Computer gaming might not be a brand new thing but given the development and its popularity, we can tell that this is one thing that is here to stay.
A proper gaming set up calls for a good quality keyboard. As it is in the name itself, Keyboards play a ‘key’ role in the performance of a gamer.
Choose the right one and you can ace any game you like, but one wrong choice can make a game feel like you are biting into bricks.
Reasons why you should get a gaming keyboard
Many games tend to span over a long period of time, moreover professional gamers and gaming enthusiasts play for hours together hence the keyboard has to be comfortable and at ease.
Gaming keyboards are designed to fit your hands to ensure prevention of tension in muscles and also the keys are large and well spaced to give you good access.
In most of the games, the time between a loss and a win is a matter of a second. The mechanical keys on the gaming board gives a smoother typing experience and hence makes typing quick, which directly affects the reflex actions taken thereby saving crucial time.
Gaming keyboards provide you with the option of assigning important functions and moves to the macros that can give you an edge over the other gamers out there.
Other than that, the macro keys can be assigned to functions differently in different games that you play, making macros one of the most advantageous features of a gaming keyboard.
Many gaming keyboards come with custom control pads (mostly on the left hand side) that allow the user to access the WASD keys easily thereby widening the scope for the character in the game to perform better by responding faster.
A lot of gaming boards come with backlights that don’t just make the arena look better but they also give a better gaming experience. When the gamer wants to get a life like feel of the game he can dim the surrounding to be absorbed by the gaming screen, the lights on the keyboard ensures that the keys are visible in the dark as well.
Now that you are convinced that you need a gaming keyboard to ensure that your gaming skills get the best of what they deserve, here are some of the points that you need to consider before picking the keyboard itself:
Know the type of keyboard
There are 3 different types of keyboards that cater to different needs. Although they don’t have varied differences, the right keyboard does provide some level of convenience to the user.
All purpose keyboardsMMO keyboardTenkeyless models
These keyboards are very basic and ideal for First person shooter (FPS), Real time strategy (RTS), Multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA). These keyboards may or may not come with some extra keys over and above the office keyboards. But they mostly come with membrane switches which questions the keyboard’s accuracy.
(Massively multiplayer online games )Gamers who are looking to handle every little detail as per their liking should opt for MMO keyboard as it comes with macro keys that can range anywhere between 6-18 keys. Such provision comes with its own hefty price tag, moreover the size of the keyboards are also often large in size.
These keyboards come without the numeric pad that makes it compact, light weight and travel friendly. These keyboards are ideal for those who have a space crunch and gamers who participate in tournaments.
Membrane keys Vs Mechanical keys
Among the most widely used keyboards are membrane keyboards. As the name suggests, these keyboards have three layered rubber membrane that has the buttons pre determined and marked. Under the membrane lies a circuit board. So when you press a key, the membrane touches the resistive pad which establishes the key that you have typed.
Mechanical keys have spring
Contrary to the working of the membrane keys, a mechanical keyboard has individual switch for each key. Only when you press the key far enough, it recognizes the keystroke.
A mechanical keyboard gives clear feedback as when you press the switch and the key springs back. Here even when the keys are pressed near simultaneously, they are recorded in the correct order.
Advantages and disadvantages of mechanical keyboard
- Great feedback
- Keys last longer
- Easily replaceable keys
RGB Lighting on Keyboards
As mentioned earlier, illumination is not the deal breaker when choosing a gaming keyboard but that being said, they do add to the overall appearance of your gaming arena. Picking the colour that syncs in with the rest of the illuminated gadgets makes the whole rig look great!
But depending upon your own taste you can get an illuminated or non illuminated gaming keyboard.
Now that we have understood the nuances of a gaming keyboard, here are some of the best picks for you:
1. Redgear Blaze 3 colour backlit gaming keyboard
This is one of the best selling and budget friendly gaming keyboard.
- Full aluminium body & windows key lock
- The top sheet of the keyboard is built with aluminum making it sturdy and underneath it has top quality plastic material.
- It looks like a generic mechanical keyboard with LEDs and gaming accents
- It has the floating styled key caps to give it the real mechanical feel.
- It comes with a sturdy USB 2.0 chord that gives zero latency
- The keyboard has 2 raisers and rubber feet to give comfort and keep the board in its place.
- The keyboard tries to mimic the mechanical board but technically it does use membrane technology.
- The product comes with a warrantee of 1 year.
- Economical and functional
- It comes with a windows key lock option for hindrance free gaming
- It has 19 anti ghost key for proper registration of the keystrokes
- The key technology used is membrane.
2. Night Hawk Nk101 FPS Gaming Keyboard
3 Color Changeable LED & 19 Anti-Ghosting Keys (Metallic Series) This is the best gaming keyboard that you can purchase with a small budget.
- The entire unit is made up of metal with a brushed metallic finish.
- The keyboard comes with RBG backlighting that can be customized to your liking.
- The key caps are suspended that gives great key travel. Adding up to the mechanical feel of the keyboard.
- The USB cable is strong, comes with its own lid and is long enough to suffice every ones needs.
- It has two flaps and rubber feet to adjust the height and prevent slipping.
- The keyboard only feels like typing on a mechanical board but uses membrane technology.
- The company gives a warrantee of 1 year.
- Good performance
- Looks very attractive and has a strong exterior
- It has 19 anti ghosting keys for better control.
- Uses membrane technology
- Heavy due to the metal weight therefore not very handy.
3. Logitech Prodigy G213 Gaming Keyboard
This product provides the customer value for money being paid.
- It looks like a casual gaming style keyboard but gives professional performance.
- It has a fairly simple design with LED backlighting.
- The exterior is built using high quality plastic that has a matte black finish.
- It has flaps and rubber base that runs along the length of the keyboard that keeps it in place even when the surface is uneven.
- The keyboard has included software that controls the macro keys.
- It is not a mechanical keyboard; it only apes the mechanical technology.
- The keyboard has dedicated media controls for easier and faster management.
- The company provides with a warrantee of 2 years.
- It offers a response time that is 4 times more than any average keyboard
- It has the options of macros
- It comes with a palm rest on the front.
- The keyboard is spill resistant
- It uses membrane technology.
4. Razer Cynosa Chroma Membrane Gaming Keyboard
This is also one of the few keyboards in the market that helps you reap every penny that you invest.
- The keyboard looks like a basic computer keyboard with 104 keys.
- The exterior is made entirely out of plastic but still is on the heavier side.
- The board comes in a black matte finish with RBG illuminated keys and logo.
- The technology used in the keyboard is membrane but doesn’t use the regular rubber membrane, but uses soft cushion gaming keys that add a nice snappiness at the click.
- It has great looking RBG and not just backlighting.
- The keyboard comes with a standard USB cable.
- It has 10 key anti ghosting
- The board is spill resistant
- Compared to all the gaming keyboards, this one is very quite.
Best mechanical keyboards
5. Logitech G413 Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard with USB Pass-Through
This the most economical mechanical keyboard out in the market. It provides with all the basic features that a gamer needs but at this price point some of the extra add ons are missing.
- The keyboard box comes with its USB cable, additional key caps and its removal tool.
- Overall the build quality of the keyboard is great with the aluminium–magnesium alloy top cases.
- The keyboard uses mechanical technology that gives its better speed and precision.
- The keyboard is by default illuminated by red lighting which gives it a premium look.
- The keyboard has rubberised bottom and flaps for comfort and to ensure that it does not move from its place.
- The keyboard comes with media control with the use to function keys.
- The company gives a warrantee of 2 years.
- The board comes with 12 extra key caps
- It has 26 key rollover and anti ghosting that gives better control and dependency
- The keys require very little force to activate and register the keys
- The keyboard has customizable macros which can be used with function keys.
- It needs a wrist rest for better comfort in long use sessions.
- Non customizable macros which are provided by its counterparts
6. HyperX Alloy Elite Mechanical Gaming Keyboard (HX-KB2RD1-US/R1)
The keyboard itself looks very clean and straightforward and is packed with some great features.
- The keyboard has a very good build quality with solid steel frame and has a standard layout.
- On the right it has buttons for brightness, profile switching and windows lock button, and on the right you have dedicated multimedia control.
- The keyboard like all standard ones has a flap and rubber pads.
- The keys here are raised and give an acrylic shell more vibrancy with the RGB lighting.
- The keys are mechanical and have cherry blue switches that are tactile and responsive.
- The company gives a warrantee of 2 years.
- The keyboard has key roll over and anti ghosting features for accurate inputs during gaming.
- The keyboard comes with an attachable wrist rest and extra titanium coloured key caps and key cap puller.
- The keyboard has a USB pass through on the back
- Slightly on the expensive side
- Limited layering options in RGB (that is 2 layers)
7. HyperX Alloy FPS Pro Tenkeyless Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Cherry MX Red, Red LED (HX-KB4RD1-US/R1) This keyboard has different key switch for many type of gamer that supports your abilities in gaming to get you on the map.
- This is a solid and compact gaming keyboard with 87 keys.
- The exterior of the keyboard is made with thin steel frame with a black matte finish.
- It comes with a detachable chord that is braided.
- The technology used is mechanical making it great for both gaming and regular use.
- The board comes with 6 different lighting modes and can also be customized.
- It has standard rubber feet and flap for height adjustment and grip.
- The keys come with the options to choose between Cherry MX blue, red and brown switches.
- The company gives 2 years of warrantee on the product.
- Its light weight and compact making it travel friendly
- It has full key rollover and anti ghosting feature
- Makes less noise
Professional gamers have various needs that the above mentioned keyboards may not be able to fulfil. So here are some of the best keyboards for the professional and aiming to be professional players.
Best Keyboard for Professional Gaming
8. Razer BlackWidow Chroma V2 RZ03-02030100-R3M1 Gaming Keyboard
Being in the tech field and for a tech savvy person Razer is no new name. This is the new gaming keyboard introduced by Razer with some very impressive features like:
- You get three switches to pick from; they are the classic green, razer orange and yellow switch. Here we have the green switches (similar to Cherry blues) which are palpable.
- The switches use mechanical technology which is a no bargain for a pro gamer.
- The keyboard is made out of plastic and has a matte black finish to it.
- The keyboard comes with a braided USB cable to connect it to the PC
- The side of the keyboard has a USB jack and a 3.5mm headphone jack
- The bright and saturated RGB lights add to its oomph.
- It has 8 different lighting modes to suit your mood.
- It has flaps and rubber feet at the back to hold it in place and give it height.
- The company gives a warrantee of 2 years.
- It comes with an attachable wrist rest that is extremely soft and cushioned
- The keyboard has 5 (on the fly recording) macros that can be customized
- SDK developer app can be used to download pre-made effects and apps for the keyboard
- The keys give accurate speed and response
- The keyboard has built in anti-ghosting feature and 10 key roll over
- The plastic body takes away from its premium looks.
9. Corsair Rapidfire Cherry CH-9101014-NA Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Rapidfire by Corsair is one of the premium class gaming keyboards that sports the eminent Cherry MX Speed switch that is up to 40% faster than its previous versions. Here are the rest of its features:
- The keyboard has a linear switch that adds up to a smooth travel from top to bottom, with zero tactile bump and noise.
- The keyboard has a black brushed aluminium finish
- The package contains 10 extra textured key caps and key cap puller for WASD.
- The keyboard has a USB pass through for you to connect other devices like your mouse to the keyboard and not all the way up to the PC thereby cutting on the clutter at the back.
- It also has 4 position polling rate switches which is helpful for BIOS and UEFI compatibility.
- On the bottom, unlike the standard keyboards this has 4 height adjustment flaps.
- The top right corner of the keyboard has a dedicated media controls like lighting, windows lock button.
- Every little spec of the keyboard has RBG lighting for a fine look.
- The keyboard can be controlled and customized using the Corsair software which is user friendly.
- The keyboard has an attachable soft finish wrist rest
- Easy maintenance and cleaning
- The clear switch housing lets the RGB lighting to glow brilliantly
- The performance and built quality is top-notch with minimum registered complaints.
10. HyperX HX-KB2BL2-US/R1 Alloy Elite Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
(RGB LED Cherry MX Blue) This is one of the first grade gaming keyboards in the market that caters to all the needs of a professional gamer. Here are the features that put it on the forefront.
- The keyboard frame is made out of good quality steel and is finished off with a black matte finish.
- The pack contains additional titanium coloured textured keycaps and keycap removal tools.
- The top right of the keyboard has dedicated media controls.
- You also get quick access to control brightness, light effects and gaming modes.
- It has 6 different RGB lighting effects to suits your needs.
- It has pass through USB2.0 connection for you to conveniently connect any device.
- The switches used are the renowned Cherry MX mechanical key switches for the best gaming results and experience.
- The company gives a warrantee of 2 years.
- You get on board memory for keyboard customization and can save up to 3 profiles
- Has macro buttons for you to build and set up as per your needs.
- Extremely durable
- It has N key roll over functionality and 100% anti ghosting