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1000Hz Mouse Polling Lag Epidemic

JamesN
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(First post, yay)
I've noticed a common problem that seems to have existed for years, across a range of mice, mobos, games, etc. - 1000Hz polling seems to cause horrible input lag and stuttering.

 

For a while now, I've been trying to figure out what was causing random microstutters for me in Apex Legends. They often happened at the most inopportune times, trying to flick/turn to shoot an enemy for example. I initially had thought it might be related to my Unraid setup. After my most recent reboot, for whatever reason, it became _very_ noticeable. I could run forward/backward/strafe, etc with no issue, turning instantly causes stuttering. This led me to eventually find a thread where someone suggests turning the mouse polling down to 500. I try this, and viola! It's not twice as good... the issue is damn near gone, if not entirely gone.

Now that I had an idea of what alleviated the symptoms, I began searching the net for phrases like "1000Hz polling lag". There are dozens, if not hundreds of people with this issue! As I said before, it seems to transcend specific hardware, games, etc. The only common factor I've noticed is Windows. The best part is that most of the threads are filled with posts doubting the OP, telling them how a difference isn't detectable, that 1000Hz is obviously better, stop spreading misinformation, etc.

There are also tons of posts that seem to point to the issue, without knowing it's an issue. For example, the internet seems to be filled with people talking about how 500Hz "feels better", and how 1000Hz seems "noisy" or "glidy". I believe they are all referring to the same issue. Most all of the threads die because the OP switches to 500Hz and moves on.

Not sure what can/should be done about it. It feels like an issue that could be affecting tons of people without them even knowing. I play alot of FPSs, and I still doubted myself.
LTT forum itself has pages of these threads, here are some of the first from google:

 

https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/62314-getting-lag-with-my-gtx-660-for-no-reason/ - "its all good guys it turns out it was my mouse. for some reason having it at 1000hz polling rate was screwing it up when i switched it back to 125hz it was fine. thank you for your help"

https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/1030800-apex-legends-stuttering/ - "For anyone stumbling upon this post and still having the issue, I figured it out from an old Titanfall 2 thread somewhere else: try tuning your mouse polling rate from 1000hz down to 500hz. Apparently this games gets overloaded with the position updates or something."

https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/564241-my-higher-end-pc-cant-handle-1000hz-polling-rate/ - "So for some reason my PC cant handle 1000Hz for my mouse's Polling Rate and my friend who has almost the same exact build can. "

https://forum.corsair.com/forums/showthread.php?t=185309 - "I have a Corsair scimat pro rgb and when the polling rate is set to 1000hz i have huge lag spikes"

https://www.reddit.com/r/MouseReview/comments/6nniho/my_zowie_ec2a_mouse_laggingstuttering_on_1000hz/dkatefj/

https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/1009681-1000hz-vs-500hz-polling-rate/
https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/842243-weird-lag-when-moving-mouse-at-1000hz-polling-rate/

https://www.nvidia.com/en-us/geforce/forums/discover/276530/-solved-mouse-delay-lag/

https://www.overclock.net/forum/375-mice/1561589-1000hz-v-500hz-rawness-inaccuracy-some-interesting-data.html

If nothing else, maybe this can serve as beacon for those with the issue, among the many muddied threads.

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I encountered this in an MMO. I noticed after getting my gaming mouse that sometimes I had big fps drops. Took me a while to notice it only happened if I moved the mouse quickly. I had to go down to 250 before it wasn't noticeable any more. I suspect the high poll rate is flooding something which then chokes causing slowdowns.

TV Gaming system: Asus B560M-A, i7-11700k, Scythe Fuma 2, Corsair Vengeance Pro RGB 3200@21334 4x16GB, MSI 3070 Gaming Trio X, EVGA Supernova G2L 850W, Anidees Ai Crystal, Samsung 980 Pro 2TB, LG OLED55B9PLA 4k120 G-Sync Compatible
Streaming system: Asus X299 TUF mark 2, i9-7920X, Noctua D15, Corsair Vengeance LPX RGB 3000 8x8GB, Gigabyte 2070, Corsair HX1000i, GameMax Abyss, Samsung 970 Evo 500GB, Crucial BX500 1TB, BenQ XL2411 1080p144 + HP LP2475w 1200p60
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Former Main system (to be retired): Asus Maximus VIII Hero, i7-6700k, Noctua D14, G.Skill Ripjaws 4 3333@2133 4x4GB, GTX 1650, Corsair HX750i, In Win 303 NVIDIA, Samsung SM951 512GB, WD Blue 1TB, Acer RT280k 4k60 FreeSync [link]
Gaming laptop: Lenovo Legion, 5800H, DDR4 3200C22 2x8GB, RTX 3070, 512 GB SSD, 165 Hz IPS panel


 

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That is why some pros still use PS/2 mouses, because those don't require cpu polling them, they are the other way around. They send info to the cpu when they are moved, while USB needs to constantly ask "where are you".

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I've encountered this multiple times in the past.

 

Two years ago when I got my Corsair m65, I decided to set the polling rate to 1000hz because that should be better, right? Well immediately after that, I noticed that youtube videos would lag as soon as I started to move the mouse, Destiny 2 was unplayable, and a number of other games behaved oddly (Minecraft, PUBG, whatever else I was playing at the time). It took me three days to determine that my mouse wasn't defective and realize that it was the polling rate actually being detrimental to my pc (at the time a measly AMD FX6300 and a GTX 750). Lowered the polling rate to 500hz, and everything was fine afterwards. Stopped worrying about it.

 

Fast forward a year later, I decided to try 1000hz again. In the last year I had gotten a few upgrades (AMD Ryzen 7 1700 and a GTX 980) and decided I should give a higher polling rate another shot. Well, it seemed to work for a while, everything functioned well enough, Youtube no longer lagged and D2 was still playable, so problem solved right? Well over time, I would notice random slowdowns in almost every game, for no explainable reason. The problem stood out the most in Minecraft, where I would get occasional "extreme" mouse acceleration for no clear reason, as well as frame rate dips left and right. Eventually it was annoying me so much that I started to dig around to find out what could be causing the issue, and eventually stumbled upon some posts talking about polling rate. I then remembered I had upped the polling rate at some point, turned it down, and voila, spontaneous acceleration issues gone. All my games stopped dipping in frame rate, and life seemed better. But to this day, it still bugs me to think about it. Some of my friends keep their mice at 1000hz, and they never have a single mousing issue (and it shows, they're better at video games than I am!)

 

It would be nice if someone could do further investigating on the subject, maybe dig deeper to determine what the overall root cause of these seemingly random cases of polling rate issues is, and wether or not it's just incapable hardware or if Windows needs a serious overhaul (which I think it does for a number of reasons, but I'll leave that for another thread).

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@Origami Cactus - While it's true that the USB bus is not great for real time stuff... 1Khz is really really slow, and the amount of data exchanged is small. Also, while ps/2 is how you describe, it's worth noting that it couldn't achieve 1khz data rates. 16Mhz khz max clock, atleast 3 byte payload.... 500Hz would probably be on the high end of what's possible. [edit] Also the cpu still has to respond to the interrupts from the ps/2 device, so you would think the same issue could still exist (if this is infact an interrupt storm). [/edit]

My main concern is that it most people who have the issue probably don't even know it. They may even suspect other causes, since this particular issue doesn't seem to be well known. Most talks about ps/2 vs usb and polling rates are concerned with latency. This issue manifests as stuttering and actual drops in fps. 

@crypticSlave - I honestly think I've seen it before, and have done the exact same thing. I really wonder if similar experiences have led to the '500Hz feels better'.
 

Would be nice if mouse manufacturers or windows could detect and alert the user of the issue, so people don't go insane.

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Very interesting, maybe it's on specific systems too. Personally I use 1000Hz and I play a ton of FPS too and don't experience this issue.

The only polling rate issue I've encountered is in WoW that if I look around fast the camera tends to spin out. Many reported the same issue. Not system, mouse, addon issue. But seems possibly engine issue. So to not get those accelerated turns I need to use 125Hz then. 

But yeah, it's very odd, I've switched to 1000Hz for quite a while now, tried back and forth and do prefer it. Tested it, it does show more updates. 

Try different USB port, do a polling rate test. 

Ryzen 7 3800X | X570 Aorus Elite | G.Skill 16GB 3200MHz C16 | Radeon RX 5700 XT | Samsung 850 PRO 256GB |Mousepad: Skypad 2.0 XL | Mouse: Zowie S1-C |Keyboard: Corsair K63 MX red | OS: Windows 10

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  • 3 months later...

I was having a really bad mouse lag in Apex Legends and as others have mentioned, lowering my polling down to 500hz worked...but I was looking around my settings and I noticed a setting in the keyboard/mouse where they try to sync the mouse and keyboard lighting to the game, so I thought I might as well try it. Turned it off, increased my polling rate back to 1000hz and bam! No more lag! 

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This happens in minecraft java too which in its base form is already kind of a jerky mess on its own.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 1/21/2020 at 7:26 AM, Fainthearted said:

I was having a really bad mouse lag in Apex Legends and as others have mentioned, lowering my polling down to 500hz worked...but I was looking around my settings and I noticed a setting in the keyboard/mouse where they try to sync the mouse and keyboard lighting to the game, so I thought I might as well try it. Turned it off, increased my polling rate back to 1000hz and bam! No more lag! 

Hey mate are you able to elaborate on this specific setting in keyboard/mouse where they try to sync stuff. Where is this setting specifically? I do believe you might be onto something that could fix this for everyone.

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i running my logitech g403 at 1000hz, so far no weird symptom you described. also my previous mouse is deathadder 2013, but i run 500 because i think the mouse warms up at 1000. besides that, i didnt find any weird symptoms.

why everybody post the spec of their rig here? i dont! cuz its made of mashed potatoes!

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  • 4 weeks later...

By any chance, do any of you having this issue have a Logitech and Corsair peripheral?  Try closing iCUE, it seems to have horrific incompatibilities with Logitech's mouse drivers, for reasons I'm still trying to narrow down.

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This should get much more attention!

 

I tried all tricks in the book, every game setting, every driver configuration. I bought a new mouse. I tried another GPU. I even did a clean reinstall of Windows. Nothing. When playing with a controller, or strafing around with the keyboard, everything was smooth as butter. But as soon as I looked around with the mouse, I got those horrible micro-stutters.

 

About a year after giving up, I stumbled across somebody like you suggesting a lower polling rate. And BAM!, all was fine. Since then, I try to spread the info whereever possible.

 

Just like you said, too many people are left with the impression

a) their hardware is defective

b) they messed up some driver

c) they are just too sensitive

 

Modern Windows and 1000hz polling rate just don't work.

 

By the way, you can easily test your current polling rate on this website:
https://zowie.benq.com/ja/support/mouse-rate-checker.html

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Just to be clear, it is possible to have working 1000hz mice on modern Windows.  Here's my screenshot for example:

image.png.03163ccb8840471e6dc1d7e37d8b5f62.png

 

What's likely going on is some pretty common hardware/software incompatibilities, which aren't well known enough to get fixed or have workarounds.

 

Here's that same test with iCUE running:

 

image.png.392a7865df9131423e9540e50a025989.png

Edited by IntrospectiveWolf
To add comparison with iCUE running
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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

Same problem! Never had the 1000Hz-Polling-Problem (Logitech GHub, G502 Hero 16k) before. The problems started  when I was using a new monitor with HDR and Freesync2. Is it possible that these problems are connected in a weird way (i.e. drivers) to these features?

I do see the effect playing GTA5 and even Anno1800 ...

but I dont see it with Warzone and while working at the Desktop... so it cannot really be a hardware-problem… 

 

Im looking forward for a solution...

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  • 4 months later...
On 3/17/2020 at 7:35 PM, IntrospectiveWolf said:

RadioactiveLobster talks about having the same issue as me on this thread .  I've just opened a formal ticket with Corsair support.

I don't know why I never updated, but the issues ended up resolving themselves after an OS reinstall.  I've definitely had this issue on and off in the past, but at least for now it seems to have gone away.

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On 9/21/2020 at 2:29 PM, IntrospectiveWolf said:

I don't know why I never updated, but the issues ended up resolving themselves after an OS reinstall.  I've definitely had this issue on and off in the past, but at least for now it seems to have gone away.

Windows is indeed a mess. I like 1000hz for specific things in games, but 500hz pretty much seems to be superior in almost everything else. EVEN at 240hz, despite people wanting to tell me it stutters and is unusable. One of the best competitive players I know has been using 500hz since he switched, and won't ever go back. I didn't agree with him at first, but after giving it more time, it just seems better and it seems like the instability of holding 1000hz vs 500hz (in movement) is SO wildly different, even with stronger cpus, that 500hz is more stable despite 1000hz being more precise; and unstable imprecision is paradoxical.

btw iCUE is garbage if you use process hacker and lower its priority and kill several of its process threads permanently it stops hogging as much cpu time 

and don't use the benq site for polling rate. at least use the softpedia download one result below on the google search for mouseratechecker, so you can keep a better log.

image.png.c8b2beb927fc77fcdd8ecc2933ee1c0d.png
The speed you're moving the mouse and in what ways also matters. These are all at 1000dpi on an XM1. I have this browser open, & steam, & using that site and not a better program for consistency, I'm also watching a YT video (might explain the stutterish things and might be -8 +4 cuz of the buffering the cpu is doing idk) and closed icue. 

 

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  • 4 months later...

My polling rate stutter was made by ubisoft launcher for some reason. Clean boot solved that.

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