With the recent shift to mechanical switches, gaming keyboards have become increasingly expensive, with more established brands pricing them at well over $200. To cater for the needs of thriftier gamers, we’ve decided to pick out what we consider the best budget gaming keyboards that are as affordable as they are satisfying to use.
All the gaming keyboards in our list feature backlit keys for user convenience. In addition to this, they offer dynamic RGB lighting that will make your gaming setup more attractive. Best of all, most of the keyboards have a multi-key rollover design, meaning they’ll allow you to work with multiple keys simultaneously. Some also have dedicated media keys that will enable you to customise your system’s audio settings on the fly.
TL; DR: The #1 Budget Gaming Keyboard for Most People 👇
The HyperX Alloy Core offers anti-ghosting functionalities, 3 brightness levels, and multiple colour effects for an enhanced gaming experience. It features highly responsive backlit keys and is also spill-resistant. If you are on a fixed budget, this may just be the right gaming keyboard for you!
Moreover, the budget gaming keyboards that we have picked for you are made of sturdy materials for durability purposes. Each keyboard in our selection has a unique feature that can improve your gaming experience. The quick links below can direct you to a budget gaming keyboard of your choosing:
The Best Budget Gaming Keyboards to Buy Today in Australia
- Best Overall: STOGA Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
- Best for Most People: HyperX Alloy Core RGB – Membrane Gaming Keyboard
- Best Value Gaming Keyboard: E-Element Z-88 Mechanical Keyboard
- Best for PC Gaming: Redragon K530
- Best Entry-level: NORCHE CQ84 Mechanical Keyboard
1. Best Overall: STOGA Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Why we like it:
- Anti-ghosting feature for smooth gaming
- It has 14 pre-set colour modes for quick RGB customisation
- All-metallic panel for maximum durability
- Tactile keycaps for real-time feedback
What customers say:
“This is the keyboard I was looking for. Minimalistic, small and relatively light, while still featuring those exiting clicky switches…”–Maximus
We chose the STOGA Mechanical Gaming Keyboard as our top pick due to its convenient multimedia functions, anti-ghosting design, and lightning performance. Plus, it comes from a brand that is known for making high-quality gaming peripherals.
Despite its small size, this gaming keyboard feels weighty and tough, allowing it to take some serious punishment while remaining stable on your desk no matter how intense your gaming session is going.
The mechanical switches offer a satisfying amount of tactile feedback and feel surprisingly tight and responsive for a budget keyboard. It offers customisable RGB lighting, so you can choose the colour scheme that matches your style.
Moreover, it has up to 14 lighting modes that can make your gaming desk more aesthetic. This keyboard utilises USB technology and is compatible with a range of operating systems. The materials from which this unit is made are both lightweight and durable, making it even more convenient.
Most of its parts are crafted from heavy-duty ABS, while the panel is metal inspired. Also, the keycaps won’t discolour nor wear out over time. The keyboard’s small stature will save you a lot of desk space and would also work great as an external keyboard for your laptop.
What’s more, the long USB cable will allow you to set up the keyboard at the most ideal position. If you are looking for an affordable mechanical gaming keyboard, this device may just end your search.
2. Best for Most People: HyperX Alloy Core RGB – Membrane Gaming Keyboard
Why we like it:
- Stable USB connectivity for lag-free performance
- Adjustable RGB for personalised lighting
- Spill-resistant for enhanced durability
- Dedicated media keys for easy control
What customers say:
“Love it–always wanted a nice gaming quality KB with the colourful lights, but dislike the sounds and additional effort required to operate mechanical ones…”–A. Lindsey
The HyperX Alloy Core RGB – Membrane Gaming Keyboard is also another excellent option that you can consider adding to your setup. This is one of the best membrane gaming keyboards currently available on the market.
It can be an excellent addition to any set-up, thanks to its stylish and space-saving design. And because the manufacturer cares about your gaming needs, this peripheral has all the features that you may expect in a gaming keyboard. Furthermore, it has quick-access buttons that will simplify your work when customising the settings.
In addition to this, it features dedicated media keys that will allow you to adjust the volume according to your preference. There is also an instant mute button for added convenience. This gaming keyboard not only has a sturdily built frame but is also spill-resistant.
According to the manufacturer, it can withstand spills of up to 120 ml. Still, you should try as much as you can to keep the keyboard dry to avoid complications. The keys on this keyboard are quiet, so they won’t distract you when you are gaming. This feature can prove helpful when using a highly sensitive gaming microphone that can easily pick up unwanted background noises.
The keys are ergonomically spaced to give you a comfortable gaming experience. To add to this, the lock function enables you to lock the keyboard with the touch of a button. All the keys are backlit, meaning you can comfortably use the keyboard even in poorly lit conditions.
It also has colourful RGB lighting that will add a touch of style to your gaming desk. There are six LED modes and three brightness levels that you can use when working with this keyboard. The keyboard’s low-profile design makes it ideal for both work and play and wouldn’t look at all out of place in an office setting as long as you turn down the lights.
In case you prefer a more reputable brand and don’t mind using a keyboard with membrane switches, the HyperX Alloy Core may just be the right product for you. It is dirt cheap compared to its mechanical counterparts.
3. Best Value Gaming Keyboard: E-Element Z-88 Mechanical Keyboard
Why we like it:
- Multi-key anti-ghosting for fast response
- Double-shot injection keycaps to prevent discolouration and wear
- It has drainage holes for draining accidental spills
- Sturdily built frame to increase durability
What customers say:
“This keyboard is the second “gaming” keyboard I’ve bought and it’s surprisingly good for the price. If this is your first or second keyboard and you’re on a tight budget, this is the one to go for…”–James Beveridge
If you liked STOGA’s compact keyboard but are looking for something with a little more flair, the E-Element Z-88 Mechanical Keyboard can be an excellent alternative. With a great set of keys and an awesome assortment of colours, you’re getting a great gaming keyboard at a reasonable price.
The E-Element Z-88 utilises Oetemu switches—a fantastic alternative to the popular Cherry switches that most mechanical keyboards use. You have a wide variety to choose from, including Blue, Red, Brown, or Black switches, each having a particular trait and a long shelf life.
Its sturdy build allows it to withstand years of intense gaming and its matte-like keycaps keep away oily fingerprints, so you won’t have to worry about leaving unsightly smudge marks on the surface of the keys. The keyboard comes in an assortment of eye-catching pastel-coloured variants that’ll look great with rigs of brighter shades.
It is also available in black if you prefer a more low-key colourway. The keyboard’s variants can add a lot of colour to your gaming setup and its Oetemu switches provide a nice layer of customisation that you won’t find on most high-end gaming keyboards.
Like the HyperX Alloy Core, this keyboard features multimedia keys that will give you easy access to the sound settings during gameplay. Additionally, it has shortcut keys that you will find helpful when gaming.
In terms of durability, the panel is made of high-quality aluminium alloy, while the housing has strategically placed drain holes that can help dispel liquids out of the circuitry system in case you accidentally spill something on the keyboard
4. Best for PC Gaming: Redragon K530
Why we like it:
- Has a wrist rest for user comfort
- The RGB lighting makes it more aesthetic
- Full layout for easy operation
- The keys are backlit for easy readability
What customers say:
“Great keyboard. Great value for money. No problems with it. Feels good to type on and my typing speed seems to be about the same with this and as it was with my old expensive razer keyboard…”–Political Researcher
Redragon has become exceedingly more popular in recent years, racking up a large roster of gaming keyboards that come in all shapes and sizes. The Redragon K530 is a full-sized keyboard that manages to keep its price tag budget-friendly on account of its membrane switches.
The Redragon K502’s tastefully gamer-esque red and black design is one of our favourites among all the budget keyboards we’ve come across. Its low-profile keys and wrist rest come together to provide a comfortable and incredibly quiet typing and gaming experience.
Also, the keyboard comes with lots of RGB settings and gaming shortcuts to fiddle around with. Since the keyboard is wired, you won’t experience a signal drop in during the gaming session. Plus, the base is designed in such a way that the keyboard cannot move about your gaming desk during usage.
While membrane keyboards really can’t beat out their mechanical alternatives in terms of performance, the Redragon K530 manages to stay relevant by offering gamers a quiet, high-quality experience, and a kickass design which could be enough of a reason to skip the transition to mechanical.
The K530 has 104 keys, so rest assured it will grant you access to all the functions that you may need during gameplay. To make it even better, the keys are ultra-quiet. The keyboard has indicator lights that will let you know if certain modes are active.
5. Best Entry-level: NORCHE CQ84 Mechanical Keyboard
Why we like it:
- Multi-device support for easy switching
- Ergonomic design for maximum user comfort
- Dual connection mode for added convenience
- Large capacity rechargeable battery for uninterrupted gameplay
What customers say:
“Good buy for the cheaper wireless keyboards and performs better than one I had that was double the price.”–Joanne Lamborn
The NORCHE CQ84 Mechanical Keyboard is one of the most affordable gaming keyboards that you can buy in Australia. This peripheral is designed with your gaming needs in mind and also has a long list of features that can greatly assist you in different scenarios.
Plus, it is compatible with most operating systems, so it won’t limit you in any way. It can work on virtually all Windows versions, making this a great choice for PC gaming. You can connect this keyboard to your gaming system via Bluetooth or USB.
Both options will provide you with a stable connection for lag-free gaming. Besides, the CQ84 has up to 84 optimised keys that will give you quick access to all functions. As such, you will have full control over your gaming character at all times.
Additionally, the keyboard is fitted with a large capacity battery for extended gameplay. To make it even better, the battery is rechargeable. But that is not all; you can wirelessly link this gaming keyboard to three devices at a go.
To add to this, it allows for quick switching from one device to the next and can also be connected to smartphones and iPads. With up to 18 pre-set RGB lighting modes to choose from, you can customise the keyboard according to your preference.
And since it has a simple design, you won’t experience any problems when working with this keyboard. It is also more compact compared to most gaming keyboards in its class.
How We Researched the Best Budget Gaming Keyboards
We chose the best budget gaming keyboards based on independent customer reviews on Amazon Australia and expert opinions from popular gaming sites. Additionally, we visited local e-commerce stores such as Kogan and Harvey Norman to see what Aussies had to say about some of the top-rated budget gaming keyboards.
Our team picked 10 gaming keyboards from 6 of the best-selling brands in Australia. We then compared the keyboards based on Size, Build quality, Type, Ease of cleaning, Switch type, and Price. We also checked if the chosen peripherals had important features like the anti-ghosting function and backlighting. This allowed us to eliminate gaming keyboards that did not tick all boxes.
As a result, we were left with 5 of the best budget gaming keyboards that you can buy in Australia. We then tested two of the five keyboards—the STOGA Mechanical Gaming Keyboard and the Redragon K502. Through this, we were able to collect more data which we used during the ranking process.
Gaming Keyboards: Buying Guide
Are looking to buy a gaming keyboard at a budget-friendly price? Well, there are countless options on the market that you can choose from, but the only problem is that not all will deliver the level of performance that you need. That being said, we recommend that you take your time to evaluate all the options when buying a low-end gaming keyboard.
However, this is often not easy if you don’t know what to look for. Plus, there is a range of factors that you should keep in mind to ensure you find the most ideal keyboard for your gaming system. This detailed buying guide will make your work a whole lot easier when shopping for the best budget gaming keyboard Australia has to offer.
What to Consider When Buying Budget Gaming Keyboard
As a gamer, you should see to it that you go for nothing but the best when picking a gaming keyboard. This will not only offer good value for money but will also provide you with a frustration-free gaming experience. Since we care about your gaming needs, we’ve listed some of the factors that you should think about when choosing a budget gaming keyboard:
Gaming keyboards come in different sizes, so ensure that you pick a peripheral that meets all your gaming needs. In most cases, size determines the number of keys on a keyboard. To get the best out of your gaming keyboard, we recommend that you go for one with a full layout design. This means you will have access to cursor keys, number pad, alphanumeric keys, and other essential functions that can boost your gaming experience.
Most full-size keyboards have 104 to 108 keys. Nonetheless, you should keep in mind that a full-size gaming keyboard may take up a lot of space on your desk. The Redragon K502 is one of the best full-size gaming keyboards that you can buy in Australia.
Keyboards can be classified as wireless or wired. Wireless gaming keyboards can connect to your device wirelessly via a USB dongle or Bluetooth. This means you can use the keyboard even when you are a few metres away from your gaming system.
Wired gaming keyboards, on the other hand, feature USB cables and a connector that you can plug into your device. Most gaming keyboards are either wired or wireless, while models like the NORCHE CQ84 Mechanical Keyboard offer the best of both worlds.
If you are a seasoned gamer, then you must be aware of how intense gaming sessions can get. Tensions rise, and keys are pressed with rage. That said, you should choose a keyboard that can withstand the abuse of intense fast-paced gaming.
The gaming keyboards in this guide are made of high-quality materials that offer long-lasting service. Moreover, a good number have metallic panels that won’t break under pressure. The casings are equally strong, so you won’t have to worry about durability.
Ease of cleaning
With time, dirt will accumulate under the keys on your keyboard, thus interfering with the normal functions of the switch. You should, therefore, buy a keyboard that can allow you to clean the keys with ease. Some models are fitted with removable keys that you can take apart during the cleaning process.
Based on your budget and preference, you can go for a mechanical or membrane gaming keyboard. Mechanical gaming keyboards are fitted with spring-loaded switches that will give you quick access to the functions that you need. When pressure is applied to a given key, the switch will close, thus completing the circuit. This will, in turn, send an electrical signal to your computer’s processing unit.
Membrane keyboards feature rubber domes with conductor points that perform the same function as mechanical keyboards. These types of keyboards generate less noise compared to the mechanical models. However, mechanical keyboards are more durable but are also more expensive than membrane keyboards.
When buying a keyboard or any other gaming peripheral, ensure that you choose a product that is worth what you pay for. Always keep in mind that not all highly-priced gaming keyboards are of good quality. In Australia, you can find a decent gaming keyboard for as low as $40.
Features to Look for When Buying a Gaming Keyboard
In addition to the above-listed factors, there are important features that you should look for in a gaming keyboard:
Rollover refers to a keyboard’s ability to accurately register inputs when multiple keys are pressed simultaneously. This prevents a phenomenon known as ghosting. All the gaming keyboards in this guide have an anti-ghosting design, so feel free to choose any that matches your preference.
Most gaming keyboards have backlit keys to increase visibility. As such, you can comfortably play your game even when in a dimly lit environment. Based on the model that you pick, you’ll be able to adjust the brightness of your keyboard according to your preference. You can as well go for keyboards with RGB lighting if you are looking to make your setup more colourful.
You may also be interested in:
- The Best Mechanical Keyboards for an Enhanced Typing Experience
- The Best Gaming Headsets for Great Gaming Experiences
- The Best Gaming Microphones for Crystal Clear Voice Recording
- The Best Budget Gaming Chairs That Don’t Feel Cheap
- The Best Budget Gaming Mouse for Premium Precision
- The Best Wireless Keyboards for Wire-free Work
- The Best Gaming Keyboards for Serious Gamers
Last update on 2022-08-15 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API