Are you looking for a new keyboard? Not sure which is the best option?
The wired vs. wireless keyboard debate has been raging for years, but it remains as important as ever. Although many believe that wireless keyboards are the optimal choice because they’re newer than traditional wired options, this isn’t always the case. Both options have advantages and disadvantages, and the ideal choice is the one that ticks all your boxes.
We’ve created this detailed comparison guide to help you find the best keyboard for your needs. Let’s dive in to see what route you’ll take — wired vs. wireless.
Wired vs. Wireless Keyboard: What’s the Difference?
Here’s a quick look at how a wired keyboard differs from a wireless keyboard.
|Wired Keyboard||Wireless Keyboard|
|Power Source||Powered by your computer||Requires batteries|
|Interference||Lower risk of interference||Higher risk of interference|
|Connection||Cable to USB port||Bluetooth or RF technology|
|Range||Shorter range, restricted by cable length||Greater range, up to 30 feet|
|Response Time||Speedy||Slower, higher probability of a lag|
|Cleanliness||Cord clutter||Easily stored to clear work or gaming space|
Wired Keyboard Basics
Wired keyboards are just like they sound — keyboards that physically attach to your computer or laptop via a cable. At the end of the cable lies a USB plug. This plug goes into a port on your computer and transmits your keystrokes to the motherboard. Since it’s directly plugged in, little can go wrong with a wired keyboard’s connection, making it highly reliable.
Many old-school gamers swear by wired keyboards because ever-dreaded input lag isn’t as big an issue vs. wireless models. That said, you’re unlikely to notice much of a speed boost when using a wired keyboard for everyday home or business tasks.
The price of a wired keyboard ranges widely. However, for an optimal wired keyboard, expect to pay at least $100.
Wired Keyboard Features
- Physical connection – Wired keyboards physically plug into your desktop or laptop via a USB plug.
- Steady power source – Since a wired keyboard plugs directly into your computer, it’s powered that way — never requiring batteries or charging time.
- Stability – A wired keyboard suffers less interference than its wireless counterpart.
Cons of Using a Wired Keyboard
- Adds to wire clutter – Wired keyboards come with more clutter compared to wireless keyboards.
- Less portable – You can only use it within the length of its cable.
Wired Keyboard Brands & Models To Check Out
- Razer Pro Type | Amazon ($159.99) – It’s tough to beat the Razer Pro Type because it offers three modes: wired, Bluetooth, and 2.4GHz. The board is made for maximum productivity, and its silent mechanical switches keep sound to a minimum. Concerning its cost, you’re looking at a starting price tag of $159.
- Corsair K70 RGB TKL Champion Series Gaming Keyboard | Amazon ($89.99) – This is another excellent mechanical keyboard, complete with stellar performance, a durable aluminum frame, and a compact tenkeyless form factor. Find it for $100.
- Kinesis TKO Gaming Keyboard | Amazon ($125) – This powerful and compact keyboard offers mechanical switches, a modular triple spacebar, dual-zone RGB lighting, and more. Find it between $125 and $175.
Wireless Keyboard Basics
Wireless keyboards don’t have any cables, making them an excellent choice for users who wants to tuck their keyboard away at the end of the day and maintain a clean workspace.
Modern wireless keyboards typically rely on Bluetooth technology or 2.4 GHz radio frequencies for connectivity. To secure the latter, you generally attach a USB dongle into your desktop or laptop. This maintains your connection and allows you to type up to 30 feet away.
In terms of pricing, wireless keyboards can be pretty steep, depending on the make and model. You can find a wireless keyboard for everyday use for at little as $50. However, a wireless gaming keyboard will be around $130 and can go all the way up to $300 or more.
Wireless Keyboard Features
- Wireless connection – A wireless keyboard connects to your computer via a Bluetooth or RF connection.
- Convenience & mobility – Wireless keyboards can be tucked away when you’re finished with them. This reduces clutter in your work or gaming area. The lack of cables also makes this option easier to travel with.
- Greater distance – Unlike a wired keyboard, which is often limited to 6 feet, you can usually use wireless keyboards up to 30 feet away from their source.
Cons of Using a Wireless Keyboard
- Possibility of interference – Other 2.4 GHz RF devices — such as printers and headphones — can cause frequency interference, leading to connectivity loss.
- You may experience input delay – Although the average person won’t notice, competitive gamers may experience input lag. This is most noticeable with cheaper wireless keyboards.
Wireless Keyboard Brands & Models To Check Out
- Corsair K63 | Amazon ($79.99) – This keyboard is one of the best wireless gaming keyboards available. It features Cherry MX key switches for unrivaled performance and per-key LEDs, making it sleek and powerful. Pick it up for $79.
- Asus ROG Claymore II Wireless Keyboard | Amazon ($269) – It’s tough to beat this gaming keyboard. Switch between wired and wireless modes, and enjoy all of today’s cutting-edge features. Just note that it’ll cost you $269.
- Logitech G915 Lightspeed Wireless Mechanical Keyboard ($329) – If there was one keyboard that could beat out all the rest, it’s this lightspeed mechanical keyboard. Known as a “breakthrough in design and engineering,” this keyboard offers a low profile, ultra-thin design, and unparalleled performance. Take care of it, and this keyboard will last a lifetime — but it will also cost you $329.
Are Wired and Wireless Keyboards Interchangeable?
The answer is, it depends. In most cases, yes. Wired and wireless keyboards are interchangeable concerning functionality. Both keyboards will allow you to perform everyday tasks, and depending on the wireless keyboard, they may also be suitable for gaming.
However, they are not interchangeable in how they connect. Also, if you’re a serious gamer, you may find that many wireless keyboards can’t stand up to a reliable mechanical keyboard that’s wired in.
Wired vs. Wireless Keyboard FAQs
In this section, we’ll answer some prominent questions about wired vs. wireless keyboards.
1. What is the main difference between a wired vs. wireless keyboard?
The most significant difference between a wired vs. wireless keyboard is how they connect. A wired keyboard connects via a physical cable, whereas a wireless keyboard connects via Bluetooth or RF technology.
2. How do wireless and wired keyboards compare concerning performance levels?
Wireless keyboards generally perform well, especially for everyday and business use. However, a wired keyboard may be worth the investment if you’re looking for better response times or to avoid any input lag.
3. How do the options differ in price?
Regardless of whether you buy a wired vs. wireless keyboard, the price will be dependent on the make and model you purchase.
With that being said, wired keyboards are generally more expensive. However, they do not require you to purchase batteries to keep them up and running. On the other hand, a top-of-the-line wireless keyboard will likely cost more than a wired keyboard with the same configurations.
Wired vs. Wireless Keyboard: Which One Should You Buy?
There is no correct answer here because the best keyboard depends on what you seek. If you’re a hardcore gamer who can’t stand input lag or a professional who wants consistent and rapid response times, a wired mechanical keyboard is probably your best bet. If you need a keyboard for home or business use, a basic wireless keyboard is more than efficient and can be more affordable.
If you need more guidance, SitWorkPlay is here. Check out The 10 Best Wireless Keyboards of 2021: Cut the Cord and The 10 Best Gaming Keyboards of 2021 for Pro-Level Performance.
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