The best keyboards

Write, email or blog to your heart’s content with a keyboard that puts comfort, connectivity and ease at the forefront

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So you have kitted out your home office with all the best gadgets, invested in your dream computer and even splashed out on a swanky leather office chair, what next? The humble keyboard doesn't often get a lot of thought, but since we all tend to type more than we write these days, so it's worth investing in a good quality keyboard that suits you and your workspace. So we've rounded up the best keyboards to help you get it right...

How to choose a keyboard

First, some guidance on which is best for your current setup. Most keyboards that can be bought separately, i.e. to work with a separate computer monitor rather than coming inbuilt as part of a laptop, use a USB to connect, although there are now some wireless options on the market that connect via Bluetooth. If you’re buying your first Apple-compatible keyboard, you’ll notice, whether immediately or further down the line when you first try to type out an email address, that a couple of the keys are positioned differently to those on PC keyboards. But don’t worry, you’ll soon adapt!

Aside from those basics, some keyboards come with added extras to fit specific needs, and might just make your life a whole lot easier if you type a lot for business or pleasure. We’re talking padding and adjustable angles for wrists, textured keys for mid-rampage gamers, and even a foldable design that fits into a work bag. 

1. Das Keyboard 4 Professional

A proper mechanical keyboard for a swish office? Das ist gut.

Specifications
Best for: A professional, mechanical keyboard
Layout: QWERTY
Power Supply: USB
Connectivity: USB
Reasons to buy
+  Looks and feels high-end + Needs very little pressure 
Reasons to avoid
- A bit full-on for some needs 

With a name as straightforward as “Das Keyboard”, you know what you’re getting is likely very simple but very elegant German engineering, and you’d be right. This mechanical keyboard requires very little force to register a keystroke, which might sound silly, but you’d be surprised what a difference it can make for long-term typing comfort. It also looks and feels much more high-end than the average plastic keyboard, with a cool-to-the-touch aluminum casing and satisfying clickety-clack keys. It might all take some getting used to, but according to happy reviewers who sing its praises, it’s a real dream to type on, and it looks fabulous. What more could you want? 

2. Logitech K780 Multi Device Wireless Keyboard

Switch seamlessly from phone to tablet and back again

Specifications
Best for: Typing on devices
Layout: QWERTY
Power Supply: 2xAAA batteries
Compatibility: USB
Reasons to buy
+ Distinctive round keys + Switch between devices 
Reasons to avoid
- Batteries required 

With its distinctive and rather sweet-looking rounded keys, you can tell at first glance that this Logitech keyboard is something a little different, but that’s not even the half of it. This full-size universal keyboard can pair with Windows, Mac, Android and iOS, so if you keep different documents in different places, you can use this to beam your typing to any of them and switch between screens; plus, the integrated rubberised stand is intended as a cradle for smaller devices, so you can even knock up a makeshift laptop in a pinch. But the kicker? It’s ever so quiet. If you don’t have a dedicated workspace and want to keep your head down, this click-clack-less keyboard may go some way to keeping the peace. 

3. Corsair Gaming K70 Keyboard

The keyboard that gives PC gamers a 1up

Specifications
Best for: Gamers
Layout: QWERTY
Power Supply: USB
Connectivity: USB
Reasons to buy
+ Texturised keys for easy finding + Customisable backlighting 
Reasons to avoid
- A bit on the bulky side

There’s nothing that can make your hand cramp and your fingers claw quite like a marathon PC gaming session — enter this fully mechanical keyboard from Corsair, specifically designed for gaming. Engineered to be accurate, customisable and comfortable for long hours at the screen, it’ll pass as a professional-looking keyboard for everyday, but there’s no doubt what it’s best for. The most commonly used keys are contoured and textured, so you can find them quickly and easily even if you’re not looking down, and key-by-key customisable backlighting lets you select what you need to see most. That red isn’t just functional though: it also provides a contrast that looks good, even when you’ve downed your gun or sword and headed off to bed. 

4. Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop

Keep hands and wrists healthy with this supportive sculpted keyboard

Specifications
Best for: Ergonomics
Layout: QWERTY
Power Supply: USB
Compatibility: USB
Reasons to buy
+ Maintains a healthy typing position + Comes with ergonomic mouse 
Reasons to avoid
- Separate number pad  

If you’ve gone to all the effort and expense of finding the perfect ergonomic office chair to make sure your maintain a healthy posture while you work, there’s no sense in throwing it all away with a bog standard keyboard. If you’re working long hours at home, this Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop from Microsoft may be a good investment, as it’s designed to keep the wrists and forearms in optimum position, supporting bones and muscles and reducing the pronation (twisting) that can result in pain and limited mobility. And that’s not all: this complete desktop set comes complete with a mouse and separate number pad. 

5. Logitech Wireless Illuminated Keyboard K800

A bright idea for night-owl typists

Specifications
Best for: Night-time working
Layout: QWERTY
Power Supply: Rechargeable battery
Compatibility: Wireless
Reasons to buy
+ Automatically detects light levels + Proximity sensor saves energy 
Reasons to avoid
- No function key customisation 

While it would be remiss of us to recommend using your computer in the dark if you don’t want to risk eye strain, this illuminated keyboard makes it undeniably tempting. Even if it’s just a little greyer than average outside, or you’re working by the light of a lone task lamp, this clever keyboard automatically sense the ambient light levels and adjusts accordingly, or gives you the option to set your own brightness with the press of a button. Perhaps even more clever than that are the ‘hand proximity sensors’ which turn the backlight on when your hands are near, and off when they leave. And, if you’re prone to distraction, it might help to know that only the characters are illuminated - no accidental Esc keys for you. Cool, eh? 

6. Apple Magic Keyboard

This slight, sleek keyboard is a must for Mac users

Specifications
Best for: iMacs
Layout: QWERTY
Power Supply: Rechargeable battery
Connectivity: Wireless
Reasons to buy
+ Use with Mac and PC + Slim, low-profile design 
Reasons to avoid
- Touch typers may need to adjust 

The first thing you’re likely to notice about the Apple Magic Keyboard, apart from its light and bright silver and white colourway, is the fact that it’s slightly smaller than the average, but that shouldn’t put you off. The slighter width, slim design and low-profile keys not only look good, they make this keyboard ideal for users with limited desk space, whether you’re on a Mac or a PC. Yep, you read that right. This wireless keyboard pairs automatically with Macs for easy setup, but perhaps surprisingly it’s also suitable for use with PCs, so long as they’re Bluetooth enabled. Whatever you use it with, reviewers found it easy and comfortable to type on, with no lag and enviable battery life. 

7. Microsoft Universal Foldable Keyboard

An eminently portable keyboard for home or away

Specifications
Best for: Portability
Layout: QWERTY
Power Supply: Rechargeable battery
Connectivity: USB
Reasons to buy
+ Very thin foldable design + Full-sized keyboard 
Reasons to avoid
- Weird split in space bar 

More of us than ever are finding ourselves working on the go these days, whether it’s typing up a last-minute briefing on the train to work or simply tapping out a late-night email on your phone. If that rings a bell, you might want to consider this full-size foldable keyboard. It pairs wirelessly using Bluetooth with iPad, iPhone, Android, and Windows tablets and phones, so you don’t have to rely on small touchscreen keyboards — which is just begging for a typo in that all-important email to the boss! Microsoft also say it lasts up to three months on a single charge, so that, plus its slim design (just 5mm thick), mean you can just pop it into a desk drawer or work bag and forget about it until it’s needed next.
 

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