No PC Gaming set-up is complete without a gaming keyboard. The most fundamental of peripherals, the humble keyboard has evolved over the years from a simple, practical input device to a desk-defining mechanical masterpiece.
The best gaming keyboard for you is a very personal proposition, as needs vary – the type of games you play will help define which type of mechanical keyboard you might choose, and the aesthetic you’ve chosen for your desk area may influence whether you’re looking for the strobing illumination of an RGB keyboard, or a more minimalist compact 60% keyboard or TKL keyboard.
What is the best gaming keyboard for you?
Comfort and familiarity are important for gaming keyboards, as not only are you likely to spend a great deal of time using them, but many of the actions you’re performing are based on muscle memory, so changes to layout or design may require a period of adjustment. You’ll also feel the difference when you switch from one type of mechanical keyboard to another if the mechanical switches are different.
Gaming keyboard form factors
Full-size gaming keyboards are full-featured and usually stick to tried and tested layouts – ideal if you’re upgrading from a regular PC keyboard or also plan to use it for working, as you’ll find it familiar, and retain the handy numpad. Many full-size gaming keyboards also offer macro key options you may not find on smaller, more compact designs.
Tenkeyless gaming keyboards or TKL gaming keyboards for short, retain most of the functionality of a full-size keyboard. They allow for a familiar and comfortable experience for users who are migrating from a full-size, but don’t need the numpad, which is usually the only thing omitted from a TKL keyboard.
60% gaming keyboards offer a further reduction in size, offering a more minimalist approach that will look particularly tidy on a well-kept, uncluttered desk. Despite the smaller form-factor, compact gaming keyboards can provide the most customisation options, with some supporting custom keys, and even custom switches, that can be changed in their entirety if you’re so inclined. They also of course come in standard gaming black with the essential RGB.
Mechanical Gaming Keyboards
Most gaming keyboards now use mechanical switches, made popular by Cherry MX switches, which were the de facto mechanical keyboard switches for quite some time due to a patent that has now expired, allowing alternatives to enter the market.
The behaviour of mechanical keyboard switches can be grouped into 3 types -- linear, tactile or clicky. Within these three groups you’ll find different switches described using a colour designation. The best mechanical switch for you will depend on a few factors, as different switches feel and sound different to type on, from a heavy ‘chunk’ to a noisy ‘clack’ and everything in-between.
Linear switches feel the same throughout the click.
Most popular for: RTS and FPS Gaming
Some examples of Linear Switches are Cherry MX Black, Cherry MX Red, Razer Yellow, Kalih Black, Kalih Red and Logitech GX Red.
Tactile switches give you physical feedback at the point your click registers in the form of a small bump during the keypress.
Most popular for: MOBA, MMO & RTS Gaming – Tactile switches offer a strong balance between feedback and noise-level.
Some examples of Tactile Switches are Cherry MX Brown, Razer Orange, Logitech GX Brown and Kalih Brown.
Clicky switches give you audible feedback at the point your click registers in the form of an extra-click.
Most popular for: Satisfying high-speed typing & all-purpose gaming – but beware, clicky switches can make a lot of noise and may not be a good idea in shared spaces.
Some examples of Clicky Switches are Cherry MX Blue, Razer Green, Logitech GX Blue and Kalih Blue.
Wireless Gaming Keyboards
Traditionally, gaming has been the domain of wired keyboards, with wireless gaming keyboards more of a vanity than an upgrade, however, improvements to wireless technology have vastly reduced the difference in responsiveness, and wireless is a more viable option than ever. Wireless gaming keyboards offer the aesthetically pleasing absence of trailing wires, and paired with a good wireless gaming mouse, make for a very neat desk area indeed.
Best Gaming Keyboard Brands
Our range of gaming keyboards is always updating as new models and manufacturers enter the market, so the brands below aren’t all we offer, but they’re some of the most trusted. Click the link to see what’s available now.
View Razer Gaming Keyboards >
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