The 8 Best Gaming Keyboards to Buy in 2018

Buy the top budget, splurge-worthy, portable and design gaming keyboards

Standard keyboards are fine for office work, but to take your gaming to the next level, you need the speed and precision that only specialty gaming keyboards can offer. Gaming keyboards offer higher quality components to give you more precision, programmable keys to put vital controls at your fingertips, backlighting to help you play in a dark room and more. They can be pretty expensive, unfortunately, but the upgrade in quality over a standard keyboard is usually worth it. If you’re in the market for a gaming keyboard, we have the best ones across a wide range of prices and features right here.

Best Overall: TEC.BEAN Rainbow LED Backlit Wired Office Gaming Keyboard

It’s tough to beat a gaming keyboard that’s anti-skid, waterproof, programmable and compatible. The TEC.BEAN Rainbow LED Backlit Wired Office Gaming Keyboard is an ergonomically designed gaming keyboard that tops the list for its multifunctional design and affordability.

The TEC.BEAN Rainbow LED Backlit Wired Office Gaming Keyboard includes an LED backlighting that gives it a rainbow illuminating effect (and it can be easily adjusted on or off). It features 104 durable and responsive keys, plus 12 multimedia keys that provide access to shortcuts for game controls (or virtually anything else). The TEC.BEAN doesn’t require any drivers and includes a braided USB cable for plug-and-play with Windows and Mac operating systems.

Runner-Up, Best Overall: CORSAIR K55

The CORSAIR K55 is an affordable gaming keyboard with a whole ton of features that give it a solid runner-up as the best on the list. It features 10 preconfigured RGB multi-color lighting effects, programmable macro keys, as well as dedicated multimedia controls for audio adjustments with no interruptions.

A good gaming keyboard has to get the keys right, so the CORSAIR K55 gives players responsive, silent and satisfying to touch key pieces along with multi-key anti-ghosting, so simultaneous keystrokes are always correctly registered. Below its body is a detachable soft rubber wrist rest to add ease and put comfort in your long gaming sessions along with collapsible feet at its bottom that allow for optimal hand positioning. The K55 RGB includes a Windows Key Lock mode that disables Windows keys to stop any potential distraction, so you can keep your focus on what matters most: the game.

Best Budget: Redragon S101 Vajra

As with most budget keyboards, the keys on the Vajra are not backlit, however, it does have a few light up sections as a reasonable consolation prize. It also has swappable WASD and arrow keys, plus 12 media keys (which require simultaneously pressing the F key) and 19 keys without conflict. Although it isn’t a mechanical keyboard, it has hybrid membrane switches, which are actually comfortably close to mechanical switches when it comes to tactile feedback. It has a fierce black and red design that has solid construction despite being plastic, and is spacious to game with, though it lacks a dedicated wrist rest.

The Redragon S101 also comes packaged with a mouse, which makes this budget pick an even better deal. As one Amazon reviewer put it, it far exceeds most expectations given the price, but it’s still a budget option so “don’t be disappointed if you are expecting this thing to walk your dog.”

Runner Up, Best Budget: Rii RK100+

When you absolutely do not want to spend more than $15 on a gaming keyboard, then the Rii RK100+ is your best bet. The rainbow LED backlight gaming keyboard is full of surprises aside from its absurdly affordable price.

The Rio RK100+ isn't necessarily a mechanical keyboard but certainly feels like one by offering a mimicked feeling. Its rainbow LED backlights are adjustable with five different settings for personal preference. When it’s not in use, the keyboard will save energy and enter into a sleeping mode after 10 minutes being idle. It works with Windows operating systems and comes with a 12-month warranty.

Best for Portability: Arteck HB030B

The Artek HB030B is a slim and portable wireless Bluetooth 3.0 gaming keyboard that fits perfectly in a backpack or purse and is light on the wallet. The tiny gaming keyboard measures .24 x 9.72 x 5.91 inches and weighs no more than 7.6 ounces.

Big things come in little packages, like the Artek HB030B’s six-month battery life (based on two hours of non-stop use per day) powered by rechargeable lithium batteries. The powerful little gaming keyboard includes seven unique LED backlights with two brightness levels and an auto sleep feature to preserve energy. It’s compatible with Windows, MAC, iOS and Android operating systems and comes with a 24-month warranty with readily available customer service.

Best Design: Razer BlackWidow X Chroma

Most gaming keyboards have some sort of back lighting these days, but not all backlighting is created equal. If you want the brightest and most colorful keys that are integrated into the actual games you’re playing, and just plain coolest looking gaming keyboard overall, the Razer Black Widow X Chroma wins hands down. It functions like a champ, thanks to reliable and precise mechanical keys, but the real attraction here is the Chroma backlighting with 16.8-million total customizable color options. The backlighting can be customized however you like, but many games will also have built in presets to light up the keyboard in specific ways just for that game like matching character colors or changing color to show ability cooldowns in MMO games. The Razer BlackWidow X Chroma turns keyboard backlighting into an art form and is definitely the coolest looking gaming keyboard on the market.

Best Wireless: Logitech K800 Wireless Illuminated Keyboard

When gaming, you want the best-secured connection you can get in order to have a quick response time without delay. If you don’t want to go wired, the Logitech K800 Wireless Illuminated Keyboard offers one of the best wireless connections you can get for a gaming keyboard.

The Logitech K800 Wireless Illuminated Keyboard is built with a powerful 2.4 GHz wireless connection using a unifying USB receiver. The keyboard includes a keystroke system that makes typing comfortable and quiet, and it requires no batteries, instead, relying on a quick charge through its micro-USB cable that gives up to 10 days of battery life. The Logitech K800 Wireless Illuminated Keyboard is compatible with Windows operating systems from Windows XP to Windows 10 and comes with a three-year limited hardware warranty. 

Best Splurge: Das Keyboard Prime 13

Sometimes it’s easy to forget how important keyboards can be for regular computer usage, but when you’re gaming, it’s especially vital to have a good one because otherwise you might lose that important match. If you’re a serious gamer and have money to spend, we’d recommend looking at the Das Keyboard Prime 13.

On first glance, the Das Keyboard Prime 13 does not have the flourishes and design prowess of some others on this list. But it does offer supreme competency in everything it does, a minimalist design, and comfort for your hands. Under its black veneer, this keyboard has high-quality Cherry MX Brown switches that give you feedback halfway through a key press. The keyboard also has white LED backlighting with seven levels of brightness, so you can find the perfect lighting while you are playing a game or browsing the Web.

For convenience, it has a USB port at its the top right corner, so you can plug in a mouse, thumb-drive or a phone in a much easier spot than plugging it into a desktop. Oh, and it claims to last more than 50 million keystrokes, so be prepared to have this keyboard for many years before having to replace it.


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