If you think all keyboards are the same, you’re obviously not a gamer. Gaming enthusiasts can tell the difference between the best gaming keyboards even blindfolded. These devices have evolved from typing tools to game controllers and they keep on improving, with newest technologies making them snappier, more comfortable and more reliable. If you’re an avid gamer and you’re looking for an upgrade, go over the basics before making a choice and investing a couple hundred dollars in a gaming keyboard. The cheapest ones might be appealing in the beginning, but they won’t get you any closer to victory with a flawed design. Factor in the right criteria and look for inspiration in this list we’ve made for you. These suggestions are still budget friendly and also fully packed with useful features.
1. Corsair Vengeance K70 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Cherry MX Blue (CH-9000066-NA) – $129.99
With 4.6 / 5 stars from 992 customer reviews, the Vengeance K70 was designed with the professional gamer in mind. The quick, linear response paired with a typing audible click are complemented by a perfect signal quality that won’t disappoint even the most experienced users. Corsair likes to make all their buyers feel unique, which is why they come out with this kind of customizable keyboards. Users will feel like they received the VIP treatment when they unbox this keyboard. The WASD and 1 to 6 keys are textured and specially outlined so that the gamer can find them in an instant and not lose any time thinking about where the keys are and what buttons to press. A nice addition to the Vengeance K70 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is the customizable backlighting. Users can set up any pattern and save it for future use. If you’re also keen on listening to music while playing games, you’ll love the dedicated multimedia controls that keep play, stop and volume buttons at your fingertips at all times.
2. CM Storm QuickFire TK – Compact Mechanical Gaming Keyboard – $99.99
You don’t have to be an angry typist to benefit from using the CM Storm QuickFire TK. The Mechanical BROWN CHERRY MX switches promise to endure as many as 50 million keypresses. With an ergonomic and compact design that also comprises the much needed numpad section, the QuickFire TK keys light up and allow users to easily adjust the brightness to their own preferences. What makes every key of the CM Storm QuickFire TK – Compact Mechanical Gaming Keyboard so durable is the special coating applied to each one of them. This is a stable and durable keyboard that comes with seven multimedia shortcut keys. Every gamer will appreciate this feature, since time is of the essence when you’re confronting multiple virtual enemies. For a fully enjoyable experience, you need one of the best gaming keyboards out there, and this is among the most affordable ones. Most CM Storm QuickFire TK buyers remarked the light weight and slim design of this keyboard, which leaves plenty of room for a mouse and allows users to stay in a comfortable position, with arms stretched enough to ensure squared shoulders.
3. HAVIT HV-KB366L RGB Backlit Wired Mechanical Gaming Keyboard with Blue Switches – $89.99
The HAVIT HV-KB366L RGB comprises 104 floating keys with blue switches. With pre-set backlit modes and four levels of brightness, this keyboard is not only incredibly functional, but also easy on the eyes. Havit guarantees to take your gaming skills to the next level with this keyboard. Promising speed and precision thanks to the build in Outemu key switches, the HV-KB366L scores 5 / 5 stars out of 24 Amazon customer reviews. The buyers’ feedback speaks volumes about the keyboard’s functionalities. Created to meet the highest standards, this Havit keyboard is entirely anti-ghosting, which ensures excellent signal quality regardless of your gaming speed. Covered by a one year manufacturer warranty, the HV-KB366L is compatible with Windows 7, 8 and 10, Linux, Max and Vista. Reviews couldn’t praise the build quality enough. The vast majority of the clients were swept off their feet by this keyboard as soon as they unboxed it. The RGB backlit keys are definitely the selling point, but there’s more to the HV-KB366L than meets the eye: aluminum top housing, full anti-ghosting and marquee mode easily make it stand out of the crowd.
4. SteelSeries Merc Stealth Gaming Keyboard – $149.99
With a maximum of 7 simultaneous keystrokes and pre-set profiles for over 150 games, the SteelSeries Merc Stealth sports 34 special gaming terrain keys, which makes every virtual move ten times easier. The keys feature an ergonomic build, making sure the gamer is comfortable even in extended gaming sessions. Buyers were pleasantly surprised by the 3 backlit colors (purple, red and blue) that have four adjustment steps. Featuring two USB 2.0 ports as well as a gold-plated mic and headset jacks, the SteelSeries Merc Stealth Gaming Keyboard is an investment worth making for any avid night gamer. This keyboard managed to nail precision and comfort with the 34 keys that are specifically labeled to ensure perfect control. The device also makes it easy to control media with the built in multimedia controls, a popular feature in the best gaming keyboards you can find, usually for higher prices. The WASD arrangement received much praise and the small amount of customization needed received a huge bonus point from all customers.
5. Corsair STRAFE Cherry MX Red Mechanical Gaming Keyboard (CH-9000088-NA) – $109.99
Enhance your gaming experience with this state of the art Corsair keyboard. The dynamic backlighting makes for easy use in the dark and the unlimited lighting adjustments are a nice addition. The selling point of the Corsair STRAFE is the full programmable feature. This means that users can reassign every single key and improve their gaming skills. A smooth, linear response is vital for every gamer. With a couple decades of experience under their belt, Corsair knows and anticipates the users’ needs. The Cherry MX Red switches are fully responsive and have no trouble picking up commands from double or triple taps. With no bumps or clicks, the keyboard is very comfortable and perfect for long gaming sessions. With a full anti-ghosting feature, you can rest assured all the keys will be registering, no matter how fast you’re playing. Combining an appealing design with great features and a resilient build, Corsair managed to exceed customers’ expectations and still keep an affordable price for one of the best gaming keyboards you can find.