/>
X
Why you can trust ZDNet ZDNet independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNet Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNet's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNet nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNet's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.

Close

The best keyboards: Find your type

What is the best keyboard? The Das Keyboard Prime 13 takes our top spot! We analyzed quality, feel, design, comfort and more below.
adrian-kingsley-hughes.jpg
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Contributor on

You deserve a good keyboard. You really do. Take it from someone who struggled with an awful keyboard for years.

Having the right keyboard can make a huge difference, not just to your productivity, but also comfort and even your health and longevity. And there's one bit of equipment that can make a massive difference, and that's the keyboard. 

Here are a few top-notch productivity-boosting keyboards (not gaming -- that brings a whole raft of additional considerations into play) for those of you considering an upgrade. I've also picked a great all-rounder keyboard for all you left-handed people out there.

Also: Best gaming keyboard: All the hits and clicks

Das Keyboard Prime 13

This is a solid, well-made, minimalistic keyboard that can last you a lifetime. Each key is equipped with a high-precision Cherry MX Brown switch, which is good for a whopping 50 million presses. Each key feels like a work of art.

The Das Keyboard Prime 13 also features beautiful LED back-lighting which makes typing in low-light a pleasure.

This feels less like a keyboard and more like a precision work of art. 

This beautiful keyboard is one of the very best money can buy, and a keyboard that, if you look after is properly, will last a lifetime. 

Pros:

  • High quality
  • Amazingly engineered

Cons:

  • Expensive

Das Keyboard Prime 13 tech specs:

  • Cherry MX switches
  • Aluminum top panel
  • White LED backlighting
  • Braided cable
  • USB pass-through
Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard

Microsoft makes great hardware, and the Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard is no exception. 

In a sea of cheap and nasty keyboards, this one stands out as being well made, reliable, and hard-wearing.

On top of a 2-year battery life, this keyboard features built-in shortcuts, including dedicated Office 365 functions, search, and Emoji keys, easy access to media controls, apps, screen snipping, calculator, volume, and more.

A cheap and cheerful Bluetooth keyboard that's packed with features and perfect for heavy-duty home and office use.

Pros:

  • Cheap and cheerful
  • Well built
  • Great selection of shortcuts
  • Good battery life

Cons:

  • Very much a keyboard for people using Microsoft products

Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard tech specs:

  • Bluetooth
  • Battery powered (2AA batteries)
Logitech MX Keys Advanced

This is a keyboard that's designed for people who have grown up on laptops. It has the look and feels of a high-quality laptop keyboard, from the key sizes, travel, and backlighting. 

It's also great for people who want to have one keyboard for multiple devices. The Logitech MX Keys Advanced is multi-device and multi OS, compatible with Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, and Android systems. Best of all, you can pair a single keyboard with three devices.

This wireless keyboard has a battery life of 10 days (or up-to 5 months with backlighting off) and is recharged using USB-C. 

Pros:

  • Works across multiple devices and operating systems
  • Backlighting
  • Decent battery life with backlight off

Cons:

  • Battery life is poor with backlight on

Logitech MX Keys Advanced tech specs:

  • Bluetooth
  • USB-C rechargeable
  • Backlighting
  • Supports multiple devices and multi operating systems
DSI Left-Handed Keyboard with Cherry Mechanical Red Switch

I'm right-handed, but statistically, some one-in-seven readers will be left-handed, and having to force yourself to fit into a world built for right-handers can be hard. So, why not grab yourself a keyboard made for people like you.

The DSI left-handed keyboard is built around the Cherry mechanical Red switch, each good for 20 million hits.

This is a wonderfully solid keyboard that's an absolute pleasure to use.

Pros:

  • Left-handed
  • Corded
  • Cherry Red switches
  • Good price

Cons:

  • No backlight
  • No built-in USB ports

DSI Left-Handed Keyboard with Cherry Mechanical Red Switch tech specs:

  • Left Handed Keyboard
  • Cherry Red mechanical switch
  • Corded
screenshot-2022-04-26-183950-2.png
Amazon

If you work primarily with mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, then you'll know just how awful on-screen keyboards are for any sort of long-term sustained typing.

It doesn't have to be!

This Logitech keyboard offers you the ability to work with a physical keyboard when the need arises. Can't choose what device to use? This keyboard offers the ability to switch quickly between multiple devices.

A great space saver!

Pros:

  • Multi-device support
  • Full-sized keyboard
  • Bluetooth

Cons:

  • No backlighting

Logitech K780 tech specs:

Multi-device wireless keyboard: beautiful type-on-everything keyboard for any computer, tablet and smartphone via USB or Bluetooth smart wireless connection

  • Type and switch between devices: Type on up to three devices and switch between them at the touch of an easy-switch button
  • Comfortable typing: full size, fully equipped keyboard with large, quiet keys and convenient Number pad
  • Integrated phone and tablet stand: Holds your devices at the perfect angle to Type and read
  • Wide compatibility: works with Windows, Mac, Chrome OS, iOS and Android devices
Apple Magic Keyboard

This is the best solution for Mac users. It's stylish, practical, and very robust. I suggest getting the version with the numeric keypad, but if you are short of desk space, you could go for the basic keyboard.

The keyboard uses Apple's scissor mechanism, giving each key a great feeling of solidity and great tactile feedback.

Pros:

  • Great build quality
  • Solid feel

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • No backlighting

Apple Magic Keyboard tech specs:

  • Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad features an extended layout, with document navigation controls for quick scrolling and full-size arrow keys for gaming
  • A scissor mechanism beneath each key allows for increased stability, while optimized key travel and a low profile provide a comfortable and precise typing experience.
  • The numeric keypad is also great for spreadsheets and finance applications.
Apple Magic Keyboard with Touch ID

One of the most perfect Bluetooth keyboards ever made. 

Beautiful to use, long-lasting battery, easy pairing with your Mac, and a convenient Touch ID pad for your fingerprint.

It's not cheap, but nothing Apple makes is cheap!

Pros:

  • Solid build quality
  • Built-in Touch ID

Cons:

  • Expensive

Apple Magic Keyboard with Touch ID tech specs:

  • Magic Keyboard with Touch ID delivers a remarkably comfortable and precise typing experience.
  • It's also wireless and rechargeable, with an incredibly long-lasting internal battery that will power your keyboard for about a month or more between charges.
  • It pairs automatically with your Mac, so you can get to work right away.
  • And it includes a woven USB-C to Lightning Cable that lets you pair and charge by connecting to a USB-C port on your Mac.
  • System Requirements: Mac with Apple silicon using macOS 11.4 or later

What is the best keyboard?

The best keyboard is the Das Keyboard Prime 13 because of its high quality build, simple design, and amazing feel.

Considerations

Some considerations to bear in mind when choosing a keyboard:

  • Wired or wireless: Wireless offers greater flexibility, but means batteries or recharging. Wired is fixed but there's less care and feeding to do.
  • Backlit or not: Some find backlit keyboards a must, others hate them. The good thing is that most keyboards that have backlighting can be put into dark mode.
  • Size: Small keyboards are nice, but they can be cramped for extended sessions. 
  • Bluetooth dongle included or not: If you want a wireless keyboard for a desktop, remember that a lot of systems don't have Bluetooth, so check if the keyboard comes with a dongle (most do).
  • Ergonomic or not: Again, a personal taste thing. Some find ergonomic keyboards comfortable (especially if they suffer from ailments such as RSI or carpal tunnel syndrome), while others loathe anything that isn't a regular layout.

Are Bluetooth keyboards less secure than wired keyboards?

If you are worried about this attack surface -- and I'm not -- then buy a wired keyboard.

Are Cherry Switches really that good?

Yes. There's something about a Cherry keyboard switch that's hard to explain. A preciseness. A positiveness. A very satisfying sound. They are awesome.

Why would I want a keyboard for a smartphone or tablet?

I've been using on-screen keyboards for years, and I'm still less efficient -- far less efficient -- using them compared to using a real keyboard. The single most important thing I can do to improve my efficiency when using a tablet or smartphone is to hook up a keyboard.



Related

The 5 best smart bathroom scales of 2022
Person's feet stepping onto a black scale that's on top of hardwood floor

The 5 best smart bathroom scales of 2022

Health
The 5 best smart speakers of 2022
black friday 10

The 5 best smart speakers of 2022

Smart Assistants
Best silent mouse (2022)
best-list-placeholder.jpg

Best silent mouse (2022)

Office Hardware & Appliances