Top Computer Keyboards 2022
Find out what features to look for when you shop for a computer keyboard. Learn more about five of the best computer keyboards available in 2022.
When selecting computer parts, it is easy to overlook the importance of a good keyboard. Keyboards may seem interchangeable, but there are many subtle differences between each type of keyboard. The size of a keyboard is one of the most notable differences. Not only does the size determine how much space the keyboard takes up on your desk, but it can also impact your typing. Larger keyboards may have bigger keys, but the keys are spaced differently compared to a smaller keyboard, which can lead to more typos if you are not used to stretching your fingers across the further distance.
Another difference is whether your keyboard has backlighting, which makes it easier to type in darker environments. Many gamers prefer backlit keyboards because they are easy to use with minimal lighting, which reduces the risk of lighting causing a glare on the monitor. There are also mechanical keyboards, which are notable for their louder keystrokes, providing more feedback so you know when a key has been pressed. Listed below is everything you need to know about buying a keyboard and some of the top considerations for 2022.
As with other types of computer equipment, it is a good idea to know what you are looking for before you start shopping. Keyboards are often categorized by group, which helps you narrow your choices down. For example, you can search specifically for gaming, work or numerical keyboard. If you are typing for long periods of time, consider an ergonomic keyboard.
Compatibility is also a consideration. While keyboards are designed to work for both Windows and Apple devices, there may be minor differences in the keys depending on what type of keyboard you get, such as Apple keyboards having an “option” button instead of the “windows” key. Another consideration is whether the keyboard comes with extra function keys, such as volume adjusters or options to skip tracks.
There are a few niche categories of keyboards. If you want additional comfort, you can look for a keyboard with a wrist pad to rest your arms against. If you are a programmer, you can get a DVORAK key layout instead of the usual QWERTY. There are even split-style keyboards, which separate the rows into two distinct portions. If you are on the go, you can get a smaller, flexible keyboard that folds into a travel bag. There are even special washable keyboards if you are concerned about cleanliness.
If you are buying your keyboard in-person, do not be afraid to test the keystrokes. This refers to how comfortable it is to type, as well as the responsiveness of the keyboard. If you are comfortable typing for long periods without glancing at your hands, mechanical keyboards let you know whether a key was clicked by sound. This is not only important for quickly typing, but also making precise movements while gaming. If you want a more casual keyboard and are less concerned with your typing speed, a non-mechanical keyboard may be preferred because it produces less noise.
Wired vs. Wireless
Another important consideration is whether you want a wired or wireless keyboard. Wireless keyboards require batteries, but thanks to technological advancements, most wireless keyboards are designed to last for months without needing a replacement. Wireless keyboards are typically more expensive, and there may be a slight delay between striking the keys and the computer registering the input. Many wireless keyboards also have an option to attach directly to the computer through a USB port, letting you get the best of both worlds.
Dell KM5221W Pro Wireless Keyboard
Dell has a variety of keyboards to choose from, but the KM5221W is a great model if you want a comfortable wireless keyboard while shopping on a budget. As of writing, the keyboard goes for around $45 to $55. Dell sells the keyboard as a bundled package, also including a wireless mouse free of charge. The keyboard is full-sized, so it contains all 104 keys, but it uses a slimmer shape so it does not take up as much space on your desk. The keyboard has a powerful battery, designed to last for several years of heavy use before being replaced. If you want a traditional keyboard you can easily transport and place on your desk, this is the one for you.
HP 975 Dual-Mode Wireless Keyboard
HP is another computer manufacturer with a wide range of keyboards to choose from. The 975 Dual-Mode keyboard is more expensive than some of their other products, costing between $100 to $115 on average. The keyboard allows you to pair up to three other devices, two wirelessly and one via USB. This allows you to control other devices directly from your keyboard, such as connecting your phone so you can listen to podcasts while you are working.
The keyboard includes a smart backlight system, which lights up your keys based on usage and your lighting conditions. The battery lasts for roughly six months of continual use. The keyboard is highly customizable, so you can create shortcuts for your most commonly used apps and commands.
SteelSeries Apex Pro
The Apex Pro is primarily marketed towards gamers, but there are many features average users will appreciate as well. One of the most unique features is a programmable OLED screen built into the keyboard. You can either program this to act as a touchscreen shortcut, or customize your keyboard by displaying images or gifs. The keyboard is highly customizable, giving you control over the sensitivity of individual keys. It is one of the pricier wired keyboards, costing between $150 to $200.
Logitech MX Mechanical
If you want a responsive keyboard, Logitech’s MX Mechanical keyboard is an excellent choice. It comes in two sizes, normal and low-profile. There are only three backlight options, which is fewer than other keyboards. Because it is a mechanical keyboard, it is much sturdier compared to traditional options. While it is not advertised as a gaming keyboard, many gamers still use it because of the quick response time. Unlike other wireless models, there are no options to manually connect to a computer via USB. It typically costs between $160 to $180.