Best gaming keyboard 2021 – the best gaming keyboards we’ve tested best gaming keyboards

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Give yourself an advantage with the best gaming keyboard. Just your run-of-the-mill keyboard, or even the one attached to one of the best laptops, isn’t enough if you’re in it to win it. A killer gaming keyboard will deliver the responsiveness, comfort and accuracy you need to triumph over your enemies and do so in style and comfort.

The best gaming keyboards are specifically tailored to the needs of a PC gamer, with improved build quality, a range of mechanical switches, ergonomic designs, anti-ghosting, and N-key rollover, as well as software-based features to extract the most from the hardware. So, whether you’re playing today’s best PC games or the best free games, getting one is crucial to have the most immersive gaming experience and the fastest response. 

The best gaming keyboard is an essential companion to the best gaming PCs, every bit as much as getting hold of the best gaming mouse or the best gaming monitor to give your rig that real wow factor. Here are the best ones.

Razer Huntsman v2 Analog

(Image credit: Razer)

1. Razer Huntsman v2 Analog

The best gaming keyboard right now

Specifications

Interface: Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Switches: Analog mechanical

Reasons to buy

+Fully customizable key actuation+Delightfully tactile key clicks+Extremely comfortable wrist rest

Reasons to avoid

Eye-wateringly expensiveBuilt-in twin-cable 

Combining the latest optical technology and Razer’s analog mechanical key switches, the Razer Huntsman v2 Analog is good enough to get a five-star rating from us. That’s under-selling it. This gaming keyboard delivers the best typing and gaming experience of any keyboard we’ve tested in the last few months, with extremely satisfying tactile feedback and a wrist rest that’s designed to let you game for longer. As far as keyboards go, it is sitting on the expensive side of things, but it’s definitely worth it.

Read the full review: Razer Huntsman v2 Analog

Roccat Vulkan TKL Pro

(Image credit: Roccat)

2. Roccat Vulkan TKL Pro

First in its class compact gaming keyboard

Specifications

Interface: Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: Yes

Reasons to buy

+Fast and accurate performance+Compact form factor

Reasons to avoid

Pricey

Who needs a full-sized keyboard when TKL gaming keyboards such as the Roccat Vulkan TKL Pro exist? This compact gaming keyboard is among the best in performance, comfort, and looks, touting a classy brushed gunmetal finish and floating keys that brilliantly showcase its customizable RGB lighting. Roccat’s Titan optical switches are not only fast and accurate, but satisfying, quiet and robust as well. It’ll set you back quite a bit, but it’s so worth it.

Read the full review: Roccat Vulkan TKL Pro

SteelSeries Apex Pro

(Image credit: SteelSeries)

3. SteelSeries Apex Pro

Taking magnetism to another level

Specifications

Interface: Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: Yes

Reasons to buy

+Beautiful aluminum build+Custom actuation settings+Quiet

Reasons to avoid

Expensive

The SteelSeries Apex Pro’s svelte aesthetic and clever OLED display are just the appetizers. The SteelSeries Apex Pro gets our coveted 5-star rating for many reasons, the biggest of which are its stunning and solid build, custom actuation and comfortable – not to mention, quiet – magnetic switches. Performance-wise, it’s among the best gaming keyboards we’ve tested yet, which makes its $199 price tag worth the splurge.

Read the full review: SteelSeries Apex Pro

Razer Huntsman Elite

(Image credit: Razer)

4. Razer Huntsman Elite

Light it up

Specifications

Interface: Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: Yes

Reasons to buy

+Fast key actuation+Tactile key switches  

Reasons to avoid

Expensive 

If you have the need for speed, then the Huntsman Elite is your best bet, thanks to its new optomechanical switches. That sounds like a mouthful, but essentially, it means that Razer has managed to combine mechanical switches with optical sensors. This unthinkable allows the Huntsman Elite to take its actuation to the next level, and you would be hard-pressed to find a faster keyboard on the market. Switches aside, it’s also remarkably comfortable to type on. Plus, it’s covered with more RGB lighting than you can shake a stick at. Sure, it needs two USB cables for power and costs a small fortune, but with tech like this, it’s absolutely worth it.

Read the full review: Razer Huntsman Elite 

Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768

(Image credit: Alienware)

5. Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768

Shockingly good value

Specifications

Interface: Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: Yes

Reasons to buy

+ Cherry MX Brown switches + Affordable 

Reasons to avoid

 Plastic body 

When you think Alienware, “value” isn’t the word that comes to mind. But, this time around, the Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768 is a genuinely great deal. At under 100 bucks or quid, you’re getting the toughest gaming keyboard fitted with mechanical keys, dedicated macro keys and slick aesthetics. It’s not the most feature rich keyboard in the game, but at this price, it really doesn’t need to be. One of the best gaming keyboards in 2021, the Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768 gets the job done, and looks good while doing it.

Read the full review: Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768 

Corsair K95 RGB Platinum

Corsair K95 RGB Platinum is one of the best gaming keyboards we’ve tested. (Image credit: Corsair)

6. Corsair K95 RGB Platinum

The Rolls Royce of RGB gaming keyboards

Specifications

Interface: Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: Yes

Reasons to buy

+Hypnotic disco lighting+Handy media and shortcut keys+Classy aluminum build

Reasons to avoid

Awkward softwareRubber palm rest gets grungy quickly

A $159 price tag on a gaming keyboard might a tad too steep, but the Corsair K95 RGB Platinum, one of the best gaming keyboards we’ve tested in the last year, really does give you a lot of ounce for your bounce. We’re not talking the more trivial bells and whistles like fancy RGB lighting either – although since we are on the subject, this one’s got a whole lot of them, not to mention its integrated 19-zone light bar and the 16.8 million color options, to boot. By bang, we actually mean its 6 dedicated macro keys, 8MB on-board storage and aircraft-grade anodized brushed aluminum frame.

Read the full review: Corsair K95 RGB Platinum

Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition

Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition manages to deliver fast performance without being expensive. (Image credit: Razer)

7. Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition

The Razer Huntsman, but smaller and faster

Specifications

Interface: Wired, wireless

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: Yes

Reasons to buy

+Fast switches+Removable cable

Reasons to avoid

Not many extra features

Shelling out more than $100 for a great gaming keyboard is to be expected if you’re even slightly serious your gaming performance. But the beauty of Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition is that it manages to deliver fast performance without being the most expensive keyboard in town. True, there aren’t a lot of features here, which puts it behind many of its feature-rich rivals, but it makes up for that by being small and boasting a removable to make it perfectly portable for on-the-go gaming.

Read our full review: Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition

Corsair K65 Mini

(Image credit: Corsair)

8. Corsair K65 Mini

Hard to ignore performance in a compact design

Specifications

Interface : Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: Yes

Reasons to buy

+Beautiful yet sturdy+Hyper responsive keystrokes

Reasons to avoid

No way to change elevation

60% keyboards are more than a passing fad. Gamers with smaller desks or just want a more compact setup in general will find these ultra-compact gaming keyboards a boon, and the Corsair K65 Mini is among the best of those. With incredibly satisfying presses, an impressive polling rate of 8,000Hz, and highly customizable keys, there’s a lot to love here. And, they make this keyboard well worth the admittedly steep learning curve if you’re used to full-sized keyboards. It may take a while to get used to not having arrow keys, for example, but you won’t regret it.

Read the full review: Corsair K65 Mini

SteelSeries Apex 3

The budget-minded SteelSeries Apex 3 may come with a few concessions, but it also boasts some impressive features. (Image credit: SteelSeries)

9. SteelSeries Apex 3

The Apex of value

Specifications

Interface: Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: No

Reasons to buy

+Affordable+Great RGB lighting

Reasons to avoid

No mechanical switchesNo USB passthrough

Not all great gaming keyboards have mechanical switches, as this affordable Apex keyboard is proving. The budget-minded SteelSeries Apex 3 may come with a few concessions, but it also boasts some impressive features that more than make up for those compromises. One of those features is its IP32 water resistance for protection against any spills – because who hasn’t accidentally knocked over a can of soda while gaming? Another is its reactive and customizable 10-zone RGB illumination to make your gaming experience all the more impressive. And, if you absolutely hate those clickety clacking noises that mechanical keyboards love to make, you’ll really appreciate this keyboard’s whisper quiet gaming switches. 

Read the full review: SteelSeries Apex 3

Corsair K55 Pro XT

(Image credit: Corsair)

10. Corsair K55 Pro XT

Great for gaming, better for budget streaming

Specifications

Interface: Wired

Keyboard backlighting: Yes

Programmable keys: Yes

Reasons to buy

+Solid performance+Dedicated macro keys

Reasons to avoid

Membrane switches

If you’re now more into streaming than just gaming, you’ll appreciate that Corsair has designed a gaming keyboard specifically made for you and your fellow streamers. The Corsair K55 Pro XT is a solid gaming keyboard that offers just as many streaming features as it does gaming ones, with full RGB customizations to boot. Its Stream Deck compatibility and six dedicated macro keys are terrific, as is the nice-to-the-touch wrist pad. So, you can easily forgive Corsair for opting for membrane switches instead of mechanical ones.

Read the full review: Corsair K55 Pro XT

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