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The best ergonomic mouse: Make work more comfortable

What is the best ergonomic mouse? The Logitech MX Vertical takes our top spot! We analyzed configuration, compatibility, comfort, and more below.
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Written by Taylor Clemons, Staff Writer on

An ergonomic mouse can be a quick, easy, and affordable way to make your home office or professional workspace more comfortable. Many feature vertical or tilted designs that put your arm, wrist and hand in a more neutral position to reduce muscle and tendon strain. Others use thumb-positioned trackballs for cursor movement, eliminating the need to move your whole arm to navigate programs and web pages. While many ergonomic mice are right-handed, you can find models with dedicated left-handed or ambidextrous designs, though they may be more expensive. I've gathered a list of the best ergonomic mice available and broke down their features to help you find the best one that fits you and your work style.

Also: Best ergonomic keyboard 2022: Work more comfortably

Logitech MX Vertical
Logitech

Connectivity: USB dongle/USB-C/Bluetooth | Configuration: Vertical, right-handed | Buttons: 4 | Programmable: Yes | Max DPI: 4000 | Sensor: Optical | Compatibility: Windows, Mac, ChromeOS, Linux, iOS, Android

The Logitech MX Vertical is one of the most well-rounded, and best designed, ergonomic mice on the market. Its vertical design puts your hand and forearm into a more natural, handshake-like position to reduce muscle and tendon strain during long days at the computer. The optical sensor has a max DPI of 4,000 for speed and precision, and the conveniently placed DPI switch button lets you choose the sensitivity that best suits your work. Each of the 4 buttons can be programmed for different hotkey inputs or tasks, simplifying your workflow. 

It's compatible with just about every operating system there is, and you can connect the mouse to up to three devices at once, switching between them with the push of a button or simply by moving the cursor to the next screen with the Logitech Flow program. The mouse connects to your computer via USB dongle, USB-C cable, or Bluetooth. The rechargeable battery gives you up to 4 months of use on a full charge, and just one minute of charging gives you 3 hours of use; which is perfect for when you forgot to charge overnight or need a quick top-up before a presentation.

Pros:

  • 3 connectivity options
  • Tons of compatibility options
  • Quick charge

Cons:

  • Only 4 buttons
  • Logitech Flow has a steep learning curve
logitech-lift-vertical.png
Logitech

Connectivity: USB dongle/USB-C/Bluetooth | Configuration: Vertical, left- and right-handed | Buttons: 6 | Programmable: Yes | Max DPI: 4000 | Sensor: Optical | Compatibility: Windows, Mac, ChromeOS, Linux, iOS, Android

If you adore the looks and function of the aforementioned Logitech MX Vertical, but can't do with the larger figure, then check out the Logitech Lift Vertical. Just released, the ergonomic mouse shares a similar form factor as the MX but comes in a smaller (and lighter) size, with left and right-handed versions available. In many ways, the Lift Vertical is the better mouse of the two given its assortment of color options (black, white, and pink) and two extra, programmable buttons,

The Lift Vertical can connect to a Windows, Mac, or even ChromeOS devices via Bluetooth LE or the included Logi Bolt USB receiver. In terms of battery performance, you can expect up to two years of usage before needing to swap out the AA battery within. While not rechargeable like more-expensive options, the use of an external battery may be an upside for travelers and working on the go.

Read more: ZDNet's full review of the Logitech Lift Vertical

Pros:

  • Compact and lightweight for smaller and/or left-handed users
  • Two-year battery life via one AA battery
  • 6 programmable buttons

Cons:

  • Not the most expensive but not cheap either
  • Recycled plastic material can attract dust
ProtoArc EM01
ProtoArc

Connectivity: USB dongle/Bluetooth | Configuration: Right-handed | Buttons: 10 | Programmable: Yes | Max DPI: 2400 | Sensor: Optical | Compatibility: Windows, Mac

Long gone are the days when a trackball mouse looks like some sort of modern art installation. The ProtoArc EM01 has a traditional, right-handed mouse design that places the cursor trackball at your thumb for more comfortable navigation. The optical sensor has a max DPI of 2,400, and you can select different levels of sensitivity with the thumb buttons to suit your work. You can also adjust the tilt angle of your mouse up to 20-degrees for a more natural hand and arm placement. 

The integrated battery lasts up to 100 days on a single charge and can be recharged by connecting the mouse to your computer via a USB-C cable. The ProtoArc EM01 is also capable of controlling two different devices simultaneously with Bluetooth connectivity; just press the wireless mode selector button to switch between computers. And if you want to show off a little of your personal style, the mouse has an RGB ring light around the trackball that can be programmed with over 16 million colors and 4 lighting effects.

Pros:

  • Intuitive design
  • Control multiple devices at once
  • Great battery life

Cons:

  • No quick-charge feature
  • Has a bit of a learning curve
Cherry MW 4500
Cherry

Connectivity: USB dongle | Configuration: Right-handed | Buttons: 6 | Programmable: No | Max DPI: 1200 | Sensor: Optical | Compatibility: Windows, Mac 

You don't have to spend a ton of money to get an ergonomic mouse for your workspace. Cherry, the same company that makes mechanical keyboard switches, has developed an affordable, vertical mouse to help reduce hand, wrist, and forearm strain. The 45-degree angle puts your arm in a more natural position to reduce stress on your muscles and tendons as well as put each of the 6 buttons within easy reach. The optical sensor has a max DPI of 1200, and you can choose between three different sensitivity levels with the DPI selector button. The mouse runs on two AAA batteries, and it can last up to 6 months before you need to even think about finding more batteries; an LED indicator lets you know well ahead of time when your batteries are getting a bit low.  It also comes in a left-handed configuration.

Pros:

  • Excellent battery life
  • Comfortable design
  • Multiple DPI levels

Cons:

  • Not rechargeable
  • No Bluetooth connectivity
  • Not programmable
Evoluent VerticalMouse 4
Evoluent

Connectivity: USB | Configuration: Left-handed | Buttons: 6 | Programmable: Yes | Max DPI: Not specified | Sensor: Laser | Compatibility: Windows, Mac, Linux 

We lefties tend to get forgotten or outright ignored when it comes to computer peripherals, but Evoluent has designed an ergonomic mouse just for us. It has a vertical design to put your hand and arm in a more natural position as well as to keep all of the 6 buttons within easy reach. You can also program each of the buttons to perform a specific task or set them as hotkeys for actions within programs. The laser sensor has 4 different DPI levels, which you can switch between with the push of a button and see which level you have selected with the handy LED indicator.

Pros:

  • Adjustable DPI
  • Programmable buttons

Cons:

  • DPI sensitivity not specified
Apple Magic Mouse
Apple

Connectivity: Bluetooth | Configuration: Ambidextrous | Buttons: 1 | Programmable: No | Max DPI: Not specified | Sensor: Optical | Compatibility: Mac, iOS

Mac users aren't left behind when it comes to ergonomic mice. The Apple Magic Mouse features a sleek, ambidextrous design that works well in either hand and a curved surface that fits the palm for more comfortable long-term use. The top of the mouse also supports touch-based inputs for scrolling, zoom, and swiping. The internal battery gives you up to 8 weeks of use on a full charge, so you can spend more time working and less time worrying about powering your new mouse. 

Pros:

  • Supports touch input
  • Great battery
  • Ambidextrous

Cons:

  • Can't use it while charging

What is the best ergonomic mouse?

The best ergonomic mouse is the Logitech MX Vertical due to its configuration, compatibility, and comfort.

How did we choose these ergonomic mice?

Aside from price, I looked at a variety of ergonomic mice at different price points and with different connectivity and compatibility options. I also looked for the best designs for long-term comfort for long days at the office.

Which ergonomic mouse is right for you?

After finalizing your budget, you'll want to find a mouse that is both comfortable to use and is going to work well with your setup and needs. A vertical mouse is easier to get used to since it still has a traditional mouse design (just tilted on its side), whereas a trackball mouse has a steeper learning curve.

What is the benefit of an ergonomic mouse?

While there aren't sufficient medical studies to suggest that using an ergonomically designed mouse prevents repetitive stress injuries and carpal tunnel, they can help ease pain associated with these conditions. Putting your hand, wrist, and forearm in a more natural position can help to reduce strain on muscles and tendons while also keeping buttons and scroll wheels close at hand for quick inputs.

Are vertical mice good for carpal tunnel?

By turning the traditional mouse design on its side, a vertical mouse can be a great way to reduce pain and tension caused by carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive stress injuries. Vertical mice have at least a 45-degree angle, which puts your arm and hand in a "handshake" position that reduces strain and tension, making long workdays and input-heavy projects more comfortable.

How do you choose an ergonomic mouse?

If possible, you should go to a brick-and-mortar store so you can get a feel for how an ergonomically designed mouse will fit into your hand. If you can't test out a mouse before you buy it, make sure to read both positive and negative reviews; negative reviews can help you identify common problems such as connectivity or battery life issues or any complications that can pop up after months of use. 

You'll also want to consider a mouse that lets you program both DPI sensitivity and button layouts for more efficient workflow and better accuracy if you deal with spreadsheets. If you want to eliminate all hand, wrist, and arm movements to alleviate severe discomfort, consider a stationary trackball model, which uses a rolling sphere to move the cursor rather than a mouse sensor. They do take some getting used to, so give yourself time to learn how your trackball mouse works before using it on important projects.

Are there alternative ergonomic mice worth considering?

There are plenty of options out there if you're looking for an ergonomically designed mouse for your home office or workspace. Here's a short list of other ergonomic mice I thought were great choices:

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