I am new Mac user and I don't really like the Magic Mouse so I reverted to a good old 3 button mouse with a scroll wheel.

When I turn the wheel slowly, it only scrolls pixel per pixel (or per two pixels) If I turn the wheel more quickly, it scrolls nearly line by line. There is a kind of scroll wheel acceleration where the amount scrolled for each wheel step depends on the rotation speed of the wheel.

This behavior is not present in Windows where you always scroll a few lines per wheel step.

Is there a way to disable this behaviour or to tweak it in Mac OS X Lion?

  • Does the mouse's vendor have drivers/software for OS X? For example, Microsoft's Intellipoint mice come with a System Preferences pane that allows you to tweak scrolling speed: i.imgur.com/GJ4SM.png – Jari Keinänen Aug 26 '11 at 10:50
  • What brand is it? – daviesgeek Aug 26 '11 at 16:29
  • It is a generic Dell mouse, but every mouse I have tested have the same slow scrolling acceleration – thieum Aug 29 '11 at 10:54
  • If Chrome is your main browser you can use this extension to add this feature to chrome. However, with this extension enabled you should only use the mouse to scroll in lion. No magic mouse or magic trackpad. – gentmatt Mar 22 '12 at 17:15
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    This behavior is really annoying. Seems like Apple wants to discourage people to use mice instead of his trackpad... – Pierre de LESPINAY Mar 6 '13 at 11:00

11 Answers 11


Hope you're still reading - I highly recommend one of the third party mouse managers like SteerMouse or USB Overdrive or ControllerMate.

I found the arch of the Magic Mouse just too low and went back to the old reliable Logitech MX Revolution, but I will never install Logitech software again without an excellent reason. These packages will let you configure all of the buttons and SteerMouse (haven't verified for the other two) will definitely let you specify linear or accelerated wheel scrolling with variable degree of acceleration.

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    I'm also new to MacOS. I totally agree we should never install contructor drivers for this kind of device. But I'm used to opensource softwares. Is there really people buying applications for tunning their mice (in Apple world) ? – Pierre de LESPINAY Mar 6 '13 at 10:56
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    I bought SteerMouse. As a developer I am happy to support another developer who makes my experience better. Open Source is a fine idea, but sometimes you just need one guy with a vision. – Adam Eberbach Mar 6 '13 at 11:39
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    I undestand your opinion. I personnaly prefer freely contribute to projets than giving money. This is the original idea of opensource. – Pierre de LESPINAY Mar 6 '13 at 14:47
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    is there any open source program? because I absolutely refuse to pay money just to slow down scrolling in finder. – Wyatt Ward Apr 22 '15 at 21:20
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    Shrug. You see some value in it but won't pay for it? Use inbuilt preferences or install the vendor's drivers - you paid for those with the hardware. – Adam Eberbach Apr 22 '15 at 21:37

After many years of frustration with macOS & wheel mice, I've developed Smooze. Disabling the scroll acceleration and setting the number of lines you want to move on each tick are free features.

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Smooze website

  • Hi bro, what are the exact settings needed to make scrolling on Chrome identical to that of Windows? Would be great if there's a checkbox where the user can just tick to make it work like as per Windows... – Pacerier Aug 17 '17 at 20:23
  • Adding presets is high on my to do list. Regarding the Windows Chrome settings, I never tried to compare the two.. Windows 10 will defiantly be one of the presets, though. – Segev Aug 17 '17 at 20:47
  • Smooze breaks scrolling in XQuartz :( – Aido Jun 3 '19 at 22:10

USB Overdrive changes the default scrolling behavior so that single ticks of a scroll wheel scroll in larger increments.

It also has an option to for example make a single tick always scroll a single line. It also supports changing the tracking (but not scrolling) acceleration, like SmoothMouse or MouseAcceleration.prefPane.

  • 4
    This works well, but it is "beg-ware" on bootup and whenever entering the dialog above, and costs $20 to register. – kmarsh Feb 7 '14 at 15:03
  • This does not work for the trackpad. – gklka Oct 22 '16 at 13:52
  • @kmarsh Yeah otherwise known as shareware? Do you not understand how that works? – tubedogg Feb 2 at 6:57
  • Thank you for your concern @tubedogg, I am familiar with shareware, and other dying paradigms. – kmarsh Feb 10 at 3:19
  • Clearly familiar enough to feel entitled to have the "beg" screen go away without actually purchasing the software instead of using it for free forever. – tubedogg Feb 18 at 4:27

If you have logitech mouse then you can try installing Logitech Control Center for Macintosh® OS X http://www.logitech.com/en-us/support/3129?section=downloads&bit=&osid=35

  • Hi Nono, welcome to AskDifferent, I find if a question is worth answering it is worth upvoting. I would also take time to read the help pages. – Deesbek Dec 19 '13 at 20:36
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    @Deesbek then it should be automatic... – traveh Dec 14 '16 at 14:32

The application found here fixes the issue:



There is now a free program called DiscreteScroll - https://apple.stackexchange.com/a/262329/221420 - it will make it so that one mouse wheel tick scrolls 3 lines.

  • This answer should have more upvotes! – Himanshu P Apr 27 at 9:54

https://mousefix.org/ -- Try this, I was facing the same issue. Sometimes wanted to use trackpad and a normal mouse together. It has a setting "Invert Direction" too. I am sure you will not go anywhere else after using this.

I am on mac Mojave 10.14.6. Its FREE!

  • As a long time Linux user, this has made my transition a lot easier. – WhiteHotLoveTiger Feb 27 at 3:08

You can use this the Mouse acceleration Prefpane, download it free here:


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    That let you tweak the mouse cursor acceleration, not the the acceleration of the scroll wheel – Alex Jasmin Nov 27 '13 at 1:27

SmoothMouse donationware works great for me on OS X El Capitan 10.11.3

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    At least try to bother to read the title, this app only works for cursor acceleration, and not WHEEL SCROLLING acceleration... – Facundo Pedrazzini Jul 12 '16 at 19:30
  • Thanks for pulling me up on this (if a little aggressively) @Facundo. I installed this and was convinced it had fixed the scroll wheel, but have since discovered that it must have been something else, as I have lost the effect. – Chris Jul 16 '16 at 14:07
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    Sorry for the aggressively part @Chris – Facundo Pedrazzini Aug 18 '16 at 18:18
  • Not at all thanks @FacundoPedrazzini and thanks for correcting my answer. – Chris Aug 21 '16 at 14:51
  • SmoothMouse does not work in OS X Sierra anymore, but you can control mouse pointer acceleration and scroll wheel acceleration via the command line with defaults write .GlobalPreferences com.apple.[mouse|scrollwheel].scaling: dolphm.com/… – Dolph Oct 6 '16 at 14:31

System Preferences---Mouse

There you can speed up the scrolling speed.

Tracking Speed relates to how fast the mouse moves across the screen.

Good Luck!

  • You could enlighten Robert, and the rest of us… – jaberg Mar 22 '12 at 17:15
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    I'll do it. Acceleration is, in this context, when the mouse cursor (or page, when scrolling) moves farther when you move your finger faster. For instance, as @thieum said in the original question, "When I turn the wheel slowly, it only scrolls pixel per pixel (or per two pixels) If I turn the wheel more quickly, it scrolls nearly line by line. There is a kind of scroll wheel acceleration where the amount scrolled for each wheel step depends on the rotation speed of the wheel." – Tuesday Mar 23 '12 at 1:39

SmoothScroll for Mac fixes this problem (you can disable acceleration or give your own parameters). Even better it makes scrolling animated between wheel ticks so you get a smooth experience.

By paying for it you ensure that there's somebody out there who cares about the mouse scrolling experience on Macs.

(disclaimer: I am the developer)

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