The best gaming keyboard can make the world of difference not just to your gaming experience, but your PC experience in general. Even the best mechanical keyboard might be peripheral to your PC setup, but when you’re mashing those QWER keys on League of Legends day-in, day-out, you’d be surprised how much difference a comfortable keyboard with useful features can make to your quality of life. And if you know what to look out for, getting your hands on a decent one doesn’t have to burn a hole in your wallet, either.
Whether it’s a full-size or compact board, membrane or mechanical switch, full RGB or just simple single-colour backlit, we’ve rigorously tested each and every gaming keyboard that has crossed our desks to help you make a decision. It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to spend all day gaming just to test them out…
We’ve picked the best Logitech, Corsair, and Razer keyboards, as well a host of options from established, and some up-and-coming, manufacturers, to help you choose the best gaming keyboard for your setup. The humble keyboard is an intrinsic part of the PC gaming experience, and it’s even now a part of the console experience too, with Microsoft enabling keyboard support for its Xbox One and upcoming Xbox series X consoles.
Here are the best gaming keyboards:
The best gaming keyboard is the Corsair K70 Rapidfire
Corsair’s K70 boards are the absolute best gaming keyboards we’ve ever used. Since they first launched back in 2013 we’ve been massive fans, and haven’t seen anything since which has changed our minds. Not even Corsair’s later boards, like the Strafe, or the overly-bling K95 Platinum, have been able to replicate the same mix of simple industrial design and sheer pleasure to use.
They have evolved over the years, but the classic design has remained more or less the same. We’ve picked the Rapidfire edition of the Corsair K70 as the top board because the light touch Cherry MX Speed keys mean seriously hardcore gamers might get a slight boost in actuation speed from their button clicks, and the rest of us don’t have to be so heavy-handed (and loud) when we’re gaming or typing. The Speed switches are almost the same as standard Red switches, just with a shallower actuation point.
What we like…
Cherry MX key switches
Read the PCGamesN Corsair K70 Rapidfire review for our full verdict and score.
The best keyboard for typing is the Topre Realforce R2.
The Topre Realforce is technically a membrane keyboard, so we can’t call this the ‘best mechanical keyboard’, but hear me out. Each individual switch consists of a rubber dome over a coiled spring that makes contact with a PCB. As a result, all of that squishiness from a membrane board is gone and is replaced by a feel like no other on the market.
If it’s the top tier you’re after, you can’t do better than the Topre switch: it’s smooth, quiet, and an all-round pleasure to type on. And with Fujitsu now donning the licensed distributor name badge in the US, this unique board is no longer tough to come by. But you will still be paying a whopping great sum to pick one up – and for that reason, this board is still enthusiasts-only.
What we like…
Unique, smooth switch
Read the PCGamesN Topre Realforce R2 review for our full verdict and score.
The best wireless gaming keyboard is the Logitech G915 Wireless.
Logitech don’t do flashy peripherals. Despite this prestigious brand’s reputation in the gaming sphere, its recent devices are just as much suited to a professional office environment as they are an esports arena. That’s why we love the Logitech G915 wireless. It’s sleek, low-profile, and perfectly suited to the gaming market rapidly expanding beyond the image of dingy basements and junk food.
With wireless connectivity across Lightspeed and Bluetooth, the G915 helps keep your desk neat and tidy, too. Although that does add some onto the price, which makes this stylish board deserving of the enthusiast label. Nevertheless, if you can swallow that, its low-profile GL switches are a dream to type on and a dab hand at gaming, too.
What we like…
Stunning, simple design
Read the PCGamesN Logitech G915 review for our full verdict and score.
The best keyboard and mouse combo is the Cooler Master MasterKeys Lite L.
The MasterKeys Lite L keyboard and mouse combo is the perfect peripheral purchase for a new gaming setup that needs a cheap and cheerful all in one mouse and keyboard package. It’s not quite mechanical – it’s ‘memchanical’ – but the keycaps themselves have that luxury mechanical feel, and the keyboard itself is sturdy and features RGB backlighting.
The mouse is no-nonsense, comfy, and well-designed, featuring a DPI cycle switch, Teflon feet, and RGB lighting just like the keyboard. A solid all-round purchase for a low cost.
What we like…
Full peripheral package
The best budget gaming keyboard is the Logitech G213.
Buying a really cheap keyboard will often leave you regretting it. A $20 board is likely to very quickly start to lose functionality, whether that’s a few sticky keys or a total meltdown. Maybe spending $50 on a gaming keyboard is still too much, but the Logitech G213 Prodigy is a great example of a simple design still offering a lot, making it the best cheap gaming keyboard you can get your hands on.
Because of the lower price you’re not getting mechanical switches or a rigid metal frame. Instead, you get Logitech’s own Mech-Dome switches and a resolutely plastic feel. Despite its all-plastic design, the G213 is still pretty robust. It also comes with a built-in wrist rest and discrete media controls too. The G213 Prodigy might be slightly above what you’d call a budget keyboard, but its smart design and solid build make it worth keeping an eye on.
What we like…
The best compact gaming keyboard is the Wooting One.
The Wooting One isn’t just the best small gaming keyboard, it’s very nearly the best gaming keyboard around. Those Flaretech optical switches allow you to turn what is normally a very digital controller into a completely analogue device. Who needs those fiddly Xbox controllers now? The keyboard and mouse combo has just got even better.
And so has the Wooting One since its launch. The small team is continually listening to user feedback and updating the device, making it more usable, adding in new features, and delivering wider compatibility. It’s a great little keyboard, with a genuine unique selling point, and solid software too. Made all the more remarkable because of its humble Kickstarter beginnings.
What we like…
Turns into an analogue device
Read the PCGamesN Wooting One review for our full verdict and score.
The most sturdy gaming keyboard is the Ducky One 2 Horizon
If you want a gaming keyboard that could survive a direct hit by a cruise missile then the Ducky One 2 is probably going to be your best bet for post-apocalyptic PC gaming. I expect you’ll find one dotted around the West Virginian landscape in Fallout 76.
It’s not the most aesthetically pleasing keyboard around, though it has its own simplistic beauty, and it’s not the most feature-packed either, but it is solid. It has double-shot PBT keycaps (with a few spare in the box) and a double layer PCB to survive the end of those hyper-aggressive Modern Warfare games. The no-nonsense styling also feels like the perfect antidote to the slew of over-designed, LED-ridden keyboards that every company seems intent on inflicting on the gaming public.
What we like…
Built like a tank
High-quality key caps
Replaceable USB-C cable
Read the PCGamesN Ducky One2 Horizon review for our full verdict and score.
The best analogue gaming keyboard is the Wooting Two.
The Wooting Two is unlike any other gaming keyboard currently available – except the Wooting One above, but that’s a given. Under its illuminated keycaps are some of the most advanced switches on the market. The Flaretech optical switches allow for complete analogue input and, once you’re used to them, they can make a huge difference to your mouse and keyboard PC gaming.
They give you full control in games where you’d otherwise be limited to a gamepad and thumbsticks. But even analogue functionality aside, there’s plenty included to put this board amongst the top gaming keyboards around, such as fantastic build quality, support, and software. And what makes this product all the more amazing is that it’s from a small team that has brought the Wooting Two all the way through from the humble Wooting One Kickstarter to what’s before you today.
What we like…
Tough and reliable
Read the PCGamesN Wooting Two review for our full verdict and score.
The best ergonomic keyboard is the Ergodox EZ.
Ergonomic keyboards deserve a little more love in the gaming world, and the ErgoDox EZ is a prime example of why. This split ergonomic design not only helps prevents nasty hand and wrist strain, but its beautifully crafted case, removable switch design, and 32 programmable layers all make it one of the best gaming boards in the biz.
This capable keyboard is one of the most versatile we’ve come across, and its utility is only limited by how deep you dive into its many features. Sure, it’s niche, and it’s not cheap either, but if you want something new and exciting that will certainly deliver when it comes to gaming performance, you needn’t look much further than the ErgoDoz EZ.
What we like…
Detachable USB-C cable
Read the PCGamesN ErgoDox EZ review for our full verdict and score.
What are mechanical keyboard switches?
Here’s our handy video ‘crash course’ guide on mechanical keyboard switches. PCGamesN also has a full guide on mechanical keyboard switches.
Gaming keyboard buying guide
It doesn’t matter whether you’re rocking the best controller, anyone playing FPS games on their PC is going to need the level of control you can only get with the classic ol’ WSAD/mouse combo. But what makes the ultimate in gaming keyboard supremacy? There are essentially two schools of thought on that front: mechanical keyboards or non-mechanical switch keyboards.
The first school of thought is obviously correct and the second woefully misinformed. From there it’s just a straight up fight over which different mech-switch type you prefer.
No matter your budget it’s always possible to find a quality keyboard that won’t let you down while you’re running and gunning around a game of Rainbow Six: Siege.
And you’ll find a lot to love even below our best gaming keyboard, the Corsair K70 Rapidfire. That doesn’t have to mean picking up a budget mechanical keyboard just for the sake of it, either. A well-built mechanical is undoubtedly the best gaming controller out there, but the Logitech G213 comes out top for budget gaming keyboards, and that’s because the quality of this membrane board just can’t be matched by anything else in its price range.
If you have the budget for something a little more mechanical, however, it’s money well spent in our eyes. The original Corsair K70 is one of our favourite all-round keyboards. It’s solid, well-designed, packed to the brim with features, and its Cherry-made switches are a tried and tested formula that is known globally for reliability.
There’s also the Wooting One for gamers who want some a little more compact. The tenkeyless design of this board cuts down on the unnecessary extras and instead focuses on a design that allows for maximum mouse movement and is easy to carry around. Not only small, however, the Wooting also offers analogue switches, allowing for a keyboard with unique functionality you won’t find elsewhere.
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