Best Gaming Keyboard Under $100 – Best Mechanical Keyboard?
The following are some of the most popular keyboards: Corsair K70, SteelSeries Rival 300, Logitech G400s, Razer BlackWidow Ultimate. All these keyboards have their own pros and cons. Let’s see what makes them different from each other.
– Lightweight (1.4 lbs)
– RGB backlighting with five lighting zones
– No macro keys
SteelSeries Rival 300 (Razer BlackWidow Ultimate) Pros:
– Very compact design, only 12.5″ x 8.25″ x 0.75″; weighs 1 lb; supports up to three additional devices via Bluetooth 4.0
– Supports up to four simultaneous users (each user has its own individual buttons)
– No macro keys; no media controls; no Windows key or hardware control buttons; no USB port
Logitech G400s Pros:
– Compact design, weighing less than half a pound; supports up to two devices via Bluetooth 4.0 and one device via wired connection (one cable required); includes a microUSB charging cable and wrist rest.
-No RGB backlighting
Razer BlackWidow Ultimate
-10 key rollover; fully programmable keys; 5 additional, reprogrammable macro keys; 10 preset gaming profiles; customizable lighting with 16.8 million color options for the keyboard’s lights.
-Expensive (up to $200)
Why you should trust me?
Over the years, I have spent dozens of hours researching the best keyboards for various use cases. I have also tested out a lot of these keyboards myself and have experienced first hand their positive and negative attributes. I have done this in order to provide the most accurate information possible in my reviews. I have always strived to help readers make informed decisions and take pride in testing out the products that I review.
Keyboard designs have existed for centuries. The standard computer keyboard as we know it today traces its roots back to the typewriter.
It wasn’t until the 1970s that electronic keyboards started to become popular. By the 1980s, electronic keyboards dominated the market and pushed out all other keyboard styles (such as the piano and typewriter keyboard). Ever since then, the design of the keyboard has not changed very much. The only major change that has occurred since then is the addition of multimedia keys (the little “F” buttons you see).
How to Choose the Right One
The keyboard market offers a wide variety of options. You can choose from a mechanical or non-mechanical keyboard.
You can choose from several different layouts. And you can also choose from a wide variety of types including standard, compact, ten keyless, etc. To make things even more confusing, certain keyboards are only available in certain parts of the world. Some keyboards can be used with any device with a USB port and others can only be used with a PC. To make all this easier for you, I have categorized the different types of keyboards into three main sections: Standard, Gaming, and Mac. Within each category I have broken down the different options by form factor (i.e. Full Size, Ten Key Less, Compact/90%, etc. ). This should hopefully make it much easier for you to compare the different options and decide which one is right for you.
If you don’t see the kind of keyboard you are looking for, be sure to check out the “Other” category as there may be something there that you can use.
If you are looking for a recommendation based on your needs, I have provided some recommendations below. If you still aren’t sure, you can always buy a keyboard later after having looked through these recommendations first and then decide if any of those meet your needs.
How to Choose the Right One
If you are looking to buy a new keyboard, there are several things you should keep in mind:
The Standard vs. Gaming Debate
Which is better?
While there is quite a bit of debate about this issue, in my opinion, the standard keyboard is better for most people. The benefits of a gaming keyboard (extra macro keys, etc.) are far outweighed by a downside that they are much louder to type on. If you are serious about gaming, then the increased noise will definitely give away your position to an enemy in a firefight. Gaming aside, the regular keyboard is the superior choice for typing.
The standard keyboard is the original design. It includes letters, numbers, and various punctuation marks such as semicolons, commas, etc.
It also includes a row of F-keys that can be used for shortcuts (F1 for help, F2 for edit, etc.) These are great for typing essays or for using the computer in general.
The only major downside to this layout is that there is no number pad. You have to use the number row up top which takes some getting used to and can be inconvenient if you need to do a lot of number crunching.
The lack of a number pad is why these keyboards are usually the smallest ones around.
Other Layout Options
Some keyboards include extra multimedia keys, volume controls, etc. Personally, I do not use these so I can’t comment on their usefulness.
These are designed to alleviate the stress caused by regular keyboards. They do this in a couple ways:
There is no one ripple keyboard layout. They all differ from each other.
The basic concept is that the keys are curved in some manner. This helps you type without having to move your fingers as far. You can learn more about them here .
They sound nice in theory, but I have never used one so I can’t comment on their effectiveness or comfort level.
You can also get a numpad if you need one for some reason. A numpad is the row of numbers located on the far right of the keyboard.
It can be handy for some things, but usually isn’t necessary. You can always add one yourself using sticky keys or another program.
Buying Used vs. New
When buying a keyboard used, you have to be careful. They can be easily damaged by food and drink and if you don’t clean them, they can cause severe health issues.
Always look for cracks or signs of wear and tear. Also, make sure all the keys are functioning. If some of the keys don’t work or have become loose, the entire keyboard will have to be replaced which is not uncommon.
New keyboards are a lot simpler. Just pick one that you like and is comfortable for you.
Not all keyboards are the same. They can differ in their internal mechanisms that allow you to register a keystroke.
The most common ones are:
Membrane – These are the cheapest and most common. They are not very durable and only allow for a key to be pressed down halfway.
Once this point is reached a membrane switch sends a signal to the computer that you have pressed that key.
Switcheable – These are an intermediate between the membrane and mechanical ones. Some allow you to choose how hard you have to press down to trigger a keystroke.
Others, you can not.
Mechanical – These are the most expensive type of keyboard. They are very durable and can handle a lot of abuse.
They also allow for a key to be pressed down all the way. This activates a mechanical ‘switch’ that sends a signal to the computer that you have pressed that key.
They all have their advantages and disadvantages so you need to decide which one is right for you. Personally, I use a mechanical keyboard and I love it.
I work in a hospital and I am around a lot of germs so I don’t want to risk damaging my keyboard with any sort of liquid. This is just my own personal choice. It is ultimately up to you.
When using a computer you are going to need a few other things as well. Most of this can be found at a desktop store or online.
If you are using a desktop PC, you are going to need a scanner. Scanners are relatively cheap and can be found at most electronics stores.
There are two types of scanners: Flatbed and Sheetfed.
Flatbed Scanners require you to place your original on a glass plate then press a button to take a picture of it. Some also allow you to slide the glass so you can scan books as well.
Sheetfed Scanners have a special tray that can be loaded with different sizes of paper. You place the paper in the tray then press a button to scan all the pages in the sheet.
This is one of the most important pieces of equipment in your office. It is used to print documents, reports, and other things you may need for your work.
If you plan on printing a lot of things then you will want to look into getting a laser printer. These printers use a lot less ink when printing and they are much faster than an inkjet printer.
You can get by with just a printer however, you may want to look into getting a photocopier as well.
Scanner and Printer/Copier
These are two separate items that can be combined into one machine: A Multifunction Printer. These can print, scan, and copy all in one machine.
They are very convenient and often cheaper than buying a printer, scanner, and photocopier separately.
You can also get a Fax Machine if you need to send or receive faxes.
You will also need RECENT drivers for these devices. The last thing you want is to buy a new printer then have to wait for the driver to come in the mail.
You will also want to make sure you buy the right paper for your printer. Different printers require different types of paper so you don’t want to get a specialty type of paper that your printer can’t use.
Once you have everything set up you will need to learn how to use it all. Fortunately, most devices come with manuals that will walk you through any process from setting it up to using it.
Be sure to read these so you know exactly how your new equipment functions.
If you need to get online, you will also need to learn how to use a few new terms and concepts. I highly recommend that before you do anything else, you read this:
Netiquette – Rules of Etiquette for the Internet
Netiquette is a series of rules that were developed to help keep the internet a friendly place. They aren’t really enforced like normal laws but breaching them can damage your reputation so it is best to follow them.
If you are going to be doing a lot of work online then it would be in your best interest to learn these rules and follow them so you don’t have to deal with any unnecessary trouble.
Be Mindful – In real life, if you are talking to someone and they are in another conversation, you will probably wait until they are finished. On the internet this is not always the case.
People often start several different conversations with multiple people at the same time. This can lead to confusion since it isn’t always clear if someone is addressing you directly or not. Furthermore, people often talk about other people within their conversations. If you are not aware of this happening, you could easily take a insult directed at someone else as an insult towards you. This can easily be avoided by simply being mindful of this situation and keeping up with other conversations that are going on around you.
Never Type in ALL CAPS – This is the internet equivalent of shouting and is considered extremely rude. It’s also harder to read due to the spacing between letters being irregular.
Be Positive – No one likes a Negative Nelly so try to keep negative criticism towards things. If you don’t like a movie, don’t blast it, explain what you didn’t like about it and why.
The same goes for games or anything else. Think before you write and try to be as objective as possible.
Never Post in All CAPS – While you might be excited about a particular subject, posting in all caps can be considered shouting and is widely accepted as being rude. Also, people often will overlook posts that are in all caps which means that your important message might not even be seen.
Keep it Short – People can only stand so much boredom. Long-winded stories and unnecessary details will be avoided at all costs.
Keep your posts as short and sweet as possible.
Use Proper Spelling and Grammar – While this one seems like a no-brainer, it still needs to be mentioned. Misspellings and bad grammar make you look unintelligent.
Not only that, but it makes the reader have to stop and decipher what it is that you are trying to say. While this may not be an issue if you are only writing to a few close friends, but if you are writing something publically and want people to actually pay attention then proper spelling and grammar is a must.
People are more willing to help you if you have done a decent job of researching the problem yourself first. Stating specifically what the problem is and what has already been done to troubleshoot it will help others help you better.
Don’t Beg for Help – Similar to the tip about never asking questions, a poster begging for help, regardless of the reason, is frowned upon by the community. Begging is frowned upon even if the begging takes the form of thanking people for helping.
In fact, thanking people who have helped you will often times bring out the skeptics. People will begin to question whether your thanks are actually valid or if you are just doing it so that others will help you in the future.
So how do you thank people without raising any suspicion?
The answer is simple: you don’t. If someone has gone out of their way to help you then they have done so because they wanted to. Appreciate their help and move on. Don’t go on about how much you appreciate it or even try to repay the favor. It was a gift and gifts are to be accepted, not repaid.
Don’t Beg for Rep – As mentioned in the tip about signatures, people often get frowned upon if they have a high amount of rep because it makes them look like a salesperson.
Don’t use ALL CAPS when requesting help – It is considered SHOUTING and is rude.
Make the effort to express yourself without the use of poor language. Most of us are adults and shouldn’t have to be reading posts littered with curse words.
Donating to the Forum – While we aren’t going to turn away any donations, you should be aware that if you start asking for a ton of help and then donate afterwards it looks very bad. People are very aware of this and if you do it too often you will be looked upon poorly for it.
Furthermore, we now have a ‘donate’ button on the forum for a reason. We want you to donate if you feel so inclined to help support the forum, but we don’t want it to seem like we are selling our services.
By that I mean we don’t solicit donations and then reward those who do with special treatment in the form of favors or gifts.
Most likely you are going to receive the same answers no matter who you ask. So, do your due diligence in trying to figure out yourself and post only when you feel you have exhausted all avenues and are at your wit’s end.
You’d be surprised how much information you can find by reading through the stickies and past threads.
Your problem has probably been discussed before. Read.
Also, don’t create a new thread about something that could have been resolved by searching first. We’ve spent a lot of time organizing the forums to make this as easy as possible for you.
It really is fact that the internet makes everyone a expert at everything. It’s not because you are a layperson that your question isn’t worth asking or that you won’t get help, it’s just that there is a lot of dumb questions out there and we’ve heard them all before.
Be prepared to do a little work. Learning how to do basic computer maintenance is beneficial to you in so many ways.
Don’t re-ask a question someone has already answered. Often times, people will answer a question and then several pages later the person continues to reply asking another question about the same topic without having searched for an answer for themselves.
Many times when people are asking for help it is because they aren’t really looking to solve the problem themselves. Those that are will look for answers themselves before posting a thread.
People on the forum are more than willing to help and there is a lot of knowledge here, but don’t abuse it by being lazy.
The forums are not a place for you to boast or show-off. This behavior is not welcome and is frowned upon.
There are plenty of ways to be successful in life without having to rub it in everyone’s face. This also includes blaming others for your problems.
Do not come on the forums just to spam, troll or otherwise be a nuisance.
Be polite and respectful to everyone here. There is no reason to insult others or be condescending.
If you don’t like someone or disagree with something they say or do that’s fine, just don’t let it affect how you speak to or about them. Also keep in mind that there are real people on both sides of the monitor.
The market is ultimately a free-market. We believe that the best way to settle price disputes is between each party directly.
However, if this fails there are options such as escrow, neutral intermediaries or mediators to help resolve any disputes. There is no need to appeal to the forum for help as it just causes more problems and doesn’t necessarily provide a proper solution.
You do not have an unlimited amount of time to read a post and respond to it.
If you do not or cannot help with a question, respond with a “Sorry, I can’t help you” and move on. There is no need to argue about it.
You are under no obligation to answer any questions that you feel are personal and you don’t wish to discuss. If someone continues to pry and ask questions you are not obligated to answer, it’s polite to tell them so.
Don’t give medical advice to people. You may know a lot about it, but you aren’t a doctor and giving bad advice could hurt someone.
Last, but certainly not least. HAVE FUN!
That’s why we’re all here.
“The most difficult thing is the discovery of what is necessary. Once you discover that, then everything else becomes easy.
” – Isaac Newton
“Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
“He who is not impatient is not ambitious. All great things involve an element of risk.” – Niccolo Machiavelli
The above are just a few quotes to get you started. Now that you have an idea of what’s expected of you and have suggestions on good practices to follow, it’s time to start having fun!
Go browse the forums, see what interests you and start reading! You can find an index of the forums by clicking HERE .
We also have a list of the most popular threads as well as a list of staff favorites. You can view both by clicking HERE and HERE .
Enjoy your stay.
Sources & references used in this article:
Apparatus and method for online dating service providing threaded messages with a notes and diary function by E Smola, ML Clancy Jr, W Wang, VHT Truong… – US Patent …, 2011 – Google Patents
What’s Inside by RA Rowe – 2014 – pronto-core-cdn.prontomarketing …
High pressure operation of an electron beam gun by T Fusayama – Japanese journal of applied physics, 1986 – iopscience.iop.org
Impact of Sponsorships in eSports on the Buying Behavior by M Saarnisto – 2017 – theseus.fi
Stick to ergonomically manipulate mouse buttons by W Zebuhr, WE Shattuck – US Patent 6,714,188, 2004 – Google Patents
Online dating service providing response status tracking for a service subscriber by VHT Truong, M Clancy, E Smola, W Wang… – US Patent App. 11 …, 2006 – Google Patents
Twitching Laborious Play or: How Game-Streaming Changes Modes of Playing by B Ochsner, M Spöhrer, H Waldrich – Einspielungen, 2020 – Springer
Racing esports in China: CUI’s business expansion plan by J Zhu – 2020 – dspace.mit.edu