Keyboards are one of the primary ways we interact with our computers. Their quality can seriously affect our daily experience. Nowhere is that more applicable than gaming on your PC.
Contrary to popular belief, an excellent keyboard experience does not have to break the bank. For $100 or less, you can find exceptionally crafted and feature-rich keyboards. The feel they provide is bound to create a positive effect during your gaming and work sessions.
There are a lot of keyboards that fall within the “under $100” category, but not all are worth your time and money. The following is a curated list of the best in this category.
1. Razer BlackWidow Lite: Silent and Tactile Gaming Keyboard
Razer BlackWidow Lite: Silent and Tactile Gaming Keyboard – Compact with Detachable Cable – Tenkeyless Design – Razer Orange Switches
Razer Blackwidow lite is a versatile, sleek, and modern-looking red-colored aluminum keyboard. This keyboard is well-fitted for gaming purposes and for the professionals at their working places. It is a tactile keyboard, compacted with a detachable cable.
Although it doesn’t offer RGB lighting, it has a white LED in the backlit keys, giving a very nice and bright look. This LED highlights the buttons, especially when used at night in darkness. You can also control the brightness as well. The Caps button, when pressed, lights up green.
It has mechanical orange switches that are known as silent switches. These switches require very little, just 45 grams of actuation force. Furthermore, to dampen the typing noise, O-rings are introduced in these switches. It helps to dampen the noise.
These rings also help soften the button and easily reduce your fatigue while using them for an extended period. These keys provide the best gaming experience.
Numpad is made on a smaller footprint, providing more room on your keyboard. Moreover, on the back floor side of the keyboard are the smooth pads that help in sliding down easily. It also offers a cloud-based configuration tool. You can configure and set the shortcuts easily.
- Light and silent typing experience with Orange switches
- Typing noise is dampened by O-rings
- Backlighting with white LED
- Razer Synapse-3: Macro-programmable keys. You can reprogram them easily
- Only 45 grams of actuation force required
- It lacks wrist rest, hence, offers limited ergonomics.
- Offers higher click latency as compared to other keyboards
- Cannot use wirelessly and for entertainment or HTPC use
2. Mechanical Keyboard HAVIT RGB Backlit Wired, HV-KB395L (Black)
Mechanical Keyboard HAVIT RGB Backlit Wired Gaming Keyboard Extra-Thin & Light, Kailh Latest Low Profile Blue Switches, 104 Keys N-key Rollover HV-KB395L (Black)
A low-profile mechanical keyboard aimed at gamers and professionals, the anodized aluminum backplate is discreet and creates a rigid keyboard. The dimensions are 17.2” 5” 0.89”, coming in at a weight of 570 g only. Although the body of the keyboard is small and subtle, its prominent mechanical key switches stand tall.
The keys are arranged in a bezel-less backplate. It has a legible perfect font style having 104 front Key layouts. This keyboard has KAILH Blue mechanical switches. These switches are clicky and loud. Sixty grams of actuation force is required for these switches.
Furthermore, the RGB lighting is controlled by the keyboard. With built-in LED profiles, which are highly customizable, you can adjust speed, brightness at your discretion. It is not wireless, but it comprises a removable micro-USB cable.
After installing the driver, you can get a bonus to modify settings like adjusting brightness and other macros, game mode, windows lock, and response time.
- Flawless and fast gaming experience
- Highly Customizable
- Awesome RGB lighting
- Blinking light of RGB colors
- Quite a noisy sound of clicking with more actuation force
3. HyperX Alloy HX-KB1BL1-NA/A3 FPS Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
HyperX Alloy HX-KB1BL1-NA/A3 FPS Mechanical Gaming Keyboard (Cherry MX Blue)
It is a highly compact keyboard made for gamers, ideal for FPS gameplay. The best feature you can get on this keyboard is the 100% anti-ghosting effect for gaming mode. It has a solid steel frame at the top for ultra-protection. This makes the keyboard highly stable and durable.
It features cherry blue mechanical MX keys and red-colored hyper X backlit keys with an amazing red-colored textured keycaps design. The red RGB backlighting enhances the glamour of keys on the keyboard. The lightning effect offers 5 adjustable brightness levels. Moreover, there are customizable six preset LED modes. You can choose any of them according to your choice.
Its blue cherry switches are loud and clicky. This can be sometimes irritating for those sitting beside you. They require 60g of actuation force. It also facilitates a USB charge port that is detachable. The USB attaching port is highly convenient. Not only this, but it also gives a bonus of N-key roll-over functions.
The keys also bear springs, which prevent them from damage and make them pressure-resistant. For the replacement of the keys, a keycap tool is also provided with the keyboard. The best feature available for keys is a 50 million per keystroke rate. Hence, you can use it limitlessly without having a fear of the damage of keys.
- Amazing build-in quality
- Durable and Stable
- Quite minimalist design with nice colors
- Chargeable port for phone
- Average wrist rest
- Annoying clicking sound
4. SteelSeries Apex 64555 Gaming Keyboard
SteelSeries Apex 64555 Gaming Keyboard
Steelseries Apex keyboard is made of steel backplate and sturdy plastics. It is very durable and ensures high stability. The dimensions of this Apex keyboard are 44.04×3.96×13.64cm. With all this sturdiness comes the penalty of weight, coming in at 1.7 KG.
Keyboard keys are equipped with the prodigious Q×1 mechanical switch. Hence with these switches, you can get fast typing with less actuation force and short actuation distance. These keys give fast reactions and provide an exceptional gaming experience.
The built-in support of a 104-key rollover feature coupled with 100% anti-ghosting are some of the luxuries afforded to gamers. To put the cherry on top, each key is programmable to any macros the user wishes to create, lending this keyboard a solid workspace experience as well.
Underneath every key, there are blue LED lights. These provide a brilliant, sparkling, and great eye-catchy style and look. It also gives the customizable option for brightness. It offers 4 levels of brightness, and you can easily choose between any level.
- Light keypress
- Highly durable
- Fast gaming experience
- It is heavy
5. CORSAIR K63 Compact Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
CORSAIR K63 Compact Mechanical Gaming Keyboard- Linear & Quiet – Cherry MX Red
CORSAIR K63 Compact Mechanical Gaming Keyboard was designed with the compactness of a ten-keyless design in mind. Assisting in desktop space management and aiding mobility, the keyboard’s dimensions are 36.5×17.09×4.09cm, weighing in at 454 grams.
Creating a premium experience through its Cherry MX Red mechanical switches, these switches are called the linear and quiet switches. The top feature is, you require only 45 grams of actuation force for these keys. This enables you to go with a fast-typing experience.
CUE Microprogramming facility is also provided. This gives a good backlighting experience. A bright and vibrant LED backlighting in its keys gives a brilliant look. You also have a facility of light adjustable options with this keyboard. Moreover, it gives a 100% anti-ghosting feature with a key roll-over for the gaming mode.
You can enjoy your gaming at a much faster speed. It is very affordable, and this ideal keyboard can be your first choice for the best gaming keyboard under 100.
- Precise and fast typing
- Awesome Software
- Audio adjustable option while gaming
- Unchangeable backlighting color
- No onboard memory
6. VicTsing Gaming Keyboard Wired, Red LED Backlit Mechanical Keyboard
VicTsing Gaming Keyboard Wired, Red LED Backlit Mechanical Keyboard with Red Switch, 100% Anti-ghosting, Waterproof, Quiet Computer Keyboard with Detachable Ergonomic Wrist for Mac, PC Gamer.
VicTsing keyboard is a highly durable, lightweight, and Waterproof keyboard. It is featuring a red backlight that is quite vibrant and extensive in its coverage. 5 themed backlights and 20 programming color model choices. This is highly customizable in the case of lighting and fading the color.
The keyboard comes with the famous Red Switches, known as the quiet switches. It is enabling a silent typing experience. This can be tested as each key can bear 60 million keystrokes over the life of the keyboard. A highly efficient and durable ABS structure is featured.
Moreover, it provides 100% anti-ghosting. A high-end detachable ergonomic wrist rest is also the best feature. This can help you to use it for hours without experiencing fatigue, and it also improves the wrist posture.
To top it off, users are given an extra feature of 12 shortcuts for multimedia adjustability. These features benefit both gamers and professionals. To keep the keyboard dust-free, 104 key removable keycaps are also enabled, making the cleaning of your keyboard very easy.
- High ergonomics
- Highly durable and lightweight
- Keys stuck problem
7. Logitech G413 Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Logitech G413 Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard with USB Passthrough – Carbon
Logitech’s G413 mechanical gaming keyboard has a minimalist design opting for several acceptable features with its high-end performance capacity. This gaming keyboard is highly durable and made of tough materials, aluminum-magnesium alloy. This allows it to be lightweight, all the while maintaining rigidity.
You can attach a USB cable that helps increase the data speed and gain 100% power output. With this, a chargeable port is enabled, which can easily charge the USB and your phone, and other accessories.
It also has Romer-G mechanical switches. These switches are extremely faster, require less actuation force. Comparable to other mechanical keyboards, it has an actuation speed of 1.5mm- 25% higher than others. These switches give a fast and quiet, convenient, and precise typing experience.
To use the keyboard in a comfortable zone, rubber stabilizers are attached. These are adjustable with different angles. The function keys FN of this keyboard gives you the advantage to control lots of features, such as control volume, play, and pause, enter the game mode, to lessen the lightning effect.
G 413 carbon is used in the backlighting. The elemental red backlighting effect is enabled all time so that the keys are always visible. Moreover, the keys are soft to use and can easily be cleaned.
Hence, this keyboard becomes an exceptional keyboard with the above extraordinary highlights.
- Sleek design with high durability
- Soft and quiet tying experience
- Rubber stabilizers
- Exceptional red backlighting
- No onboard memory
8. CORSAIR K57 RGB Wireless Gaming Keyboard
CORSAIR K57 RGB Wireless Gaming Keyboard – <1ms response time with Slipstream Wireless – Connect with USB dongle, Bluetooth or wired – Individually Backlit RGB Keys, Black
Corsair wireless laptop is extremely versatile and gives an excellent gaming experience. It enables an option to use a wired USB. Moreover, with that a bonus feature of a super-fast 1ms response time with Slipstream. You can also connect with a wireless USB dongle, Bluetooth.
It also supports RGB lighting with the backlit RGB keys, giving a vibrant lighting effect in darkness. Capellix LEDs are used in this backlighting. Every time it lights up when you press a single key. The finest feature is they consume less battery, all the while providing the same vibrant brightness. It also provides 18 kinds of colorful lighting effects using it wirelessly. To get full control of the colors for each key, you need to use the plugin via wire.
The battery can last longer, up to 35 hours, with RGB lightning on, and without this, it can last up to 175 hours. Awesome! A great microprogramming system is installed on it. To get the best gaming practice, six programmable macro keys are enabled.
For smooth gaming and comfort, a soft rubber pad is attached. This helps to reduce pressure on the wrist. A multimedia option can adjust the volume while gaming is also there. You can use it without having any interruption with your game.
- High ergonomics
- Vibrant RGB lighting
- Long-lasting battery life
- Adjustable brightness
- Custom colors with multiple colors scheme
- Comfortable typing
- Irreplaceable battery
All the keyboards listed here provide an exceptional experience for gaming. Out of all these the Corsair K57 will be our recommendation, for the following reasons:
- Lowest latency results in a more competitive and responsive gaming experience
- Wireless connectivity enables more degrees of freedom
- Included wrist rest can prevent the onset of medical issues such as carpal tunnel
Corsair being a complete system manufacturer means the user is backed up by their large and professional customer support staff.
Taking all this into conjunction, the Corsair K57 is the sub $100 gaming keyboard king.