mouse sensor is not covered in dirt
  • Make sure your mousepad is compatible with the sensor (many models have issues with reflective surfaces and glass)

2. Test the USB ports and check USB 3.0 compatibility

Also, try changing the USB port device or even device. If the problem only occurs on your PC and not another, it may be an indication of software, which we will get into later.

Avoid using inferior USB hubs and other types of port expansions. Our goal here is to isolate the source of the problem, so connect it to the motherboard ports.

Avoid using USB hubs.

Another tip is to connect the peripheral to a USB 2.0 port instead of a 3.0. Several devices have reading problems with the new USB generation, which led to crashes and power errors.

3. Update your video driver

It is very common for users to complain about mouse lag while using Windows 10. One of the causes could be the lack of suitable graphics drivers. This problem is easy to spot and affects not only pointer movement, but windows and other UI elements as well.

One of the causes could be the lack of suitable graphics drivers.

Windows 10 can check for new drivers in Device Manager, but ideally, visit the manufacturer’s website and get the latest version available.

4. Update the mouse driver

As I said, Windows 10 can recognize most of the necessary drivers. However, from time to time problematic versions may be installed. To update the mouse driver through Windows:

Windows 10

  • Press the Windows logo key and the X key at the same time
  • Press the G-Key or click the “Device Manager” option
  • Navigate to Mouse and Other Pointing Devices
  • Right click on the mouse name and select “Update Driver”
  • Windows 10

    Also, remember to download the manufacturer’s official apps. Companies like Corsair, Logitech, Asus, MSI and others offer suites with additional functions such as DPI control, lighting and macros.

    5. Disable test Windows 10 scroll inactive window

    A very nice feature of Windows 10 that can have issues and slowdowns on some PCs and mouse models is inactive window scrolling. You can turn it off for a test by following the steps below:

  • Open the Windows 10 settings window with the keys “Windows + i”.
  • Select the “Devices” option
  • Select the “Mouse” option in the left menu
  • Deactivate the option “Inactive windows scroll when I hover over them”
  • 6. Realtek Audio drivers can cause problems

    In terms of software issues, many Windows 10 users and mouse lags have reported when using Realtek’s audio hub that comes with most motherboards.

    Try again to end the Realtek HD Audio Manager process in the Windows 10 Task Manager. To open it, press Ctrl + Shift + Esc.

    Also, try disabling NVIDIA HD audio outputs if you are using a card from one manufacturer.

    7. Turn off Cortana

    In a final act of desperation, our tip is to disable Cortana in Windows 10. While useful, the tool can consume machine resources and cause mouse delays depending on your hardware configuration.

    Turn off Cortana on Windows 10.

    This can be done in the Windows 10 settings panel. Press Windows Key + “i” to access it. Then navigate to the tab of the wizard and manually disable all features.

    If none of the above tips work, maybe it is time to think about switching mice. As always, try testing the device on other PCs to make sure the problem is mouse related. Much luck!