Mousesettings for Newbies

This tutorial is meant to be an addition to the Aiming by Raziel guide which can be downloaded via It is directed towards people who are fairly new to the game, or to people who generally have no idea whatsoever about their mouse and its' settings.

Back when Norway RaZieL wrote his guide, technology was not advanced enough to enable the 2000 DPI setting, nor the feature of having high polling rates. I am not however, suggesting these settings are the best for everyone. The majority of people who have played with the same settings for years, would probably not benefit from making any changes to their settings - but instead suffering a reverse effect - "hurting" your aim.

Before you start changing every single setting you currently use, pause. It is crucial you write down, or save the settings you currently use in a text-file.

All the possible changes stated in this article, can all be undone if you are not completely satisfied, which is why you need to keep note of ALL your current settings.

QuoteAt the end of the day, keeping the same settings over a long period of time, is what makes you aim better... not changing your settings every other week because you had one bad game.

Okay, enough of the babble, let us get started.

1. FPS or Frames Per Second[/u]

QuoteYou basically would benefit by having as much of these as possible. FPS is the speed at which your mouse will react.

Start up your ET, preferably into a high-fps map. Seta com_maxfps 43, and wiggle your mouse around. Seta com_maxfps 125, and again wiggle your mouse around. You should immediately notice that your mouse will react a lot faster when having high FPS. You must however, try and find a suitable number of FPS, at which it will remain stable. FPS drops are normal, but you basically need to keep them as high as possible, but at the same time as stable as possible.

[Some Extra Bumcum]

*Common FPS caps: 43 / 63 / 72 / 76 / 83 / 100 / 125 / 166

*Recoil: This is FPS dependable. Having extremely high FPS, will result in a higher recoil than having a lower FPS setting. Lowest recoil is at 71 fps. Any FPS higher or lower will increase the recoil.

2. Mouserate

FPS make your mouse move, but the rate at which your mouse sends information to your computer (mouserate), will also speed up the reaction times of your mouse abit. It will also make your aim a bit smoother. The best mouse port to use, is USB, not PS/2.

You can use the following program to view your current mouserate: DX_mouse_timer_dialog

QuoteUse Raziel's USBrate to change the rate of your mouse without rebooting, try 250 or 500 hz: USBrate
If you are using Vista, you can change the mouserate with TBagsPatcher for Vista

If you are having problems with other USB hardware try using this other program wich allows you to only patch your mouse USB port:

Try putting your mouse at 250 or 500Hertz. Some may only report 450Hertz, but that is standard. I personally recommend 250 as it tends to be the more stable one on most mice and FPS is still way more important when it comes down to the reaction speed of your crosshair.

Do not use 1000hz. There are few mice that give 1000hz stable. Depending on how fast or slow you move the mouse, the mouserate increases or decreases. When using 250/500hz it is much easier to reach the maximum polling rate of 250/500hz. The higher and stable mouserate will give you a more consistent and smoother aim. Using 1000hz makes it very hard to keep the mouserate stable as you need to move the mouse very fast AND in two directions to get it all the way up to 1000hz. You can test this out for yourself by using the DX_mouse_timer_dialog

Using high polling rates will increase cpu usage when moving your mouse, some mice don't work at 1000hz, so i urge you leave it at 250 or 500hz.

Do not buy wireless mouse like mx1000 or G7. Wireless mouse run at 66hz, using software to smoothen out the movement. Although they might work out for most average gamers, the best choice is still a mice with a cord.

Using a USB to ps/2 adapter on a USB mice will give unstable polling rates, much like using 1000hz. Only true ps/2 mice will give stable polling rates on a ps/2 port.

3. DPI or Dots Per Inch

You may have seen all of the new mice being released with information given such "ultra high DPI". Low profile mice may only use 200, 400 or at best 800DPI - if you have a low profile mouse, you may not need to take notice of the following section.

There is a major problem however, concerning the use of a high DPI setting in the Quake 3 engine. Join a server, and keep your crosshair focussed on the same point. Put an object next to the current placement of your mouse. Move your mouse swiftly to the other side of your mouse pad or desk. Next, return it slowly to its previous position (next to the object). You will notice that your crosshair has not returned to the same point at which it started - even though it has moved back and forth exactly the same distance.

Whilst moving your mouse with a high DPI setting, it is more likely to lose data or mouse input. When you move the mouse back to its original position slowly, the engine is able to process all of the data. This results in different levels of data processed, and therefore, NEGATIVE ACCELERATION.

In an ideal situation, you want every movement of your mouse to be translated at exactly the same speed displayed on screen - no matter how fast or how slow you move it.

Do not fret... negative acceleration is not a flaw in your mouse, but simply a bug or glitch in the Quake 3 engine.

So, what should you do if you buy a new mouse? You could either set your DPI to 400 or 800, or you could change Operating System (OS) sensitivity via the control panel. The second or third notch should be fine.

QuoteBoth drivers or lowering windows sensitivity will lower the DPI and no matter how fast you move your mouse, it will always move accurately. I recommend 400dpi for low fps players, 400 or 800dpi for high fps players. Anything higher is useless and will make your aim less accurate

More info
Mousereviews by Sujoy

4. WindowsXP noAccel

QuoteAs mentioned by RaZieL in his guide, WindowsXP has an inbuilt 'acceleration-like' feature. Operating Systems like Win9X/WinNT/Win2000/Linux/Mac do not have this feature. It can be easily enable or disabled by running the following patch: Aoin Accelfix

Make sure you reboot your computer and run the patch a second time to check if the tweak has been enabled/disabled. Once you have run this program you no longer need to turn off 'Increased pointer precision' at the mouse control panel. If you are having troubles running the patch, reboot into safe mode and run it again.

More info

5. Monitors: CRT vs. TFT

This one is extremely complex and difficult to get a grasp of, let me try and explain...

Quote"CRT > TFT"

...end of story. CRT monitors are the 'daddy's'. Just like with FPS and mouserates, you want high display refreshes.

Good CRT screens can go up to 200Hertz, depending on their size and what resolution, or r_mode you play on. The ideal situation is, Hertz >/= FPS. 120hz is what you should be aiming for, but again more is better. TFT screens can only show 75 images a second, but should suffice for most average gamers. Still most top gamers still prefer CRT screens for best performance.

Teh End

This guide was meant to be as simple as possible. I have wrote and rewrote this article in the past and have always ended up with an endless clump of text full of technical bullshit and explanations no-one understands. I hope this one has and will continue to help out fellow gamers.

over 'n out.

Extra reading stuff:
Mousereviews by Sujoy
How many fps can you see
How many fps can you see²
Raziels rant vs wireless mice
Bani going technical
Mousepads by feuersturm
A Literature Review on Reaction Time
Playing to win by Sirlin

Special thanks go to all the people that helped me out with all kind of technical ET stuff or that gave me inspiration:
Norway Raziel
Germany Wipeout
Germany Tron
United Kingdom Madscientist
United Kingdom Sockeh
Netherlands Fratze
Croatia Chaplja
Ireland Sol
Anonymous Aion for stealing Norway Raziel's usbcode without referring to the original coder.
United Kingdom Sheep for rereading this text, editing errors and adding markup. I'm sure some new slipped in due to updates ;)

Last updated 28th of March 2008

To do, keyboards and why ps/2 > usb
Good Tutorial!
Second link in "DPI or Dots Per Inch" paragraph links to "CoD2 EuroCup XIII Lan Finals Preview"
Damn xfire³ Cannot find the link again, was a realy good article by Bio*tron but it seems to have dissappeared.
Hey overdrive, I was just looking for my own article and realized it's not even stored at the Internet Archive. But I found the full text on another page, using the exact article title.

Here it comes, maybe one could reference it somehow, if only for historical reasons. ;)

QuotePage 1: Negative mouse acceleration in ET/RtCW *UPDATED*
Since I wasn't the only one who experienced negative mouse acceleration with the Diamondback - Bjorn had started a thread on the Razer Blueprints forum - I was curious how this could be. It should be noted that all of the following does not only apply for the Diamondback but for any mouse.

If you want to read the whole thread, it is there:

I'll try to summarize it here.

Someone replied on that thread saying that the game in which negative acceleration occured was probably not using DirectInput. So I played around with in_mouse in Q3, ET, RtCW and CoD. And indeed, in_mouse does not work in ET and RtCW (and CoD) as it should. Fyi, in_mouse -1 in Q3 stands for using default windows mouse routines and in_mouse 1 stands for using DirectInput.

In Q3, you can observe the difference between using DirectInput or not: Set com_maxfps to 10 and then test for negative acceleration. With in_mouse -1, you'll experience a huge amount of it, while with in_mouse 1 you don't. The reason for this is as follows:
Without DirectInput, the game just reads the position of the normal mouse cursor and resets it to the middle of the screen every frame. When the cursor moves too fast, it hits a border of the screen and the exceeding movement is "discarded", which is perceived as negative acceleration.

In ET and RtCW (and CoD), DirectInput doesn't work, i.e. in_mouse -1 or 1 makes no difference (although some people reported it did for them...?). I had a chat with zinx (from the ETPro team) about it and he confirmed it. It was removed by "someone somewhere" in the engine code between Q3 and RtCW.

In result, that means that if you have low fps in ET or RtCW (or CoD) you will experience inherent negative acceleration. Unless you use Linux because the Linux equivalent of DirectInput, which is DGA, still works in ET. It can be set with the cvar in_dgamouse.

Everyone should test for themselves if they notice it at all on their system (which depends on the system specs -> fps, the r_mode -> see below, the playing style -> do you often do fast turns, your mouse settings -> do you have some positive acceleration which might balance things etc.). A good way to test it is to point your crosshair on a prominent object, like the edge of a wall, put your hand to the left or right side of the mouse on the mouse pad (or just make sure the mouse is exactly on the edge of the mouse pad), make a very -fast- turn with your mouse away from the hand and then move it -slowly- back until the crosshair points at the same object again. Without (negative) acceleration, you should reach the same position on the pad again. If there's negative acceleration then you will have to move the mouse past the initial position in order to point at the object again.

Now, this is not as dramatic as it maybe sounds at first glance.

Firstly, the effect of the negative acceleration becomes strongly noticeable only at really low fps. I tested with 76, 43 and 10 fps. 10 is horrible, at 43 it is still considerable when doing fast turns and at 76 it is barely existent. This does however explain at least for me why I do sometimes struggle on heavily populated servers running Railgun where my fps can drop to values like 30.

Secondly, there is something you can do about it (apart from the obvious solution to reach higher fps): Raise your r_mode. The reason why this helps is because it makes the distance the pointer can travel before reaching the border of the screen longer. r_mode has almost no influence on my fps at least from r_mode 1 to 7. I haven't tested above yet, but I think this is not the main limitation on fps (complexity of the map and other things rather are).

Thirdly, there might be hope for a fix. When I talked to zinx, he said that DirectInput might be re-added in a next release of the ET engine, if there will be one, which obviously left me puzzled a bit. He said that they were not in contact with Splashdamage about it and I guess such a modification could not be made within ETPro. He apparently didn't want to tell me further details about this seemingly classified information, but he also said that it's not a pure guess. It's a bit mysterious.

What I didn't try so far is if you can deal with it by adjusting mouse sensitivity. I'm pretty sure that changing the Windows/mouse driver sensitivity on its own wouldn't help because you would still reach the border of the screen when you wanted to do the same turn: Either you move the mouse at low speed and with high sensitivity or you move the mouse at high speed and low sensitivity, the distance the pointer travels should be the same. However, I was thinking that adjusting in-game sensitivity *might* help because afaik it translates the pointer movement received from the Windows mouse routines into the actual turning in the game. So you could lower Windows sensitivity and raise in-game sensitivity which would allow you to reach the same turning speed at a lower speed of the mouse pointer which would not reach the border of the screen as quickly. This would be at the expense of precision though because you would effectively create gaps in the area you can cover with your crosshair.

RtCW players are probably not as affected by the whole thing because the fps are usually much higher.

Any update on the mouse sensitivity front is welcome. If you want to test it, don't forget that perceived negative acceleration might not only stem from the issue described in this article but also from hardware limitations of your mouse. The Diamondback is pretty resistant to that since the maximum speed is specified at something like 1-1.5 m/s. But you can even reach that limit (as I found out with DirectInput in Q3). With a MX500 or so, you should reach the peak speed more easily.

Added two example calculations based on S0und's example configuration (1280x1024, Windows sensitivity 4):

Look at the following calculation:

Assuming you get 76 fps. Assuming mouse sensitivity in Windows works linear on the dpi you actually get (which is just a wild guess, I don't know if it actually works like that), you would have 4/10 (10 is the standard sensitivity which translates to a 1:1 relation between pointer and mouse) * 1600 = 640 dpi. (I know that speaking of "dpi" isn't strictly correct because the mouse hardware still runs at 1600 dpi, but you know what I mean )
640 happens to be half of your horizontal screen resolution, which means you have to move the mouse 1 inch in order to move the mouse pointer from the screen center to the border of the screen. For the negative acceleration to kick in, you would have to make that movement within 1/76 s. So to find out the speed per second, you would have 2.54 cm (1 inch) * 1/s * 76 = 193.04 cm/s = 1.93 m/s. This is pretty fast and probably not reachable in practice. It is beyond the hardware limit of the Diamondback anyway, so this would be the limiting factor. Since vertical resolution is a bit lower, speed in that direction wouldn't need to be so high (1.93 m/s * 1024/1280 = 1.54 m/s), but that's even more irrelevant since you don't often make such fast vertical movements.

With 800x600, only 43 fps and the full Diamondback resolution of 1600 dpi (assuming that you want to make full use of the dpi the mouse offers for a higher precision, once they fix the pixel skipping...), it's a whole different story: You only need 1/4 Inch in horizontal direction to reach the screen border and it may take you 1/43 s. Result: 2.54 cm * 1/4 * 1/s * 43 = 27.3 cm/s ! I can imagine that a low sens player (like me atm) easily reaches that speed when he wants to do a fast flick. And don't forget, you don't have to make a full one second move, it's enough if you exceed the speed limit just during some of the frames.

All these calulations are more or less just "guesses", maybe there are things I forgot. But I think they illustrate the basic problem.

Someone on the Razer forum (and SoL who also helped me with testing ) agreed that the possibility I described above to fight the effect by reducing Windows sensitivity and increasing in-game sensitivity would work, however at the expense of precision.
I have G7 :<

:D I know a lot of people who buy them, just because they are the most expensive.
Don't see anything about G7...

And that was exactly the reason I bought them. I thought they would be expensive for a reason xD
Its about wireless mouse in general.
i did such a long post full of technical stuff and advices, and your damn website logged me out and so erased it all when i tried to post ...

so here is a short bored version about neg accel and how to get ride of it:

-increase you screen resolution

-increase you mouse rate

-lower your dpi

-increase your sensitivity ( hell if i ll chose this one)

-change your mouse pad (can help for some mouses)

for some who wanted some explainations and advices ... go blame the website timelimit to stay logged on with inactivity grrrrRR

and even if i m fed up right now, nice tut short and all good, not that common
An advice: Use Opera, so you can get back to the form to copy and paste your last form input ;).
Only happens with the oldest diamondbacks, the new diamondback plasma doesnt have that problem. Doubt many ppl have the old one.
have an old diamondback, tell me more about this pixelskip-fix, never heard about it.. btw, dunno what it`s actually is :d
download this file and read readme.txt :>
anyway, if u install this patch u will see diffrence..
one problem, i already explained this on et section, bout fps rates, better frames per second

41 > 43

and so on
usbrate not working for vista 32bit for me...
btw my mousescroll is scrolling down all the time when useing usb anyonw know any reasons
nice info ty ...
THANK YOU²³²³²³! Finally somebody made those weird settings understandable for me! =)
Best tutorial in Xfire! Still reading this sometimes :d
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