With the introduction of Apple Arcade, gaming on Mac has become so much easier than it used to be. Regardless, Mac’s keyboard is best used for working. Gaming is an intensive task, and gaming on a Mac can wear out the keyboard fast. To help you out, I’ve compiled a list of the best gaming keyboards in 2022.
- ANNE PRO
- Razer Cynosa Chroma
- Corsair K65 Mini
1. Corsair K100 – Editor’s choice
Mechanical keyboards do a fair job as a gaming keyboard substitute. However, if you have the funds, gaming is best experienced with a keyboard like Corsair K100.
This is the best gaming keyboard that money can buy, hands down. Corsair K100 is durable, sleek, and highly customizable. The entire keyboard is built with aluminum, promising durability in case of hard falls and bumps. The keys are tactile and responsive. Each key has its lighting system for a unique level of color customization.
It also uses Corsair’s patented AXON-Hyper Processing technology, ensuring 4000Hz key scanning and 4000Hz Hyper-polling. This implies that your key usage during gaming will face zero latency.
There’s iCUE control as well, with a control wheel at the middle of the keyboard’s upper section. This control wheel can be used to change the keyboard’s backlights, surf through media, as well as certain actions in games.
Long-time users of this keyboard have complained about the wrist rest. If you’ve got issues with your wrist already, you should probably go for a different option.
- Durable build quality
- Fast key response
- Highly customizable
- iCUE scroll wheel is a nice touch
- Wrist rest is uncomfortable
2. SteelSeries Apex Pro – Highly durable and robust keyboard
SteelSeries is a company famous for making some of the best gamepads that you can find. The Apex Pro is their entry into the big leagues for mechanical keyboards.
This keyboard uses aircraft-grade aluminum to give you maximum durability. From the keys to the keyboard’s frame, you can see that manufacturers have put thought and effort into building this keyboard.
The keyboard features the OmniPoint switches. This allows you to change the actuation distance for the keys based on your requirement. Using the keyboard for work? Increase the actuation distance slightly for a better feel when typing. Ready to game? Decrease the distance to witness fast response times.
An OLED smart display fitted into the keyboard ensures a beautiful lighting experience when listening to music or playing games. This customizable display can check your keyboard’s settings and track information from your music or game.
However, some users have experienced issues physically setting the keyboard. It doesn’t seem to sit properly against the surface.
- Aircraft-grade aluminum for best durability
- Adjustable actuation distance for keys
- OLED smart display
- It may not sit well on some surfaces
3. Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro – Versatility champion
If you’re looking for a keyboard that provides versatility, the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro should be a serious contender.
This ergonomic keyboard can be connected in three different ways. Firstly, through the HyperSpeed Wireless method for gaming. Secondly, through Bluetooth, and thirdly, through the USB-C port. When you connect it through the USB-C cable, it charges the keyboard.
The mechanical switches in the keyboard have an actuation distance of just 1.2mm. Moreover, the switches have almost no tactile feedback. Combining these two features gives you a low sound profile for the keyboard.
Further, the frame of the keyboard is transparent. This allows the keyboard’s lighting to push through beautifully during gaming.
Lastly, the molding process of the keys is done so that the labeling can’t wear off, even after extended usage. However, if you’re looking for a keyboard that provides customizable lighting, the BlackWidow V3 Pro isn’t it.
- You can connect it in multiple ways
- Low sound profile
- Low actuation distance for low latency
- Lighting cannot be customized
4. Redragon K580 VATA – Best budget keyboard
Gaming keyboards can be expensive. If you’re looking for a good budget option, I’ve got you covered with the Redragon K580 VATA keyboard.
For the price, this keyboard is highly customizable. There are 5 dedicated keys that can be customized for your macros.
If you like listening to music when gaming, multimedia keys on the keyboard help you change, play, or pause the music. You can also adjust the volume and the brightness of the backlit keyboard through extra keys.
While many keyboards allow only a limited number of clicks simultaneously, the Redragon K580 allows you to click as many keys together. The keys are also dust- and scratch-resistant.
The software provided for programming the keyboard isn’t great, though. It covers the bare minimum and won’t be satisfactory for enthusiast gamers.
- Decent for the price
- Dedicated customizable macro keys
- Durability is satisfactory
- Software provided doesn’t work well
5. ANNE PRO 2 – Minimalist design
If you’re not a fan of flashy and fancy keyboard designs, you’ll prefer the small form factor and no-nonsense delivery of the ANNE PRO 2.
The keyboard possesses all the basic functionalities you can expect in a gaming keyboard while maintaining a size making it portable. You can even fit it into your backpack.
The Bluetooth connectivity of the keyboard is good and can be connected with up to 4 devices. The latency is low, and you can easily switch between the connected devices.
More importantly, it’s also customizable to a certain extent. The provided software helps you customize the keyboard layout the way you’d want. It also adds functionality for changing the lighting.
You might have to tamper around with lighting options to find what suits you best.
- Small form factor
- Minimalist design
- Customizable keyboard layout
- Bluetooth connectivity is decent
- Software’s lighting options need work
6. Razer Cynosa Chroma – Best all-rounder keyboard
Mini keyboards that provide all-around functionality are rare. Thankfully, Razer Cynosa Chroma is one of the best of the lot.
The keyboard’s key rollover features enable you to execute 10 commands together. Gone are the days when using too many keys together would result in high latency execution.
The software provided with the keyboard also syncs the keyboard with the most popular games and some other software. This means that your keyboard’s lighting will always be on point, whether you’re playing the best games or listening to music.
The keyboard can also withstand the worst of spillages. Regardless of the spillage, the keyboard’s durability implies that you only need to clean the keyboard once with a clean cloth, and the keyboard will continue to function as normal. There’s also a 2-year warranty for this keyboard, and this makes it future-proof.
But I didn’t like that the onboard software will log every keyboard stroke you make. If you value your privacy, this keyboard may not be for you.
- The key rollover feature works well
- Lighting for the keyboard syncs with almost every game and music software
- Can handle most spillages
- 2-year warranty
- Privacy issues with the provided software
7. ROCCAT Vulcan TKL Pro – Mini keyboard for competitive gamers
Another mini keyboard to check out, the ROCCAT Vulcan TKL Pro, is perfect for enthusiast gamers.
The smaller form factor allows more space for mouse movement and better accuracy. Your responses in games will also be blazing fast due to ROCCAT’s Titan Linear Optical Switch, for the least actuation distance.
The easy Shift+ functionality of the keyboard also enables you to customize some of the programmable keys to perform more than one function. You use the second assigned function by holding down the key. This can be a boon in most online competitive games.
For the lighting nerds, the AIMO illumination of the keyboard syncs with all other compatible devices present in the setup. You don’t have to configure the lighting for hours either. The software is user-friendly enough for you to choose from 16.8 million shades.
You can also attach the keyboard with a USB-C cable. This will reduce all latency and prepare you for your competitive gaming experience.
The manufacturer provides a 2-year limited warranty as well.
I’ve found the build quality to be below par, however. If you’re looking for a more stable and durable keyboard, this may not fit the bill.
- Compact form factor
- Actuation distance is minimal for competitive games
- Some keys can be programmed for two functions
- Lighting configuration is made easy
- 2-year limited warranty
- Build quality could’ve been better
8. Logitech G915 – Best wireless gaming keyboard
When building a gaming PC, you must spend a fair amount on the right keyboard. While Logitech may not be the first choice of many competitive gamers, this keyboard is worth checking out.
The Logitech G915 is a completely wireless keyboard that takes away the pain of managing a thousand different cables for the gaming setup. The keyboard’s battery is built to last for 30 hours on a single charge.
Logitech’s LIGHTSYNC technology makes an appearance with this keyboard, and you can customize the lighting for each key. You can also create custom animations for certain scenarios, whether gaming, movies, or music.
Thanks to the low actuation point, it’s also a rather silent keyboard, and you can work in silence without disturbing anyone.
Gaming keyboards generally tend to be bulky. However, the Logitech G915 is thin and crafted using aluminum for durability.
There are also macro keys for customizing functionality based on your playing style or even on a whim. My only gripe with this keyboard is that it’s rather expensive for the features that it provides.
- Decent battery backup for a wireless keyboard
- Low actuation points
- Thin and durable build
- 5 Programmable macro keys
- Too expensive
9. EVGA Z15 – Best budget optical gaming keyboard
If you’re short on the budget, the EVGA Z15 might be what you’re looking for.
The mechanical switches of the keyboard can be changed to your liking, thanks to the keyboard’s Kailh 3-pin mechanical switch technology.
The EVGA Z15 is relatively good for competitive gaming, as the onboard microprocessor can process keyboard usage at a fast polling rate of 4000Hz. This gives you more precision in your movement for all the mobile games you emulate on your PC.
The provided software also gives you 14 preset lighting configurations. Fear not; you can also change the lighting based on your preferences.
The palm rest of the keyboard can also be detached if you have to fit the keyboard into your backpack during your travels.
The software provided with the keyboard needs further refinement, however. There are plenty of options missing in the software provided with other keyboards in this price segment.
- Fast polling rate for competitive games
- Swappable and customizable keyset
- Lighting options are good
- Clunky and below-par software
10. Corsair K65 Mini – Fastest-polling mini keyboard
The Corsair K65 Mini is one of the smallest keyboards you can find in the market. Surprisingly, that doesn’t mean that the important features are skipped.
If you thought that some of the keyboards with 4000Hz hyper-polling were good, this keyboard surpasses this expectation. It has a blazing speed of 8000Hz hyper-polling. When you play games online with this keyboard, even the slightest press of a key will register the function.
The actuation distance is 1.2mm only, and this means that latency with this keyboard is almost non-existent. The keycap sets are also molded to resist most wear and tear. Even if you use this keyboard for extended periods, you will not see any fading on the labeling.
Unfortunately, the keyboard doesn’t support wireless or Bluetooth connectivity.
- The form factor is small but doesn’t skimp on features
- Low latency
- 8000Hz Hyper-polling for gaming excellence
- No Bluetooth or wireless connectivity
Things to consider when buying a gaming keyboard for Mac
The gaming keyboard industry is a rabbit hole, with different switches, molds, keys, and other features to consider when buying a gaming keyboard. Since you plan to use a gaming keyboard for your Mac, here are a few things you should consider:
1. How many keys do you need?
Mac users pride themselves on the efficiency that the device provides. When you’re buying a gaming keyboard, you should consider the size, weight, and functionality of the keyboard.
You can choose from 104, 87, or 84 keys on a gaming keyboard. If you’re someone who plans to use the keyboard for working on software such as Excel, a 104 keys keyboard would be important, thanks to the number pad. If you do not need the number pad, you’re better off with the smaller keyboards.
2. Switch tester is important
Since you’re about to make a possibly huge investment on a gaming keyboard, you should also spend money on a key switch tester. Gaming keyboards have different key switches, and each of them feels vastly different from the other, based on what you’re looking for.
You can choose from clicky, linear, or tactile switches. All of them have their functionality, based on the task the keyboard will be used for. If you’re unsure which key switch a keyboard is using, you should go for a key switch tester.
These devices will tell you which switch is provided on a gaming keyboard. You can decide which keyboard you’d want to buy based on the result.
3. Go for higher switch quality
The branding of the key switches could be more important than the brand of the keyboard manufacturer. You should go for the variants made by Kailh or Cherry MX. Do not buy keyboards that have generic color names for the key switches.
These will not log every keystroke and are bound to fall apart after a few months of usage.
Keycaps are also an important part of buying a gaming keyboard. There are usually two types of keycaps, PBT and ABS. ABS keycaps tend to shine and pop out more, but they are susceptible to spills, dust, and grease.
PBT keycaps don’t usually fade out, unlike the ABS kind. They’re also more robust. However, these keycaps may not look as good as the ABS keycaps.
Whether you go for Bluetooth, wireless, or wired keyboards will completely depend on the situations you find yourself in. Personally, for work, I’d prefer a wireless or Bluetooth-enabled keyboard that would allow me to relax a bit further away from the computer screen.
If you buy a wireless gaming keyboard, I’d recommend spending more money on higher-tier gaming keyboards. Cheaper wireless keyboards tend to lag slightly due to latency issues. If you don’t have the money to spend on a good wireless gaming keyboard, spend the money on a good wired keyboard instead.
As more and more games become accessible to Mac owners, gaming keyboards will become much more relevant in the coming days. I’ve listed my picks for the best gaming keyboards you can buy today, bearing these scenarios in mind.
Are there any other tips you’d recommend to fellow Mac users when buying a gaming keyboard? Let me and the rest of the readers know in the comments below!