In this article, we will talk about gaming keyboards under $50. While having a good gaming keyboard won’t turn you into a pro overnight, it will make your playtime much more enjoyable. For that reason, we don’t think you should spend a fortune on your keyboard. That’s why we have created this list, giving you the best options for the budget gaming keyboard in 2020.
After all, many other investments directly improve your gaming experience; such as PC components, monitor, as well as some accessories like a headset and a gaming mouse. That doesn’t mean the keyboard is unimportant. It just means you should not waste too much money on it, at least until you have priorities sorted out.
Conclusion – Logitech G213 Prodigy is the best one in our opinion and that’s why our team is currently using it. Read below why, and to find out how to choose a gaming keyboard on your own, and to see our other picks.
Here is what to look for when browsing for a keyboard:
1) Is it only for gaming?
If you use your PC for both work and gaming, think about how much you type. While you can both play and type on any keyboard, the thing you do more should be your primary focus when browsing for one.
Also known as the rollover is the number of keys pressed at the same time a keyboard can register. Low-tier models have a 2-key rollover, while a gaming keyboard needs to have at least 6. But for competitive gamers, N-key rollover, or an unlimited number of keys pressed at once is the best option.
3) Keyboard type
Mechanical vs. membrane
Mechanical keyboards mimic the old-school typewriters. Every button has its own mechanical switch underneath, giving you a better feel as you type.
Membrane keyboards, on the other hand, have a more high-tech approach, as they run an electrical current along the two membranes, responsible for every button press. They don’t allow the same response, but they are much cheaper than mechanical keyboards, but they have a shorter lifespan. They have one major advantage – membrane keyboards can be completely silent.
Mechanical keyboards are a better choice. But, you need to know which one you want, as mechanical Cherry MX (a German company) switch types are different. Because each has a different feel, depth, stiffness, it is better for you to go to a local PC store and try a few different options, to see what feels right. Once you know the color that suits you (switches are color-coded), you can order your keyboard online to get a better price. But don’t expect to find any true mechanical keyboards under $50.
Tenkeyless keyboards lack a numeric pad, which saves up a lot of space. If you need a keyboard strictly for gaming, tenkeyless is a good option, since Numpad is there mostly for business purposes. Also, these keyboards are much smaller, and an ideal travel companion.
While originally illuminated keyboards, were meant for working at night or low lighting, nowadays, illuminated (RGB) keyboards are all about style and gaming. Sure, it will help you type at night, but let’s face it, 99% of the time you are only using W-A-S-D. RGB is all about that swag!
RGB lighting lets you customize the looks of your keyboard, which can practically change how your whole desktop environment feels. Manufacturers brag with thousands of colors their keyboards can show, which does make a visual difference.
However, although this sounds fancy, and leaves a great first impression, it won’t help you climb that ranked ladder, and it will cost you quite a bit. RGB is a luxury. If you need lighting, go for a single color, at least in this price range.
4) Type of Games Played
Unlike gaming mice, keyboards are much less game type-specific, and they tend to be much more all-purpose beasts. Differences are slight, and gaming keyboards usually have more peripheral keys that you can assign for multimedia controls or in-game bindings. MMO players will appreciate these more than other gamers. A thoroughbred MMO keyboard can have multiple rows of 6-18 extra keys that will let you cast those special abilities instantaneously. But, these keyboards are enormous, and they are most of the time completely overkill for those of you who are not die-hard MMO fans. You can also try a regular gaming keyboard combined with an MMO mouse, as it will allow even easier access to abilities.
5) Connection type
Most keyboards nowadays are USB, and the PS/2 standard is almost completely abandoned. However, the old technology has its strengths, as it allows many more keys pressed at the same time. But if you get an N-key rollover USB keyboard, you will be fine.
As for the wireless keyboards – they are not very popular among gamers, especially pros. First, you need to charge them, and you might find yourself with an empty battery in the middle of a frag. So make sure you keep some spare batteries in your drawers. The second issue is lag and interference since other devices in your home use the same frequency. Also, wireless keyboards are more expensive, and it is hard to find a quality one in a lower price tier.
To summarize – USB is your best bet.
The Best Gaming Keyboards under $50 List
Budget Gaming Keyboard | Razer Cynosa Chroma
- Has an app to control the settings
- Razer is trusted and always provide great quality
- Very silent
- Slightly above $50
- 10 key-rollover
- Not mechanical
No gaming gadgets list would be complete without Razer. Cynosa Chroma is their entry-level gaming keyboard. Yes, this one is slightly above $50, but get it on a discount, and you are good. This is a very good keyboard, and we simply had to include it on this list of the best budget gaming keyboard.
This membrane keyboard is all about the RGB experience. All 104 backlit keys are customizable to your liking, and Razer’s signature Chroma technology makes this keyboard look awesome.
You control everything through the Synapse app, which is one of the best in the gaming industry. This app leaves no setting behind, and you can customize the lighting however you want, which is a very pleasing process you will often want to repeat.
Through this app, you can also program any key, which is very useful as this keyboard has no additional gaming or multimedia buttons.
And don’t worry, you can set lighting only to one color, dim it, or completely turn it off, which is excellent for in-office use. This keyboard is quite minimalistic, and there are no additional gaming or multimedia buttons to stick out. When RGB is off, it looks quite professional.
Razer Cynosa Chroma is not only about RGB, but it also delivers a decent performance. This is a membrane keyboard, and you can’t expect to have a mechanical-like performance. But for a membrane keyboard, Cynosa Chroma does very well, and you will get better feedback than with most other peripherals in this price range.
This keyboard has a 10-key rollover to prevent ghosting. 10 is a decent number, but it is not perfect, and you might feel it from time to time when a jungle team fight breaks in LoL. Still, what’s great about this keyboard is that it is incredibly silent, even for the membrane keyboard standards which are quiet in general. If you have roommates, Razer Cynosa Chroma is for you.
An RGB Razer for $50? Yes! Razer Cynosa Chroma won’t disappoint.
Budget Gaming Keyboard | CORSAIR K55 RGB
Arrrr! Sub $50 pirate is in the house! Corsair K55 RGB will give you much more than this affordable price tag might suggest.
First, as the name suggests, there is RGB lighting. This model has three light zones, so no lightning per each key. But, when lit, K55 does look awesome, and we can freely say premium, well beyond its price range.
Now, this is plastic, membrane keyboard, but again, the finishing is much better than what you would expect. Buttons are not soft like with most other membrane keyboards, but quite responsive and sharp. Spacing is optimal, and you will have no issues typing. Also, unlike the previous model we reviewed, Corsair K55 does have dedicated media buttons, as well as six macro buttons on the left side. This many macro keys are unique for a keyboard this cheap, and if this is what you are looking for, look no further, Corsair K55 is the keyboard for you. However, all these extra keys add to the size of the keyboard, as it has a full Numpad and wrist rest (that you can detach).
You can set up macros using the CUE app, or on the fly by using a dedicated button on top of the keyboard. This is very easy to do, and kudos to Corsair for making it that way. CUE app will also let you tweak the lighting and other settings, also for a Corsair mouse, if you use one. CUE goes into great detail and is one of the better customization apps out there. Customizing light is especially interesting, as you can pick your unique color from the color wheel, selecting a different one for each of the three color zones.
As you can see Corsair K55 offers a lot of bang for each of your fifty bucks, and you can’t expect much more from a branded budget gaming keyboard like this one. Recommended!
Budget Gaming Keyboard | Redragon K552 KUMARA
Redragon K552 KUMARA is a budget-friendly membrane keyboard that does its best to mimic the iconic blue Cherry mechanical buttons. If you don’t know, these buttons have that old school typewriter feel. In other words, they feel amazing, extremely tactile, and they are very noisy, which is something many players prefer.
Kumara is FPS friendly, especially great for players who like low sensitivity as it is tenkeyless, with no numeric pad. That gives you much more room for your mouse. Also, if you play in constricted space, or you travel frequently, this compact keyboard is a good option.
The design of this keyboard is awesome, considering the price. The base is aluminum, and the rest is made from quality plastic (but still plastic). This keyboard will take up a lot but don’t go berserk on it; it is still way under $50. Oh, Redragon claims that Kumara is “splash proof,” which is good news if you are a nervous gamer.
If you are looking for RGB insanity, waves and flashes, look elsewhere. Redragon K552 Kumara is all about simplicity, and it isn’t backlit. But make no mistake, this is a real gamer.
Worried about ghosting? No such thing with Kumara, as it has n-Key Rollover, for all of its 87 keys. 12 additional multimedia buttons will make your life a bit easier, and you can turn on the gaming mode which will disable the dreaded Windows button.
For this price, you get a Cherry-blue-like experience, packed in a compact shell, splash-proof with an aluminum base – very good in our opinion.
Budget Gaming Keyboard | Logitech G213 Prodigy
Ahh, the good old Logitech. This company has been around forever, and they have been making terrific peripherals ever since the beginning of time. G213 Prodigy is no exception, as it is a fantastic gaming keyboard and our top choice for the best budget gaming keyboard in 2020.
This keyboard is extremely fast, unlike any other membrane keyboard. G213 will respond almost instantaneously, which makes it a perfect choice for action multiplayer titles. Tactile performance keys will make sure every key press feels just the way it’s supposed to. What’s also great is that every key has its own RGB light (we will get to that later). The keyboard is big, there is no denying that, and it isn’t meant to be on smaller desks. But, it feels very good, even though its plastic, and looks fantastic. There are also separate media buttons, which can come handy for some in-game adjustments.
The keyboard feels very good, and won’t come in your way either when typing an essay or gaming. It doesn’t have a mechanical feel, but it goes pretty close to that, at more than half the price, which is a good deal.
Logitech G213 Prodigy has excellent RGB lighting. You can fully customize it through the Logitech Gaming Software, which is very user-friendly. The lighting looks very good, and it isn’t too bright, which is a plus in our opinion. Through the software, you can also program each key, as well as create macros,
As you can see, Logitech G213 Prodigy is an all-inclusive budget gamer, that gives you a little bit of everything, and is very polished. For this price, there is not much more you can expect.
Budget Gaming Keyboard | Turtle Beach Impact 100
Turtle Beach Impact 100 tries to mimic mechanical keyboards, and it does that very well, at 1/4 of the price. If you are looking for a mechanical keyboard, but can’t afford one, consider Turtle Beach Impact 100.
Perfect for FPS gamers who don’t want to spend a big buck on a mechanical keyboard. The Turtle Beach Impact 100 is to be considered one of the best budget gaming keyboards out there.
When you look at this keyboard, it doesn’t look like much. As there is no lighting or fancy RGB nor any multimedia or macro buttons. This keyboard is all about its unique keys.
This is a membrane keyboard, but instead of having just two membranes, each key has its own rubber switch. This leaves an entirely different feel than we are used to, at least when playing on membrane keyboards. Impact 100 has keys that mimic Cherry MX Red, as it is very responsive and quiet.
Because there are no additional buttons, and no RGB lighting, this keyboard is plug and play, and it requires no drivers or software. There is a gaming mode, however, that turns off the Windows key. It is very light and is a great travel companion.
If you want things simple, in other words, a great, responsive keyboard, with no extras, that delivers steady gaming and typing performance, Turtle Beach Impact 100 is a viable option, and won’t disappoint.
As you can see, you indeed can find decent keyboards under $50. While serious gamers need to go with mechanical, finding those in this price range is impossible. But, some models mimic mechanical keys just fine, like Turtle Beach Impact 100 and Redragon Kumara.
On the other hand, if you are an RGB fanatic, you will love Razer Cynosa Chroma. And if you need dedicated macro buttons, Corsair K55 is for you. Last but not least, there is the reliable Logitech G213 that gives an all-around performance. Indeed a lot to choose for $50! Which makes G213 the best budget gaming keyboard in 2020 according to us.