While some people are content with using an ordinary keyboard for their daily typing tasks, others prefer using a mechanical keyboard for a number of reasons. One of these is the sound that mechanical keyboards make when you use them. The clicking sounds are caused by the springs placed underneath each key that has its own dedicated mechanized sensors. Others may find mechanical keyboards quite loud but a lot of people actually prefer it for that exact reason.
Gamers typically use a mechanical keyboard because it helps them play better and more efficiently. Plus, you can also customize your mechanical keyboard to suit your needs. You can change its appearance as well as its feel when you use it. You also have the option of choosing the type switch of your mechanical keyboard based on which one you prefer.
Related: Why use a mechanical keyboard?
However, one of the caveats of using a mechanical keyboard is its price. Quite frankly, mechanical keyboards are considerably expensive compared to the “normal” ones. But don’t worry, as there are still mechanical keyboards out there that are great even though they’re slightly cheaper. Here are some of the best mechanical keyboards under $100 that you can check out.
The Poseidon Thermaltake Tt e-Sports Poseidon Z Mechanical Gaming Keyboard comes with blue switches if you like that look. One of its main features that gamers might appreciate is the ability to disable window keys when they’re gaming. This mechanical keyboard also offers several connectivity options so you can choose which one’s convenient for you. Its heavy weight might be an issue though. Hence, it’s not portable and best to be left at your desk. Still, it’s a nice option for gaming enthusiasts. It doesn’t include macro keys, but if you want something straightforward, this mechanical keyboard is certainly a good option.
The Corsair K63 Compact Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is quite compact, so you don’t have to make that additional effort to reach out if you don’t have long arms. It offers a full-key rollover option and has an aluminum finishing, which makes it look quite sleek and stylish. While most mechanical keyboards are big and heavy, this one is actually portable. The only downside to this keyboard is it doesn’t offer LED on its keys. This feature can be rather essential for some gamers. If you can see past this, then this keyboard is indeed a great option. It has powerful keys and a nice design. You also get several connectivity options.
The Redragon K552 Mechanical Gaming Computer Keyboard’s main selling points are durability, longevity, and high quality. It also features a range of controls that may be beneficial for gamers. This option is also extremely affordable considering that it’s a mechanical keyboard. In addition, its keycaps are swappable. So if you’re not feeling its keycaps, it’s quick and easy to replace them. However, this keyboard does not have RGB lighting. This may be a dealbreaker for some people. It also does not feature macro keys and has limited support for Mac.
Another contender from the same brand is the Redragon K556 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard. It’s designed to be compact so it won’t take up too much space on your desk. You can try out several lighting combinations and create multiple effects with this keyboard to suit your style. On the other hand, you might be disappointed if you’re looking for really bright lights, because this one can be considered pretty dim. Nonetheless, it offers the most important factor when it comes to mechanical keyboards: the clicking sound. Its rounded keys are also a nice touch.
The Hyper X Alloy FPS is built with a thin layer of metal and framed in steel with a plastic base. Its Cherry MX switches come in three variants: blue, red, and brown. This keyboard also has a mini USB plug at the back, which may seem like a downgrade since most devices now offer at least a micro USB. Do note that this keyboard can only offer red LED lighting, so if you’re not a fan of that color, better skip this option altogether. Otherwise, it’s a good, affordable choice for a mechanical keyboard.
If you’re looking for something different and more of a hybrid, you might be interested in the Razer Ornata Chroma Gaming Keyboard. Its keyboard is a combination of mechanical and membrane. Despite the membrane switches, these keys are designed to still have a tactile bump every time you press them, which is exactly what you’re looking for in a mechanical keyboard. You get a soft feel while still getting that tactile feedback, which makes for a different typing experience. It’s a great mechanical keyboard for heavy-handed people.
The Durgod Taurus K320 TKL Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is an incredibly sturdy accessory that features a center-mounted USB-C port. You can adjust your cable either to the left or to the right depending on your desk arrangement. This keyboard comes with PBT keycaps that are designed to look simple and clean in one look. One issue you might find with this keyboard is the firmware, which some people find challenging to use and navigate through.
If you want something that looks a little more old-school, the iKBC CD87 V2 Mechanical Keyboard might be the one for you. It comes tenkeyless and with some additional colored keycaps so you can customize the whole look of your keyboard. Overall, this accessory feels solid and sturdy and offers different Cherry MX switch types. In case you need a little more height, this keyboard comes with kickstands on the back.
Just as the name implies, the Vortexgear Cypher Mechanical Gaming Keyboard features only 65% of the whole layout. This means that this one does not come with the function row and number pad. If you don’t use these functions anyway, then the Vortexgear Cypher 65% should be enough. You can choose from different Cherry MX switch types depending on your taste. What’s great is this one also comes with a detachable USB-C cable.
First published in November 2020; updated July 2021