For writers, spending countless hours typing on a bad keyboard can be tiring and can potentially lead to other issues. Writers also have very different tastes and needs when it comes to keyboards; some prefer mechanical switches, while others prefer the silent typing noise of a membrane keyboard. As such, we've compiled a list of our recommendations for the best keyboards for writers, from feature-packed models to budget options; hopefully, you can find one that will inspire you to keep writing.
We've reviewed more than 60 keyboards, and below are our recommendations for the best keyboards for writers that are available for purchase. For other options, see our recommendations for the best keyboards, the best gaming keyboards, and the best mechanical keyboards.
The best keyboard for writers that we've reviewed so far is the Razer BlackWidow Elite. The unit that we reviewed features Razer's proprietary Orange switches, which are similar to Cherry MX Brown switches, but you also can get it with Green (tactile and clicky) or Yellow (linear and silent) switches.
The Orange switches provide great tactile feedback when typing and they're nearly silent, making this keyboard suitable for quiet offices. Typing on this keyboard feels light and responsive, and a well-padded wrist rest is included for optimal comfort. Overall build quality is excellent and the doubleshot keycaps ensure that key legends won't fade over time. This keyboard comes with a ton of extra features that are quite convenient. It has dedicated media controls, a USB passthrough to charge mobile devices or to connect another peripheral, and full RGB backlighting for those who like to work in the dark. Each key's backlight can be customized individually, and you can reprogram or set macros to any key.
Profiles can be saved on the keyboard's on-board memory, making it easy to switch to another computer, or they can be saved using Razer's Synapse 3 software. Sadly, the latter is only available for Windows, but macOS and Linux users can still program macros using hotkeys. If you're a writer or you spend all day typing, this keyboard is worth a try, making this the best mechanical keyboard for writers.
If you don't like full-size keyboards like the Razer BlackWidow Elite and would prefer a smaller keyboard, then check out the Vortex Race 3. It might not have RGB lighting like the Razer and some people might prefer having a NumPad, but its compact layout takes less space on your desk. Even if it's compact, this keyboard still has dedicated arrow keys, which makes navigating in your text much easier than typical compact 60% keyboards. It offers a great overall typing quality and it feels very durable thanks to its metal frame and doubleshot keycaps. If you write a lot at night, the variant we tested doesn't have any backlighting, although there's a model that has full RGB, which is a bit more expensive.
If you like having a typical full-sized keyboard with a NumPad for when you're writing, look into the Razer, but if your space is limited or simply prefer compact keyboards, consider the Vortex.
The best ergonomic keyboard for writers that we've tested so far is the Logitech ERGO K860. It has a split keyboard design and reverse incline settings to help promote a natural typing position.
The built-in wrist rest is well-padded and covered with a fabric that feels very premium. Although the scissor switches require a bit of force to actuate, the overall typing experience is very pleasant, as the switches have a very pronounced tactile bump and their low pre-travel distance make the keyboard feel extremely responsive. That said, the keyboard's unconventional layout does have a bit of a learning curve and you may notice a greater number of typos at first. This keyboard can be paired to multiple devices simultaneously either through Bluetooth or its unifying USB receiver, and you can switch between them with a press of a button, making multi-tasking easy. Logitech's Options software lets you reprogram the function keys; however, it's only available for Windows and macOS, so Linux users won't be able to customize.
There are also a few other downsides: it doesn't have backlighting, it uses disposable batteries, and the keycaps are pad-printed, which means that key legends can fade or chip with regular use. If ergonomics are a priority or you're concerned about repetitive strain injuries, this keyboard could be a good option.
If you're looking for an ergonomic keyboard with mechanical switches, the ErgoDox EZ is an amazing choice. It's a wired keyboard, so it doesn't have multi-device pairing like the Logitech ERGO K860 Wireless Split Keyboard, but it has a ton of customization options. Not only can you reprogram every key and save up to 32 layouts on the keyboard, but each half has three adjustable feet, so you can place them in whatever position you like, including placing one half on a downwards incline and the other on an upwards incline. The typing quality is excellent as the keycaps are stable and it's available in a variety of switches, but it's going to take some time getting used to. Unfortunately, it doesn't have any RGB backlighting, so it's not ideal to use in dark environments, but the build quality is fantastic and you shouldn't have any issues with it.
If you want the best ergonomic keyboard for writers, look into the Logitech, but if you want a truly split keyboard with mechanical switches, consider the ErgoDox.
The best non-mechanical keyboard for writers that we've tested so far is the Logitech MX Keys. This full-size keyboard features scissor switches that are great to type on, and its chiclet-style keys are also lightly indented to help with typing accuracy.
It has exceptional wireless connectivity, with a multi-device pairing feature that lets you connect up to three devices at the same time, and switching between the paired devices is easy and seamless. It has fantastic compatibility with most operating systems, as it can be used with any device that's Bluetooth-capable, and there are only a few OS-specific shortcuts that don't work on Linux and mobile operating systems. Although this keyboard operates on a built-in rechargeable battery, it has backlighting for those who like to work in the dark. There are a number of keys that can be reprogrammed to other functions through Logitech's Options software, but you can't set any macros to them and it doesn't have any dedicated macro keys.
This keyboard doesn't come with a wrist rest and there aren't any incline settings; however, it's decently comfortable to type on for long periods due to its low profile. Typing noise is very quiet, so you shouldn't have any issues using it in quiet environments. All in all, if you don't like mechanical keyboards, this is the best non-mechanical keyboard for writers.
The best budget keyboard for writers we've tested so far is the SteelSeries Apex 3. It's a decent overall keyboard that uses rubber dome switches that are quiet and won't bother others around you.
This is the entry-level keyboard in the SteelSeries lineup. Although it has features found on other high-end keyboards, like media keys, RGB lighting, macro programmable keys, and a scroll wheel, the rubber dome switches don't offer the same typing experience as mechanical switches. The typing quality is decent, and the keycaps are very stable, but it could be difficult to press and it could get tiring at times due to the high actuation force. Luckily it comes with a nice wrist rest and has good overall ergonomics, and for a budget keyboard, the build quality is impressive, and it should last you a few years.
Unfortunately, it doesn't have any on-board memory if you want to set macros, but that shouldn't be a problem for most writers. The keys aren't individually-lit, but rather there are 10 lighting zones, which still gets the job done if you write in dark environments. Overall, it offers great features for a budget keyboard, making it the best budget keyboard for writers we've tested so far.
If you're looking for a wireless keyboard on a budget, the Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard is a good alternative. You can't reprogram every key like the SteelSeries Apex 3, but the Microsoft keyboard connects to any device via Bluetooth, so you can use it with your mobile devices. It also uses rubber dome switches, but with a shorter pre-travel distance than the SteelSeries, so the typing quality is better on the Microsoft. It has media keys and good build quality, but unfortunately, there's no backlighting and it doesn't have multi-device pairing. It's what you expect from a full-size budget wireless keyboard, and the quiet keys won't disturb others in an office environment.
If you're looking for the best budget keyboard for writers we've tested so far, the SteelSeries has great features, but if you want some a wireless keyboard, the Microsoft is a good choice too.
05/19/2020: Minor changes to text for clarity; updated notable mentions to reflect the current market.
04/07/2020: Replaced Kinesis FreeStyle Edge RGB with ErgoDox EZ, added Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best keyboards for writers for most people. We factor in the price, feedback from our visitors, and availability.
If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here is the list of all our keyboard reviews. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no keyboard is perfect for every use, most are good enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you really look for them.