A good budget gaming mouse can be hard to find, and a wireless one even more so. But the Inland GM-98 may be just what you’re looking for, coming in at only $39.99 and offering options found in top-of-the-line mice.
The GM-98 is a wildly versatile mouse, usable both wirelessly, over a 2.4ghz band, and wired via a USB-C connection. Each of its 18 buttons are programmable, and it comes pre-loaded with 5 DPI settings, all adjustable, ranging from 1000 all the way up to 16000 DPI. And, like any good gaming mouse, it’s fully equipped with RGB functionality.
The wireless functionality does what it needs to and does it well. Even while gaming, I’ve seen no noticeable lagging or dropped inputs. The mouse lasts about 10 hours per charge with RGB on and around 70 if you turn the RGB off. The GM-98 can be recharged while in-use through its wired cable, so if it does run out of juice in the middle of a gaming session, you can plug it in and get right back to gaming… Just with a flashing mouse.
And therein lies my only real complaint with the wireless functionality of the mouse. When it dips below 30% charge, it will begin to pulse red. Initially, this is a great and welcome warning sign that your mouse is about to die. But plugging the mouse in will not stop the flashing until it has returned to 100% charge. Thankfully, with the decently long battery life, so as long as you’re charging in between uses, it shouldn’t be an issue.
The 2.4ghz dongle has its own issue, though. While there is a slot for it to fit in the mouse, it’s not deep enough to fully fit the dongle, so it sticks out about an eighth of an inch past the slide pads. Just enough to cause the sensor to miss movement when using the mouse in wired mode. Of course, the simple answer is to pull it out while in use, but if you don’t have the dongle plugged in at all times, I would worry about losing it.
The actual design of the mouse is fairly thick, clearly intended to be fully cradled by your hand, emphasizing a palm grip. Unfortunately for the left-handed users, it's explicitly a right-handed mouse, locking all side buttons to the mouse’s left side.
The surface of the mouse is textured, creating a gripping surface that may be a sticking point. While my coworker loves the way the textured grip feels, I initially found it off-putting. It's since grown on me, but it’s definitely a matter of personal taste. However, love it or leave it, it does its job well. I never feel like I’m losing my grip on the mouse, even when sweating into it for multiple hours at a time.
Much like the wireless functionality, the face of the GM-98 is perfectly functional, with emphasis on perfect. The two main buttons, DPI switches, and scroll wheel are all responsive and tactile, guiding fingers exactly where they need to be. But then we get to the side buttons, the core of the 18 button mouse, and I’m a bit more mixed.
While the layout of the side buttons makes it easy to know where your thumb is in relation to every other button, my first few days with the mouse were worrisome. The side buttons felt paradoxically both too squishy and too firm. Each of the twelve side buttons fought back when using depressed but offered no tactile feedback. However, just one week later, they have loosened up and feel decent to use. The stiffness is gone, and they now respond with a soft-but-audible click.
Setting up those side buttons, however, is smooth and easy from the get-go. The Inland App is where you’ll configure everything, from your DPI settings to the RGB profile. The app itself is relatively minimal, and it shines with its simplicity. There aren’t hidden settings or extra fine-tuning options to fiddle with, just the tools needed to make the mouse yours.
The DPI is set with easy-to-use sliders, with each of the five DPI modes getting unique sliders for easy visualization. The RGB settings are just as clear, allowing quick color changes that you can set and forget or easily change every time the mood strikes.
That same easy-to-use simplicity carries over into the keybinding and macro settings. Configuring the side keys to keyboard keys is fluid and simple, as easy as pressing a button. It also allows for multiple simultaneous button presses without setting up a macro. There are also preset bindings for common usages, such as pausing media and web navigation.
Macros are just as easy to set up. Simply hit record in the software and act out your macro. It will record everything from time between presses to length of the press, allowing for vast control over every action, both in-game and out.
For gaming, the GM-98 is a solid introductory wireless gaming mouse and one I would heartily recommend to anyone looking for something simple It might take a bit of time to break-in the side buttons, but once you’ve made it yours, it’s more than worth the $40 price tag thanks to solid wireless capabilities and an easy-to-use interface.
Unfortunately, no - Just a standard scroll wheel!
Great review, looks like a solid mouse at a great price!
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