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Evening Standard
Saskia Kemsley

Best customisable, mechanical keyboards for improving dexterity and design

A realm previously reserved for professional gamers and stock traders in the 1990s, high-spec and highly customised mechanical keyboards have made their way into the mainstream thanks to TikTok.

The sheer virality of #KeyboardTok has shown new gamers and casual at-home workers the wonders of keyboard customisation, and how it can work to optimise your computer experience. Though a significant portion of the viral sensation that is keyboard content on TikTok is owed to ASMR channels, its prevalence has nevertheless piqued the interest of daily computer users across the board (if you’ll pardon the pun).

ASMR, or autonomous sensory meridian response, is the goosebump-causing, tingling sensation elicited from specifically triggering audio or visual stimuli. It’s often provoked by the ‘clicky clacky’ sounds of keyboards, reminiscent of our childhood ICT lessons in school computer bays back in the early 2000s.

Naturally, technology and design have evolved greatly since those sky-high Dell buttons of ‘ole, and the ability to explore different keyboard textures and feels has resulted in the creation of an entire community around aesthetically pleasing and satisfyingly clicky customised boards.

While the design of each key is indeed a considerable factor for those in the market for mechanical keyboards, what really affects user experience is the keyboard switch types beneath the keycaps. Switch & Click has an incredibly handy guide to understanding keyboard switches, but we’ll break it down for you.

Common, highly onomatopoeic adjectives used by creators to describe sounds on #KeyboardTok include ‘creamy’, ‘thocky’, ‘scratchy’, ‘pingy’ and ‘muted’. Such descriptors are commonly employed by keyboard enthusiasts who prioritise clickability and personal aesthetics over general function. The switches which are installed beneath each key are bumpier, louder and suitable for newbies to the world of mechanical keyboards.

On the other hand, tactility is incredibly important for serious gamers and fast typers. Tactile keyboard switches can be removed and changed frequently to optimise speed and comfort, and they feature a small bump on each keystroke while producing minimal noise. Linear mechanical keyboards are beloved by serious gamers for their inherently quiet nature, as well as their smooth and consistent keystrokes.

Optimise your gaming experience by leaving out buttons that you don’t use, and elevate your WFH experience with satisfying sounds and brilliant vibes. Keep scrolling for a round-up of the most aesthetically pleasing and customisable, mechanical keyboards on the market.

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Best customisable, mechanical keyboards at a glance:

Logitech POP Keys

Best for: a first foray into the world of mechanical keyboards

Logitech's innovative POP Keys is a wonderfully affordable, high-end, wireless mechanical keyboard, offering a brilliant blend of fun customizability, aesthetically pleasing design and clicky keys. Available in three funky colourways including ‘heartbreaker’, ‘daydream’ and ‘blast’, the computer specialists also offer matching companion accessories including the POP mouse.

The keyboard is crafted from 41 per cent post-consumer plastics and is certified carbon neutral. It is supported by two AAA batteries which will last up to 36 months before replacement is required. Moreover, the keyboard switches and caps are designed to last for up to 50 million strokes, with the entire set supported by a three-year warranty.

We’re big fans of the fact that the keyboard features a row of customisable emoji keys for easy emoting whether you’re a writer, gamer or blogger. If you’re not sure whether the clicking and clacking is entirely suitable, you can listen to a snippet of the bouncy, mechanical sound of POP Keys via the Logitech website.

Buy now £99.99, Logitech

Logitech G715

Best for: intermediate gamers

While POP Keys is an admirable choice for casual enthusiasts, Logitech’s true best seller is the G715 and its dreamy, accompanying cloud wrist rest which offers brilliant support. Available with either tactile or linear keyboard switches depending on your personal preference, the G715 is equipped with mood-boosting RGB lighting and comes in an array of colourways.

Download Logitech’s dedicated gear control application ‘G Hub’ to delve into the endless customisation possibilities, including adjusting the RBG lighting, customising which keys deactivate, toggle into Game Mode and so much more. Shop the rest of the ‘aurora’ themed collection to truly upgrade your entire set-up.

Buy now £179.99, Logitech

Redragon K683-WB RGB Wired Mechanical Keyboard Magnetic Switches

Best for: superior customisation

The Redragon K683-WB mechanical keyboard features innovative magnetic switches which allow you to swap between tactile, clicky and linear keys with the utmost ease. This option is wired for added convenience and doesn’t run the risk of dropping connection mid-gaming session.

The superior adjustability levels of this keyboard are further boosted by its 0.1mm to 4.0mm trigger point range and 40-level settings. Each individual switch can be customised to suit your personal needs, and a Rapid-Trigger option even allows users to assign separate keystrokes with the touch of a button. You can also choose from up to 14 different RGB backlighting modes depending on your mood. Winner winner.

Buy now £64.99, WhatGeek

PIIFOX ER95 Triple-Mode Wireless Mechanical Keyboard With LCD Screen

Best for: aesthetic value

This triple-mode wireless keyboard is equipped with an LCD screen and, in our humble opinion, functions like a piece of art. The keyboard itself is compatible with three or five-pin mechanical switches for seamless switching, as well as customisable RBG backlights which can be toggled using simple key combinations.

The innovative LCD screen is also capable of showing real-time gaming feedback and can be customised with ease. A premium, customisable mechanical keyboard that doesn’t compromise on looks? Sign us up.

Buy now £139.99, WhatGeek

Ajazz AKS068 Pro Alice Wireless Mechanical Keyboard

Best for: ergonomics

This ergonomic keyboard has a 65 per cent layout which is split into left and right halves for supreme comfort and performance. Our favourite aspect of this keyboard is the ‘fingertip touch’ metal knob which responds instantaneously to stimuli. It can be used by gamers to navigate characters, or simply by researchers looking to scroll through documents quickly and efficiently.

The acoustic-dampening silicone switch pad and PCB foam put this keyboard on the quieter end of the spectrum while providing a smooth and luxurious typing experience. The LED RGB backlights also come programmed with 18 different light effects.

Buy now £58.99, WhatGeek

Razer Huntsman V3 Pro

Best for: professional gamers

For ultimate precision and customisation, look no further than the Razer Huntsman V3 Pro. With a name that sounds more like an off-road car brand than a gaming keyboard, it’s safe to say that the V3 Pro can withstand the wear and tear of professional, competitive gameplay. The keyboard’s top plate has been crafted from aircraft-grade brushed aluminium and has a sumptuously smooth finish, while the casing is highly resistant to warping.

The extended, built-in leather wrist support system provides ergonomic comfort, while the advanced Rapid Trigger switch allows for lightning-speed repeated inputs. The keys have a 0.1–4.0 mm adjustable actuation range and a 100-million keystroke lifespan.

Buy now £249.99, Amazon

YUNZII ACTTO B303 Wireless Keyboard, Retro Bluetooth Aesthetic Typewriter Style Keyboard

Best for: transforming your WFH set-up

Offering a unique sense of vintage charm while delivering on the aesthetic and auditory value of a traditional typewriter, the ACTTO B303 wireless keyboard will instantly elevate any WFH set-up. The keyboard is supported by Bluetooth and has a range of up to 10 metres without running the risk of lagging, and you can even switch between multiple devices with the touch of a button.

Buy now £54.99, Amazon

EPOMAKER TH80-X Gasket Mechanical Keyboard

Best for: thocky key sounds

The headline of the top, five-star review on this sub-£100 mechanical keyboard simply reads ‘Thock’. With 79 keys, one knob, south-facing LEDs and a 4000mah battery capacity, the TH80 doesn’t compromise on design or functionality. For an easy-to-integrate mechanical keyboard which is sure to deliver on all those thocky ASMR sounds, the TH80 is the customisable keyboard for you.

Buy now £99.99, Amazon


While newbies to the world of mechanical keyboards should opt for Logitech’s cult-favourite POP Keys, and intermediate gamers the Logitech G715, professionals couldn’t invest in a better gaming keyboard than the Razer Huntsman V3 Pro.

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