Best TKL Mechanical Keyboard 2020

Gaming is no fun with regular keyboards. They are too big and often bulky. Moreover, if they are unneeded keys on the board, the gaming experience is just not the same. TKL keyboards are sought after by gaming enthusiasts as well as pro players. These gadgets are the best when it comes to content creation because of their remarkable features.

While gaming, a compact keyboard is one of the critical elements. No one wants to handle prominent keyboards because they often cause distraction. If you are new to PC gaming and are looking for recommendations, a TKL keyboard should be right on top of your priority list.

TKL keyboards not only add to the looks of your gaming setup, but their latest technological features make them ideal for gaming. TKL game keyboard may be wired or wireless, so there is much variety to choose from.

Whether you are a beginner at PC gaming or a pro player looking to switch their gaming keyboard, this article will help you find the right product.

We will look at the best tenkeyless models that offer the ultimate gaming experience, mostly at an affordable cost. Also, there is a buying guide to help you choose the best mechanical keyboard every time.

What is the Best Mechanical Keyboard for Gaming

It’s time to look at the best TKL keyboards for gaming. We have handpicked the best options only, so you can understand why this is not an exhaustive list. Moreover, this list will allow you to explore multiple options and features such as wireless or wired connectivity, backlighting, compactness, etc.

Here are some exciting TKL keyboards.

SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL Mechanical Keyboard

We start with the ultimate mechanical keyboard for professional gaming. SteelSeries Apex 7 is one of the best options for a mechanical gaming keyboard. Let alone the features; it’s looks are enticing enough for new and old buyers alike. It’s a high-end functional keyboard, ideal for a gaming setup.

SteelSeries offers a high build quality that one would expect from this manufacturer. The best part, though, is the top aluminum plate. So, it provides more rigidity to the keyboard. Moreover, there are double-shot ABS keycaps, which last longer.

The key stabilizers are worth mentioning. Since mechanical keyboards have higher keys, it creates a wobbly effect when the key is pressed. However, Apex 7 has special stabilizers that prevent rattling and wobbling of any sort.

The SteelSeries Apex 7 features a magnetic so you can rest your wrists during the game. It comes with a detachable USB interface and features RGB backlights per key. You can generate up to 16.8 million colors, so you can virtually set any gaming ambiance that you want.

There are six macro keys on the right side of the keyboard that you can program using the SteelSeries Engine Software. It’s easy to use software that lets you change profiles and adjust RGB settings. Moreover, there is an OLED screen that modifies the settings on the go. So, you don’t need to pause your game to tweak with this mechanical keyboard.

Pros

The life span of 50 million clicks
Per KEY RGB lights
OLED display
Top-quality switches
Available in different colors

Cons

Can trap dust particles
Slightly expensive
No wrist cushioning

E-Element Z88 Vintage Mechanical Keyboard

A combo of compactness, class, and style, the E-element is a fantastic mechanical keyboard for pro and amateur gamers alike. When gamers want something techy, the Z88 mechanical keyboard comes with its unique typewriter-inspired set of keys.

It challenges the entire gaming keyboard concept, adding a sweet touch of classy olden days to the highly advanced machinery. So, if you love to add unique items to your collection, the E-Element Z88 is one tech device you can’t ignore.

This mechanical keyboard comes with an ABS material metal base providing extra strength and sturdiness. It’s a non-slip design with partial splash proofing. So, if It’s typewriter-like round keys are super-comfortable and give a decent tactile feedback every time.

Talking of tactility, the keyboard isn’t as loud as the typewriter, of course. It’s quiet and clicky. Also, you get brown switches that are highly responsive. You can connect the keyboard through the detachable USB cord.

Since it’s a plug and play device, there is no software dependency. So, if you don’t like creating profiles on your keyboard, this is an easy option.

The keyboard has RGB backlighting with ten standard modes. You can customize the brightness and RGB settings, so it’s a perfect option for low-light gaming.

Pros

Unique typewriter-like round keys
Vintage design
Responsive switches
Compact design

Cons

No configuration software
Limited RGB customization settings

HyperX Alloy FPS Pro

If you are looking for a compact design with the standard features, the HyperX Alloy FPS Pro is just the mechanical gaming keyboard for you. Looks can be deceiving, and that’s precisely the case with this keyboard. High-quality switches, lightweight design, with numerous lighting options, the HyperX Alloy will look great in any gaming setup.

Unlike other high-end TKL mechanical keyboards, this is a relatively simple keyboard, but it has all the tournament edition keyboard features. The board’s low base gives extra height to the keys, so it’s practically quite useful.

Perhaps one of the downsides is its red color backlight. You can’t vary the lighting colors, so it’s not all that fun. However, the red color perfectly matches the black body, so it creates a rather bold look.

The Cherry MX switches in this keyboard are the premium features that separate the HyperX Alloy from other TKL mechanical models. Three types, i.e., Tactile brown, soft red, and clackety blue switches, are available. Hence you can customize your board with your preferred switch types.

If you like to play with your mechanical keyboard regardless of the place, the detachable USB cord allows you to take the keyboard anywhere you want.

Pros

Easy to use, plug and play application
Compact keyboard for gamer
Variety of switches

Cons

No RGB lighting
No software configuration and profile options

Drevo Calibur V2

Next in line, we have the Drevo Calibur V2. In terms of price, Drevo gives you the best options because a TKL mechanical keyboard in such a price range isn’t all that common. Its compact design offers all the features you would want in a quality gaming keyboard.

Calibur V2 features the mechanical switches from Outemo. These are quite affordable and highly useful switches. Outemo switches have many similarities with the famous Red, Silver, Black, and blue buttons from Cherry MX. You will find several function keys in the front row that you can use with the Fn key for using specific predefined actions.

The Calibur V2 mechanical keyboard has a detachable USB C type port with a rubber-coated 52-inch power cord. You can also upgrade the keyboard’s firmware. The underside features a pair of rubber pads on either side so that your keyboard sits nicely on your desktop.

In terms of looks, this keyboard competes with the best. It has RGB backlighting that lets you create any color of your choice. So, it goes well with your gaming setup, allowing you to change themes according to the game. Moreover, you can boast about its tiny size among your friends, as it’s easily portable.

The keyboard has its software that allows you to customize lighting and keyboard functions. It’s easy to use software with an intuitive design for regular users.

When you talk about the build quality, there can be further improvements. It’s made of plastic, so you need to handle it carefully for more prolonged use. However, its borderless design prevents dust particles from trapping inside, so it’s easy to clean. Moreover, the keys stay above the keyboard frame, so you get a decent tactility when pressing them.

Pros

Compact design
RGB backlighting
Variety of mechanical switches

Cons

Not the best build quality
Complex software for beginners

Corsair K63 Wireless Gaming Keyboard

Next in line, we have the wireless mechanical keyboard from Corsair. The company is renowned for making some of the best TKL mechanical keyboards. The K63 features a variety of exciting upgrades, making it a preferred choice among its competitors.

Firstly, the K63 is a wireless mechanical keyboard, so it connects via Bluetooth. There is a sturdy aluminum frame that holds the plastic body together. It’s an all-black keyboard with a sleek and slim design with raised keycaps, tactile enough to handle aggressive clicking.

Corsair K63 uses switches from Cherry MX so that you can expect a high-quality response. It uses Cherry MX Red switches that offer consistency and reliability in the longer run.

Moreover, the vibrant blue backlights create a fantastic ambiance mostly suited to aggressive gamers. In times of RGB keyboards, it’s rare to see a mechanical keyboard with a single color backlight, but Corsair decided to go with it.

If you’re looking for a wireless mechanical option, Corsair K63 is the best TKL keyboard because of it’s extensive features, portability, lightweight, and boasts a style statement of its own.

Pros

Wireless Connectivity
Solid design
Floating keys
Highly responsive switches

Cons

No RGB backlights
Expensive

Asus Rog Strix Scope

The Asus Rog Strix Scope is one of the most OK TKL mechanical gaming keyboards in looks, performance, and durability. From the eyes, it seems like one of those high-quality full-size keyboards for gaming.

You can argue that the price is relatively high, but you can undoubtedly rely on the quality and product durability with ASUS. Moreover, it brings you a classic combination of Cherry MX and ROG switches; you’re in for a real gaming treat.

One of the exciting features of the Rog Strix keyboard is the keycap design. There is a double layer of plastic, molded together, providing extra strength to the keys. So, if you get aggressive during the game, Rog Strix Scope will be a good option for your gaming desk.

It’s an RGB backlit keyboard that comes with five lightings presets. Moreover, the Armoury software can help to tinker with the lighting presets too. You can maximize preset themes and also create your customized color themes.

When we talk about the looks, very few TKL mechanical keyboards can beat the Strix Scope keyboard. It features an aluminum top plate giving it a classy yet sturdy look. In terms of construction, it is one of the best tenkeyless mechanical keyboards.

Pros

Heavy-duty build for extreme gaming
RGB customization
Cherry MX switches
Easy to use keyboard software

Cons

Expensive price tag

What is a Gaming Keyboard?

If you are new to gaming, it’s okay to question what a gaming keyboard is. Well, in terms of functionality, there isn’t much difference between a regular PC keyboard and a gaming TKL keyboard. Both connect and interact with the PC in the same way. The sequence of keys is also similar, and the shape may be identical too.

However, tenkeyless gaming keyboards are much more compact. They do not have a numeric keypad, which reduces the size of the keyboard. Moreover, they may have additional components such as a joystick or a trackball for quicker navigation. In terms of looks,

TKL gaming keyboards are a thousand times more attractive than regular keyboards, thanks to the RGB LEDs that light up the keys from beneath. Ultimately, they can transform your gaming room into a place from another world.

Gaming keyboards also have a slightly different formation in key structure because of the gaming applications. If you are to summarize the key features in a gaming keyboard, you should focus on the following:

Keyboard Size

The first thing the gamers focus on is keyboard size. Generally, full-size keyboards have up to 105 keys, but you don’t need that in a gaming keyboard. Keyboards with number pads often make the boards too complete for gamers. They struggle to reach the keys. Therefore, compactness is a serious matter when it comes to gaming keyboards.

Hence, TKL keyboards have become a significant preference for gamers. They are relatively compact and fit easily on your desktop, giving additional space and a cleaner front area.

There are full-size tournament edition gaming keyboards, too, but a TKL keyboard has its value in the gaming community.

Mechanical Keyboard or Membrane?

Membrane keyboards are more common in the markets because of the easy and cheap build. They use a rubber layer that adds springiness to the keys when they are pressed. Also, they can work with thinner boards, so they add much versatility to these boards.

The problem with the membrane keyboard is that it doesn’t indicate a distinct click when pressed. Hence, it confuses the user whether the key is pressed or not. This is where TKL mechanical keyboards have a competitive advantage.

Ask any pro gamer, and they will tell you how important it is to feel the sponginess and clicking effect. Mechanical keyboards are kind of old keyboards with more extended key displacement. It’s like pressing mechanical switches.

They are a bit taller and give more sponginess and a distinct clicking effect. There is tactile feedback, which is very important for gaming. Hence, mechanical is the right keyboard for gamers.

Key Ghosting and Rollover

Ghosting is a strange phenomenon in regular keyboards. When you press multiple keys together, the keyboard confuses and generates the stick keys alert. Also, in such a situation, it often reads a key that wasn’t pressed at all. This concept is known as Ghosting.

If you are a keyboard gamer, you will know how dangerous it is if your keyboard doesn’t read the right keys. Also, regular keyboards do not support simultaneous key presses. Remember sticky keys? Therefore it creates problems while gaming.

Gaming keyboards can accept a higher number of simultaneous presses because it’s essential in gaming. The concept is called ‘n-key rollover.’ High-end keyboards have a higher value of ‘n,’ so they accept several key signals at a time, making them more appealing for gaming applications.

Backlit Illumination

Although backlighting seems an excessive feature, it’s widespread in the gaming community. Most pro gamers tend to buy backlit keyboards because they perfectly fit a gaming room environment. Usually, you can find RGB keyboards with multiple color settings to modify according to your mood and the game’s nature.

Moreover, backlit keyboards provide better visibility as gaming rooms are often kept dark to create the ultimate gaming environment,

Customizations Options

Although TKL mechanical keyboards seem too small for customizations, they can still handle many customizations such as macro buttons, lighting, etc.

Often, gamers add customizations to boost speed and enhance the keyboard’s looks. Moreover, mechanical keyboards have some dedicated buttons like in a joystick that triggers predefined actions in a game. They act as shortcut buttons.

Also, you can add soft springs under the keyboards for more comfortable use. Most of these customizations work with mechanical keyboards. You can even add keys with different textures and feel as per your preference.

How Much is a TKL Gaming Keyboard

TKL mechanical keyboards can be slightly expensive. In comparison to regular keyboards, they are much pricier because they have additional switches and features. If you want to buy a high-quality gaming keyboard, it can range anywhere between 30 to 100 USD. Some keyboards can cost even more.

Generally, the price depends upon the factors mentioned earlier. Moreover, other factors such as life span, connectivity interface, build quality, and switch type also affect the price.

Nevertheless, whether it’s membrane-type or mechanical keyboards, they come at an affordable price so you can amp up the gaming thrill.

Conclusion

TKL gaming keyboards are the talk of the town in gaming circles. Nowadays, it’s rare to see regular keyboards being used for proper gaming. It’s fair to say that these keyboards will continue to upgrade because of such popular demand.

Now that you know the best gaming keyboards and what features to focus on, it’s time to upgrade your gaming room with a friendly and compact keyboard that fits your needs.

A TKL keyboard has exceptional build quality, excellent tactile feedback, highly responsive switches, and they are mostly backlit. The best TKL mechanical keyboard will showcase all these features and at a reasonable price too.

If you ask for recommendations for a regular or tournament edition keyboard, it’s best to go for a mechanical gaming keyboard. They are ideal for pro gaming.