The 10 Best Mechanical Keyboards Under $100 (for 2022)

best mechanical keyboards under $100

On a budget? No problem! 💰

There are amazing mechanical keyboards you can pick up for under $100, without sacrificing a good sound and feel.

In fact, out of the 30+ keyboards I own, over 75% of them are BUDGET keyboards.

But there are some “duds” that aren’t worth it–so keep reading.

Here are our top picks for the best mechanical keyboards under $100:

Best Overall
Keychron K2
The best low-budget
Tecware Phantom
Best Premium Feel
Durgod Taurus
Keychron K2 75% Layout 84 Keys Hot-swappable Bluetooth Wireless/USB Wired Mechanical Keyboard for Mac with Gateron...
TECWARE Phantom 104 Mechanical Keyboard, RGB LED (Outemu Red)
Durgod Taurus K320 TKL Mechanical Keyboard | 87 Keys Tenkeyless | USB C Wired | Doubleshot PBT Keycaps |...
$89.99
$39.99
$99.99
Wireless/Bluetooth?
RGB backlighting
Hotswappable?
Switch Options?
Best Overall
Keychron K2
Keychron K2 75% Layout 84 Keys Hot-swappable Bluetooth Wireless/USB Wired Mechanical Keyboard for Mac with Gateron...
$89.99
Wireless/Bluetooth?
RGB backlighting
Hotswappable?
Switch Options?
The best low-budget
Tecware Phantom
TECWARE Phantom 104 Mechanical Keyboard, RGB LED (Outemu Red)
$39.99
Wireless/Bluetooth?
RGB backlighting
Hotswappable?
Switch Options?
Best Premium Feel
Durgod Taurus
Durgod Taurus K320 TKL Mechanical Keyboard | 87 Keys Tenkeyless | USB C Wired | Doubleshot PBT Keycaps |...
$99.99
Wireless/Bluetooth?
RGB backlighting
Hotswappable?
Switch Options?

Let’s get into it.

How we rank our budget keyboards:

There are a few common features that we like to look for:

Cost:Obviously, we’ll look at the price tags of these keyboards and make sure they’re under the $100 range.
Wireless:Do you need your keyboard to be wireless? Or do you prefer the wired connection?
Hot-swappable:Hot-swappable keyboards allow you to easily change the switches without de-soldering (which makes it more convenient to make customizations.)
Switch and customization options:Many of these keyboards have different switch options to choose from, as well as different case colors or even keycap colors!
Build Quality:We’ll check to make sure the overall build quality is good and that there aren’t any obvious “cheap stuff.”

Best Mechanical Keyboard Under $100

Now that you have an understanding of how we are judging these keyboards, let’s dive into our favorite recommendations.

Keychron K2 – Best Overall (and Best for Mac)

Keychron K2 75% Layout 84 Keys Hot-swappable Bluetooth Wireless/USB Wired Mechanical Keyboard for Mac with Gateron...
  • Keychron K2, a 75% layout 84 keys hot-swappable white LED backlight wireless mechanical keyboard giving you all the keys and function you need while keeping it compact. And let you personalize per-key...
  • With a unique Mac layout while compatible with Windows, the Keychron K2 has all essential multimedia and function keys you need. Extra keycaps for both Windows and Mac operating systems are included.
  • Connects with up to 3 devices via the reliable Broadcom Bluetooth 5.1 chipset and switch among them easily for multitasking needs. The K2 is best to fit home, office and light gaming use while...
  • Cost: ✅ $69-$99
  • Wireless? ✅ yes
  • Hot-swappable? ✅ yes
  • Customization Options: ✅ lots!

The Keychron K2 takes our top spot for one reason: it’s one of the ONLY keyboards under $100 that has all the options:

  • They have hot-swap versions
  • They have versions with different color keycaps
  • Windows & Mac compatible (with a physical toggle switch on the case!)
  • Great RGB backlighting
  • Wireless works really good!
The very first K2 I ever bought!

It’s just a solid keyboard overall, and Keychron actually makes several different versions of these!

The K2 is a 75% TKL layout (meaning it doesn’t have the 10-key numberpad), but you can pick up 100% full-sized versions, 60% compact versions, etc.

AND–you can actually save a bit of money by choosing NON hot-swappable versions. Though it’s only a few bucks more.

Looking for more Mac keyboards? Check out our recommendations here.

Durgod Taurus K320: The Runner-Up

Durgod Taurus K320 TKL Mechanical Keyboard | 87 Keys Tenkeyless | USB C Wired | Doubleshot PBT Keycaps |...
  • STURDY – Extra sturdy case with adjustable feet in two positions for a comfortable typing experience. Durable and fade resistant doubleshot PBT keycaps can be changed with the included keypuller.
  • CHERRY MX BLUE SWITCHES – Clicky feedback with a noticeable bump and an audible click, perfect for typing. High actuation force of 60 cN and 4.0 mm of total travel.
  • FULLY PROGRAMMABLE – Set up macros or rebind keys in the Durgod Zeus Engine Software. Independent profiles and practical features such as Windows key lock and multimedia controls. Full Anti Ghosting...
  • Cost: ✅ Right at $99
  • Wireless? ❌ No
  • Hot-swappable? ❌ No
  • Customization Options: ✅ lots!

The Durgod Taurus is probably the most “premium” look and feel that you can get for under $100.

It’s probably the most well-built keyboard on our list!

Add to that several Cherry MX switch options (Red, Brown, Blue, Silent Red, and Speed Silver), AND several color options–and this is a great pick.

  • N-key rollover
  • PBT Doubleshot keycaps
  • USB-C (some keyboards don’t have this, sadly)

Those features are mostly going to be standard on all of the budget keyboards recommended here–but the Durgod is reliable keyboard and a step up in terms of build quality and feel.

Anne Pro 2 – Best Compact under $100

Sale
ANNE PRO 2, 60% Wired/Wireless Mechanical Keyboard (Gateron Red Switch/White Case) - Full Keys Programmable - True...
  • Minimalistic design doing more with less. Requires less hand movement while still being able to access all the functionalities.
  • Compact and Portable . It saves desk space and easy to carry around. Fits right in backpack. Perfect for home, work and on the go.
  • Decent bluetooth connectivity enables wireless connection up to 4 devices and switch seamlessly back and forth.
  • Cost: ✅ $69-$89
  • Wireless? ✅ yes
  • Hot-swappable? ❌ No
  • Customization Options: ✅ Enough

The Anne Pro 2 is one of THE most popular keyboards in the community, and for good reason: it’s a cheap-but-good 60% layout!

The 60% layout means you will be missing…

  • The number pad
  • The function row
  • Dedicated arrow keys
  • the “home cluster” keys

Yes, you can still ACCESS the keys, but they’ll require using a fn (function) layer.

And hey, it’s small enough to fit in your pocket (almost).

The Anne Pro 2 offers several different Gateron switch options, as well as case colors (white/black), and it’s one of the few wireless 60% keyboards that actually works well!

If you’re looking for a smaller keyboard on a budget, the Anne Pro 2 is highly recommended.

Corsair K65 – the Runner-Up Compact 60% Layout

Another great pick is the Corsair K65 RGB.

It’s not wireless or hot-swappable, and has fewer options, but if you like the overall design (which is a bit different than the Anne Pro), this could be a good option (especially for a gaming keyboard).

The K65 offers Cherry MX red switches, or Cherry MX speed silvers!

Tecware Phantom – the Best Ultra Low-Budget

Sale
Tecware Phantom 87 Key Mechanical Keyboard, RGB led, Outemu Brown Switch
  • RGB BACKLIGHTING - Enhance your gaming experience with 18 pre-set configurations on the mechanical keyboard, or create a unique one to match your setup
  • OUTEMU SWITCHES - The gaming mechanical keyboard comes with Outemu mechanical switches for precise gaming and comfortable typing. Spare switches + keycap & switch remover tools are provided for easy...
  • FIBERGLASS PCB - Built with SMD LEDs and FR-4 fiberglass printed circuit board, this Tecware mechanical keyboard is able to withstand extended periods of intensive and hardcore gaming sessions
  • Cost: ✅ $39-59
  • Wireless? ❌ No
  • Hot-swappable? ✅ yes
  • Customization Options: ✅ a few

The Tecware Phantom comes in 2 sizes:

  • The 87 = an 80% TKL
  • The 104 = a 100% full-sized keyboard

I recently purchased the Phantom 104 for testing (you can read our full review of the Tecware Phantom here), and it’s FANTASTIC at that price point!

$39 for a mechanical keyboard?

That’s insane, and they managed to squeeze a good design, sturdy construction, and some solid Outemu switch options.

It’s the best gaming keyboard sub-$50 keyboard, period.

The Tecware Phantom comes with its own software, which allows you to create macros and assign personal keybinds. You can generally download this from the Tecware website.

Keychron K7 – the Best Low-Profile Under $100

Keychron K7 65% Layout Ultra-Slim Hot-swappable Wireless Bluetooth/Wired USB Mechanical Keyboard with Low-Profile...
  • Keychron K7, a compact 65% layout 68 keys hot-swappable ultra-slim white LED backlit wireless mechanical keyboard built to maximize your productivity and desktop space, with its 65% layout and...
  • The redesigned low-profile keychron optical switch is 40% slimmer than conventional switches with a shorter pre-travel and total travel distance that triggers an input and feedback faster than...
  • You can easily hot-swap every low-profile optical switch without soldering to customize your typing experience on the K7 (*This keyboard is NOT compatible with any conventional MX style mechanical...
  • Cost: ✅ $80-90
  • Wireless? ✅ yes
  • Hot-swappable? ✅ yes
  • Customization Options: ✅ lots!

The only problem with our TOP OVERALL pick, the Keychron K2, is that it can feel a bit tall for some people (you’d either have to get used it or purchase a wrist rest).

Most of these mechanical keyboards ARE “high-profile” like that, unless explicitly called “low-profile.”

The Keychron K7 is our favorite low-profile pick in this price range!

It’s a 60% layout, so it’s ultra-portable. They also offer both optical and Gateron low-profile switches, which is pretty sweet!

The K7 offers RGB backlighting (with per-key customization), Mac and Windows support, etc, etc. Everything that the Keychron K2 offers, it’s just much more low-profile and travel-friendly!

Click here to see our other low-profile keyboard recommendations.

Logitech G413 – a Budget Keyboard With USB Pass-Through Ports

Sale
Logitech G413 Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard with USB Passthrough – Carbon
  • The Romer-Gmechanical switch is purpose-built for pro-grade performance, responsiveness and durability.
  • Romer-G is also purpose-designed for precise and clean lighting through the keycap. Keys are always visible and never distracting, especially during late night gaming sessions
  • Additional USB cable connects the USB pass-through port to its own input for 100% power throughout and data speed. Plug in a device to charge or plug in a mouse to charge your adversaries
  • Cost: ✅ $59-$79
  • Wireless? ❌ no
  • Hot-swappable? ❌ no
  • Customization Options: ✅ a few

The G413 doesn’t offer all the bells and whistles of the more expensive Logitech keyboards, but it DOES have some USB pass-through ports!

You can plug in a device to charge, plug in your mouse, etc. This is a handy feature, and you can’t usually find it at this price point!

Also, it looks cool. I like the brushed aluminum, and they also offer a lighter grey color as well.

The G413 Carbon is an 80% TKL layout, but they also sell a 100% full-sized layout for only a few bucks more.

Not a ton of switch options though, and not wireless.

(And of course, all of the Logitech keyboards utilize the Logitech gaming software, which you can use to change up the media keys, macro keys, etc)

Logitech G PRO – the Most Premium Logitech Keyboard Under $100

Sale
Logitech G PRO Mechanical Gaming Keyboard, Ultra Portable Tenkeyless Design, Detachable Micro USB Cable, 16.8...
  • Built with and for esports athletes for competition-level performance, speed and precision.
  • Durable GX Blue Click switches deliver an audible and tactile click for a solid, secure keypress.
  • Ultra-portable compact ten keyless design frees up table space for mouse movement. It’s easy to pack up and transport to tournaments.
  • Cost: ✅ $99
  • Wireless? ❌ No
  • Hot-swappable? ❌ No
  • Customization Options: ✅ lots!

The Logitech G PRO series are a bit higher in quality (even if they still lack some of the better features like hot-swap, wireless, etc).

It’s built like a tank.

The upgraded features (from the cheaper Logitech keyboards) are:

  • GX switches – these are Logitech’s premium switches. Still no Cherry MX in my opinion, but they’re probably better than normal Gateron or Outemu switches
  • LIGHTSYNC – a premium RGB experience, which mostly just means more customization options.
  • A few dedicated media keys
  • A “more solid build.”

Honestly, it probably IS built a bit better, but that’s not a super noticeable thing (especially if it just sits on your desk all the time!)

Also, several versions of this keyboard are OVER $100. But if you stick to the standard version with GX blue clicky switches or GHX red linears, it’s right around $100.

Corsair K60 – the Most Premium Corsair Keyboard in This Price Range

We already mentioned the 60% compact Corsair K65, well the K60 is it’s big brother!

It’s a slightly different design (no crazy logos or branding on the space bar, for one), but it also offers some great Cherry MX switch options.

This is your “no-frills, plain but solid” keyboard pick for the Corsair brand.

Aluminum frame. 100% full-sized layout.

Nothing fancy, but it’s just a solid keyboard.

HyperX Alloy Origins Core – Lots of Options

HyperX Alloy Origins 60 - Mechanical Gaming Keyboard - Ultra Compact 60% Form Factor - Linear Red Switch - Double...
  • Petite 60% form factor: Free up more room for your mouse with this supremely compact keyboard. Side-printed functions on the keycaps allow you to quickly locate secondary keypress functionality.
  • Full aircraft-grade aluminum body: The aluminum casing keeps the keyboard structurally sound and stable when the action gets intense and the game hangs in the balance; battle after battle, night after...
  • Double shot PBT keycaps with side printing: The pre-installed PBT keycaps have text on the sides to help you quickly locate additional key functions.
  • Cost: ✅ $89-$99
  • Wireless? ❌ No
  • Hot-swappable? ❌ No
  • Customization Options: ✅ lots!

The HyperX Alloy had to be mentioned in this post as well. It offers SEVERAL different size and switch options, all under $100!

THEY HAVE A PINK CASE VERSION which is super cute!

These keyboards come stock with HyperX switches, which aren’t my favorite, but they aren’t terrible either.

Not hot-swappable or wireless, but these are still solid mechanical keyboards if you’re a HyperX person (I’m not).

Razer Ornata V2 – Detachable Wrist Rest and “Hybrid” Switches

Razer Ornata V2 Gaming Keyboard: Hybrid Mechanical Key Switches - Customizable Chroma RGB Lighting - Individually...
  • The #1 Best-Selling Gaming Peripherals Manufacturer in the US: Source - The NPD Group, Inc. U.S. Retail Tracking Service, Keyboards, Mice, PC Headset/Pc Microphone, Gaming Designed, based on dollar...
  • High-Performance Mecha-Membrane Switches: Provides the tactile feedback of mechanical key press on a comfortable, soft-cushioned, membrane, rubber dome switch suitable for gaming
  • Ultimate Personalization & Gaming Immersion with Razer Chroma: Fully syncs with popular games, Razer hardware, Philips Hue, and gear from 30+ partners; supports 16.8 million colors on individually...
  • Cost: ✅ $50
  • Wireless? ❌ No
  • Hot-swappable? ❌ No
  • Customization Options: ❌ No

So why would we include a keyboard on this list that ISN’T hot-swappable, wireless, and doesn’t have many options?

Because it’s unique, that’s why.

The Razer Ornata comes with 2 cool things:

  • A detachable “leatherette” wrist rest
  • “mecha membrane” switches

They aren’t mechanical switches. They aren’t cheap rubber dome switches.

They’re a hybrid switch that’s designed to activate FASTER (which is supposed to lead to a better gaming experience, of course).

(Note: The difference in speed is hardly noticeable to me, but alas)

All in all, it’s just a unique keyboard that offers something different than the others on this list.

And of course, wrist rests are a must-have if you suffer from any sort of wrist pain (which I do), and the Razer Ornata comes with one!

And at $50, it’s hard to beat.

SteelSeries Apex 5 – a keyboard with a tiny OLED Smart Display

Sale
SteelSeries Apex 5 Hybrid Mechanical Gaming Keyboard – Per-Key RGB Illumination – Aircraft Grade Aluminum...
  • Hybrid mechanical gaming switches – The tactile click of a blue mechanical switch plus a smooth membrane
  • OLED smart display – Customize with gifs, game info, discord messages, and more.
  • Aircraft-grade aluminum alloy frame – Manufactured for unbreakable durability and sturdiness
  • Cost: ✅ $90
  • Wireless? ❌ No
  • Hot-swappable? ❌ No
  • Customization Options: ✅ yes, but costs more

In most respects, the SteelSeries Apex 5 isn’t any “better” than the keyboards listed above, but it DOES have a fancy OLED screen, right there on the keyboard.

You can customize this little display with GIFs, game info, volume display, discord messages (COOL), and more.

Is it worth paying extra for?

MAYBE.

Luckily, the Apex 5 also comes with a detachable (magnet) wrist rest, and “hybrid” switches (though there are some mechanical options as well, they might cost more).

For example, if you want the same keyboard with mechanical blue switches, the price jumps up to $150+. Odd.

iKBC CD87 V2 – a minimal design with Cherry MX switch options

iKBC CD87 V2 Ergonomic Mechanical Keyboard with Cherry MX Clear Switch for Windows and Mac, Tenkeyless Keyboard...
  • ▼ Mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX Clear Switches (Medium Tactile and Light Clicky): It was designed for firmness and tactility so a slightly enhanced version of the Cherry MX Brown with a more...
  • ▼ CD87 v2 Designed with Mistel Doubleshot Keycaps: MISTEL OEM PBT DOUBLE SHOT KEYCAP is created using Special two-shot molding process, ensuring more durability, more stability and legends that...
  • ▼ iKBC CD87 v2 Mechanical Keyboard Design: The case is very simplistic and streamlined and the ergonomic wide PBT keycap shapes are designed to provide a comfortable typing experience even during...
  • Cost: ✅ $80
  • Wireless? ❌ No
  • Hot-swappable? ❌ No
  • Customization Options: ✅ yes, but costs more

The more I write about this keyboard, the more I think it should’ve been higher on our list!

To sum up the iKBC CD87 = boring, but good.

It features some WOB (white on black) PBT double-shot keycaps (the best), and a simple black case design.

No wireless. No hot-swap.

But they have several nice Cherry MX options:

  • MX clear
  • MX red
  • MX silent red
  • MX black
  • MX brown
  • MX blue

Even though the design screams “I’m not a gaming keyboard,” it’s totally work of course. I LOVE the simple black design.

Royal Kludge RK84 – a budget keyboard that’s wireless and hot-swappable

RK ROYAL KLUDGE RK84 RGB 75% Triple Mode BT5.0/2.4G/USB-C Hot Swappable Mechanical Keyboard, 84 Keys Wireless...
  • That is THREE MODES: Believe it or not, this is the first generation of RGB three-mode wireless keyboards on the market. Wireless mode with stable bluetooth 5.0, hassle-free 2.4Ghz dongle plus USB-C...
  • 84 Keys, Redefine TKL: The innovative 75% unique layout differs from traditional TKL keyboards, which cuts more clumsy space off while supporting the same functionality as practical arrow, multimedia...
  • Hot-swappable - Hot-swap PCB allows you to replace 3 pins/5 pins switches freely without soldering issue. Enjoy the fun of making your own unique keyboard.
  • Cost: ✅ $80
  • Wireless? ✅ Yes
  • Hot-swappable? ✅ Yes
  • Customization Options: ✅ a few

I mean, as far as gaming keyboards go, you might NOT need 2 features I’ve brought up a lot:

  • wireless Bluetooth capabilities
  • the ability to hot-swap in mechanical switches.

And while the Keychron K2 recommendation has both of these (and more), there’s another low-budget pick in the RK84.

my RK84 on the right! I put POM Jelly keycaps on there

And they also have different sizes, all of which are wireless and hot-swappable!

The reason the Royal Kludge keyboards aren’t higher up on our list?

  • Build quality feels a bit cheap
  • The stock RK switches are NOT the best
  • The RGB lighting feels a bit off (from a color perspective. It’s not BAD. Just feels a bit more “saturated”)

Specifically, the stabilizers (under the space bar, enter key, backspace key, etc), are a bit wobbly and scratchy.

But overall, there are ton of features for being a $50-80 keyboard!

Conclusion: Should you get a keyboard under $100?

Absolutely! Just because a keyboard doesn’t cost $250+, doesn’t mean it can’t be great.

As long as you do a bit of research to figure out which FEATURES you absolutely need and want, you should have no problem finding a fantastic keyboard under $100.

Our favorites are:

  • The Keychron K2 – It’s wireless keyboard that’s hot-swappable and built like a truck!
  • The Durgod Taurus K320 – It feels like a premium keyboard (though it does lack a few features)
  • The Tecware Phantom – A fantastic gaming keyboard under $50!

By the way, click here to check out our best keyboards under $50, if you want to stay even cheaper.

Budget Keyboard F.A.Q.s.

Let’s explore some frequently asked questions!

What is the best mechanical keyboard for gaming under 100?

If you’re a gamer who needs to stay on a budget, we recommend the Durgod Taurus K320 (because of the premium feel and build quality), or the SteelSeries Apex 5 (because of the extra media and macro keys, as well as an OLED Smart Display right on the keyboard).

What is the best $100 keyboard?

Overall, we recommend the Keychron K2. It has an incredible feature set for the price, including hot-swappable mechanical switches, wireless and wired connectivity, Mac and Windows layout options, and solid build quality. And it comes in at just under $90!

What is the best 60 percent keyboard under 100 dollars?

There are two budget compact keyboards that we recommend: The Anne Pro 2 (because it’s packed with features and fully programmable) and the Keychron K7 (it’s a great low-profile option that still offers switch options).

What is the smoothest mechanical keyboard?

Really, the “smoothness” of a keyboard comes down to several factors, including what switches are being used, as well as the keycaps and case build. Overall, any mechanical keyboard that comes with LINEAR switches will be smoother (as opposed to tactile or clicky switches).

And if you want an even SMOOTHER experience, look for keyboards that are gasket-mounted, or that have foam installed in the case.

Keep Reading

does gmmk work on mac

Does GMMK work on Mac? (Setup Guide)

Mac users rejoice! Yes, GMMK and GMMK Pro mechanical keyboards are fully compatible with Mac. You’ll simply need to open your System Preferences and tweak