The best budget keyboards 2022

Cherry Stream Desktop on a coffee table with a marble top
(Image credit: Future)

You don’t have to break the bank with the best budget keyboards. And, though you’re spending less than you would with pricier options, you may just find that they’re just as robust and capable as their more expensive counterparts. You might miss out on certain features that ones that cost over  $75/£75 come with, but when it comes to durability, versatility, and performance, these cheaper keyboards are able to keep up.

Since we’ve spent some time with a number of budget keyboards, even using them for day-to-day work, we’re more than comfortable recommending these here. And, though many cheaper models are limited when it comes to their features, some of these do come with some nice extras such as multi-device connectivity. No matter which one you choose though, you’ll find that all of them are quite comfortable to type on whether you plan on using them for long gaming sessions or to put in a long day’s worth of work on them.

Don’t judge the best budget keyboards by their price tags. If you’re a bit strapped for cash, our cheap keyboard picks, including some great mechanical keyboards, are a terrific value for you.

Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard against a white background

(Image credit: Microsoft)

1. Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard

Best full-sized budget keyboard

Specifications

Interface: Bluetooth
Switches: Rubber dome membrane
Backlighting: None

Reasons to buy

+
Slim form factor
+
Great typing experience

Reasons to avoid

-
Non-rechargeable

Windows users will love typing away on the Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard, which the company has designed to work seamlessly with the operating system and the Microsoft Office suite. It’s packed with Microsoft 365-specific and Windows-related shortcuts, as well as media controls and a search key. There’s even an emoji key because let’s face it, they help ensure that your email doesn’t get lost in translation. Since this is a full-sized keyboard, you’re getting the full experience, including a number pad. It’s also got a neat and slim profile for a more minimalist look, and offers a comfortable typing experience for your long work sessions.

The only issue we have with it is that it’s AAA-powered. Microsoft does give it a three-year battery life, but in this day and age, it’s almost unacceptable for any peripheral to be non-rechargeable. 

Logitech K380 against a white background

(Image credit: Logitech)

2. Logitech K380 Multi-Device Bluetooth Keyboard

Best budget keyboard for multiple devices and travel

Specifications

Interface: Bluetooth
Switches: Scissor
Backlighting: None

Reasons to buy

+
Attractive and extremely portable
+
Multi-device connectivity

Reasons to avoid

-
Non-rechargeable

Mac users, on the other hand, will love pairing their MacBook or Mac with this adorable keyboard that absolutely knocks it out of the park. The Logitech K380 is actually Windows and Chrome OS compatible as well, but we love using it with our MacBooks because the two are a match made in heaven. Whichever operating system you use it with, it’s an absolute dream to type on thanks to those scissor switches underneath, and a great travel companion thanks to its sleek, slim, and small profile. But wait, there’s more: it’s also capable of connecting up to three devices at once, and its three connectivity buttons at the top make it easy to toggle between devices. If that isn’t impressive, we don’t know what is.

It does have one failing – unfortunately, it’s not rechargeable, which means you’ll have to replace its batteries at some point. However, we’ve used ours for more than a year now, and it’s still going.

Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard against a white background

(Image credit: Microsoft)

3. Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard

Best budget ergonomic keyboard

Specifications

Interface: USB
Switches: Rubber Dome
Backlighting: None

Reasons to buy

+
Ergonomic design
+
Dedicated Microsoft keys

Reasons to avoid

-
Very limited features

The Microsoft Ergonomic Keyboard may not win any beauty contests any time soon, but what it lacks in style, it more than makes up with substance. Namely, its ergonomic, split-keyboard design is there to alleviate potential long-term injury from long typing sessions. Of course, that design wouldn’t be complete with a cushioned wrist rest. The one included here follows the keyboard’s sloping curves for an easy-on-the-wrist feel as well as promoting a neutral wrist position. Making your typing experience its priority, it even comes with a number of dedicated shortcut keys for Microsoft Office 365 and controlling media as well as a few other functions.

This full-sized keyboard offers very little in the way of features beyond its ergonomically-driven design, unfortunately. You won’t find backlighting, customization, or any special type of switches. And, if you want an ergonomic keyboard that comes in any other color beside black, you’ll have to look elsewhere. With that said, it delivers where it counts.

Logitech G213 Prodigy against a white background

(Image credit: Logitech)
Best budget gaming keyboard

Specifications

Interface: USB
Switches: Mech Dome
Backlighting: 5 Zone RGB

Reasons to buy

+
Satisfying, impressive typing action
+
Loaded with features

Reasons to avoid

-
Not mechanical

A non-mechanical keyboard for gaming might seem like heresy to hardcore gamers, but trust us when we say that the Logitech G213 Prodigy still delivers that satisfying mechanical-style feel without the steep price. This keyboard also has a lot going for it in terms of features. It’s got five RGB lighting zones, a 4mm travel distance, and a beautifully quiet operation to start. Because it is a membrane keyboard, it is spill-resistant with up to 60ml liquid rating specifically, which means it’s a terrific option for young gamers as well as clumsy ones. Adding more to its value is its integrated palm rest; while pricier gaming keyboards require for you to buy one separately, the G213 Prodigy’s comes included. And, while other cheap gaming keyboards abandon any macro recording altogether, this one allows you one macro button at least.

It’s never going to outmatch a premium mechanical keyboard in feel and in pro-level performance. However, for a cheap gaming keyboard, you can’t find a better value than this.

Read the full review: Logitech G213 Prodigy

Cherry Stream Desktop Keyboard against a white background

(Image credit: Cherry)
Best budget keyboard and mouse combo

Specifications

Interface: Wireless via USB receiver
Switches: SX Scissor
Backlighting: None

Reasons to buy

+
Incredibly straightforward and easy setup
+
Keyboard great to type on

Reasons to avoid

-
Plain design

Don’t let the Cherry Stream Desktop’s boring made-for-cubicles exterior put you off. This combo delivers in performance and comfort. In fact, its keyboard is one of the best we’ve ever typed on with its satisfying feel and feedback and incredibly responsive execution. It’s clearly made for long hours of typing, and trust us when we say, you won’t get sick of doing so. Or at least, your fingers won’t. Plus, setting it up on Windows is a pain-free experience, much easier than other wireless keyboards that promise an easy setup. And, that price tag is astounding, especially when you realize that it also comes with a mouse that’s just as reliable and has great palm support.

The only thing to bear in mind here is that it has a back-to-basics approach and doesn’t come with a whole lot of features. That’s not necessarily a downside for all users, but it might be for those who enjoy their frills.

Read the full review: Cherry Stream Desktop

Michelle Rae Uy
Buying Guides Editor

Michelle Rae Uy is the Buying Guides Editor here at TechRadar. She's a Los Angeles-based tech, travel and lifestyle writer covering a wide range of topics, from computing to the latest in green commutes to the best hiking trails. She's an ambivert who enjoys communing with nature and traveling for months at a time just as much as watching movies and playing sim games at home. That also means that she has a lot more avenues to explore in terms of understanding how tech can improve the different aspects of our lives.