If you are in the market for a new keyboard, you’ve probably come across gaming keyboards and are wondering; What is a gaming keyboard and what is it used for?
What Is A Gaming Keyboard?
Gaming keyboards are keyboards that are designed primarily for gaming. They come with extra features such as programmable keys, RGB backlights, and media controls that help enhance a user’s gaming experience. And compared to regular keyboards, they often use mechanical switches which are more responsive and durable, instead of membrane switches.
High-end gaming keyboards often come with proprietary software that allows you to optimize and customize the keyboard to your liking. Examples of such software include Logitech G Hub, Corsair iCUE, and Razer Synapse. The software helps you to:
- Control and synchronize RGB lighting
- Configure programmable keys
- Keep firmware up to date
- Create game profiles
- Save game profiles in the cloud for easy access from anywhere
- Download and share game profiles with other gamers
Gaming Keyboards For Typing
Gaming keyboards are good for typing as long as you are comfortable with their feel and audible feedback. Mechanical gaming keyboards especially those with Cherry MX blue switches can get quite loud with fast typing. But for many users, brown Cherry MX switches work great for both typing and gaming.
Using Gaming Keyboards For Work
You can use a gaming keyboard for work and everyday use. In fact, you can take advantage of the programmable keys (macros) on gaming keyboards to perform repetitive tasks such as copying and pasting, launching programs, closing windows, etc. This saves you a lot of time and increases productivity.
Are All Gaming Keyboards Mechanical?
Not all gaming keyboards are mechanical, there are a few that use membrane switches. However, most use mechanical switches. Mechanical keyboards are preferred over regular keyboards because they last longer, are more tactile, and have a faster response time which is good for gaming.
Mechanical keyboards also provide users with a lot of flexibility with regard to the types of switches. Users can choose between linear, clicky, and tactile switches. You can also swap keycaps and replace them with others that have the look and feel you want.
Wireless Vs Wired Gaming Keyboards
Gaming keyboards can either be wired or wireless.
Wired gaming keyboards are the most popular. They connect to your computer via a cable that powers the keyboard and also transmits data back and forth.
If you don’t want to deal with replacing or recharging batteries, then a wired gaming keyboard is for you. Most users also prefer a wired connection because it is more responsive and less susceptible to external interference.
Wireless gaming keyboards, on the other hand, transmit data via radio frequency, such as Bluetooth, and are powered by a removable or rechargeable battery. They have a built-in transmitter and a separate receiver (USB dongle) that connects to your computer’s USB port.
The main advantage of having a wireless gaming keyboard is that a wireless connection allows you to game or use the keyboard while seated further away from the screen. Another advantage is that no cable management is needed to keep the desk tidy.
Using A Gaming Keyboard On PS4
You can use a gaming keyboard with your PS4 console. The compatibility of a keyboard and mouse on PS4 makes it easy to use media apps, type messages, navigate the dashboard, and even play games that support keyboard use.
Gaming keyboards are not limited to PS4 consoles. You can use also them on Xbox consoles and gaming laptops as well. All you need to do is to connect your keyboard via the USB port and it will automatically be detected by your device.
Do You Really Need A Gaming Keyboard To Play Games?
If you are a heavy gamer, you should consider getting a gaming keyboard as the extra features as well as the fast response time offered by gaming keyboards can help improve your performance. But for casual gaming and everyday use, a regular keyboard will do just fine.
The Cost Of A Gaming Keyboard
Gaming keyboards cost anywhere between $30 and $250 depending on their features, build quality and brand. How much you should spend on one depends on your budget and how heavily you are invested in gaming. If it’s just for casual gaming, it’s not worth spending over $100.
Gaming keyboards are designed with gamers in mind. But this doesn’t mean they can’t be used for other things such as everyday work, home, or office-related tasks such as typing, coding, browsing the web, etc.
If you are looking to get into gaming, then you should consider buying a gaming keyboard. But if you are looking for a keyboard for everyday use, a regular keyboard will work just fine.