Looking for the best mechanical keyboard out in the market? Whether you’re a gamer, a programmer, or spend all day working, the best mechanical keyboard is imperative for the ultimate typing experience. We scoured the market for the top mechanical keyboards that are perfect for every need and every budget.
If you’re interested in learning about the pros and cons of mechanical keyboards, we’ll point you in the right direction.
What is a Mechanical Keyboard?
You might have already encountered a mechanical keyboard and just didn’t know it. Mechanical keyboards are the ones that generally come to mind when thinking of keyboards. At a glance, they don’t look so different from membrane-based or dome-switch keyboards. However, mechanical keyboards are usually bulkier in size and louder in sound when typing.
At the heart of any mechanical keyboard are the switches under each keycap. These switches are what make mechanical keyboards, well, mechanical. They may be bigger and louder, but mechanical switches have a longer lifespan than regular membrane keyboards.
Notable for their distinct key-feel, mechanical keyboards offer more precision, and consistencies in keystrokes. Thus, this makes them perfect for blind typing. Whether you’re a fast-paced gamer or a nimble typist, using the best mechanical keyboard will ultimately provide a better feel when typing.
Now, the next question on your mind is probably: why use a mechanical keyboard? What are the benefits of a mechanical keyboard? Here are a few advantages and disadvantages for you to ponder over when deciding on purchasing a mechanical keyboard.
Advantages of a Mechanical Keyboard
- Durability — As mentioned above, mechanical keyboards last longer than regular keyboards. Majority of mechanical keyboards boast 70 million keystrokes, with some even up to 100 million key presses. This is thanks to the switch methods used in mechanical keyboards. The switches make the key caps more resilient against pressure. You can expect that there won’t be any clanging of keycaps or them getting stuck, even after years of usage.
- Customization — There are endless options when it comes to customizing a mechanical keyboard. From custom keycaps and USB cables to switch modifications, you can fully customize the look and feel of mechanical keyboards.
- Faster for Gaming and Typing — Mechanical keyboards are generally more responsive compared to ordinary keyboards. Thus, this makes them more efficient when working or gaming. This is due to the way mechanical keyboards register an input midway through a switch press. Moreover, the sounds that switches omit provide additional feedback to indicate when a key stroke registers.
Disadvantages of a Mechanical Keyboard
- Sound — As mentioned above, mechanical keyboards use switches to signal the circuit to register a keystroke. This also results in a distinct and rather loud noise when typing. While there are others who find the sound of keyboards relaxing, the loud sound is distracting in a workplace setting. However, you can purchase O-Rings to install under the keys to decrease the sound level of your keyboard.
- Price — Ordinary membrane or synthetic keyboards are relatively cheaper compared to mechanical keyboards. However, since they are more durable and made with high-quality materials, purchasing a mechanical keyboard can ultimately be an investment despite its higher cost.
- Size — Mechanical keyboards come in different sizes, however they do have the tendency to be bigger and heavier. Thus, not all mechanical keyboards are easy to transport. Moreover, if you have the inclination to place your keyboard on your lap, they may not offer the best comfort. However, this results in them being more sturdy and stable when placed on a desk or table. You wouldn’t need to worry about them shifting when in use.
Best Mechanical Keyboard for Gaming
There’s no denying that owning the best gaming laptop is already a step-up in your gaming experience. Hardware and software are both essential factors for gamers. We have also discussed how the best gaming headset can also impact one’s gaming experience. Meanwhile, we can’t dismiss the notion that the keyboard one uses can also affect their gaming performance. Here are our picks for the best mechanical keyboards that are perfect for every type of gamer.
Steelseries Apex Pro
The first mechanical keyboard for gamers on our list is also considered as the best gaming keyboard in the market right now. A competitive gaming keyboard, the SteelSeries Apex Pro boasts first-of-its-kind adjustable mechanical switches for each key. This means that you can customize the level of sensitivity per-key. Gone are the days you accidentally hit one key when playing the best free Steam games. With the Apex Pro, you can reduce the sensitivity of your less frequently used keys.
Moreover, this SteelSeries keyboard features an OLED screen as an integrated command center. It displays all essential information and options like volume adjustment, and rewinding or pausing a video. Thus, you needn’t change tabs or exit the game you’re playing if you need to adjust settings or change profiles. Furthermore, with its detachable soft touch magnetic wrist rest, the Apex Pro assures maximum comfort during long gaming sessions.
It may not be the most budget friendly with a price tag of $209.99 on the official SteelSeries website, though. However, there’s no denying that the Apex Pro is currently at the forefront of premium mechanical gaming keyboards.
Razer Huntsman Elite
The speed of light is unquestionably a universal physical constant in the realms of physics. However, it is also now a component when it comes to mechanical gaming keyboards. The Razer Huntsman Elite is a full-size mechanical gaming keyboard that features Razer’s new optical switches. Unlike traditional mechanical keyboards, this Razer keyboard model does not rely on mechanical switches to trigger keystrokes. Instead, it uses the power of light to actuate key commands. Thus, this results in faster response and ultimately cements the Razer Huntsman Elite as one of the fastest keyboards available in the market right now.
In terms of customization, all keys are macro-programmable and the dedicated media controls such as the volume dial are also customizable. While some customizations are possible through the board, you will need the Razer Synapse 3 software to access full customization options. Unfortunately, however, this configuration tool is only available for Windows devices.
Moving on to aesthetics, the Razer Huntsman Elite features full RGB backlighting with individually lit keys. Gamers can select any preset lighting effects available or create their own customized lighting profiles. Additionally, users can also enable the magnetic wrist rest’s underglow lighting feature via another dedicated customization software. Users needn’t have to choose between aesthetics or comfort with the Huntsman Elite.
As mentioned above, Razer’s configuration software is only available for Windows devices. Thus, users of operating systems (OS) such as Mac and Linux will not have all the options for customizations.
The Razer Huntsman Elite will set users back $199.99.
Corsair K100 RGB Optical-Mechanical
Corsair’s K95 RGB Platinum seemed like the best mechanical keyboard for gamers. It was a top-notch offering that seemed impossible to beat, and yet Corsair did just that. With the new K100 RGB Optical-Mechanical Gaming Keyboard, Corsair definitely outdid themselves in the realm of mechanical gaming keyboards.
At a glance, the Corsair K100 RGB Optical-Mechanical may not seem all that different from the K95 RGB Platinum. They both feature the same premium design and quality, with both keyboards being the same size. Additionally, they both have the same number of macro keys, same position of media keys, and even a similar metallic roller bar for volume control. However, the K100 RGB brings many new features and upgrades to the table that prove it is steps ahead of its predecessor.
What truly elevates the K100 from the K95 are the new and improved switches used in this model. These new optical-mechanical switches are perfect for competitive gaming, since they register keystrokes four times faster than standard mechanical switches. Additionally, Corsair’s innovative switches also result in lesser repeated letter typos when typing. Moreover, the K100 RGB also boasts improved stabilizers with factory lube applied to them. This minimizes friction between stabilizers when they move up and down. Thus, this results in less loud and rattly noises when typing.
This Corsair keyboard also features a new second wheel that can be used to control brightness and to zoom in and out of your screen.
Overall, Corsair’s K100 RGB Optical-Mechanical may not offer so much difference in terms of aesthetics and design. However, the overall performance is smoother and faster. The K100 RGB definitely is worth checking out when in search for the best mechanical keyboard for gamers.
Users can get their hands on Corsair’s K100 RGB Optical-Mechanical for $229.99.
Best Mechanical Keyboard for Typing
Known for their colorful keyboards and customized designs, Varmilo’s VA87M is every typist’s dream keyboard. It comes in an array of colors and unique designs, as well as different types of switches.
If your primary focus is writing or editing, then the VA87M mechanical keyboard is the one for you. The keycaps of the VA87M feel nice to the touch and feel light when pressed upon. Thus, users needn’t worry about any increase of typos. Moreover, it boasts minimalist features with stable and durable keys that offer a tactile feel when pressing down on them. Therefore, this guarantees comfort for long-term use.
The VA87M is also perfect for those less tech-savvy individuals who don’t really prioritize customization. It’s a mechanical keyboard to its core, with no additional software or configuration firmware.
However, it’s important to take note that this Varmilo keyboard does lack a number pad. This means that if you tend to work with numbers, this mechanical keyboard may not be the most suitable for you. However, with the lack of a number pad, it does offer a more ergonomic design that saves you space on your work desk.
Admittedly, aesthetics may not play the biggest part in a person’s productivity. Nevertheless, the numerous options of quirky design that the Varmilo VA87M offers are a welcome bonus. This is especially for those who want to add a splash of vibrancy to their otherwise monotonous desk setup.
The Varmilo VA87M will set users back $142 on Amazon.
Razer BlackWidow Elite
Razer has cemented themselves as one of the most notable brands of mechanical switch keyboards for gaming. However, that doesn’t mean they are behind when it comes to mechanical keyboards for typing. The BlackWidow Elite features a bold design that does not compromise functionality. With its noticeable step up from its predecessor, the BlackWidow, the Elite version boasts more accuracy, precision, and is very much more responsive to every keystroke. This makes it the best mechanical keyboard for programmers and coders.
The Razer BlackWidow Elite uses Costar stabilizers with dual sided walls that result in greater stability. This also reduces the risk of major typos when in a rush. It is the utmost ideal keyboard if you want downright accuracy when typing. These stabilizers also offer an extra layer of protection against dust and liquids that may affect your keyboard’s lifespan.
In terms of comfort, it comes with a wrist rest that’s perfect for long periods of typing. Furthermore, it allows you to personalize your typing game with the Razer Hypershift. This configuration software lets you add a secondary function per key. Thus, users can assign complex shortcuts to any key to further boost their performance.
Users can get the Razer BlackWidow Elite for $169.99 on the official Razer website.
Obinslab Anne Pro 2
The Obinslab Anne Pro 2 is a remarkable keyboard for its price. One of the cheaper options on this list, the Anne Pro 2 mechanical keyboard has a solid Bluetooth connectivity feature. This means users can pair it not only to PC devices but tablets and smartphones as well. The Anne Pro 2 also comes with a USB-C cable. This makes it more compatible if you want to use it on more modern devices. It is truly the best compact mechanical keyboard for typing on the go.
While it offers an array of switch options, if your sole intention is for typing, we suggest going with the brown switches. Most traditional mechanical keyboards offer either red or blue switches. However, with the brown switches, users can find the perfect balance between the two. They’re smooth and fast, like the red switches. Yet, they also offer you the distinct tactile bump and audible sounds that the blue switches are known for.
The keycaps of this Obinslab keyboard are of excellent quality. Users need not worry of them wearing out or fading away as easily, despite the keyboard’s price.
The Obinslab Anne Pro 2 is available on Amazon for $160.
Roccat Vulcan 120 Aimo
German manufacturer Roccat is an established name in the realm of esports. However, their keyboard models aren’t just limited to competitive gaming. The Vulcan 121 Aimo may be a gaming keyboard, but it is also a competent keyboard for typing and coding.
With the use of Roccat’s trademarked Titan Switches, the Vulcan 121 Aimo can easily be the best mechanical keyboard for coding. Designed to deliver swift and stable keystroke accuracy, the Titan Switches are impressively tactile and silent. Moreover, the keys aren’t mushy or wobbly in any way when being pressed down on. Additionally, thanks to the new Titan Switches, devices can recognize keycap inputs 20% faster compared to traditional switches.
Made with anodized aluminum plates, users can rest assured that this Roccat keyboard is protected against wear and tear. This is even after long hours of computer designing, programming, and testing codes.
However, a downside to this mechanical keyboard is its magnetically attached wrist rest. Unlike other entries on our list, the wrist rest of the Vulcan 121 Aimo is hard plastic. Nevertheless, this is not necessarily a deal-breaker for most users. They still have the option to detach it and use another, more comfortable wrist rest.
The Vulcan 120 Aimo is available for less than $160 on the official Roccat website.
Best Budget Mechanical Keyboard
For those who may not want to invest hundreds of dollars on the best mechanical keyboards, there are still options available for you. The Logitech G413 may be one of the lower-end models that the brand has released, however it doesn’t lack in quality and performance.
This no-frills Logitech mechanical keyboard features the same Romer-G Tactile switches that are found on its high-end counterparts. These tactile switches ensure a smooth typing experience with minor tactile feedback. Additionally, these switches are relatively quiet with no click when actuated. This makes it perfect when used in an open-office setting.
In terms of design, the G413 forgoes the traditional plastic cases found on other keyboards. It also makes do without the customizable RGB backlighting system that other Logitech keyboards feature. This results in a minimalist frameless design and only features red backlighting.
Moreover, Logitech’s G413 mechanical keyboard lacks dedicated media controls. Instead, it has FN media control keys for video or audio content. This may not be a deal-breaker for some, though. Considering the price point of this Logitech keyboard, we’re willing to forgive these absences.
The Logitech G413 mechanical keyboard will set you back less than $90.
Cooler Master CK552
The next budget friendly option on our list comes from Cooler Master’s line of gaming keyboards. The CK552 is the perfect example of cost-cutting done right. It’s a full-sized mechanical gaming keyboard with a compact design. This is not only optimal for gaming, but general computer use as well.
This Cooler Master keyboard features a sleek aluminum design with a solid top plate. Therefore, it results in a durable keyboard even after extended periods of usage. Users of the Cooler Master CK552 can choose from three switch types, depending on their preference. Moreover, these switches can withstand up to 50 million keystrokes.
In terms of customization, the CK552 features on-board memory. This is perfect for users who want to store different customized profiles. Unfortunately, there are no dedicated controls keys on this keyboard. In lieu of these are double mapped on-the-fly macro controls.
It comes with an attached rubber USB 2.0 cable that’s just under six feet long. Although the material may seem a bit fragile, the length is perfect for most users.
Moreover, it may be the best compact mechanical keyboard in terms of price. However, there are a few compromises that it took for it to hit the budget friendly price tag. With that said, the Cooler Master CK552 lacks a wrist rest that’s usually found in Cooler Master keyboards. Nevertheless, with the quality performance we get from this keyboard, we’re willing to understand this sacrifice.
Users can purchase Cooler Master’s CK552 mechanical keyboard for less than $80 on Amazon.
Still looking for even more budget friendly options? Then you’ll be glad to know that this mechanical keyboard sits pleasantly below the $50 mark. It’s a straightforward mechanical gaming keyboard that delivers quality performance even if you’re on a limited budget. It also offers a superb ergonomic space saving design that delivers a comfortable and fluid typing experience.
Designed exclusively for gamers, the Redragon K552 offers a smooth and tactile experience at an affordable price. For those who find themselves playing for extended periods of time, the keycaps on this keyboard are light and feel nice to the touch. This means users needn’t worry about fatiguing overtime when using it.
Moreover, the tactile feedback of the Redragon K552 is satisfying and stable. Unfortunately, due to its use of blue switches, typing sounds are rather loud. Thus, this may not be the most ideal keyboard if you’re in a noise-sensitive environment, like an open-office space.
It is important to note that the Redragon K552 comes in several versions at different price points. Although, their biggest difference lies in their backlighting. The most expensive version comes with a full RGB lighting, while the non-RGB version can save you up to $10. Nevertheless, all models of the K552 offer the same degree of performance.
Users can get their hands on the Redragon K552 for $47.98 on Amazon.
Best Wireless Mechanical Keyboard
Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro
Another entry from Razer’s collection of keyboards, the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro is a wireless mechanical keyboard that has three connectivity modes. Users can choose from Razer’s own HyperSpeed connection to Bluetooth connectivity. Users can even connect it to their unit via the USB-C port, which is also for charging the board.
When it comes to wireless keyboards, one’s first worry is latency and response time. However, the BlackWidow V3 Pro promises low-latency and hyper-responsive keystroke registry. This is thanks to Razer’s own HyperSpeed Wireless technology. With this, the input registry of data between keyboard and PC device is 25% faster compared to other leading wireless technology.
In terms of comfort, keycaps feel nice to the touch and shouldn’t cause any pain or irritation when typing. Moreover, it comes with a detachable wrist rest that’s made from plush faux leather. Users can rest assured that they won’t experience typing fatigue mid game with this wireless mechanical keyboard.
The Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro will set users back around $230.
Logitech G915 TKL
Another superb entry from Logitech, the G915 TKL is a pro-grade wireless keyboard that uses high-performance mechanical switches. Its compact tenkeyless layout forgoes a numeric pad and macro keys. However, it makes up for this with smooth keystrokes, courtesy of their GL switches. Users can choose three low-profile GL switches: tactile, linear, or clicky switches.
In terms of typing experience, the keycaps are stable and well-spaced. This results in more accurate inputs and fewer typos. Moreover, the tactile feedback you get feels satisfying when you press down on a key.
Besides Logitech’s own LIGHTSPEED wireless technology, users can also use Bluetooth connectivity when using the G915 TKL. Furthermore, users can also toggle between two devices with just one switch when in Bluetooth mode. Users also have the option of using this mechanical keyboard wired via the micro-USB cable that’s also for charging the board.
When it comes to battery, Logitech’s G915 TKL boasts a 40 hours battery life. This is with the RGB backlight at 100%. Once drained, it will take around three hours for the device to fully charge. However, users can also use the keyboard while it is charging via the micro-USB cable. This results in more hours of unending gaming sessions.
One of Logitech’s higher-end models, the G915 TKL will cost users almost $230.
Cooler Master SK622
Released in 2020, Cooler Master’s SK622 comes equipped with low-profile switches that result in a more sleek aesthetic. It features upgraded keycaps that contribute to a more innate typing experience. However, users can still get that familiar tactile feel of other standard mechanical keyboards, albeit in a more compact and slender frame.
Performance wise, thanks to its on-the-fly system, users get consistent performance. This guarantees that every keystroke is accurately actuated.
In terms of connectivity, users can choose between wireless freedom via Bluetooth connectivity or anchored usage via the USB-C cable. The SK622 uses Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity that promises minimal input registry delay, as well as low battery consumption.
Compatible with major operating systems and devices, Cooler Master’s SK622 is the perfect board if you find yourself toggling between different units. It will cost users less than $120.
Still need a more affordable option for a wireless mechanical keyboard? Then Velocifire’s TKL02WS is a brilliant choice if you’re looking to save on dollars, but not on reliable performance.
This wireless keyboard comes equipped with a 1850 mAh rechargeable battery that provides several days of uninterrupted usage. This, of course, will vary depending on usage, settings, and environmental conditions. Additionally, once drained, it will take between three to six hours for this Velocifire keyboard to charge fully.
As a more affordable option, we are not surprised to see that the TKL02WS only comes with mechanical brown switches. Unlike other premium brands, you can’t opt for other colored switches. However, with the brown switches, you get less clunky noise when typing. This is perfect for when you’re working in an open-spaced setting. However, if you still want to further lessen the sound of the keyboard, you can opt to buy the version with pre-installed O-rings. You needn’t worry about annoying your co-worker or neighbors with loud typing sounds with this silent mechanical keyboard.
Moreover, the TKL02WS comes with an anti-ghosting key rollover. This guarantees that every keystroke is actuated without any delay.
Made with sturdy plastic material, this wireless keyboard is both dustproof and waterproof. This offers a layer of protection against accidental spillage. Furthermore, the doubleshot ABS material keycaps are of high-quality that won’t easily deteriorate.
Depending if you choose the model with the pre-installed O-rings or not, the TKL02WS will cost users between $49 and $55.
Best Overall Performance Mechanical Keyboard
The Drop ENTR offers outstanding build quality for a mid-range priced mechanical keyboard. It comes in a solid aluminum case that’s protected by a plastic top cover. The two rubber stoppers on the bottom ensure users that the board won’t shift out of place mid-use.
An all-rounder mechanical keyboard that’s great for gaming and programming. It features white backlighting that’s perfect for when you’re working in a dimly lit area. Users can select from four brightness presets that are adjustable on-board. It is also a fantastic choice if you’re looking for a mechanical keyboard for office use. This is due to its use of Halo True switches that are relatively quiet when typing on. Plus, the ENTR’s doubleshot PBT keycaps are nice to touch and do not require too much force to actuate a keystroke.
However, a down-side when it comes to this wired keyboard is the lack of macro keys. Instead, it has a dedicated function key row for its media hotkeys. This prevents users from accidentally minimizing their window mid-game or when they’re watching Disney Plus movies. Moreover, it also forgoes a number pad, which results in a more ergonomic and space-saving design.
Drop’s ENTR mechanical keyboard is fully compatible with both Windows and Linux devices. However, for macOS users, take note that the scroll lock and pause keys will not work.
Users can get their hands on the Drop ENTR for only $90 on Drop’s official website.
When Choosing the Best Mechanical Keyboard for You
There was once a time when mechanical keyboards seemed like a thing of the past. However, it seems like they made the ultimate comeback in recent years. Along with their rise in popularity, more and more manufacturers are releasing keyboard models that meet the public’s demand. We now have more options for the finest customizable, durable, and top-performing mechanical keyboards.
There are several factors that make-up the truly best mechanical keyboard. However, when deciding on what keyboard to purchase, you should pick the model that will suit all your own needs.
Nevertheless, we hope this guide helps you on determining which model you should invest in. After all, the best mechanical keyboard can help boost not just your gaming performance (for all the gamers), but it can help improve your work productivity as well.