- Adjustable tracking speed beyond what macOS offers
- Good price
- Ability to use 2.4 GHz wireless connection
- Software utility not available until June
The M3 Wireless Mouse isn’t as stylish as the Magic Mouse, but it’s more useful. You can find other mice that offer more features for a bit more money, but the M3 is a pretty good deal overall.
Keychron has made a name for itself making high-quality mechanical keyboards, but has recently expanded into other accessories, including the M1 wired mouse. Keychron now has the new M3 Wireless Mouse, a welcome addition to the company’s lineup and a high-performance alternative to Apple’s Magic Mouse.
The M3 was made for PC gaming, but it can be used on a Mac without any major operational issues. Compared to the Magic Mouse, the M3 has a utilitarian design in white or black that is very similar to many other third party computer mice. I find the M3’s taller profile to be more comfortable in my hand than the Magic Mouse, but if you prefer the design aesthetic of the Magic Mouse, you probably won’t like the M3.
Since it’s a gaming mouse, the additional RGB lighting adds flair by illuminating the cutouts around the M3’s edges and the scroll wheel. Like other gaming mice from Razer and Logitech, it can change colors during use or switch between different lighting modes with a button below the scroll wheel. It’s an aesthetic that suits the PC gaming community, but if you have an M1 iMac in red, green, or blue, the M3’s light effect is a welcome addition.
But don’t judge a mouse just by its looks. The M3’s key feature is the PAW3395DM optical sensor, which supports a huge 26,000dpi resolution, which is a huge improvement over the 1300dpi Magic Mouse.
For a mouse, optical resolution is the number of pixels that move across the screen, and the higher the resolution, the more sensitive the mouse is to hand movement. Of course, not everyone prefers an ultra-sensitive mouse. But there are times when a very sensitive mouse comes in handy, namely in games with face recognition. On a more practical level, this can help users who have physical issues with mouse control, or if you’re doing ultra-fine editing on images, video, or audio.
The M3 also has ultra-fast tracking at 650 inches per second. To illustrate what accelerated tracking is like, I need about 4 inches / 2.5 centimeters to move the macOS pointer from one edge of a 15-inch MacBook Pro screen to the opposite edge with the Magic Mouse and its tracking set to the fastest level. in the mouse system settings. With the same system settings and the M3 mouse set to the fastest tracking, it only takes 0.25 inches/0.64 centimeters for the same movement.
If that sounds too fast for you, the M3’s tracking speed is controlled via the button under the mouse. You can set it to be as fast as Magic Mouse or even slower.
The M3 also has an adjustable polling rate, another feature that gamers love and non-gamers don’t care about. The polling rate describes the frequency with which the mouse tells the computer its location, and gamers demand a high polling rate. The M3 can be tuned to 125Hz, 500Hz and 1000Hz by simply pressing the button under the mouse. (For reference, the Magic Mouse has a advertised fixed polling rate of 90Hz.) However, if the mouse is connected via Bluetooth, it can only use 125Hz.
If you really need a faster polling speed, the M3 also supports 2.4GHz wireless frequency which enables faster polling. Keychron includes 2.4GHz USB-C and USB-A receivers that can connect to your Mac.
The M3 has a built-in battery rated for 70 hours. It charges through the USB-C slot on the top end of the mouse, and Keychron includes a USB-C cable, a USB-C to USB-A adapter, and a USB-C to USB-A adapter. You can use the M3 as a wired mouse while it’s charging, and you can even use higher polling rates.
The mouse has left and right buttons, and the scroll wheel/button has a notched rotation wheel, but there’s no option to switch to a non-notched wheel. There are also forward and back buttons on the left side of the mouse that work when using a browser.
Keychron currently has a Windows utility available for customizing the M3’s buttons, setting lighting effects, implementing macros, and setting up M3 tracking and polling. The company says the Mac version will be available in June.
The M3 Wireless Mouse is much more affordable than Apple’s Magic Mouse and has more to offer: a wider range of tracking speeds; wireless Bluetooth or 2.4 GHz; a wired connection where you can still use a mouse; and comfortable fit. It’s not as stylish as the Magic Mouse, but more useful. You can find other mice that offer more features for a bit more money, but the M3 is a pretty good deal overall.