Gaming can be highly competitive, and the input devices you sue can make all the difference in killing the competition, or getting owned. Your keyboard is an essential part of this setup, and for gamers the mechanical keyboard rules the market. Mechanical keyboards can be mroe responsive, long lasting, and prevent the accidental doubletaps or surrounding keyboard clicks that regular keyboards suffer from.
Choosing the right mechanical gaming keyboard can seem like a challenge with so many options on the market. There’s some clear guidelines for choosing the perfect keyboard.
Choose a Reputable Brand
Mechanical keyboards come with a lot of moving parts, cheap brands can break quickly, so make sure that the rand of keyboard is legit and has a reputation for using high quality parts.
Substance vs Style
Don’t be swayed by some of the flashier keyboards, make sure your keyboard has a strong reputation no matter how cool it looks. The good news is, you can get a high quality mechanical keyboard that has the style you want, without sacrificing the reliability or performance.
Check the Reviews
We’ve got some great options for the best mechanical keyboard below, but there’s plenty more out there if you’re looking at other brands! Just be sure to check reviews, and keep a close eye on how “real” they are before you buy. A quick way to spot a cheap keyboard is to look for the same (or very similar) keybaord being sold under random brands on Amazon.
The Best Mechancial Keyboards Reviewed
We’ve handpicked four of the very best mechanical keyboards of 2021 to help you on your hunt. Whether your focus is on fast and accurate gaming, or completing the look of your gaming setup, we have options for you.
We’re going to begin our list of recommendations with a mechanical keyboard that places a strong emphasis on ergonomics. If you’re seeking a mechanical keyboard that offers gamers the ability to enhance hand and wrist endurance, look no further than the Kinesis Freestyle Edge RGB.
While the Kinesis Freestyle Edge RGB takes some getting used to, the split design allows gamers to keep their arms in a more natural position, which translates to less stress on their arms and hands. A reduction in arm and wrist stress can serve as an excellent asset for gamers that enjoy playing for prolonged amounts of time. On the topic of comfort, the Kinesis Freestyle Edge RGB provides a comfy wrist rest that blends well with the keyboard’s overall design.
Suppose you’re someone that takes a minimalist approach to gaming. In that case, it’s important to keep in mind that the Kinesis Freestyle Edge RGB will take up more space than traditional mechanical keyboard designs. You can work around the extra desk space that the Kinesis Freestyle Edge RGB takes up by spreading out the keyboard’s two halves and placing relevant gaming accessories like speakers between the two halves.
Per-key customizable RGB lighting within this mechanical keyboard allows gamers to create custom color tones that suit their preferences, while the True Cherry MX switches come in three varieties.
The Kinesis Freestyle Edge RGB Mechanical Keyboard does come with a learning curve. Still, once you’re acquainted, you’ll drastically reduce the likelihood of hand, wrist, or arm stress occurring during play.
The Drop ENTR proves that a mechanical keyboard doesn’t have to be fancy to perform at a high level. While the Drop ENTR’s design isn’t flashy, the quality of the device is exceptional. Many publications recommend the Drop ENTR as one of the market’s best budget mechanical keyboards due to its high-grade parts that spur top-level functionality.
High-quality parts translate to a mechanical keyboard that’s reliable in more ways than one. First, you can trust that the Drop ENTR’s lifespan will be anything but short, and secondly, the thick build of this keyboard offers durability that fosters long-term use.
While the Drop ENTR doesn’t offer the same customization opportunities that other mechanical keyboards provide, you’ll find that this keyboard model has other attractive offerings like a traditional key layout that’s accessible to every level of gamer.
You’ll be able to select either Gatreon Yellow or Drop’s Halo True mechanical switches for the DROP ENTR. Gatreon Yellow switches are similar to Cherry MX Red switches because they provide gamers with quick, smooth action during play. While Gatreon Yellow keys are plenty responsive, they contain a higher actuation force than Cherry MX Reds, which reduces the number of keyboard errors a gamer might register.
If you’re someone that likes to travel with your gaming gear, the DROP ENTR’s USB-C cable is detachable for easy unplug, pack up, and go scenarios.
Fairly priced with a quality build, the Drop ENTR is a budget keyboard that delivers.
We couldn’t have made a list of the top 2021 mechanical keyboards without including a wireless model. The Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro emphasizes comfort along with portability by offering users a detachable wrist rest and two incline settings to match their personal gaming preferences.
It’s essential that gamers gain a feeling of stability with the keyboards they use. The plastic and aluminum materials that the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro utilizes create a solid foundation. Simultaneously, the device’s keys are noted as performing well overall, with only some minor shakes and rattles. Gamers will achieve an ideal balance when using the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro’s keys as they don’t require much force to actuate. Still, they provide that tactile, clicky design that mechanical keyboard enthusiasts love.
If you’re a gamer that enjoys customizing your keyboard’s lighting, you can easily manage the BlackWidow V3 Pro’s RGB backlighting through the device’s hotkeys. This mechanical keyboard’s companion software allows you to take color customization to a higher level by changing the lighting’s colors, effects, and pacing.
Gamers should note that the BlackWidow V3 Pro is only available on Windows. If you’re looking to lower the noise level you produce when registering keys on this mechanical keyboard, you can opt for silent Razer Yellow switches.
While some of our picks utilize a minimalist design, our final pick will serve as a reliable option.
COVID-19 is leading to a substantial increase in the amount of people working from home. If your computer gaming space now doubles as a home office, the Razer Pro Type can easily double as both a work and gaming keyboard.
Many mechanical gaming keyboards pride themselves on being flashy in their design. If you’re looking to take a more subtle approach to your mechanical keyboard’s aesthetic, the Razer Pro Type Wireless Mechanical Keyboard skips typical offerings like chroma lighting and opts for white LED backlighting. If backlighting isn’t your thing at all, you can turn it off completely or adjust lighting levels.
Gamers looking for a durable mechanical keyboard can place their trust in the Razer Pro Type Wireless model as this keyboard is certified to last at 80 million keystrokes. While the Razer Pro Type’s tactile “Orange” switches require a slightly higher level of press force, you’ll make fewer typos than you would on other mechanical gaming keyboards.
When you’re looking for a wireless keyboard that’s affordable and types like a pro, you can’t go wrong with the Kinesis Freestyle Edge.
The Pros of Mechanical Keyboards
Durability is one of the biggest perks that mechanical keyboards offer. The average amount of keystrokes that a mechanical keyboard provides easily beats out standard membrane keyboards. Gamers often select mechanical keyboards because they feel more connected to the games they play through key clicking elements.
Pressing down a key on a membrane keyboard simply doesn’t compare to a mechanical keyboard’s tactile sensation. Since it takes you less time to register keys on mechanical keyboards, you can maneuver between keys faster and press keys with lower amounts of force.
If you’re looking for ways to upgrade your gaming experience, a quality mechanical keyboard that matches your preferences will always make a positive impact.
How Mechanical Keyboards Benefit Gamers
Gaming enthusiasts are always looking for ways to improve their play. Since keyboards are an integral component of how a gamer can perform, the market presents different keyboard options for gamers to elevate their experience.
Mechanical and membrane are the two classes of keyboards that gamers use. The most common variety of keyboards on the market is a membrane keyboard that sends signals to a computer from a rubber dome when a user presses a key. Since membrane keyboards are more common, they’re less expensive than mechanical keyboards. Mechanical keyboards are more costly than membrane keyboards due to a high-quality plastic key switch sitting underneath each keycap.
A mechanical keyboard’s three components include a keycap, a stem, and housing, that holds together all of its components. Many gamers find that the spring-loaded design that mechanical keyboards offer more of a responsive feel than mainstream membrane keyboards.
Before we highlight the most exciting mechanical keyboards for 2021, we’re going to discuss mechanical keyboard customization. We list some things to consider when shopping for a mechanical keyboard so you can have an easier time locating a product that’s right for you.
Mechanical Keyboard Customization
If you’re looking to increase your mechanical keyboard’s responsiveness, you can opt for tactile keys that register when you press the key halfway down. When you only have to press a tactile key halfway down, you can increase your level of responsiveness during play and navigate different keys with a higher level of speed.
Mechanical keyboards often offer LED-backlit keycaps that can enhance the aesthetic of your keyboard. You can go above and beyond customizing your keyboard’s visual design by selecting keycaps that contain different shapes, sizes, logos, and more.
Selecting the right mechanical keyboard is all about meeting your personal needs as a gamer. While mechanical keyboards offer more durability on average than membrane keyboards, it’s essential that you select a mechanical keyboard that can handle the amount of time that you spend gaming. A keyboard’s lifespan is going to be measured in keystrokes. The average keystroke lifespan of a membrane keyboard is 5 million clicks. In contrast, Cherry MX mechanical switches contain a lifespan that functions over 20-50 million clicks.
Many gamers enjoy the audible clicking sounds that tactile keys produce at the beginning and end of keystrokes, but some gamers might find these noises distracting.
Actuation force indicates the amount of force that’s necessary to register a key. If you’re a gamer that prefers a keyboard with a lighter response, we recommend choosing tactile keys or keys with low actuation force levels. Mechanical keyboards typically contain an actuation force range of 45-60 grams.
Now that you have a more clear idea of what makes mechanical keyboards different than your average membrane keyboard, it’s time to dive into our list of the top mechanical keyboards for 2021.