Choosing a gaming keyboard is a matter of personal taste. One person could be into Cherry Browns and white backlighting. Another might favor Razer Greens and a rippling RGB glow. Gigantic wrist pads, compact shapes, numeric keypads, macro keys, volume controls—a plethora of keyboards exists because everyone wants a different mix of features.

To help you sort through the many options, we’ve sifted through the latest and greatest planks to come up with our top recommendations. All of these are mechanical keyboards, and for good reason—they’re simply more comfortable to use over the long haul. But we’re open-minded, so if we encounter an alternative that works well, you may see it appear on this list. We’ll keep updating it periodically as we test new keyboards.

Updated 9/1/17 to reflect the addition of the Corsair K95 RGB Platinum, the very definition of decadence, and the hands-down winner in a new category: Best ultra-premium keyboard

Best budget keyboard

Not too long ago, the CM Storm QuickFire TK was the go-to recommendation for a sub-$100 mechanical keyboard. For good reason, too: Classic black-rectangle design, no number pad for those who hate them, and fully backlit (with the color varying based on the switch you choose). Plus, it uses genuine Cherry MX switches.

The budget-friendly mechanical keyboard market has expanded quite a bit in recent years, though. These days, I’d go with Razer’s new BlackWidow X Tournament Edition —so long as backlighting isn’t a must-have.

It lists for only $70, has the same trendy exposed-metal-backplate design of the larger BlackWidow X, and sports a discreet typeface on its keys. Oh, and unlike Razer’s other keyboards, you can get this one with Cherry MX Blues.

Runner-up

If you’re willing to go right up to $100, the HyperX Alloy FPS offers some nice perks. It comes with backlighting, features Cherry MX keys, and is the slimmest keyboard on the market. I also like that the Mini USB cable is detachable—you won’t have to RMA the board if only the cable busts.

HyperX Alloy FPS

The HyperX Alloy FPS offers thoughtful touches.

That said, the low end of the market is a free-for-all. The Cougar Attack X3, the Razer BlackWidow Ultimate, G.Skill’s Ripjaws KM570, the Corsair Strafe—these are all fine sub-$100 keyboards that feature (or at least can feature) genuine Cherry MX switches and per-key backlighting. The biggest difference is design, which is a personal preference. I happen to like the HyperX Alloy’s minimalist look, but someone else could prefer a bulkier look like that of the Strafe.