Gaming Keyboards

Whether you’re an FPS player or an RTS buff, a gaming keyboard can give you that edge you need to dominate the competition. These keyboards offer features like programmable macros, dedicated media controls and customizable RGB lighting.

Other key features include a wide range of switch types, including tactile feedback and a choice of actuation points. For example, a heavier actuation force may be preferred by gamers who slam their fingers down hard.
Tactile Switches

Many mechanical keyboards are available in multiple switch types, each with their own unique feel. It’s important to understand the differences between each switch type before making your final decision.

Linear switches offer a smooth keystroke with no noticeable bump or noise. They’re popular among gamers due to their shortened actuation distance and smooth travel.

Tactile switches feature a small “bump” that you can feel underneath each keystroke. These switches are a great choice for typists and coders, who need to be sure that each keystroke is registered accurately.

Some tactile switches feature a light bump, while others have a heavier one. If you’re looking for a tactile switch with a heavier bump, consider the Durock T1 switches. These switches are similar to Cherry MX Browns but have a higher actuation force. They’re also available in a variety of colors, including red. These switches are a good choice for e-sports gamers who require a high level of accuracy.
Clicky Switches

Clicky switches are a sub-set of mechanical keyboard switches that produce a tactile bump and audible clicking sound with each keystroke. While the sound and feel of these switches is incredibly satisfying to many gamers, their loudness may be an issue for some in a public workspace or when using a voice chat.

Gateron Blues, Kailh Box Jades, and Kailh Box White switches are excellent options for clicky keyboards as they provide a great audible sound while not being too loud. These switches also have a light typing feel with a short pre-travel and a relatively long reset travel.

NovelKeys Sherbet switches are another great option for a clicky keyboard. They have a light typing feel from the factory and are relatively smooth, but can be made even smoother with a little home-lubing. The actuation force of Sherbet switches is light, around 45 gf, and don’t bottom out as quickly as other clicky keyboard switches.
Adjustable Switches

Whether you’re a competitive gamer or just looking for the best keyboard for typing, your choice of switches will play a major role in your experience. A key switch’s ability to register a press and send that information to your computer will determine how long the keys last, how fast they reset, and whether you get any annoying issues like key chatter or input delay.

Keyboard switches vary widely by manufacturer and type. Most gamers look for linear switches with a light actuation point to reduce the amount of force needed to enter a keystroke and provide the responsiveness that is ideal for gaming.

A few manufacturers, including SteelSeries, have begun to offer adjustable switches for a more personalized experience. The latest versions of their OmniPoint mechanical switches, featured in the Apex Pro TKL and Apex Mini Wireless, allow you to adjust the actuation point on a per-key basis. This means that you can set the switches to have a light touch for quick reflexes while gaming, and then set them to have more resistance for longer form typing sessions.
RGB Lighting

Gaming keyboards with RGB lighting offer a way for gamers to express themselves through their desktop setups. Unlike simple backlighting, which makes keys easier to read in the dark, RGB lighting can produce a palette of more than 16 million colors and help tie a gaming computer’s aesthetic together.

When choosing an RGB-capable keyboard, look for one that offers features like mouse syncing to coordinate the illumination of your keyboard and mouse at the same time. You’ll also want to find a keyboard with software that lets you customize RGB effects for different games.

While most people would agree that RGB lighting isn’t crucial to gaming, it can add a touch of style and flair to any gaming keyboard. Just be sure to choose a model with good software to control the LEDs and ensure that it won’t drain your battery too quickly.

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