Anyone who has ever used a computer is familiar with a keyboard. But what makes a gaming keyboard different from a standard one?
Gaming keyboards include features not found on standard keyboards, like RGB backlighting and customizable macro keys. They also have faster key response times and are typically built with sturdy materials for increased durability.
In this article, we'll discuss five of the most common problems faced by gaming keyboard users. We’ll also briefly review some HyperX gaming keyboards, which are known for their high quality, durability, and compatibility with major gaming platforms.
Mechanical vs membrane keyboards
If you’re in the market for a new keyboard, you should know that there are two different types: membrane and mechanical.
On membrane keyboards, each keycap sits on top of a rubber dome or membrane. This allows the keys to be pressed without very much force, making them extremely quiet, lightweight, and affordable. Laptops are usually equipped with membrane-style keyboards.
Conversely, mechanical keyboards use individual mechanical switches for each key, which gives keystrokes tactile and audible feedback. This feedback is caused by a physical switch mechanism that usually requires some force to activate.
Many gamers prefer mechanical keyboards for the “clicky” sound they make when a user is typing. However, there are plenty of membrane-style gaming keyboards to choose from as well.
Common gaming keyboard problems
Mechanical and membrane keyboards both have their own unique benefits - and these days, they’re sturdier and more portable than ever before. Unfortunately, like any piece of technology, keyboards are not immune to certain issues. Here are five of the most common ones.
Customization is one of the most important aspects of a gaming keyboard. Most gaming keyboards require software to adjust settings like custom macro keys and RGB backlighting.
With that in mind, it's important to research a gaming keyboard's software requirements and compatibility before making a purchase, to ensure that it will work seamlessly with your gaming setup.
Gaming keyboard software can be finicky, and incompatibilities may cause issues and even crashes. Be sure that you’ve downloaded the latest version of the software directly from the manufacturer’s website, and ensure that you’re using up-to-date drivers and firmware.
But software compatibility is only one half of the equation - there’s also the matter of connecting the keyboard to your computer, whether it’s wirelessly or via a USB cable. The most common problem gamers face is a faulty USB connection. This can happen for a variety of reasons, such as a loose connection, a damaged cable, or a malfunctioning USB port.
If you think the USB connection might be causing trouble, you should try unplugging and re-inserting the USB into its port. Next, try a different USB port if you have one available. You could also try restarting your device.
However, in some cases, you may need to replace the keyboard or get it repaired by a professional. It's important to take care of your gaming keyboard and troubleshoot any connectivity issues early on to avoid major problems down the road.
RGB backlighting is a popular feature found on many gaming keyboards. It allows users to customize the color and brightness of the LED lighting under the keycaps.
Common backlighting issues include uneven lighting, flickering, and complete failure to light up. These issues can often be solved by updating the keyboard's firmware, checking the cable connections, or adjusting the backlight settings in the keyboard software. In some cases, the issue may be with the LED lights themselves, and the keyboard may need to be repaired or replaced.
It's important to keep in mind that backlighting is a non-essential feature, and if it's causing too many problems, it's best to simply turn it off.
Ghosting and key rollover
One of the most frustrating gaming keyboard problems is ghosting and key rollover. Keyboard ghosting occurs when the keyboard fails to register a keystroke. Conversely, key rollover is when the keyboard cannot process all the keys pressed at once, resulting in missed or incorrect inputs.
These issues are particularly tough, if not impossible, to fix. Luckily, many gaming keyboards have anti-ghosting and key rollover features that can help prevent them. When choosing a new keyboard, it’s important to consider these features based on your specific needs.
Durability and wear
Since gaming often requires intense and prolonged use of the keyboard, keys can wear out or become unresponsive over time. Additionally, spills and drops can cause damage to the keyboard, making it unusable. Proper care and maintenance, such as regularly cleaning the keyboard and avoiding spills, can help extend its lifespan.
Many gaming keyboards are designed with durability in mind, with materials that can withstand heavy use and even some minor accidents. It's important to consider the materials and construction of the keyboard before purchasing, as well as any warranty or repair options that may be available.
HyperX gaming keyboards to consider
HyperX offers a variety of high-quality gaming keyboards that cater to different types of gamers. Their keyboards are known for their excellent build quality and durability, which means they can withstand heavy usage over time.
Plus, HyperX keyboards are built to work seamlessly with most major gaming platforms. They also come with specialized software that allows users to customize their experience.
HyperX Alloy Core RGB
The HyperX Alloy Core RGB gaming keyboard is a budget-friendly keyboard that doesn't skimp on performance or style. It features a radiant light bar and dynamic RGB lighting with six different presets, and the five-zone multi-color customization option allows you to personalize the keyboard to your liking.
The keys are responsive and quiet, and the keyboard includes anti-ghosting and key rollover functionality. The reinforced plastic frame provides stability and durability, and the keyboard is spill-resistant, tested to withstand up to 120 ml of water. Plus, the keyboard lock mode allows you to lock the keyboard without putting your entire PC on standby. With dedicated media controls and quick access buttons, this keyboard is a great all-around multimedia keyboard for gamers.
HyperX Allow MKW100
The HyperX Alloy MKW100 gaming keyboard is an impressive and reliable full-sized mechanical keyboard that delivers precision, durability, and affordability, all in one package. Its dynamic, per-key RGB lighting and effects allow you to personalize your keyboard and add a touch of flair to your gaming setup.
The keyboard is durable thanks to its brushed aluminum frame, and includes a detachable wrist rest that helps reduce fatigue during extended gaming or work sessions. Its responsive and reliable dust-proof mechanical switches have a lifespan of up to 50 million key presses, ensuring you get long-lasting performance.
HyperX 60 Alloy Origins AOU
The HyperX Alloy Origins 60 gaming keyboard is a compact 60% form factor keyboard that offers more desk space without the expense of comfort and performance. It features a durable aluminum body, customizable RGB lighting with exposed LED design, and reliable mechanical switches, rated for 80 million presses.
The stock keycaps have secondary functions printed on the sides for quick recognition, and additional customization is available through the HyperX NGENUITY software. The keyboard also offers three adjustable angles and a detachable USB-C cable for extra portability. It comes with a keycap puller, additional keycaps, and an alternate spacebar for maximum personalization.
HyperX Alloy Origins HX Red (Naruto)
The HyperX Alloy Origins Naruto Edition gaming keyboard is a compact, durable keyboard with a limited editionNaruto-inspired design. This keyboard features custom-designed HyperX mechanical switches for enhanced performance. The full aluminum body provides stability, while the compact design frees up more space for mouse movements.
The Alloy Origins has three customizable tilt levels, making it versatile and comfortable to use for extended periods. It also has a detachable USB Type-C to USB Type-A cable, making it easy to take on the go. The keyboard's stylish design is perfect for Naruto fans looking to add some flair to their gaming setup.
HyperX Alloy Origins PBT HX Red
The HyperX Alloy Origins PBT HX Red gaming keyboard is a high-performance keyboard designed for gamers who want the best blend of style, performance, and reliability. It features custom-designed HyperX mechanical switches that are rated for 80 million keypresses and are responsive, accurate, and reliable.
The keyboard has a full aluminum body for durability and stability, and it comes with pre-installed PBT keycaps with side-printing for improved durability and legibility. The keyboard also features a compact design, which maximizes space on crowded desktop setups, and has adjustable keyboard angles for maximum comfort.
Whether you’re writing or gaming, HyperX keyboards are a great choice for avoiding the most frustrating gaming keyboard problems such as software compatibility, connection issues, backlight problems, ghosting and key rollover, and durability and wear – consider checking one out the next time you’re in the market for a new gaming keyboard.
About the Author
Cameron Cashman is a contributing writer for HP Tech Takes. Cameron is based in New England and has experience writing for a variety of industries, including technology, gaming, finance, HR, and recruiting.
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