Wireless gaming mice have one key flaw over their wired counterparts: They need to be charged. That nagging chore is a minor, but noticeable, inconvenience. A few mice have mitigated the issue, and they charge a lot for the privilege. The Logitech G502 Lightspeed, when paired with the company’s wireless charging mousepad, can charge while it’s in use. Razer’s “Ultimate” and “Pro” series mice have wireless charging docks that create a frictionless charging workflow. These wireless mice cost more than $200. HP’s newest Omen-series gaming mouse, the Vector Wireless, doesn’t offer a workaround, but it has the next best thing: incredible battery life and quick-charging technology, so that you’ll rarely charge your mouse and, when you do, it’s only for a brief time. At only $100, the Vector Wireless should be the go-to option for gamers who can’t stand the thought of plugging in their mouse, but don’t want to break the bank in search of a fix.
Moves Fast, Charges Faster
Aside from its exciting power management, HP Omen Vector Wireless is a fairly conventional six-button, right-handed mouse. Measuring 1.56 by 4.91 by 2.94 inches (HDW) and weighing 3.74 ounces, the HP Omen Vector Wireless feels tall and long in your hand, giving it plenty of space to create an ergonomically supportive design. The hump on the mouse’s left side guides your thumb to rest on the slight thumb wing that flares out of its base. Its uniformly black plastic shell, with only two small RGB elements—the scroll wheel and a small Omen logo in the palm looks comparatively plain for a gaming mouse. You might even call it “unassuming.”
The Vector wireless has six customizable buttons, set in the usual configuration. There are four buttons on top: Left click, right click, center button in the scroll wheel, and DPI switching button in the central column. On the side, you have forward and back side buttons. You’ll also find a power switch on the underside of the mouse, and an always-useful storage slot for the mouse’s wireless dongle. It lacks Bluetooth support, however. The $169 Razer Basilisk Ultimate, PCMag’s Editors’ Choice for wireless gaming mice, boasts nine customizable buttons.
While simple, the Omen Wireless is a premium product, which you can tell from looking at its Pixart PAW3335 sensor. It tracks up to 16,000 DPI, and is accurate at up to 400 inches per second. Those aren’t quite best-in-class specs, but they’re close enough that most gamers will be able to calibrate the mouse to handle their fastest possible play.
And there’s the battery life. According to HP, the Vector Wireless should get an incredible 180 hours of playtime from a single charge with its RGB lighting off, and 80 hours with the lighting elements on. Even the lower, RGB-on number is an incredibly long time for a wireless gaming mouse, especially one with a rechargeable battery. In everyday testing, it took more than two weeks to whittle down the battery from 50 percent down to 20 percent, even with RGB brightness at 100 percent and “power-saving” mode turned off. Those options, accessible through the Omen Command Center configuration app, can both help you get more juice out of each charge.
Then there’s the charging. HP contends that, at a reported 90 minutes to a full charge, the Vector Wireless is “the world’s fastest USB-C charging mouse.” While I’m not prepared to confirm that assertion, I can tell you it charges incredibly fast. The Vector Wireless charged more than 60 percent of its battery in less than an hour, even as I continued to use it. That’s an impressive recovery time.
On the wireless front, the Vector Wireless connects wireless to your PC through 2.4GHz wireless via a USB dongle. The connection, I found, was stable and did not impose any noticeable lag. Of course, you can also plug in the mouse using its USB charging cable to establish a wired connection.
Charging Up at the Command Center
The Vector Wireless features support for the HP’s Omen Command Center gaming gear configuration app. Through Command Center, you can remap buttons, create macros, change DPI presets, and adjust other power and performance settings. The Command Center menus for the Vector Wireless are clear and make it easy to find and adjust all of its features. Some of those settings, like the aforementioned “power-saving” battery mode and a higher-than-average number of DPI presets (eight, versus five found on most mice) are both useful and impressive.
As I’ve discussed in past reviews, Omen Command Center is a well-made app, but includes some questionable features aimed at gaining access to users’ personal information. In addition to the mouse configuration menu, Command Center offers a “rewards” section, that gives you access to various sweepstakes when you complete in-game achievements. For example, you can enter for a chance to win a $25 Dominos gift card after playing Valorant for 30 minutes.
To gain access to this section of the app, you must let HP access monitor your PC usage and your location, plus broader data collection purposes related to the app. Simply put, this is a ploy to gain access to more personal information, and I don’t think it should be included as part of the app. That said, the questionable features are entirely optional; you can configure the mouse completely without giving the app those permissions.
Less Charging, More Playing
The Vector Wireless is a wedge-issue gaming mouse. Its fundamentals are well designed, but its features are basic. Except when it comes to its battery and charging capabilities, which are among the best I’ve seen. Though power is a smaller, more passive feature, the Vector Wireless’ performance is incredibly impressive.
Given how many wireless gaming mice are out there, having even one incredible feature is enough to make a strong impression, and an edge over other conventional wireless gaming mice like the Cooler Master’s MM831 or HyperX Pulsefire Dart. The Vector Wireless doesn’t have the superior feature set of our Editor’s Choice gaming mouse, the Razer Basilisk Ultimate (a mouse with more features, additional inputs, and an overall better design), but it is the best mouse for power-conscious players south of $200. That may not be the sexiest recommendation, but it’s nothing to sneeze at.
HP Omen Vector Wireless Gaming Mouse Specs
|Number of Buttons||6|
|Interface||USB Wired, RF Wireless|
|Sensor Maker and Model||PixArt PAW3335|
|Sensor Maximum Resolution||16000 dpi|
|Power Source||Internal Battery, Wired USB|
|Warranty (Parts and Labor)||1 year|