Whether you're a casual or serious gamer, looking for a gaming keyboard that suits your needs can be challenging, especially if you're on a tight budget. We've compiled a list of our picks for the best gaming keyboards with a price under $100, and although some won't have extra features like more premium models, they're reliable for playing all your favorite games. When looking for a gaming keyboard, it's important to consider which types of switches you're most comfortable with, as some come in a range of mechanical switches while others have rubber dome switches.
We've tested over 165 keyboards, and below are our recommendations for the best gaming keyboards under $100 available for purchase. All of these picks are suited for gaming, so if you're looking for budget keyboards that aren't gaming-focused, you can check out our picks for the best cheap keyboards. Although many of these picks are mechanical, you might find something better suited to your needs in our recommendations for the best budget mechanical keyboards. Otherwise, feel free to check out the best keyboards for gaming.
A gamer needs a few things from their keyboard to ensure a successful and fun gaming session. It needs to be durable, responsive, and comfortable. The Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition definitely meets these criteria. Despite its budget price point, this keyboard has an excellent build quality with double-shot PBT keycaps, so you'll never have to worry about the legends fading away, no matter how hard you hit the WASD keys.
The Razer Linear Optical switches have a very short pre-travel distance with a very light actuation force, so the keys are sensitive. Combined with its outstandingly low latency, every keypress feels responsive and fluid. The TenKeyLess layout does away with the Numpad to free up more space on your desk for mouse movements, but if you're even tighter on space, the Razer Huntsman Mini offers the same performance in a more compact package.
Although this keyboard doesn't have an included wrist rest, like the EVGA Z15 or Z20, it's comfortable to use without one, thanks to its two incline settings. Also, due to the sensitivity of the keys, it's unlikely you'll experience any finger fatigue as they don't offer much resistance and feel very light to type on.
If you're looking for a straightforward keyboard with high gaming performance, we recommend the Logitech G413. At its low price point, it's an excellent entry-level board for anyone looking for a mechanical gaming keyboard. While more premium options offer a variety of choices for switch types or keyboard sizes, this one only comes in full-size with Logitech's proprietary Romer-G Tactile switches.
These switches have a fairly short pre-travel distance, and they're light to actuate, so keypresses feel responsive and good for gaming. The latency on this keyboard is incredibly low, so you won't notice a delay even while playing fast-paced games. It's supported by Logitech's G HUB software, so if you're also using a Logitech mouse, you can control all of your peripherals from one piece of software. However, the backlighting only comes in red or white, depending on what colorway of the keyboard you get.
If you want all the bells and whistles, including full RGB backlighting, the EVGA Z20 is a good choice. It performs very similarly, but it has additional features like a volume wheel and a USB pass-through to connect other peripherals or gaming controllers. However, the stock clicky switches are very loud and will likely distract others around you, so be warned if you're planning to use this keyboard in a shared space.
The Obinslab Anne Pro 2 is a small but mighty wireless gaming keyboard under the $100 mark. It's an excellent keyboard to use with a multi-device streaming setup as you can toggle between wired and Bluetooth mode using a switch on the bottom, and you can switch between four paired Bluetooth devices using the F1 to F4 function keys. In wired mode, its latency is extremely low and on par with some premium gaming models; though its latency over Bluetooth is much higher, it's not recommended to use Bluetooth while gaming anyway.
While its compact form factor eliminates the dedicated arrow keys, you can still access the arrows as hotkeys mapped onto the WASD keys. With this layout, you don't have to up and move your entire hand; you can keep your fingers on the home row and limit any time-consuming movement while gaming. Also, the compact size leaves you with more room to make dynamic mouse movements.
However, we understand that a compact board isn't everyone's style. So, if you'd prefer a full-size keyboard, we recommend the Logitech G613 LIGHTSPEED. It comes with a USB receiver, and its wireless latency is low. You should note that it uses two AA batteries for power rather than a rechargeable battery, so you'll have to keep quite a few spare batteries on hand if you're doing a lot of hardcore gaming with lighting effects.
Most people are familiar with non-mechanical keyboards. They come, whether we want them or not, with most PCs, and they're built into our laptops. They're a lot more beginner-friendly than mechanical keyboards because there's a lot less choice and experimentation that goes along with choosing one. Truth be told, some people (even in our office) don't like the feeling of mechanical keyboards and prefer the classic feel of a scissor or a rubber dome switch. It all boils down to personal preference. For a non-mechanical option, we recommend the Corsair K55 RGB PRO XT.
What it lacks in mechanical switches, it makes up for in extra features. There are dedicated macro keys on the left, a cluster of media keys on the top right, and on-board controls for the RGB backlighting, Windows Key Lock function, and macro-programming, so you can make on-the-fly adjustments without having to open the iCUE software. Its latency is extremely low, making it well up to the task of gaming in any genre. Although the rubber dome switches have a long pre-travel distance, they're light to actuate, so they still feel sensitive. Impressively, it has individually backlit keys, which you can customize on a per-key basis using Corsair's iCUE software.
As a bonus, it comes with a magnetic wrist rest for added support. However, the wrist rest is hard plastic, which you might want to upgrade for something more plushy if you find it uncomfortable. Overall, this is a great choice if you're looking for a more standard-feeling keyboard with lots of extra features packed in.
Customizable boards with hot-swappable switches are gaining popularity, and cheaper models with this feature are becoming more commonplace, so it's even easier to get into the keyboard modification hobby. If you're looking for a good model to start with, we recommend the EVGA Z15. In addition to its hot-swappable PCB, it comes loaded with gaming-oriented features like full RGB backlighting, which you can customize on a per-key basis.
Its latency is outstanding, so it can handle fast-paced games. It also has a maximum polling rate of 4000Hz, which is a rare feature to find on a keyboard under $100. The stock clicky Kailh Speed Bronze switches have a short pre-travel distance, so the keystrokes are sensitive, which is great for reaction-based titles. As you should expect from a budget keyboard, the stock keycaps are made of cheap-feeling ABS, but you can easily replace them with a custom PBT set since it comes with a keycap and switch puller to help you change things up.
Customizing a full-size keyboard and purchasing over 100 switches at a time can get a bit costly, so if you're looking for a smaller alternative to ease into the hobby, check out the ROYAL KLUDGE RK61. Its latency isn't as low as the Z15's, but it's still a good choice for a budget-friendly, hot-swappable gaming keyboard.
Jun 03, 2022: Restructured article to better align with user expectations.
Apr 05, 2022: Added the HyperX Alloy Origins 60 to Notable Mentions; updated text for clarity and accuracy; no changes to main picks.
Feb 04, 2022: We've confirmed all picks are currently available for purchase and continue to represent the best picks for their respective categories. We've also added the Redragon K582 SURARA RGB to our list of Notable Mentions.
Dec 07, 2021: Restructured the article to reflect user needs; moved the Obinslab Anne Pro 2 to its own 'Best Compact' category; added the EVGA Z20 as the 'Best MMO', and removed the EVGA Z12. Updated Notable Mentions based on changes and market availability.
Oct 08, 2021: Replaced the SteelSeries Apex 5 and the SteelSeries Apex 3 with the EVGA Z15 and the EVGA Z12 because they're cheaper; added the Keychron K10 and HyperX Alloy FPS RGB to Notable Mentions.
Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best gaming keyboards under $100 for most people. We factor in the price (a cheaper product wins over a pricier one if the difference isn't worth it), feedback from our visitors, and availability (no keyboard that is difficult to find or almost out of stock everywhere).
If you would like to do the work of choosing yourself, here is the list of all keyboards we've tested under $100. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. While no product is perfect for every use, most keyboards are great enough to please almost everyone, and the differences are often not noticeable unless you really look for them. Be sure to know your key switch preferences before choosing.