Many mechanical keyboards are appreciated for the satisfying typing experience they offer, but do you know what could make them even better? No more having to deal with those boring strings. And while in the past your options for wireless mechanical keyboards were limited, you now have more options than ever before.
What to Look for in a Wireless Mechanical Keyboard
You may not have as many choices when it comes to wireless mechanical keyboards versus wired keyboards, but that doesn’t mean you just have to buy any card. There is a lot to know about mechanical keyboards, but these are the factors that should concern you most.
Manufacturing quality: Mechanical keyboards are expensive, so you want something worth the price you paid. Most keyboards will be plastic or aluminum, with aluminum being the most durable but most expensive option.
Keycaps: Not far from the build quality, the keyboard keys are important. Most key caps are made of ABS or PBT plastic, the PBT being more durable. But this does not mean that you should immediately ignore the ABS keys, as high quality ABS keys are always worth using. There is also the technique of double-shot of legends on keycaps, which prevents them from disappearing over time. Some keyboards also have alternative functions for certain keys through the use of specific key combinations, and having these alternative functions printed on the keys is useful.
Switch selection: The switches are located under each keyboard and are what make mechanical keyboards special. There are tons of different switches, but they all mainly fall into one of three categories: clicky (switches that make a noticeable “click” noise), touch (switches with a large tactile bump but no click) and linear ( smooth switches without tactile bump or click). The switches can also have different rod designs, the standard being the MX style cross rod. Non-standard rods rarely have spare key caps made for them, so this is something worth keeping in mind.
Disposition: There are many keyboard layouts including the standard full-size, keyless layouts (a full-size layout with the numeric keypad cut) that you see on most tables. Most of these provisions allow you to exchange certain keys in exchange for a smaller array, whether it is worth it or not.
Connection method: Although all keyboards in this list are wireless, there are several forms of wireless connectivity. The most obvious is Bluetooth, which is also the easiest to use on all platforms. But some keyboards rely on a USB-A RF connector to work properly, and others can use their own unique connector. Most wireless cards also offer the option of plugging in the keyboard so that it can be used as a standard wired keyboard when the battery is low. (This is usually done via the charging cord, which means you can use and charge the keyboard at the same time.)
Battery life: Using a wireless keyboard means you will have to worry battery life. It is also important to note that backlit keyboards will burn batteries much faster when the backlight is on than if it is off.
Battery Type: While most keyboards use rechargeable batteries, there are still a few that use AA for power. We will note what each keyboard is based on.
Additional features: RGB backlighting, reprogrammable keys, macros, and dedicated multimedia controls aren’t things a keyboard should be great for, but they can make using your new keyboard even more enjoyable.
Ultra-compact: Anne Pro 2
If saving desktop space is your main concern (or if you want a keyboard that is ideal for travel), the 60% layout is the solution. It removes a lot of keys (most of the navigation keys, dedicated arrow keys and the function line) and focuses only on what you need. And when it comes to wireless cards for this configuration, the Anne Pro 2 is one of the best on the market.
Not only is the keyboard wireless, but it also has some quality of life features. You can still access the missing keys via key combinations (such as FN + W for the up arrow key), and there is even a side print on the keys to tell you what the alternate action of each key is . The caps are made of PBT plastic and are double shot. Keyboard has full RGB backlight, which can be deeply customized in the companion app ObinsKit, where you can also reprogram the keyboard layout and layers so that each key (or combination of keys) does what you want – you can even create macros. The Anne Pro 2 relies on Bluetooth for connectivity, but also works in wired mode (with a USB-A cable) if you need to.
Finally, when it comes to switching options, there is a good selection for the Anne Pro 2. You can choose from 11 different switches: Cherry MX Blue, Cherry MX Brown, Cherry MX Red, Cherry MX Silver, Gateron Blue, Gateron Brown, Gateron Red Box, Black Kailh, Brown Kailh, Red Kailh and White Kailh. You can get the keyboard in black or white (and this also applies to keys). You can also expect the Anne Pro 2 to last about eight hours on a full charge (although you can expect it to last longer with the lights off), and it uses a rechargeable battery.
Slim and elegant: Hexgears X-1
If you want something compact that doesn’t remove as many keys as the Anne Pro 2, then the Hexgears X-1 may be what you are looking for. It is an ultra-thin keyboard only 0.8 inch thick and uses a unique, highly compact layout. As you can see in the previous image, you still have the number and the function lines, the dedicated arrow keys and even a full numeric keypad, the navigation keys such as Home and Delete being relegated to the key combinations.
The X-1 relies on discrete Kailh switches to achieve its slim frame, which uses a unique rod design (so no spare key caps here). The keyboard body is made of solid aluminum, which should help prevent flexing despite the slim profile of the keyboard.
There is no additional application for the X-1, which means that no reprogramming options are available, and if you want to customize the backlight, you will have to do this via different key combinations. With the backlight on, the X-1’s rechargeable battery lasts for about eight hours, but with the lights off, it can last up to 40 hours. You can choose between three switches: Kailh Choc Brown, Red or White. It also comes in a black or white body. The X-1 uses Bluetooth to connect wirelessly, but it also comes with a USB-A cable for wired connectivity.
Hot replacement: Keychron K6 and K8 (to come)
Hot-swappable keyboards are perfect! They allow you to quickly turn off the switches on your keyboard without even looking at a soldering gun, which can save you a lot of time and complicate you. And if you want a hot swap with wireless functionality, Keychron’s K6 and K8 keyboards are your best options.
The K6 uses a 65% layout (which is only the 60% layout with dedicated arrow keys and a few navigation keys), and the K8 uses a keyless layout. It is important to note that, although the K6 is fully published and available for purchase on Keychron website and Amazon, the K8 has just finished being kickstarted and will likely go on sale in the coming months. (You can buy it on Keychron website when it does.)
Either way, these two keyboards are pretty much the same when it comes to features and options. There is no associated app for either yet, but Keychron says it will be one this year. But even out of the box, the two keyboards are programmed to use different key combinations to give you full access to all of the missing keys and multimedia controls. The caps (which are made of ABS plastic) help with this, with all the alternative functions for each button printed on the caps.
As for the options, there are several. You can get these keyboards with plastic or aluminum bodies, white or RGB backlight, and with Gateron (red, blue or brown) or LK optical switches (which promise lower latency and are available in red variants , blue or brown). . You can also choose to get these keyboards without the hot swap feature, which reduces the price by around $ 10.
Both keyboards are installed with macOS keyboard keys, as well as an additional set of Windows keyboard keys in the box, which is quite rare in the mechanical keyboard world. They both use Bluetooth for wireless, but can be used with the included USB-A cable. And while we don’t know how long the K8’s battery will last, we can expect it to be similar to the K6’s rechargeable battery, which lasts about 72 hours with static backlighting on. sure.
Compact without sacrifices: Keychron K2 and K4
Another duo of Keychron keyboards. However, although the K2 and K4 are not equipped with hot swapping like the K6 and K8, they are still excellent keyboards. The K2 uses a 75% layout and the K4 uses a 96% layout. You can think of these layouts as compact versions of the keyless and full size layouts respectively, as they group all the keys together to save space.
Like the K6 and K8, there are no reprogramming tools available for these keyboards, but you can still access multimedia controls (and the few missing keys) via key combinations printed on the keys. You also always get macOS compatible keycaps with an additional set of Windows keycaps also included. And, like the K6 and K8, the K2 and K4 both use Bluetooth for wireless, with an included USB-A cable for wired mode.
You can choose between aluminum or plastic bodies for both cards, with full white or RGB backlight. The K2 allows you to get PBT keyboards if desired (although you are limited to white backlighting and a plastic body), and you can choose between the Gateron Blue, Red or Brown switches. The K4 may not have PBT keys available, but it offers more switch options, including the LK Optical Blue, Red, and Brown switches, as well as the Gateron Blue, Red, Brown, and Yellow switches.
The Keychron K2 and K4 use rechargeable batteries and can last approximately 72 hours when fully charged.
Faster than light: Logitech G613 and G915
When it comes to wireless keyboards, latency can be an issue, as it will always be higher than a wired keyboard. Most people can’t tell the difference, but if that’s something that is of particular concern to you, Logitech Lightspeed Wireless technology can just give you what you’re looking for. It is a form of wireless that reduces latency, and although it is still not as good as a wired keyboard, it can outperform other forms of wireless connectivity (including Bluetooth).
Logitech currently has two mechanical keyboards with Lightspeed: the G613 and the G915.
The G613 is a standard size keyboard with six dedicated “G keys” that can be reprogrammed by Logitech G Hub. You can only use Romer-G switches, which is a lightweight touch switch. There’s no backlight on the G613, but it does have a suite of dedicated multimedia controls located above the numeric keypad, which is always nice to see. It also has an integrated wrist rest to improve ergonomics. The last feature to note on the G613 is the battery life, which Logitech says lasts up to 18 months of regular use on two AA batteries, which is really impressive.
Faster than light
The G915 is a full size or without key card that uses discrete switches to refine the keyboard. It has an entirely aluminum body, dedicated multimedia controls and a volume scroll wheel, and the full-size version comes with five reprogrammable “G keys”. You can choose between three different switches: GL Clicky, GL Tactile and GL Linear. The full size version lasts approximately 30 hours with lighting on, and the TKL version lasts approximately 40 hours with lighting on. (Both last much longer with the lights off.) Both versions use a rechargeable battery.
Faster than light
Since both cards use Logitech’s own switches, spare keyboards will not be an option for both. And although Logitech Lightspeed Wireless requires its own USB-A dongle, the two keyboards can also be used in Bluetooth (with a wired mode).
The economical option: VELOCIFIRE mechanical keyboard
All the keyboards discussed so far have been quite expensive, but the VELOCIFIRE keyboard manages to reach a more affordable price.
There is not much to say about this card, as it only has a white backlight and it is installed with an unnamed touch switch. But whatever, for the price, it’s a solid board whether you type or play. You can choose to get it in a black or white body, and there is a Mac version available as well (even if it costs about $ 20 more).
You can also find 60% and full size versions of the card as well as the TKL version illustrated above. TKL and full size versions rely on a USB-A dongle for connectivity, but the 60% version is Bluetooth compatible. In addition, the three cards can be used with the USB-A cables included with each card.
VELOCIFIRE does not provide an estimated battery life, only indicating that it is installed with a rechargeable 1850 mAh battery, which should be good for several months of use with backlight off.
Ideal for office workers: FILCO Majestouch Convertible 2
If you like discreet and silent keyboards, the Filco Majestouch Convertible 2 (what name) should give you exactly that with its all-black look and silent switches. It uses a standard full-size layout and will blend in perfectly with other pieces of office equipment.
The key caps are made of ABS plastic, and they have a side print to show alternative key functions (mainly support controls). The keyboard connects via Bluetooth and can be used in wired mode with the included USB-A cable.
You can choose between Cherry MX Brown, Blue and Black switches. If you want the keyboard to be as quiet as possible, you will need to choose the Cherry MX Black switches, as these are linear switches. And lastly, the battery life is one of the biggest draws of the Majestouch, as it can last up to 900 hours on two AA batteries.
Ideal for office workers