Best gaming keyboard 2020: the best gaming keyboards we've tested

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Jan 10, 2015
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The best gaming keyboard is more than just an excuse to show off some fancy RGB lighting. They’re more rugged, last longer and are more accurate than your average keyboard. And, while they may not turn you into an elite gamer overnight, they will only add to your gaming sessions, making every dive into the best PC games that much more enjoyable.

Most keyboards are good enough to get the job done. Just like the best gaming mouse and the best gaming monitors however, there’s a certain quality missing with run-of-the-mill options. Whether it’s due to performance, extra features or build that can take a beating, the difference is night and day. These keyboards come with features like n-key rollover, macros, incredibly fast response rates and often the kind of lighting options to make a neon sign blush.

No matter what you’re looking for, you can’t go wrong with our selection of the best gaming keyboards. Take advantage of our price comparison tool to find the best bang for your buck.

The best gaming keyboard 2020 at a glance

  1. SteelSeries Apex Pro
  2. Razer Huntsman Elite
  3. Roccat Vulcan 120 Aimo
  4. Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768
  5. Cooler Master MasterSet MS120
  6. Corsair K95 RGB Platinum
  7. Havit Low Profile Mechanical Keyboard
  8. Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition
  9. SteelSeries Apex 3
  10. Razer Ornata V2

SteelSeries Apex Pro


The SteelSeries Apex Pro gets our coveted 5-star rating. (Image credit: SteelSeries)
1. SteelSeries Apex Pro


Taking magnetism to another level


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: Yes

Beautiful aluminum build
Custom actuation settings
Quiet
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


Razer Huntsman Elite costs a small fortune, but it’s absolutely worth it. (Image credit: Razer)
2. Razer Huntsman Elite


Light it up


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: Yes

Fast key actuation
Tactile key switches
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


Roccat Vulcan 120 Aimo


Roccat Vulcan 120 Aimo uses Roccat’s own Titan switches. (Image credit: Roccat)
3. Roccat Vulcan 120 Aimo


The sci-fi keyboard


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: Yes

Feels great to type
Gorgeous lighting
Expensive

The Roccat Vulcan 120 should be at the top of your gaming keyboard wish list, if you want one that looks and feels good. This svelte keyboard uses Roccat’s own Titan switches, rather than the Cherry MX switches found on most other keyboards on this list, and we can vouch for how superb they are. This gaming keyboard combines amazing tactile feedback with quiet and comfort. It really isn’t hard to see why this is one of the best gaming keyboards on the market today.

Read the full review: Roccat Vulcan 120 Aimo


Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768


Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768 is fitted with mechanical keys, dedicated macro keys and slick aesthetics. (Image credit: Alienware)
4. Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768


Shockingly good value


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: Yes

Cherry MX Brown switches
Affordable
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 2020, 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


Cooler Master MasterSet MS120


Cooler Master MasterSet MS120 is affordable while being up there with its more premium ‘mem-chanical’ competitors. (Image credit: Cooler Master)
5. Cooler Master MasterSet MS120


The complete package


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: No

Compact design
Illustrious lighting
Included mouse is mediocre

Not everything has to be super high-end to be good, and the Cooler Master MasterSet MS120 is the perfect example. Though this one’s a keyboard and mouse set, the keyboard is the star of the show. Sitting at just under a hundred bucks, the MasterSet’s keyboard is affordable while being up there with its more premium ‘mem-chanical’ competitors in terms of quality. The switches on offer bring a ton of tactile feedback and deep travel. It’s quiet as well, so you can furiously pounding away during an intense late-night Overwatch match without worry. The Cooler Master MasterSet MS120 is, without a doubt, one of the best gaming keyboards under $100.

Read the full review: Cooler Master MasterSet MS120


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


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: Yes

Hypnotic disco lighting
Handy media and shortcut keys
Classy aluminum build
Awkward software
Rubber 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


Havit Low Profile Mechanical Keyboard


Havit Low Profile Mechanical Keyboard is extremely comfortable to type as well as game on. (Image credit: Havit)
7. Havit Low Profile Mechanical Keyboard


Low profile. High performance


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: Yes

Fully programmable keys
Thin, sleek design
No multimedia buttons

You might be thinking that if you’ve seen one of the best gaming keyboards, you’ve seen them all: big, garish hunks of metal with bright RGB lighting. Well, the Havit Low Profile Mechanical Keyboard will surprise you. While it definitely has the RGB lighting (honestly, how could it not?), it leaves the rest of the cliches in the past where they belong. Appealing and responsive, this keyboard is only as big as it needs to be, and is thus extremely comfortable to type as well as game on. There are no multimedia buttons, but we’d happily make that trade any day for a keyboard this good at such a low price.

Read the full review: Havit Low Profile Mechanical Keyboard


Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition


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


The Razer Huntsman, but smaller and faster


Interface: Wired, wireless | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: Yes

Fast switches
Removable cable
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


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


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: No

Affordable
Great RGB lighting
Empty No mechanical switches
No 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




(Image credit: Future)
10. Razer Ornata V2


Mecha-membrane with a few selling points


Interface: Wired | Keyboard backlighting: Yes | Programmable keys: Yes

Dedicated media keys
Very comfortable wrist rest
Quiet
Not great for light typists
Expensive for a non-mechanical keyboard

Although the Razer Ornata V2’s mecha-membrane keys aren’t as comfortable to type on as other mechanical switch keyboards, this gaming keyboard does have a few selling points that really set it apart from its rivals. Some of the notable design elements here, which are typically seen in more expensive products, are the dedicated media keys, a volume wheel that has a really nice texture to it, and an incredibly comfortable wrist rest. Plus, those mecha-membrane switches are incredibly quiet, making them perfect for late night gaming when you’ve got a roommate. This is definitely one of the best gaming keyboards we’ve tested in 2020.

Read the full review: Razer Ornata V2

Bill Thomas, Gabe Carey and Michelle Rae Uy have also contributed to this article

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