There’s a dedicated realm for keyboards, especially for mechanical ones. In our previous articles about keyboards, we have quite stress over the concept of switches. Forsooth, the switches do not exist in our traditional membrane keyboards, but their advent changed our perception of the best keyboards. Typically, there are three types of switches-Linear, tactile and clicky. All these switches have a discreet functionality. For example, clicky switches lack silence.
Similarly, tactile switches might not make any hearable sound. If one thing goes up, the other one comes down. So, it’s like trading between two extreme ends; hence, making the selection criteria for the best low profile mechanical keyboard for gaming tough.
The idea for a low-profile keyboard sank in years later after the advent of our first switches. There are people out there who enjoy timing in serenity and calmness but also can’t type and game with the mechanical keyboards. You should know mechanical keyboards are renowned for at least making little clicky sounds. To our surprise, people don’t need that either. For them, new mechanical keyboards slipped into the market. Well, Cherry and Kailh, the two leading mechanical switches companies, introduced low-profile switches. These low-profile switches use the same actuation, actuation force, feedback, and tactility-bingo, no compromises on the other leading elements. For these new switches, a name was coined “MX Low profile” and “Kailh low profile switches.”
For gamers and typists alike, these low-profile switches can turn out to be orgasmic. These keyboards tend to be more specific in size, compactness in terms of height, and durable. Well, before proceeding to the actual product review of the best low-profile gaming keyboards, I would like to pitch in the design of these low-profile switches, and why they are further revolutionizing the concept of gaming.
Cherry MX Low-profile Switches
There are no better switches than Cherry MX, but at times the price factor stops many people from buying Cherry MX keyboards. You get to play with blue, brown, red, black switches at your ease. Recently, Cherry MX manufactured new low-profile switches that have a unique design. The switches house linearity, and SMD LEDs. For actuation power, you only need to provide 45cN, which is relatively lower than the traditional mechanical keyboards; thus, lowering the clicky sounds. It just doesn’t stop here! The switches also offer a 1.2mm actuation point, a maximum distance of 3.2 mm, and 35% shorter in height.
The features mentioned above are perfect for gaming and typing alike. From Cherry MX, the popular low-profile keyboards include Cooler Master CK620, CK640, and Ducky blade air keyboard.
Not to mention, a couple of months back, Cherry MX released yet another premium tier switches, which are known as “Cherry MX Low profile RGB speed.” These switches are volatile and aggressive in terms of speed. Verily, you are getting all the features of a low-profile switch; it’s just a little faster in terms of pressing.
Kailh Low-Profile Switches
As I said, there’s a panoply of varieties you can look into for switches. Well, Kailh switches go by the name of “PG1350”. These switches have alternative names: Kailh chocolate switch or Kailh choc switch (if you don’t like characters and numbers in names). Notwithstanding, these switches have special properties that are unique to each layout/type. For instance, Kailh choc has low-profile red, brown, and white switches with 50gf, whereas other switches have around 45gf. It’s worth mentioning that red, brown, and white switches are linear, tactile, and clicky.
Moreover, choc dark yellow, burnt orange, and pale blue falls within the category of PG1350, but are comparatively heavier with a greater actuation force of 70gf. In short, for Kailh switches, you’ll be coming across a surfeit of types that you can sieve through for your system.
It’s time to proceed to the actual session of the excerpt. Without any delay, let’s begin the review of the best low-profile mechanical keyboards.
Prime 7 best low-profile keyboards overview
Best overall low-profile mechanical keyboard
Do you know a fun fact? Corsair K70 RGB MK.2 was the first keyboard to use Cherry MX’s low-profile keys. Initially, the keyboard had cherry MX red switches, but over time, new switches for this particular model plummeted down. Not to mention, the keyboard has 45 CN operating forces. But at different points on the keyboard, the actuation force is variable. The use of variable force was voluntarily implemented to tackle the different force power of each finger. For example, your little finger can’t exert much greater force than your index finger. The manufacturers mapped out a detailed plan about the places your pinky finger can reach.
The red switches actuate at 1.2mm, while the speedy ones at 1.0mm. The difference of .20 mm matters a lot to gamers and typists alike. Notwithstanding, the aluminum frame construction of the keyboard makes it durable and strong. On top of that, you get hold of a soft wrist handler that comforts your hands. For the other features, you get hold of low-profile ABS keycaps, RGB lightning in synchrony through Corsair iCUE software, and top-notch height.
For gaming, the keyboard proposes N-key rollover with 100% Anti-ghosting, programmable macros, profiles, and FPS and MOBA keycap sets. Moreover, there are multimedia keys at the top right-hand side, which you can use to lower and increase the volume. Last but not least, there’s a USB-pass through-port, which allows you to connect your mouse, headset, or any other low power-consuming device directly to the keyboard. That’s wonderful!
|Switch||Cherry MX low profile Red/Speed|
Best high-end low-profile mechanical keyboard
Logitech always brings in outstanding products and hence is the case with Logitech G815 RGB. It has all the advanced features and looks an on-fleek design that’s enticing and enthralling. On top of that, the keyboard houses low-profile switches, which are called GL switches. Well, these new switches are proprietary to Logitech only. These new types of switches offer three standards: tactile, linear, and clicky. It entirely depends on your personal preference to cherry-pick any one of them. The Logitech G815 is super thin, with a limited height of 22mm. Well, it’s apparent from the name that it’s an RGB keyboard. If you want to switch profiles and modes, download the Logitech’s hub software and tweak as per your will.
It just doesn’t end here! You get hold of dedicated five programmable G-keys (macros) on the left side of the memory keys. Not to mention, the keyboard also offers a game mode button that can be put in to use for disabling individual keys through G-Hub. The keyboard also provides media controls and a volume wheel that comes in blissful use in gaming sessions. Well, it saves you from the hassle of minimizing the game and then decreasing the volume.
Notwithstanding, the keyboard offers USB pass-through ports for small devices (mouse, headphone, flash drive, and other low power consuming products). Surprisingly, the keyboard has gone lengths to provide ease of use to the potential users. It’s also worth mentioning that the USB cable is non-detachable, which is the only setback of the keyboard. Otherwise, it’s a top-notch piece as it comes with an aircraft-grade aluminum-alloy body and steel-reinforced base.
|Switch||Logitech GL switches|
|Backlight||RGB LED lighting|
Best RGB low-profile mechanical keyboard
Cooler Master has been providing ethereal products to potential customers. SK-650 is one of those mechanical keyboards that will blow your mind. You get a super slim and minimalist design. The low-profile keyboard uses Cherry MX RGB, which means that you are hitting two birds with a single stone. You know what’s surprising, the keyboard does not have the Cooler master brand name; thus, giving it a clean and cute look. Not to mention, the keycaps on the keyboard are flat, and they resemble most to the chiclet keyboard that you usually find on laptops.
The keyboard is well suited for gamers and typists, so if you are one of them, then it’s a go-to keyboard. There’s a tiny problem with the keyboard. The adjacent spacing between the keys is less, which might result in a random pressing of some other key. Plus, if you are a fan of a normal keyboard with more space, this might not be your shot. For aesthetics, you get hold of a brushed aluminum top that gives the keyboard its metallic look.
There’s more tea to sip! For gaming, you get hold of N-key rollover, Anti-ghosting keys and windows lock key. The keyboard also features an innovative on-the-fly feature, which helps change the profile and mode of the RGB pattern on the keyboard. You also get hold of macros and volume keys on the keyboard. On top of that, the keyboard also offers FN function, braided and detachable USB type-C, and 1.8m long cable. Notwithstanding, Sk-650 has height and angle adjusters, which help you use the keyboard at the extreme comfort zone.
|Switch||Cherry MX RGB low profile|
Best aesthetic low-profile mechanical keyboard
Are you excited about this product? Because I am! Who wouldn’t be? It’s Alienware. You must have come across countless Alienware laptops, and forsooth, they are out-of-this-world. Recently, they started producing keyboards as well, and here we are, with a low-profile mechanical keyboard. AW510K offers stunning and ethereal looks and comes with red switches. It’s true that these low-profile red switches are linear and do not traverse like the traditional red switches. The actuation force is lowered as compared to many other switches. Not to mention, these switches are best for typing, gaming, coding alike-no doubt, why many users reported positive reviews. It’s worth noting that these switches can register up to 50 million keystrokes and are reliable for years.
For backlighting, you get an RGB LED that can be channeled to different profiles and modes by a single button. You can also use third party software from Alienware to tweak macros and other programmable keys. Additionally, the keyboard supports Anti-ghosting, N-key rollover, which is vital for top-notch gaming. You also get hold of Function keys and ergonomic volume wheel. It just doesn’t stop here. The keyboard comes with a USB pass through the loop that allows you to connect low power consuming devices directly to the keyboard; hence, saving a couple of ports on the motherboard.
Last but not least, you can order the keyboard in two different colors: Dark chocolate or lunar light. I would say it’s a must keyboard for enthusiasts looking forward to a seamless gaming experience.
|Switch||Cherry MX RGB low profile|
|Backlight||RGB LED lighting|
Best TKL low-profile mechanical keyboard
Your concern is valid since I’m proposing a new brand for your system. Does it always mean that the new products will malfunction and turn out to be faulty at the end of the day? No, I don’t think so, because I have personally tested Hex gears NOVA, which is quite interesting in so many ways. Although the layout and design might have a palpable repulsive effect on buyers, it’s still a decent choice considering the price tag of the product. The keyboard won the award of being the best TKL (tenkeyless), which means that the product is compact and portable with no Numpad area. You get a hold of RGB backlighting and light Ring profile, which is customizable through the software/keys on the keyboard.
For construction, the keyboard takes on full metallic linings, which makes it stronger and beautiful at the same time. It’s worth adding that the keyboard has three colors: Black, silver, and blue. It also provides you with ABS shine-through keycaps, which look aesthetics when used under the night light. Something is surprising for the users; they choose from Kailh box brown (tactile) and white (clicky) mechanical switches. The recent price of the hex gears is around $90, but it’s subject to change from vendor to vendor. Not to mention, you get N-key rollover, anti-ghosting keys, F function key, and detachable USB for maintenance purposes. It’s worth mentioning that the keyboard allows you to RGB as per your will, simply channel the modes and profiles from the keyboard, and you are good to go.
The keyboard is best suited for those people who love smaller and compact keyboards.
|Switch||Kailh box brown and white|
Best 60% low profile mechanical keyboard
If you still find tenkeyless keyboards not so tiny and cute, then it’s time to show you something exceptional. Well, cooler master SK621 is a keyboard that is more compact and portable than the traditional TKL keyboards. They are known as 60% keyboards, which lack the Numpad area, and have arrows keys merged with the rest of the keyboard. For gamers and typists, the Numpad area doesn’t matter much; even the cluster of arrow keys at the rightmost side only takes up space and is, to an extent, useless. That’s the reason why 60% of keyboards are taking all over the industry, recently.
The SK621 provides hybrid wireless functionality, giving you a customizable choice to clean and tweak as per your will. It’s worth adding that the keyboard comes with a Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, allowing you to connect the RGB system and large wireless batteries. Not to mention, the keyboard has a USB Type-C, which is detachable for maintenance purposes. It’s truly surprising to see low profile slim switches on the keyboard. They use cherry MX red switches, which are linear and tactile.
For people who love procrastination, the keyboard does not require any software for tweaking. Everything is possible through onboard keys. Good luck and have fun typing!
|Switch||Cherry MX Red switches|
Best full-sized low-profile mechanical keyboard
It’s time to welcome our last product, renowned for being the best full-sized mechanical keyboard. Although you might not trust the company since it’s new, yet you can still give it a shot. Tesoro Gram Spectrum is a dedicated gaming keyboard that comes with a blue/ red agile, slim switch; manufactured by Kailh. The keyboard features floating keys design, which is lit by the RGB backlighting. It’s worth mentioning that the keyboard has a metal backplate for rigidity and durability; thus, making it more trustworthy compared with newly arrived brands.
Not to mention, the keyboard also offers N-key rollover, Anti-ghosting for registering multiple presses at once, and several macro keys (programmable). It just doesn’t end here. You can control the RGB lights through FN function, or download third-party software for channeling between profiles and modes as per your will. For the wiring system, you get hold of braided and detachable USB cable for maintenance purposes. On top of that, the keyboard is compatible with most versions of windows; hence, saving you a handsome amount of time for upgrading.
|Form factor||Full-size (104 keys)|
|Switch||AGILE Slim switch|
|Backlight||RGB LED lighting|
The selection criterion for the best low-profile keyboard might be tough, but in the end, everything turns out to be blossoms and buttercups. If you are going to ask me for the recommendation, I would say CORSAIR K70 RGB MK.2 has the best spot. Although it might be expensive, it works top-notch, and that’s what you need for typing and gaming. My advice isn’t concrete, and you can still go for the one which fascinates you the most. In the end, the choice will be yours, and not mine.
I hope the article must have cleared your concerns about which mechanical keyboard to root for. Do not forget to pitch in your comments and reviews about the article. Your advice is valuable to us.
People always ask
Are low profile keyboards better?
In my opinion, they are. You get wrist placement, silent keystrokes, adjustments, and a lot of beautiful features that you might not find in a traditional keyboard.
Does a mechanical keyboard make you type faster?
Yes, it’s because of the low requirement of actuation force. All you have to do is press a little and bingo; the key is registered. That’s the reason why people reported a significant change in their typing speeds.
Is low profile mechanical keyboards best for gaming?
It depends on your taste. If you don’t like clicky sounds, then low-profile keyboards are the way to go; otherwise, you can always root for clicky switches for your ear’s pleasure.