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A keyboard might seem like a small factor in your gaming experience, but it can make the difference between night and day. A good gaming keyboard can improve your game by a huge margin and make your experience that much enjoyable.
Buying a good gaming keyboard on a tight budget might seem like an impossible task, but we’re here to debunk that myth. You don’t need to spend a fortune on a keyboard to improve your experience, keeping in mind that these keyboards might overlook some features. But that is a price to pay when you’re on a strict budget.
What Are Gaming Keyboards?
A gaming keyboard is more focused and directed towards gamers and not everyday users. These keyboards provide you with an edge over the competition as they focus more on the switches and their travel distance and actuation point etc.
They provide gamers with the ultimate gaming experience. Where an average user might not feel a difference, a gaming keyboard can give gamers the edge over a matter of milliseconds in response time. A gaming keyboard is essential for any gamer if they want to get better at a game or want to have a better overall experience.
Why Do You Need a Good Gaming Keyboard?
A lot of options in the market are available when you’re looking for a keyboard for your gaming needs. It can range from price to switches to RGB to form factor and to features. But you have to keep in mind that a huge price tag doesn’t exactly make the keyboard a “good” gaming keyboard. A good gaming keyboard provides you with the complete package at a justifiable price.
A gamer needs a gaming keyboard because that can improve their gameplay and can give them the ultimate user experience at the same time. A good switch versus cheap switches can give you the unfair advantage you need over other players.
The slightest change from the actuation point to the keypress can be a factor of if you win or you lose. The skill of a gamer might be locked due to their low-end keyboard, and if they purchase a gaming keyboard, they might just unlock their full potential.
Top 5 Good Cheap Gaming keyboards
Redragon is one of the kings of budget-friendly gaming peripherals. They are a solid option for people who aren’t willing to spend a fortune on a keyboard, but they still want the best experience. The Redragon K556 is another example of Redragon’s expertise in making a budget-friendly board in a complete package.
This board comes equipped with a fully anodized aluminum frame brushed build, which is extremely durable and can endure heavy use and isn’t prone to bending. It also gives the keyboard a high-quality finish and look. This makes it stand out among the high-end keyboards in the market even though it comes at such a budget-friendly price tag.
The keyboard is equipped with brown switches, which are a great option for gaming and typing. These are mechanical switches that are quieter than other more expensive options but provide you with an overall great and tactile feel. The K556 comes with high-quality keycaps that are illuminated with RGB colors. This backlit keyboard comes with 18 lighting models and 6 themed backlights.
This is a full 104 key keyboard, which is anti-ghosting. It is ideal for gamers as they require multiple keys to be pressed at the same time, and getting one key unresponsive would be a nuisance. It is supported by Redragon’s software in which you can assign macro keys to make your gaming experience more fluent.
- Anodized aluminum frame
- Brown switches
- RGB backlit
- 104 key keyboard
- Customizable macro keys
- Full metal body
- Cherry Mx Brown Mechanical switches
- Splash proof
- Incomplete software
- Switches become unresponsive in the long run
If you haven’t dived into the pool of mechanical gaming keyboards, then the Redragon K556 keyboard is the one to start with, as this is a keyboard that provides you with the mechanical experience of a high-end board in a low price point.
The MX Brown switches provide an excellent feel and response time. This keyboard is cheap, but in no way is the cheap referring to the quality and finish of this keyboard. Although the software support is nowhere near that of the big league keyboard, i.e., Corsair, Logitech, Razer, etc. but it is surely impressive and is a tough competitor.
Logitech is no stranger when it comes to keyboards. From the start, Logitech has been the main option for gamers as they provide quality products with commendable features in a certain price bracket. The G413 is an amazing keyboard by Logitech.
It features a lightweight full aluminum top that houses the famous Romer-G switches. These actuate at just 1.5 mm, which is claimed to be 25% shorter than rival keyboards. Although these are membrane switches, they don’t fall short in providing you with a competitive edge. Though the keyboard is not RGB backlit, it still gives a beautiful, simple, and sophisticated look with its crimson red backlit keycaps.
The keyboard comes equipped with media controls to control your music during your gaming sessions with ease. It also features a USB 2.0 pass-through that can be used for data transfer or to power your appliances.
This reduces the clutter of wires caused by a mouse and makes your user experience that much seamless. This keyboard is also known for its 26 key layover, which greatly prevents ghosting and doesn’t become unresponsive when you require it the most. The macros on the keyboard are also customizable through Logitech’s user-friendly software.
- Full aluminum top
- Romer-G switches
- 1.5 mm actuation
- Crimson red backlit
- Media controls
- USB 2.0 pass-through
- 26 key layover
- Customizable macros
- Top grade aluminum top
- USB pass-through
- Low actuation point
- Customizable Macros
- No RGB
- Membrane switches
Logitech surely hasn’t disappointed with the G413 keyboard. Although you can find semi-mechanical keyboards in this price bracket, it would be better to go with a high-quality membrane switch that Logitech has delivered in the form of this keyboard.
If you can overlook the non-RGB nature of this keyboard, the crimson backlit keycaps are surely not disappointing. But it still would’ve been better to include RGB to improve aesthetics. Overall this is a solid keyboard with all the required features and is a good option if you’re on a budget and are looking for a good gaming keyboard.
The GK61 is a 60% form factor keyboard and is equipped with Gateron Optical switches. As a bonus, they are hot-swappable. This means that you can easily take out and swap the switches without the need for soldering the board, which makes them extremely customizable. This also adds a personal touch to the overall board.
These switches are claimed to be much smoother than mechanical switches. They are rated at 100 million clicks and have an actuation point of 1.5mm. This is quite impressive, giving you the advantage in encounters where you need the extra microseconds the most.
This board is USB-c powered, which is quite astonishing as most keyboards, even some high-end ones, don’t provide that feature. It also comes with complete RGB backlighting with 16.8 million color combinations and multiple backlit modes. Another great feature is that you can record macros through the official software making your gaming experience flawless.
- 60% Keyboard
- Hot-swappable Gateron Optical switches
- Rated at 100 million clicks
- 1.5mm actuation
- USB-c connection
- RGB backlighting
- 16.8 million color combinations
- Hot-swappable switches
- RGB backlighting
- Extremely customizable
- Small form factor
- Lack of good software
- Unknown brand
Even though the GK61 keyboard is not as well-known as other rival keyboards, we think you should give this a shot if you truly want to customize your gaming experience. This keyboard can be customized according to your style and needs, but the stock keyboard is also quite impressive, and to find a good 60% form factor keyboard at this price point is extremely hard. So this is also a viable option. This is a great option for people looking to add a more personal touch to their setup and want great performance along with it.
HyperX Alloy Core RGB
HyperX has made its mission to provide excellent quality products with affordable rates for the average consumer. They have products ranging from keyboards, mice, and even gaming headsets. The HyperX Alloy Core RGB is no exception.
It features a solid keyboard that is durable and rigid, providing gamers with a peace of mind and giving them a quality experience. HyperX advertises this keyboard to be splash resistant. This keyboard also offers dedicated media controls.
It is equipped with keys to control the RGB backlighting and to turn on the ‘Game Mode.’ This is to turn off the windows key, so your game doesn’t get minimized during your gaming sessions if you accidentally click the windows key. These features are hard to come by on a budget-friendly keyboard, and it comes at a nice surprise that it is present in the Alloy Core.
The HyperX Alloy Core comes equipped with quiet, responsive keys. This gives an option to the people who dislike the loud tactile sound of mechanical switches. These switches are claimed to be comfortable and responsive and have anti-ghosting capabilities.
The overall build of the Alloy Core RGB is quite light and portable and is durable, even for an all-plastic body. It also comes equipped with a 5 zone RGB backlighting with six different presets. This might not be as impressive as other RGB keyboards in the market, but it still provides a great look to your setup.
- splash resistant
- dedicated media controls
- quiet and responsive keys
- all-plastic body
- 5 zone RGB backlighting
- RGB backlighting
- Splash resistant
- Quiet and responsive switches
- Dedicated media controls
- All plastic build
- Lack of decent RGB controls
Overall the HyperX Alloy Core is a solid option with decent features with a few exceptions at an affordable rate. Even though the body is made of full plastic, the build quality is above average and provides gamers with a comfortable board.
The ridges on the keyboard also provide an aesthetic appeal to the board. Although the RGB present on the keyboard is not as satisfactory, it makes up for it with its quiet and responsive key switches. All in all, the HyperX Alloy Core RGB is a keyboard to be considered if you’re on a tight budget and don’t fancy the loud and tactile noise of mechanical switches.
Logitech doesn’t fail to deliver as they keep making excellent quality products that are extremely top quality, loaded with features all in a compelling price point. The Logitech G213 is an impressive keyboard packed with amazing features while remaining at a reasonable price.
As expected from Logitech, the G213 is a very well-built keyboard with amazing quality and feel even though the body is made entirely of plastic. The switches in the G213 simulate mechanical switches.
The Logitech G213 inbuilt wrist rest prevents your wrist from straining from many hours of gaming, which is quite surprising at this price. It has a wide range of dedicated media buttons in the top-right corner, a button to control the lighting, a game mode toggle, and a volume rocker
This keyboard is resistant to spill, and it includes a braided cord. The lighting in the G213 is also quite impressive because of the Logitech G LIGHTSYNC technology feature. It is next generation RGB lighting that is driven by actions in over 300 top games. It has a total of 16.8 million possible color combinations, which can be controlled through Logitech’s own user-friendly software.
- membrane switches
- 4mm actuation
- Plastic body
- inbuilt wrist rest
- dedicated media buttons
- braided cord
- Logitech G LIGHTSYNC
- 16.8 million possible color combinations
- user-friendly software
- Dedicated media controls
- Customizable RGB
- High-quality build
- Inbuilt wrist rest
- Mechanical simulating switches
- High 4mm actuation
All in all, the Logitech G213 is an amazing option for the budget-conscious gamer as it provides the top features at a competitive price. The mechanical simulating switches provide an amazing feel and let you have a taste at what mechanical switches are like. The impressive RGB present in the keyboard surely will add an aesthetic flair to your setup, and you won’t be disappointed in your purchase. You will not be disappointed with this keyboard as this is highly acclaimed by users and belongs to a reputable brand that delivers quality and performance.
What to Look for When Choosing a Cheap Gaming Keyboard?
When choosing a keyboard, you need to know that you have to choose the one that will be able to endure heavy usage and intense gaming for hours on end. So, when choosing a keyboard, make sure that it is durable and reliable enough to fulfill your everyday gaming needs.
When on a budget, you need to make sure that you are getting the bang for your buck. No money is to be wasted on extra features you might not require, or anything you might be able to let go to get that extra performance instead.
Even if you’re on a budget, you need to make sure that the keyboard you are about to purchase gives you the value for its money. Features like media controls, anti-ghosting, key layover, etc. are essential for gaming. If they are not present, then the lack of these features may make your gaming experience stressful instead of fun.
The keyboards presented in our list are great options and give users all the features and quirks they are looking for in a gaming keyboard. Overall you won’t be disappointed with any of the keyboards presented as they deliver in performance and fall in a reasonable price bracket. But we think that the best keyboard that checks all the boxes of build quality, performance, price, features, and aesthetics is the Redragon K556.
This keyboard is an all-metal build with true mechanical switches and fully addressable RGB lighting. No other keyboard in this price segment offers all these features in a single package.
A good gaming keyboard is one of the most important components to improve your gameplay. Even though choosing one in a strict budget might be overwhelming, you can easily find the perfect one for yourself.
Hopefully, our top 5 list has helped you to narrow down your search. In the end, it all comes down to what type of keyboard you prefer and if it is available in your budget. Just be sure to get the best value for your money. If you don’t agree with our top pick, then feel free to pick a gaming keyboard that is more suited to your needs and requirements, all at a great price.
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