10 Best Gaming Keyboards for 2022

Taking a dip into the waters of buying a gaming keyboard can lead you down a path of confusing terminology and crazy custom jobs. This can complicate the process of buying the right keyboard the first time. This is why we’ve done all the heavy lifting for you and picked out the best gaming keyboards to get you that victory royale or just a satisfying click with every keypress as you clear trash mobs in WoW. Each of these gaming keyboards offers unique pros and cons, and most of them are even somewhat customizable.

How to pick the best gaming keyboard

Naturally, we want to make things as easy as possible for you to make your buying decision. So before we show you our spiciest picks, let’s go over the important parts of a gaming keyboard and why they matter.

Gaming keyboard buying guide

Gaming keyboard size

What you may not realize about gaming keyboards is that they have a wide variety of sizing options. Sure, we know that some may or may not come with a number pad, but some ditch the arrow keys and function keys too. Others add tons of macro buttons.

Here’s a brief rundown of some of the sizes we think will make for a good gaming keyboard experience.

Full-sized (100%) keyboards are what most people are used to. These include the standard letter keys, a number pad, the function key row, arrow keys, and a home cluster. Some manufacturers tend to add more keys to be used as macro keys with their included software.

Full-sized keyboards are the most commonly used outside of gaming, but they can be on the bulkier side for some pc gaming setups.

Tenkeyless (TKL) keyboards are the next step down, with the number pad entirely axed. Those who don’t do a lot of number crunching can get away with these easily.

Naturally, this is why they’re so popular with pc gaming.

TKL keyboards still retain the home cluster and arrow keys.

60% (mini) keyboards are the most common smaller size for gamers. These keyboards drop the home cluster and the function key row. You’ll have to start using layers if you still want that functionality on your number keys.
These are very popular, and you can find plenty of gamer and enthusiast keyboards in this size.

40% keyboards are incredibly small and almost exclusively for gaming. 40% keyboards trim the number row off the top and remove most of the symbol keys.

This layout leaves you with around 40-50 keys, in comparison to a TKL’s 87 keys.

The other primary gaming keyboard sizes are compact full size, compact TKL, 65%, and some lesser-known options. Each has its unique layout that some pc gamers may find to be useful.

However, we think the vast majority of people should narrow down to the four sizes highlighted above to balance size with versatility.

In most cases, gamers are best off with a TKL keyboard or a full-sized keyboard. Both sizes offer the most buttons available, which can be handy for hotkey-heavy games like MMOs.

Overall, these two gaming keyboard sizes are more comfortable too. Some gamers prefer a 60% keyboard for performance, but you do lose versatility and anything below that in size is risky.

Wired or wireless?

Now comes the next step once you’ve picked the right size: do you need a wireless keyboard or are you content with being tethered to your desk?

Most wireless keyboards tend to be more expensive than the wired version of the same keyboard. Wired options add cables to your desk to be managed. But wired keyboards can also include a USB passthrough to add more readily-available USB ports.

In many cases, wired beats out wireless. They’re cheaper and USB passthrough can be too good to pass up. Wireless is fine, but not essential for those who need to de-clutter their desk.

Gaming keyboard switches

Naturally, gaming keyboards go even further into customization for key switches. Mechanical keyboards offer various switches. Each switch type has its feel and performance.

The basic types of keyboard switches are:

  • Linear switches are fairly silent and you won’t feel any “click” as you type.
  • Tactile switches give you tactile feedback as you press the key down to the actuation point when the keyboard registers the keypress.
  • Clicky switches generate the loud, clacky sounds that are iconic with mechanical keyboards. Instead of giving tactile feedback, clicky switches make a louder clicking noise when registering a key press.
  • Optical switches are different than mechanical switches. Optical switches use a beam of light as an actuator. When you press down, it breaks the beam and registers a keystroke.

Some companies make different blends of switches. The goal for some of these switches is so you can get a good click while getting tactile feedback, or a silent key with a tactile feel.

Optical switches are great for gaming due to their durability and responsiveness. But they don’t feel as good as mechanical switches and are often pricier. Gamers who need the best reaction time should go for optical switches, but mechanical switches are better overall for the average person.

There are also membrane keyboards, which you’ll find on most laptops and low-end keyboards.
Underneath the keys is a layer of rubber that separates the key from the switch.

The two contacts touch and a key press is registered when you press down. These are very uncommon for most mid to high-end keyboards, though.

Setup.gg’s best gaming keyboards

Best 60% keyboard
Razer Huntsman Mini 60%
Pros:
  • Optical switches for fast response time while gaming
  • Slim profile and compact size
Cons:
  • 60% keyboards may be too small for those with big hands
Check Price
Connectivity Wired
Size Availability 60%
Switch Type Clicky or linear optical, hot-swappable with other Razer optical switches
Palm Rest No
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: It’s no surprise that Razer has secured a spot on this list with its enduring lineage in pc gaming. The Razer Hunstman Mini 60% gaming keyboard has excellent construction, packs in RGB, and has lightning-fast key switches. This trio of features makes it an easy shoo-in if you’re a Razer aficionado and want to narrow down to the best Razer keyboard options. Razer even went the extra mile to allow you to swap out the keycaps and USB-C cable so that you can match it to your aesthetic.

The inclusion of optical switches means this keyboard is lightning fast. Response time can be critical in the heat of the moment. The switches can be up to 30ms faster than a traditional mechanical key. This performance advantage can easily mean life or death when it comes to competitive gaming.

However, it is a keyboard made for gamers, first and foremost. Its 60% size can make it difficult to adjust to if you have smaller hands. If you happen to do a lot of typing and/or number crunching, this gaming keyboard is not for you.

 

Best TKL keyboard
Logitech G PRO
Pros:
  • Logitech’s GX Blue Clicky offers a tactile and clicky experience
  • Key switches are hot-swappable, meaning you can use whatever switch you prefer
Cons:
  • Switches can be very loud
  • The plastic body makes this keyboard feel cheap
Check Price
Connectivity Wired
Size Availability TKL
Switch Type Clicky mechanical, hot-swappable
Palm Rest No
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: Logitech’s G Pro series has been around for a few years and it persists as a mainstay thanks to its build quality and feature set. Simply put, it’s one of the best Logitech gaming keyboard options. The Logitech G PRO looks sleek and has enough keys for most gamers, no matter what they play.

However, the GX Blue Clicky switches are quite loud. Those who aren’t fans of the clicky ambiance may not be happy with these switches, and doubly so for those who might share a living space with someone.
Thankfully, you can hot-swap the switches out for any switch and customize the board to fit your needs.

 

Best TKL keyboard
SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL
Pros:
  • Switches have an adjustable actuation point
  • OLED display to adjust keyboard settings
  • Premium aluminum frame
Cons:
  • Some users claim the switches feel “mushy”
  • Occassional quality control issues with these keyboards
Check Price
Connectivity Wired
Size Availability TKL
Switch Type OmniPoint switch, not hot-swappable
Palm Rest Yes
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: The SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL certainly lives up to the hype with it being advertised as the “World’s Best Selling TKL Keyboard.” With SteelSeries’ proprietary OmniPoint switches, you get a switch that allows you to adjust the actuation point. With that, you’ll be able to have lightning-fast response times.

The SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL also features stellar RGB and a small OLED screen to feed you important information or adjust various keyboard settings. This gaming keyboard is premium, and it makes sure you feel it too.

The only potential downside is with the OmniPoint switches. Several users have mentioned they feel “mushy” or are squeaky, both of which cannot be fixed. Because this gaming keyboard doesn’t allow you to hot-swap switches, you’d have to fully disassemble and de-solder the switches, which isn’t something everyone can do.

 

Best full-size mechanical keyboard
Corsair K100 RGB
Pros:
  • Unique optical-mechanical switches offer a lightning-fast, tactile response time
  • Includes a multifunction “control wheel” and macro keys
  • Streaming integrations
Cons:
  • It’s a big keyboard with an additional large knob at the top
Check Price
Connectivity Wired
Size Availability Full
Switch Type Cherry MX or optical, not hot-swappable
Palm Rest Yes
RGB Lighting Yes, zonal

Bottom line: The Corsair K100 RGB is one of the best mechanical keyboards. A unique feature is that it comes with a useful “control wheel” on the left-hand side above the ESC key. The knob allows you to customize media controls, games, or whatever else you’d like.

The Corsair K100 RGB features six fully customizable macro keys on the left side, which is a standout feature for MMO gaming. Corsair also enables streamers to connect it to their StreamDeck software to control things such as OBS and other streaming software. This is a big plus.

However, the biggest drawback is Corsair’s optical-mechanical switches. The switches are supposed to be hyper-fast. However, the switches have proven to be quite sensitive, which might lead to a bad user experience outside of fast-paced gaming moments. If this is worrisome, you can choose Cherry MX switches instead.

 

Best full-size mechanical keyboard
MOUNTAIN Everest Max
Pros:
  • Extremely customizable
  • Modular media dock and Numpad
Cons:
  • Windows-only, sorry Mac and Linux gamers
Check Price
Connectivity Wired
Size Availability Modularity to go full-size or TKL
Switch Type Multiple options, hot-swappable
Palm Rest Yes
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: The Mountain Everest Max takes amps up uniqueness to a level not seen much in the gaming keyboard world. It offers a modular media key dock with a control knob and a screen. The Mountain Everest Max also has a detachable Numpad/macro pad that you can place on either side of the keyboard.

Mountain has given us an extremely customizable keyboard with these modular add-ons, but the company didn’t stop there. You can pick your keyboard with one of four switch options, or you can buy your own and hot-swap them to your liking.

The only downside to this keyboard is the build quality and software. The included keycaps can feel cheap to some people. Of course, you can replace those if you choose. The extra macro keys and media controls don’t work on non-Windows devices, which is tough for Linux or Mac users.

 

Best wireless gaming keyboard
Logitech G915 Lightspeed RGB
Pros:
  • Super thin, low-profile keyboard
  • Macro keys and TKL or Full-sized options
Cons:
  • Build quality is great, but could be better for such a pricey gaming keyboard
Check Price
Connectivity Wireless
Size Availability Full or TKL
Switch Type Tactile, linear, or clicky, not hot-swappable
Palm Rest No
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: Logitech is known for its great products, and the Logitech G915 Lightspeed is no exception. It features ultra-low profile switches and keycaps, leading to a svelte gaming keyboard that stands above many others. Plus, Logitech’s Lightspeed wireless technology eliminates any worry about response time.

However, the one thing this gaming keyboard lacks is premium build quality and it is one of the most expensive gaming keyboards on our list. For a pricey keyboard, it comes with cheap ABS keycaps that are prone to peeling and fading. Some keys also feature stickers instead of printing on the actual key. This can lead to the keys being unreadable in the dark.

Your average gamer probably won’t notice much of these issues or care after a while. But those who are keyboard enthusiasts, or spend a lot of time at their computer outside of gaming, may find the quality to be bothersome at this price level.

 

Best wireless mechanical keyboard
Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro
Pros:
  • Can connect to multiple devices via Bluetooth and cycle between them
  • Offers two switch types - linear & silent or tactile & clicky
Cons:
  • Battery life is fairly poor with RGB on
  • Requires you to use Razer’s Synapse software to access all functions
Check Price
Connectivity Wireless
Size Availability Full or 60%
Switch Type Linear silent or tactile clicky, not hot-swappable
Palm Rest Yes
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: Razer’s BlackWidow series is known for building great all-around mechanical keyboards for gamers and those wanting to dive into mechanical boards. The Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro is no different, offering great switches for a quiet gaming keyboard, should you choose to go the linear silent switch route.

While this gaming keyboard does offer wireless functionality with Bluetooth or Razer’s HyperSpeed technology, the battery life is not great if you want to keep the RGB lights on. Those looking for a long-lasting wireless gaming keyboard with RGB on might want to look elsewhere. The RGB also doesn’t work in Bluetooth mode, but we recognize this isn’t a deal-breaker for most people.

 

Best full-size gaming keyboard
Corsair K70 RGB
Pros:
  • USB passthrough
  • Excellent build quality
Cons:
  • Corsair’s iCue software is annoying to use
Check Price
Connectivity Wired
Size Full
Switch Type Multiple options, not hot-swappable
Palm Rest Yes
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: The Corsair K70 packs in a premium feel and plenty of RGB and switch types options. But the switches are not hot-swappable, which may not be an issue for many.

The biggest gripe with this keyboard is Corsair’s iCue software. It’s a pain to use, the UI isn’t great, and you lose all of your RGB customizations without it. Occasionally, the program will fail to load, leaving you with a keyboard that’s essentially at factory defaults.

 

Best small gaming keyboard
HyperX Alloy Origins 60
Pros:
  • Excellent build quality
  • Available in multiple sizes
Cons:
  • HyperX’s software leaves a lot to be desired
Check Price
Connectivity Wired
Size Availability Full, TKL, and 60%
Switch Type Multiple options, not hot-swappable
Palm Rest No
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: The HyperX Alloy Origins 60 is a stellar 60% keyboard that works well for anyone interested in one, but it doesn’t come with bells and whistles. The target audience that appreciates this layout will surely place this gaming keyboard on their shortlist.

The only major flaw of this keyboard is related to HyperX’s software. Several users have reported issues, ranging from failing to change the RGB lighting to missing keystrokes. This can get annoying for some. But more recent reviews have said that the software has improved. Your mileage may vary.

 

Best gaming keyboard with USB passthrough
Razer Huntsman V2 Analog
Pros:
  • Customizable actuation for switches
  • USB passthrough
Cons:
  • Analog optical switches are very new and not a perfect experience
  • Analog options only work while Razer’s software is active and if a game supports it
Check Price
Connectivity Wired
Size Availability Full
Switch Type Analog optical, not hot-swappable
Palm Rest Yes
RGB Lighting Yes, per-key

Bottom line: The Razer Huntsman V2 Analog is the only gaming keyboard on our list with “analog optical” switches. Unlike its mechanical Huntsman twin, this version offers new key switches and USB passthrough in a larger form factor.

However, the biggest flaw with this gaming keyboard is its biggest selling point: the switches. These switches are supposed to emulate a gamepad’s inputs, but they are still a new technology and aren’t perfected yet. Keys can get stuck repeating the same input, and not all games support it.

Comparing the best gaming keyboards

Keyboard Connectivity Size Availability Switch Type Palm Rest RGB Lighting
Razer Hunstman Mini 60% Wired 60% Clicky or linear optical, hot-swaps with other Razer optical switches No Yes, per-key
Logitech G Pro Wired TKL Clicky mechanical, hot-swappable No Yes, per-key
SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL Wired TKL OmniPoint, no hot-swap Yes Yes, per-key
Corsair K100 RGB Wired Full Cherry MX or optical, no hot-swap Yes Yes, zonal only
Mountain Everest Max Wired Full or TKL Modularity to go full or TKL, hot-swappable Yes Yes, per-key
Logitech G915 Lightspeed Wireless Full or TKL Tactile, linear, or clicky, no hot-swap No Yes, per-key
Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro Wireless Full or 60% Linear silent or tactile clicky, no hot-swap Yes Yes, per-key
Corsair K70 RGB Wired Full Multiple options, no hot-swap Yes Yes, per-key
HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Wired Full, TKL, and 60% Multiple options, no hot-swap No Yes, per-key
Razer Huntsman v2 Analog Wired Full Razer analog optical, no hot-swap Yes Yes, per-key

After breaking it all down, we’ve got some recommendations for those with specific use cases. We suggest starting with these models and then comparing these gaming keyboards against others you may have an eye on.

If you’re an average, everyday gamer

Look towards the Logitech G Pro or the Steelseries Apex Pro TKL. These gaming keyboards are stellar out of the box and will work just fine regardless of your gaming preference.

If you’re a serious gamer

Depending on your size preference, serious gamers will want to look at either the Razer Hunstman Mini or the Logitech G915 Lightspeed. They’re both stellar for gaming and have lightning-fast response times for keypresses.

If you’re a work-from-home gamer

Most gamers looking for versatility should be aiming for the full-sized option for the Logitech G915 Lightspeed, the Corsair K70 RGB, or the Mountain Everest Max. Each of these keyboards offers a stellar typing experience without compromising gaming quality.

What gaming keyboards do the pros use?

Pro esports players primarily focus their attention on fast performance. Pair a fast gaming keyboard with a high Hz gaming monitor, and you’ve got a lights-out setup for the fastest-paced games.

In most cases, pro gamers are using TKL keyboards. Since most games don’t use the Numpad, these keyboards allow more desk space for their mouse for finer movements. Some pros are also using 60% gaming keyboards.

Specifically, many pros have become accustomed to using the SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL or the Logitech G Pro. Each of these keyboards is TKL-sized with nice RGB. But they don’t come with the flashy options some other keyboards come with.

Other features to consider

Mechanical or membrane?

You’ll want to pick a mechanical keyboard over a membrane one in most cases. Overall, mechanical keyboards are much more responsive, easier to customize, and have a better typing experience. Membrane keyboards are typically only for laptops or extreme budget options.

Software customization

Most keyboard manufacturers will insist you use their proprietary software alongside their keyboard to get the most out of it and customize RGB lighting and macro keys.

In most cases, these software options are fine at best. Razer is the worst offender on the list, as they require you to use their Synapse software to control just about anything on the keyboard, and it’s got to be constantly running.

Other brands’ software is generally easy to use and set up, with Logitech being the reigning king of excellent software and HyperX having OK enough performance.

Palm rest

The inclusion of a palm rest can make for a more comfortable typing and gaming experience, especially when a high-quality material is used.

You can add an aftermarket wrist wrest to most keyboards. But gaming keyboards that include a palm rest are purpose-built for that exact keyboard, typically resulting in a better overall fit.

Gaming keyboards that didn’t make the cut

Sadly, not all the gaming keyboards we reviewed made the final cut. The SteelSeries Apex Pro is nearly identical to its TKL variant but in a full-size layout. Why didn’t we pick it? The TKL variant is just more popular overall, and gamers don’t need the Numpad in most cases.

We skipped over the Razer Ornata mostly due to its choice of a key switch. The Razer Ornata is a mechanical switch and a membrane pad hybrid, which means the response time is not as fast as a mechanical or optical switch.

Many people are very excited about the Wooting Two HE keyboard, and it was featured in several Best-Of lists by other reviewers. However, since this gaming keyboard isn’t readily available yet, we felt it would be unfair to include it. That said, we are seeing many gamers move to this keyboard and it’ll be hard to ignore including on this list when picks are revisited.

The G.Skill KM360 is certainly a great entry-grade mechanical keyboard that’s cheap enough for any budget. Yet, the overall build quality matches its low price, leaving you unsatisfied after using it for a while.

Like the SteelSeries Apex Pro, the Corsair K95 is a great gaming keyboard that is almost identical to the Corsair K100 RGB and the Corsair K70 RGB. The only difference is the addition of macro keys that the K70 lacks and the control wheel that the K100 adds. Between these, the gaming keyboard is fine, but it’s not stellar.

How we picked the winners

We compiled our list of the top gaming keyboards by comparing over 65 top-rated models across different manufacturers. After that, we compared them based on their specs, prices, and additional features. Once we narrowed down the list, we sought out user reviews and firsthand experience to ensure that every gaming keyboard on our list was worth the praise.

Because the mechanical keyboard community is so vocal, we wanted to make sure we stayed true to the spirit of those fans while also keeping gamers in mind. We included any information that any avid key clackers would want to know while also pointing out the gaming benefits.

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