What makes for the best wireless keyboard depends a lot on how you plan to use it. Are you a couch gamer or a productivity focused neat freak who just wants the best wireless keyboard so you can maintain a clean-looking desk? Are you after a clacker that can switch between multiple devices on the fly, or do you need something that’s compact and travel-friendly so you can bang out a few emails and documents on the go?
You’ll find picks for all those use cases (and more) below. But first, here’s some key things to consider when deciding on a wireless keyboard:
Mechanical or not? If you’re a gamer or will be doing a lot of longform writing, a mechanical keyboard is definitely the way to go. Keyboards with mechanical switches are also more durable than most other keyboard types. But mechanical keyboards tend to be bulky, even the compact 60% models. So if you need something slim that you can slide easily into a bag, you may want to consider alternatives.
Backlighting / RGB: The cheapest wireless keyboards won’t have any backlighting at all, which is OK if you always use your keyboard in a well-lit space. But if you’re the type who works late into the night and you don’t want to (or can’t) switch on bright overhead lights, a keyboard with backlit keys is important.
Many of the best wireless keyboards with mechanical switches that are aimed at gamers feature RGB backlighting, letting you change the color of each key or sometimes just a few zones via software or presets using key combinations. This isn’t strictly necessary for gamers or productivity users, but that doesn’t mean it’s not fun. Even if you’re using your keyboard just to write documents, it’s fun to change up the look of the device your fingers are banging away on for hours at a time.
Pick your switch: Not all of the best wireless keyboards will use mechanical switches. But of those that do, you’ll have plenty of switch options, depending on the model you choose. Many gamers prefer linear switches (often labeled as red) because they make it easier to mash the same buttons repeatedly in quick succession. However, this design can lead to more mistakes when typing.
Many people who type for a living prefer “clicky” switches with a tactile bump (often labeled as blue) that you can feel when the switch actuates. But blue switches are often fairly loud, which can bother other people nearby or even the person typing.
There are dozens of other switch types, including optical mechanical and even membrane -- which tend to have a mushier feel, but are much better at surviving things like spilled drinks. The type of switch that’s best for you depends on personal preferences and your use cases and needs. So whenever possible, get an inexpensive switch tester to try out different options or try to find a keyboard you’re considering in a store to get a feel for it before buying.
Here are some of the most common mechanical switches:
A.) Clicky Tactile: Blue, Green, White
B.) Quiet Tactile: Brown, Clear
C.) Linear (quiet and go straight down): Red, Silver
Don't want to commit to a specific switch? Check out our article on how to change mechanical keyboard switches easily.
Full-size, tenkeyless or smaller? Tenkeyless keyboards drop the numpad, while 65% ones eliminate navigation keys and 60% boards also cut the arrow keys. While some users want every possible key, others prefer a smaller keyboard that gives them more space on their desk or is easier to travel with.
Bluetooth or RF dongle: If you want a keyboard that you can use with smartphones and tablets, opt for a Bluetooth keyboard. Most laptops and some desktops these days also support Bluetooth, so these are good if you want to use your best wireless keyboard with multiple devices, as well.
That said, if you’re only going to use your keyboard with a PC or Mac, a keyboard that uses some form of radio frequency (RF) dongle is worth considering. You’ll need a spare USB port to plug in the RF transceiver, but generally pairing is a lot simpler with a keyboard that uses RF. In most cases, you just plug in the dongle, turn on the keyboard, and you’re ready to start typing.
USB charging or standard batteries? Many of the best wireless keyboards will have a built-in battery that charges conveniently over USB. But many less-expensive keyboards use standard AA or AAA batteries. In some cases, standard swappable batteries can be convenient because you can just pop new ones in. But think carefully about how often and where you’ll be using your wireless keyboard if you aren’t sure about either option. Also consider rated battery life.
If you’re using the keyboard all the time, especially with a PC where there’s always a port and cable handy, USB charging is probably your best option. There are also a few solar-powered wireless keyboards on the market that should make power something you never need to worry about, but because the solar cells need surface area, these keyboards aren’t very travel-friendly, and there just aren’t many of them. Logitech makes a couple of solar-powered keyboards, and there’s also this $30 model by Arkteck.
The Best Wireless Keyboards You Can Buy Today
The Logitech G915 TKL is definitely one of the best gaming keyboards you can get when going cable-free. The keyboard offered great wireless performance during our testing. You have the option to connect via Bluetooth or a USB Type-A dongle powered by Logitech's Lightspeed technology. For mainstream gaming, the keyboard seemed as responsive as a wired one without dropouts.
The G915 TKL is a smaller and cheaper version of the full-sized Logitech G915 Lightspeed. For $20 more than the tenkeyless version, it offers programmable G keys and a numpad. The G915 TKL, however, frees up more desk space for your mouse and makes a very expensive mechanical keyboard a tad more accessible.
You can find the G915 TKL with three different types of mechanical switches: either tactile, clicky or linear. Regardless, the switch will be from Logitech’s low profile GL line and have 2.7mm travel rather than the traditional 4mm. That means quicker actuation while gaming and typing. However, without a wrist rest your wrists will feel neglected on the G915 TKL, especially when remembering the price.
Read: Logitech G915 TKL review
Redragon isn’t exactly a well-known gaming brand in the U.S., but it’s hard to argue with the $70 price of the K596 Vishnu. This 2.4 GHz wireless gaming keyboard packs RGB, dedicated macro and media keys, a metal volume rocker, linear switches and even a wrist rest (albeit a hard plastic one) all into a tenkeyless package. And that's at well less than half the price of the more well-known competition.
The K596 Vishnu also feels solid and was comfortable to use while gaming and typing; although, the plastic used for the shell does look a bit cheap. There’s also some funkiness going on with the design, like the fact that F1-F8 are labeled as secondary media controls, despite there also being a bank of dedicated media buttons directly to their right.
The second bank of programmable G keys are also oddly narrow and jammed up. And there are light bars on either side of the keyboard that, while look cool, are only going to drain your battery faster while you’re gaming without the USB-C cable plugged in. You can turn these off by hitting Fn and the Pause button repeatedly, but that’s a pain. The extra lights should default to only turning on when the keyboard is plugged in via a cable. The Vishnu is also heavier than competing wireless keyboards.
Still, despite its oddities and minor flaws, this is one heck of a keyboard for $70, when you consider Logitech’s G915 TKL costs more than three times as much and doesn’t include a wrist rest. If you’re after a compact, colorful wireless gaming keyboard on a budget, the K596 Vishnu easily earns a top spot in the pantheon.
The G915 brings a fantastic combo of error-free typing, speed and comfort. It looks smart and mature in a manner that very few gaming peripherals are able to put off, and -- short of a wrist rest -- it's replete with anything you could ask of a keyboard.
You're not exactly slumming it with Razer or Corsair's slightly cheaper high-end boards by comparison, but for those who secretly miss the stability of the old membrane days, this low-profile keyboard is a dream come true.
Pretty much any mechanical keyboard is good for typing and productivity tasks, as long as it doesn’t use a switch you don’t like for typing (sorry, all you linear switches out there). But Keychron’s K2 75% Bluetooth model works in both wired and wireless modes, is compact without giving up too much in the way of functionality (that is of course, if you don’t need a number pad) and comes with your choice of three switch types, as well as either white backlighting (as we tested) or RGB. There’s also a model with RGB and an aluminum frame and RGB for $95, but even the version with a plastic frame, which we tested, feels solid.
The Keychron K2 is also versatile, with keycaps for both Apple and Windows included in the box and support for Android as well. The two-level feet lift up the back-end by as much as 9 degrees for more comfortable typing, and you can choose between Gateron Red, Blue, or Brown switches, as well as ABS or PBT keycaps. So you can kit out the Keychron K2 in whatever fashion fits you best. Really, though, it’s that orange Escape key that gives the K2 that extra level of retro appeal. These days, it always feels good when escape is as easy as possible to find.
The Razer Turret for Xbox One is an inspired couch keyboard and mouse setup. It’s built solid, the extendable mouse mat is excellent for easy storage, it’s comfortable to use on your lap and it offers the true feeling of using a mechanical keyboard and mouse -- because you are.
Though it’s designed for the Xbox One, the Turret is still a strong option for a PC gamer who plays from the couch. In fact, it works with more games on PC, so it’s really a better deal for those on PC. If you don’t want to slip existing PC mice and keyboards into something like a Corsair Lapdog, this Turret is a great fit.
Read: Razer Turret One review
Any compact or travel-friendly keyboard is going to involve some sacrifices. But with the Cooler Master SK621, you get mechanical switches in a slim, 60% keyboard that manages to retain arrow keys (a key feature for many gamers and productivity users). On the flipside, you’ll have to live with flat key caps, a narrow right Shift key and a Delete key that gets shoved unceremoniously below the Enter key. If those awkward key placements sound too painful and you’re willing to go a little bigger, you may want to look instead at the company’s SK630 or SK650 keyboards instead.
But if portability is a priority and you want mechanical switches, RGB lighting and access to dedicated arrow keys, the SK621 is tough to beat. It also comes with a travel pouch and is small and svelte enough to slip into an outer pocket of a backpack. And its Bluetooth and wired USB connectivity means it will work with most devices, from smartphones and tablets to that work laptop with the keyboard you just can’t stand.
Lenovo’s ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II looks and feels like it was ripped straight from one of the company’s business laptops. The keyboard has the same smile-shaped, springy keys as a ThinkPad laptop, along with the little red TrackPoint pointing stick. The typing and navigation experience is as good as you’ll find without a mechanical keyboard and mouse.
The TrackPoint Keyboard II has both Bluetooth and 2.4-GHz wireless connectivity options, with a physical switch to toggle from one to another. So, if you want to use more than one device at a time, it’s easy to switch between, for example, your Windows PC and your Raspberry Pi.
Read: Lenovo ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II review
If you’re switching between multiple devices around the house, the Corsair K83 could be just what you’re looking for. It has a 2.4-GHz wireless dongle in addition to two different Bluetooth profiles, so you can easily connect to a set-top box, a tablet and a PC. The built-in touchpad means that you can use it on your lap, no mouse required.
The Corsair K83 has a premium look and feel and, for a non-mechanical keyboard, the keys feel pretty snappy and good. However, with an MSRP of $100, this is very expensive for a media keyboard. It also, in our experience and others we’ve seen reported online, experiences occasional lag and connectivity issues with the touchpad.