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The 5 Best RGB Keyboards - Winter 2023 Reviews

Best RGB Keyboards

Lately, many keyboards have some form of backlighting. RGB backlighting differs from simple backlighting, using a palette of over 16 million colors to help you customize the lighting atmosphere of your setup. While backlighting primarily serves a practical purpose of making keys easier to see in the dark, RGB backlighting is an easy way to tie your desktop aesthetic together. If you're choosing a keyboard for its RGB lighting, it's important to consider the number and location of its lighting zones, the quality of its companion software, as well as the range of customization features available to you.

We've tested over 185 keyboards, and below are our recommendations for the best keyboards with RGB lighting. As a note, this list is mostly made up of wired-only keyboards as RGB backlighting tends to quickly drain the battery on wireless keyboards, especially with custom effects going on. If you're only interested in wireless models, check out our picks for the best wireless keyboards. For other options, see our recommendations for the best gaming keyboards and the best keyboards overall.

  1. Best RGB Keyboard

    The Corsair K100 RGB is the best RGB keyboard that we've tested. It has a whopping 44 RGB zones built into the frame, along with customizable per-key lighting, this keyboard is an RGB enthusiast's dream. Using Corsair's iCUE software, you can sync the lighting with any other Corsair devices or hardware in your build for a perfectly lit setup.

    Under the hood, this keyboard boasts a higher-than-average max polling rate of 8000Hz and split-millisecond latency for an incredibly responsive in-game experience. Not only that, but the Cherry MX Speed Silver switches are optimized for gaming, with an incredibly short pre-travel distance and a light actuation force. With all of its extra features, like a programmable iCUE wheel, a volume wheel, dedicated media keys, and a column of macro keys, it's an excellent keyboard for every gamer and RGB enthusiast.

    See our review

  2. Best Upper Mid-Range RGB Keyboard

    The keyboard with the best RGB lighting at an upper mid-range price point is the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro. Its price is volatile, but it often goes on sale, so whenever it's close to the price of our top pick, the Corsair K100 RGB, it can be worthwhile to wait. It's rare for a wireless keyboard to have great RGB lighting, but that's what this keyboard delivers. Razer advertises a battery life of up 13 hours with the Spectrum color cycling effect running at 100% brightness, which may not sound very long, but lighting effects eat up a lot of battery. You can extend the battery life to about 25 hours by keeping the brightness at 50% or up to 200 hours if you decide to keep the lighting off. You can use this keyboard while it charges, and your RGB will still be on full display.

    In terms of its performance, this keyboard has outstanding click latency. It has one of the lowest latency results we've tested, coming in at under a millisecond with its USB receiver. You can buy this keyboard with either clicky Razer Green switches or linear Razer Yellow switches, and both options are optimized for gaming with short pre-travel distances. However, the Green switches are loud, even when compared to other clicky switches, so the silent Yellow switches may be a better choice if you're looking to game around people.

    See our review

  3. Best Mid-Range RGB Keyboard

    If you're looking for a solid mid-range option with outstanding RGB, we recommend the SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL. This TenKeyLess keyboard lacks a Numpad, giving you more room on your desk for mouse movements while gaming or to put a notebook or coffee alongside you while you work. It's a pretty versatile keyboard, so while its excellently low latency makes it a great choice for gaming, it's also comfortable and offers a nice typing experience for general typing tasks.

    It has a host of extra features, which is remarkable considering its price point. Some of these features include a dedicated media key, a volume wheel, and a programmable OLED display where you can adjust the lighting, display images or gifs, or check your keyboard settings directly on the keyboard. You can also program this screen to display certain in-game information, like your KDA ratio. There's also an included wrist rest for extra ergonomic support, and the wrist rest itself has a nice soft-touch finish that feels nice.

    See our review

  4. Best Budget RGB Keyboard

    The Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition is an older model in Razer's flagship Huntsman lineup, so it punches well above its weight considering its budget price point as it's one of the best RGB mechanical keyboards on the market. It has excellent build quality, with durable PBT keycaps, a solid plastic and aluminum body, and outstanding RGB backlighting that shines brightly through the key legends.

    The linear Razer optical switches in the board provide an incredibly light typing experience, especially when your fluid keystrokes are combined with the keyboard's extremely low latency. No matter what games you tend to play, you'll have an incredibly immersive and responsive in-game experience.

    See our review

  5. Best Cheap RGB Keyboard

    The Razer Cynosa Chroma is the best cheap RGB keyboard we've tested. Be aware that the price of this keyboard can vary, but it's at its best value when it's available for around $50 or less. While most keyboards at this price point only have zone lighting or can only display a single color at a time, the Cynosa Chroma has full RGB backlighting with individually customizable keys. This keyboard is also compatible with the Razer Chroma lighting system, which makes it easy to sync your lighting together if you have other Razer peripherals in your setup.

    In terms of gaming features, this keyboard is a bit lacking. The latency is best suited for casual gaming rather than fast-paced gaming, and the rubber dome switches are heavy to press, so they don't feel as snappy and responsive as the mechanical switches in our best budget pick, the Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition. That said, it's still a solid-performing unit for a cheap keyboard, and the RGB customization hits above its weight.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Corsair K95 PLATINUM: The Corsair K95 PLATINUM is a gaming keyboard with an under-glow effect from the lighting strips in the frame. However, it doesn't have as many independent RGB zones as the Corsair K100 RGB. See our review
  • Dygma Raise: The Dygma Raise has very customizable RGB lighting with a strip around the entire keyboard and wrist rests that create a satisfying glow around the keyboard. Its compact size, eight-button thumb cluster, and fully-split design are pretty unconventional and may be a bit too intimidating if you're looking for a standard keyboard. See our review
  • Logitech G715: The Logitech G715 has excellent RGB lighting, including an RGB strip around the frame that creates a nice underglow effect. However, it doesn't have nearly as many customizable zones as the Corsair K100 RGB, and its color mixing isn't great. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Jan 19, 2023: We've refreshed some of our text and confirmed all picks are in stock and remain the right choices for their respective categories, but we haven't made any changes to our picks with this update.

  2. Nov 22, 2022: Changed the 'Best Upper Mid-Range' pick from the HyperX Alloy Elite 2 to the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro for a wireless option; swapped the ROCCAT Vulcan TKL for the SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL; changed the EVGA Z20 to the Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition due to the EVGA's recent price increase above the budget limit; swapped the Razer Cynosa V2 with the Razer Cynosa Chroma as the Chroma is cheaper.

  3. Sep 23, 2022: Added in the ROCCAT Vulcan TKL and EVGA Z20 as 'Best Mid-Range' and 'Best Budget' picks, respectively. Removed Notable Mentions that were no longer relevant.

  4. May 25, 2022: Fully restructured article to better reflect user needs.

  5. Mar 22, 2022: Text updated for clarity and accuracy; no changes to picks.

All Reviews

Our recommendations above are what we think are currently the best RGB membrane and best RGB mechanical keyboards 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.