Most of us now use slimline, lightweight keyboards with rubber domes and scissor switches, but there are still quite a few mechanical keyboards for those who like the clickety-clack sound from typing on these devices.
There’s a multitude of mechanical keyboards for almost every possible use. Mechanical keyboards may sound old-fashioned, but the latest ones have a raft of modern features to suit today’s users. These include gaming models, programmable units, and quiet-tuned models for office environments
We have compiled a list of the best mechanical keyboards worthy of consideration.
1. Best full-size gaming mechanical keyboard: Corsair K95 RGB Platinum XT
This mechanical keyboard features per-key RGB backlighting and a 19-zone LightEdge across the top. Six dedicated macro keys are programmable with custom macros or key remaps that should help gamers gain advantages.
The anodized aluminum frame with a 104/105-key ultra-durable PBT double-shot keyset is built to withstand a lifetime of gaming.
The Corsair K95 RGB Platinum XT rings in at $169.99.
2. Best wireless mechanical keyboard: Logitech G915 TKL
This wireless mechanical keyboard is available in white or black and features high-performance, low-profile mechanical switches. Logitech claims the $229.99 G915 TKL wireless keyboard achieves 1ms performance.
The low-profile GL mechanical switches provide the performance of traditional switches but at half the height. The LIGHTSYNC RGB technology enables fully customizable per-key lighting with 16.8 million colors to choose from.
It takes four hours to charge, but you can do this while it’s plugged into a computer.
3. Best value mechanical gaming keyboard: Xtrfy K4 TKL RGB
The K4 TKL is the tenkeyless version of the K4 and is quite a value at just $99. Tenkeyless means it lacks a 10-key numeric keypad on the right side, making these keyboards more compact for smaller spaces.
It features a 1000 Hz polling rate that instantly registers keypresses, while full N-key rollover means zero missed keystrokes for gamers. The chassis has a metal plate construction, reinforced PCB, and casing and comes equipped with red mechanical key switches with a 70-million-keystroke lifetime.
4. Best mechanical keyboard for coding or typing: Das Keyboard 5QS
The $199 Das Keyboard 5QS is the second generation of the 5Q keyboard and offers increased productivity to coders by displaying information — weather, stock quotes, project progress, CPU usage, and more — in color on the keys. It also has macros to play recorded keystroke sequences and multiple built-in RGB profiles.
Its mechanical switches are made by Omron (Japan) and promise a 100-million-keystroke lifetime.
The 5QS sports an anodized black aluminum top panel and a magnetically attached detachable wrist rest.
5. Best compact keyboard: Keychron K2
The $69 K2 is a compact keyboard that’s available as wireless or wired. It can connect up to three devices via Bluetooth and switch among them. It can connect to your smartphone, laptop, and iPad via Bluetooth, but It also has a wired mode with a USB Type-C connection.
While it is compatible with all operating systems from Mac to Android to Windows, it is one of the few mechanical keyboards featuring Mac layout media keys. This means a user can use all the same media keys as conventional macOS. Every K2 keyboard comes with three specific keycaps for Mac and Windows.
It also has more than 15 types of RGB light and comes with different styles — flashing, breathing, or static — to match anyone’s mood. With its 4000 mAh battery, the K2 can handle up to 240 hours of typing without recharging.
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Rene Millman is a freelance writer and broadcaster who covers cybersecurity, AI, IoT, and the cloud. He also works as a contributing analyst at GigaOm and has previously worked as an analyst for Gartner covering the infrastructure market. He has made numerous television appearances to give his views and expertise on technology trends and companies that affect and shape our lives. You can follow Rene Millman on Twitter.