Though it cries out for media/macro keys, the minimalist Logitech G513 Carbon gaming keyboard justifies its price with custom, RGB-lit mechanical switches that feel great and won't wake up your household. One aspect of keyboard design that you'll see mentioned in reviews—but about which most people don't give a second thought—is the type of switches used for individual keys. Non-gaming keyboards are usually plug-and-play devices, with no additional software to install, meaning that plugging in the keyboard cable is all the setup you'll need. Bluetooth options make sense in certain situations; they don't monopolize a USB port, and newer versions of Bluetooth—the current one is 5.0—are stable, easy to manage, and offer compatibility with more mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets. These aren't the sorts of customization features that everyone will use from day to day, but for players who invest time and money into gaming, these keyboards offer a competitive edge. Razer's Huntsman Tournament Edition is a solid twitch-response keyboard for competitive players comfortable prioritizing gaming over typo-free typing. The dongle itself is usually a tiny rectangle—small enough to plug in and forget about. On cheaper boards, the backlight coloration tends to be just one hue, but as you go up the market, you get programmable RGB lighting, sometimes customizable by zone, and at the very top end, assignable by each individual key (so-called "per-key RGB"). Featherlight actuation can lead to lots of typing mistakes. (See our guide to ergonomic keyboards.). While a few of these use plain silicone-dome switches, many use scissor switches, which add a mechanical stabilizer to each key for a uniform feel, and an attached plunger under each keycap allows for shorter key travel. Comfortable and quiet for typing and gaming. A lifetime New Yorker, John is a graduate of New York University and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Follow him on Twitter @branttom. Best Computer Keyboards Windows Central 2020. The best computer keyboard for most people, especially those focused on comfort, is the Microsoft Sculpt. The Best Keyboards for 2020. Among the only major drawbacks of mainstream wireless keyboards is that few of them feature key backlighting, which hampers one of their most useful roles: controlling a home theater PC in a softly lit living room. Smaller distinctions include the placement of the directional-arrow, Page Up and Down, and Home and End keys. Driverless SmartSet app is more work than we'd like. John is PCMag's executive editor for hardware. The simplest way to connect a wired keyboard to your PC is via a standard USB port. Many keyboards—not only models designed specifically to be ergonomic—have these feet, and research has shown that it's important to experiment with them until your keyboard is flat or, ideally, angled slightly away from your wrists. The result is not only greater comfort, but reduced stress to the joints and tendons, ultimately helping you to avoid painful inflammation and the potential for worse: expensive surgery. But if you want to reduce the number of cables on your desk and gain the flexibility to use your keyboard at a distance—whether that be on your lap at your desk, or from across the room—wireless is the way to go. True Cherry MX switches in a choice of three varieties. Most mainstream and gaming models offer a 10-key numeric pad, which laptops frequently lack and is a necessity for anyone who needs to tally numbers or enter data into a spreadsheet. Other extras include pass-through USB ports or audio connections on the keyboard, which simplify the process of connecting peripherals to a desktop PC whose ports may be inconvenient to reach under a desk. If premium features aren't what you're after, HyperX's Alloy Origins may be the nicest no-nonsense midrange mechanical keyboard around. Bear that in mind if you're looking at gaming keyboards, as tenkeyless models are a recent trend especially in that subclass. Subscribing to a newsletter indicates your consent to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. It's extreme, but it's also one of the better esports keyboards around. He served as Computer Shopper’s editor in chief from 2008 to 2017. The Best For Seekers of a Deluxe RGB Mechanical, The Best For Esports Players Seeking a Tenkeyless Design, The Best For No-Nonsense Mechanical-Keyboard Buffs, Kinesis Freestyle Edge RGB Split Mechanical Gaming Keyboard, Razer Pro Type Wireless Mechanical Keyboard, The Best For Heavy Typists Who Are Also Gamers, The Best For Extreme Tweakers, Key-Switch Connoisseurs, The Best For Ergonomic Design at a Value Price.