The best mechanical keyboard isn’t necessarily a gaming keyboard. It often is the case, but the focus here is work, not play. If you’re looking for a keyboard that prioritises productivity and ergonomics to get you through an eight-hour working day then you’ve come to the right place.
If you’ve ever used a mechanical keyboard before, then you know that there is nothing else like it. The satisfying and consistent feel along with the reliable performance of the switches makes them ideal for gaming, and typing. If you haven’t used one before, then you are missing out on what typing and gaming could and should feel like.
There are many keyboards available in various shapes and sizes at different price points, and we’ve got a list of some of the best mechanical keyboards you should consider for your next purchase.
Why Use a Mechanical Keyboard?
If you have a job that demands a ton of time typing — web development, web design, IT, and journalism are some professions that fit the bill — investing in a high-quality keyboard can lead to a more productive and enjoyable work experience.
I’ve used many keyboards in the past: Generic $9.99 replacement keyboards, stock keyboards that come free with a new desktop PC, high-end gaming keyboards, laptop keyboards, ultra-portable wireless keyboards, you name it. A mechanical keyboard has been my preference for the past three years. Here are some reasons why:
- Delight: Mechanical keyboards provide you with a fantastic typing experience. Each keystroke feels gratifying and authoritative, unlike on a common dome-switch keyboard, which feels mushy.
- Speed and precision: Accentuating a key in a mechanical keyboard results in some form of tactile feedback, telling you that you’ve pressed the key successfully.
- Build quality: Good mechanical keyboards are sturdy and durable, being able to bear the brunt of your keystrokes for years without any degradation to your typing experience.
10 Best Mechanical Keyboards of 2021:
|Corsair K95 RGB Platinum||18.3 x 6.7 x 1.4 in||4.85 pounds|
|Das Keyboard 4 Pro||18 x 6.8 x 1.3 in||2.87 pounds|
|Das Keyboard X40||17.8 x 6.6 x 1.3 in||3.2 pounds|
|Havit HV-KB390L||13.9 x 5 x 0.9 in||1.15 pounds|
|Logitech G513 RGB||5.1 x 17.5 x 1.4 in||1.11 pounds|
|Logitech G610 Orion Brown||17.5 x 6 x 1.4 in||2.6 pounds|
|Nixeus Moda Pro||17.3 x 5.1 x 1.2 in||3.35 pounds|
|Razer BlackWidow Chroma V2||9.2 x 17.6 x 1.7 in||3.69 pounds|
|SteelSeries Apex M500||6 x 17.9 x 1.8 in||2.22 pounds|
|SteelSeries Apex M750||6 x 17.9 x 1.8 in||2.22 pounds|
As the corsair gaming keyboard for the pirate ship, the K95 Platinum fills the gap left by the retired K95 Vengeance.
It features the new Cherry MX Silver Axis button, which offers less trigger pressure and shorter keystrokes than previous models. Some minor aesthetic designs have also been improved.
The keyboard features a standard 104-key layout with a set of six macro buttons on the left side; three buttons at the top for switching onboard profiles, adjusting backlight brightness, and disabling Windows keys, plus a dedicated row of media controls.
Its overall layout is cleaner than the previous generation, and it won’t be too fancy to distract you from the use.
In general, after a long game or typing, you will find the advanced enjoyment of this keyboard, which is the main reason why we ranked it first.
The Das Keyboard 4 saves most of the plastic, and the delicate frame has been replaced with an aluminum alloy. Although the weight is almost unchanged, the quality is clearly stronger.
Another major change is that the bottom of the keyboard is no longer equipped with a flip stand and replaced by a magnetic pedal, which is a viable solution.
The overall design of the keyboard is only slightly different from the Model S: the black frame is matte instead of glossy, and the font is used on the keycap.
Unlike the Model S, Das Keyboard 4 introduces dedicated hardware controls: above the numeric keypad are the Sleep, Mute, Play/Pause, Back and Forward buttons, and a large volume knob.
It has dual USB ports on the upper right side and supports USB 3.0. These USB ports have been moved from the right side of the keyboard to the front to make the right mouse experience easier for the right hand.
Despite the lack of obvious features like backlighting, the Das Keyboard 4 can still be the best general-purpose mechanical keyboard with its superior design and features.
The X40 looks very simple and it has very little exterior decoration. The left edge is equipped with five macro keys that distinguish it from the traditional 104-key design. All other enhancements come from the FN button at the bottom right of the primary key area.
In addition to the backlight, there are three lights in the upper right corner and a fourth big light that reminds you in game mode. The only other feature worth noting is the three jacks on the top right edge: a USB 2.0 jack, and a headphone and microphone jack next to it.
Most keyboards, even those designed for games, basically maintain a fairly plain look, but the X40 features a sophisticated aluminum panel with angular geometry that you can remove and replace.
Its software system provides a lot of flexibility, you can easily write macro keys, or create up to five configuration files. However, because the X40 does not have the ability to cross-zone colorful backlights like some gaming keyboards.
As a keyboard designed for games, the X40 excels in the gaming arena. But ordinary office typing, its performance is not ideal, especially when you need to type for a long time.
This is a relatively inexpensive mechanical keyboard that is ideal for typing. By removing the digital button area, it has a thinner and lighter body than most keyboards.
The Havit HV-KB390L looks very ordinary. In fact, this is a very good product, and considering the detachable USB cable, you can carry it easily anytime, anywhere.
It also comes with built-in lighting, and although it has only one color to use, it looks very cool. For the way to adjust the light, the HV-KB390L offers 13 presets and 5 custom modes, and many modes have many different effects.
Surprisingly, you don’t have to make a lot of power when typing, it’s much lighter than most mechanical keyboards, which helps speed up your typing.
Although this keyboard can be used for games, it has few customization options, so it is not a professional gaming keyboard. However, the N-key no-rush feature will definitely be appreciated by gamers.
If you are looking for an affordable mechanical keyboard and are intended primarily for typing rather than games, the Havit HV-KB390L will be a great option.
This keyboard features Logitech’s own Lightsync RGB technology, a comfortable palm rest and an anodized aluminum surface for a cool touch.
At its core are two robotic axes that are unique to Logitech: the Romer-G Tactile and the newer Romer-G Linear, which they developed in collaboration with Omron.
From the appearance, the G513 has a typical 101-key structure. Logitech provides 12 additional keycaps in the product package, but don’t judge its performance just by the number of buttons and the size of the keyboard.
Whether it’s the Romer-G Tactile or the Romer-G Linear, the G513 is no different in size and slimness.
As for performance, Logitech says its response speed has increased by 10 milliseconds, 25% faster than black widows. Even so, in real game scenarios, it’s hard to tell the difference.
The G610 Orion Brown is a well-built product with a simpler function and no built-in USB and audio ports, but its performance is very good.
It looks simple and practical, with almost no extra features or controls, or even a USB port. But that doesn’t mean it’s nothing, all the buttons are backlit by a white LED with adjustable brightness.
The keyboard doesn’t have any type of wrist rest at all, but you can adjust the three tilt angles. Although you can’t change the color of the backlight, Logitech offers a variety of lighting effects, and you can also synchronize the light mode with other Logitech peripherals.
Whether it’s playing games or general use, the G610 is very easy to use, programmers, clerks, and gamers, etc., will be satisfied with its performance.
Nixeus Moda Pro is an excellent universal mechanical keyboard for games and long typing. Its stylish design and versatility are very attractive.
If you already have an Apple MacBook Pro notebook or a desktop computer such as Microsoft Surface Studio, the silver-white shape of Moda Pro will be the perfect match.
Most of the keyboard body is made of matt aluminum alloy, the full height plastic keycap is white, the top surface is printed with easily recognizable characters, the mechanical shaft is mounted on the steel plate, and each button is very strong.
The tapping life of each button is as high as 50 million times, far exceeding the estimated 5 million to 10 million times of the ordinary keyboard. Even after several years of daily use, it still performs well.
Overall, the Nixeus Moda Pro is an affordable mechanical keyboard that provides an excellent typing experience.
It looks like the original and looks the same, the body is made of beautiful black matte plastic. There are five macro keys on the left side of the keyboard, but there is no media control bar above.
In addition, it features 10-button no-shoot and anti-ghosting for better recording of input and prevents interference during intense gaming or typing.
It has a USB 2.0 port on the right side and an adjacent audio output jack that you can charge via the USB port.
The compact design is very appealing, especially when compared to keyboards that look cluttered. The low-key black frame looks elegant and luxurious, and not too fancy.
In keeping with the other high-end products of Razer, the backlight options are almost limitless. With the free Synapse software, you can manage the configuration files, color settings, and lighting effects of each button on multiple peripherals.
Even if you don’t talk about the game, V2 is quite good at typing. The button feedback is very reliable and flexible enough to keep your hands moving easily.
The M500 is equipped with a 10-key numeric keypad and 104-key no-punch. The mechanical shaft belongs to the Cherry MX Red variety, the same as the Corsair K95 RGB.
Most of the keyboard is made of black plastic with a matte finish on the keys and a textured finish on the rest of the frame.
Its button backlight is a blue LED. In most cases, the light is clean and clear, but for buttons with more labels (such as numeric keys), the illumination is not uniform enough and the lower half looks darker.
In the game test, we found that this is a keyboard specially designed for the game. The layout between the buttons is very reasonable, the game feedback is strong, and the game will not be tired for a long time.
Overall, the M500 is a rugged, well-crafted gaming keyboard for gamers who have limited capital and don’t need extra features.
No matter which game you choose, it simplifies the keystrokes during the game.
The Apex M750 is designed to be very compact: it has no design that deviates from the standard American keyboard layout except for the buttons with the Cypress logo next to the right Windows button.
There is a black matte aerospace aluminum panel under the button, with no other contours except for the slight tilt of the top and bottom edges.
In addition, the keyboard does not have an adjustable foot pad, so you can’t change its tilt angle. Although the overall design of the M750 is ergonomic, there is always someone who doesn’t feel comfortable enough.
As the flagship product of the game console lineup, the M750 fills a huge gap and is ideal for professional gamers who don’t care about fancy features.
The Classics: Cherry MX Switches
The best known and most frequently encountered mechanical key switches come from a company called Cherry Industrial. These “Cherry MX” switches come in a range of styles that offer different operation and feedback to better match with your own personal preference, and the work or play you plan to do most on them. (Note that most have an actuation point of 2mm.)
The different types of Cherry MX keys are named for colors. This rundown of the most common Cherry switches will help you better match what you need with the mechanical keyboards you can buy.
Keep in mind that some keyboard makers use switches of a similar style, made by companies other than Cherry. But almost every manufacturer maintains the same basic “color” scheme and related traits to help keep confusion down. (So, for example, Cherry MX Blue switches, and Blue-“style” switches from other makers, both tend to be clicky.)
Cherry MX Blue
A close approximation of the old-school buckling-spring switch (see below), but with a new-style mechanism, Cherry MX Blue switches are both tactile and clicky
With Blue switches, you feel as well as hear the completion of a keystroke (via a bump when it activates, and a distinct click). These switches are ideal for serious typists (many of whom insist that the switches deliver a turbocharging bounce you can’t get anywhere else), but they are not best for gaming applications, as they have a rather higher actuation force (50 centi-Newtons, or cN) than you might prefer for a fast-twitch gun battle.
Cherry MX Black
With the highest actuation force of the standard Cherry varieties (60cN), the Cherry MX Black switch can come across as stiff.
This type is thus less suitable for the kind of nimble key work most speed and touch typists depend on, and fast-fingered gamers tend to shun it.
But this makes Black an excellent switch for cases where precision is paramount: entering mission-critical data (say, for an accountant or at a point-of-sale terminal) or for certain kinds of more deliberate gaming, as you will seldom have to worry about accidentally striking a key twice. Cherry MX Black switches are also neither tactile nor clicky.
Cherry MX Red
Similar to MX Black, Cherry MX Red switches lack both tactile and auditory feedback.
But they have a lower actuation force (45cN), so they can be hit more quickly and more often, giving you the edge in any game demanding ultra-quick input. MX Red keyboards tend to be favored by gamers who play games that require fast-twitch actions.
These same qualities, however, keep them from being a good choice if typing is your primary activity, as they make it easier to register more keystrokes than you intend or to trigger typos on a slightly stray stroke. Certain highly precise typists, though, will appreciate their light touch.
We recommended 10 best mechanical keyboards to everyone, each with its own characteristics. I hope you can choose the one that suits you. If you have any questions, please contact us or leave a message.