A question that bothers the majority of the gamers and non-gamers is whether they should invest money in purchasing a separate keyboard for regular use, or should they simply use their best gaming keyboard to fulfill the same purpose?
Yes! you can use gaming keyboard as a regular keyboard. In fact, the gaming keyboards have numerous advantages over regular ones. From having faster response time to providing a diverse range varying feedback types to its users – gaming keyboards have got it all covered. It all comes down to whether you have the budget to invest in a gaming keyboard or not, because gaming keyboards are more expensive than standard membrane keyboards, but they are worth it.
Why Use a Gaming Keyboard As a Regular Keyboard?
Gaming keyboards are mostly mechanical keyboards that are manufactured keeping in view the demands of gamers. Therefore, their internal components are designed in such a way that they can tolerate intense use. At times, daily activities such as typing and programming can cause one to use the keyboard intensively as well. So, it can be much more beneficial if the user utilizes a gaming keyboard for everyday tasks.
For starters, the major difference between both keyboards is that gaming keyboards have extra features that are mostly absent from their regular counterparts. An example of this can be that you will barely ever find RGB backlighting on a regular keyboard. Furthermore, gaming keyboards lay heavy emphasis on programmable keys and media keyboards.
Other important differences between mechanical switches in gaming keyboards and membrane switches in regular keyboards include durability and responsiveness. Another important aspect to be considered is the type of tasks a person performs daily. This determines whether investing in a gaming keyboard is feasible or would go to waste.
10 Reasons to Use A Gaming Keyboard as A Regular Keyboard
Generally, you can use gaming keyboards in place of regular ones. However, to be more careful, you need to be aware of the advantages of using a gaming keyboard as a regular keyboard and the potential disadvantages of it. Below, we will be digging deeper into the reasons why it can be more helpful for you to use mechanical keyboards for gaming as well as regular use. Here are the 10 reasons you can you a gaming keyboard as a regular keyboard.
- Gaming Keyboards have a relatively long lifespan
- Gaming Keyboards offer superior design
- Gaming Keyboards respond quicker than Regular ones
- You get greater tactility with gaming keyboards
- Gaming keyboards are ergonomically designed
- Greater consistency comes with mechanical gaming keyboards
- Mechanical gaming keyboards are comparatively more versatile than regular keyboards
- Bonus Backlighting in Gaming Keyboards
- N-Key Rollover in gaming keyboards increases typing speed
- Mechanical Gaming Keyboards have greater stability
1. Gaming Keyboards have a relatively long lifespan
Repetitive actions involved in typing and programming can cause some of the keyboard key switches to wear out quickly. Gamers, especially, tend to press some keys more forcefully than the others. For instance, keys like W, A, S, and D are used frequently and therefore are more prone to wear and tear. Therefore, it is evident that both regular use and gaming require keyboards that have a longer lifespan.
Based on facts, mechanical gaming keyboards far outweigh membrane regular keyboards as far as durability is concerned. An average membrane key switch has a lifespan of 5 million key presses which means that your regular keyboard will last up to a year.
On the contrary, an average mechanical gaming key switch such as Cherry MX switches has a lifespan of approximately 100 million key presses which is approx more than 100 years life of the best gaming keyboard. This means that if you were to buy a gaming keyboard and use it for gaming as well as regular purpose then you can use it for most of your life without feeling the need to replace it.
Top-tier gaming keyboard switches even have a lifespan of up to 150 million key presses. Therefore, concerning durability, gaming keyboards are a much better option.
Decided to have a gaming keyboard? here are our top picks you can go with:
2. Gaming Keyboards offer superior design
Whether someone is planning to buy a keyboard for regular use or gaming, aesthetics play a defining role. You will normally only find regular membrane keyboards in a handful of colors with no variety whatsoever. They are either available in black or white. With gaming keyboards, on the other hand, you have the option to choose from a range of colors.
Furthermore, to attract gamers, these keyboards also include RGB effects and decorative patterns. Not only that but the shapes of the gaming keyboards vary as well directly affecting the ergonomics, we will add more on that later. In short, if you are interested in the style and design of your PC components then we recommend buying gaming keyboards like Razer Huntsman or Logitech G915.
3. Gaming Keyboards respond much quicker than Regular ones
The response time of a key switch is equally as important for typists as it is for gamers. Input lag or delay in the registration of a keypress can be irritating if you are trying to finish your work as soon as possible. In this regard, mechanical gaming keyboards have an average response time of 15 milliseconds compared to that of 30 milliseconds for regular membrane keyboards. With a faster response time, you can type faster which is more convenient for writers.
4. You get greater tactility with gaming keyboards
Mechanical keyboards are known to provide tactile feedback which is considered ‘satisfying’ by typists. There are a couple of reasons why this is an advantage. First of all, tactility allows the users to distinguish the amount of force that is required to register the actuation of a key switch. This results in fewer typing errors and improved accuracy.
Membrane keyboards, on the other hand, lack this factor because which you are never sure how much actuation force will be needed. Secondly, the audio feedback produced by the best tactile mechanical switches like Glorious Panda and DUROCK T1 switches adds to the enhanced experience of the user.
5. Gaming keyboards are ergonomically designed
One of the most well-known issues with membrane keyboards is the uncomfortable typing experience. Similar to how gamers demand keyboards that are easy to use, typists and programmers, need keyboards that have strong ergonomics. Gaming keyboards handle this aspect perfectly by providing removable wrists, wrests, paddings, and adjustable angle of elevation so that your hands become less fatigued.
This is a major selling point for typists as they have to type for hours on end. Furthermore, the keys are spaced at an appropriate distance in mechanical gaming keyboards so that people with different hand sizes can use them and the chances of mistyping are reduced.
6. Greater consistency comes with mechanical gaming keyboards.
Users admire the spontaneous feedback that comes with mechanical keyboards. This is because you do not have to press down until it bottoms out. Not only does this help in building the muscle memory of the user but it further ensures accuracy.
Consistency increases because with instant feedback it is easier to predict how far you have to press. You know when a keystroke has been successfully registered which prevents you from mistyping.
On the contrary, the actuation force of standard membrane keys varies from switch to switch. Consequently, you are unable to predict how far the key needs to be pressed resulting in frequent typing errors.
7. Mechanical gaming keyboards have more versatility.
Modularity is an important aspect of keyboards. The modular nature of mechanical keyboards makes the key switches swappable. Let’s say you accidentally break one of the keys. If you are using a mechanical keyboard, you can easily find a replacement for the damaged key. However, this flexibility is limited in standard membrane keyboards as you will have to replace the entire keyboard due to one dysfunctional key. Moreover, with mechanical keyboards you can remove the keycaps, clean the dust and replace them without facing any inconvenience.
Furthermore, the range of mechanical key switches available is highly versatile. You get to choose from different switch categories including the clicky switches, tactile and linear switches that offer distinct feedback. Not only can that but the mechanical switch types also have different variants with varying travel distance and actuation force.
If you choose to purchase a mechanical gaming keyboard instead of a standard membrane one, you can come across a type that specifically suits all of your needs. For instance, typists that prefer switches that have a smaller travel distance so that their fingers would not tire out after working for long sessions can purchase Cherry MX Red Switches as their actuation force is only 45 grams.
With mechanical gaming key-switch types, you get an array of preferable audio feedback to choose from. For example, users who prefer clicky feedback can purchase Cherry MX Blue Switches, and those who prefer tactility can opt for Cherry MX Clear, whereas KAILH switches are known for their linear feedback. To find out more about which linear switches to buy, read our article on best linear switches.
8. Bonus Backlighting in Gaming Keyboards
Whether it is single-colored or RGB multi-colored, backlighting adds to the improved experience of the users. Not only is the look of backlighting appealing, but it also offers users a diverse environment to work in. Perhaps, you like working in a low-lit environment where your standard membrane keyboard is of no use. With RGB backlighting, your typing experience can become more immersive.
Furthermore, by assigning different colors to specific keys, you can easily type even with your eyesight fixed to the screen. With mechanical gaming keyboards, especially from brands such as Razer and Logitech, you can synchronize your RGB settings with your other PC components. Read more on Best RGB gaming keyboards.
9. N-Key Rollover in gaming keyboards increases typing speed.
N-Key Rollover is another defining feature that gives superiority to mechanical gaming keyboards over regular membrane ones. It refers to the potential of the keyboard to accurately register multiple keys spontaneously.
Since in mechanical keyboards each keystroke is scanned separately, you can press any number of keys at the same time and still obtain accurate results. This feature plays a crucial role when you have to get a task done in a limited amount of time or games when you need to utilize combo attacks. Conversely, the N-Key Rollover of standard membrane keyboards is limited to only 6 keys.
10. Mechanical Gaming Keyboards have greater stability
Standard membrane keyboards are extremely lightweight which causes them to slide around easily with the application of little force. It is more convenient to use mechanical gaming keyboards because they are a lot heavier. Owing to the robust nature of the components of mechanical keyboards, they remain stable at their place however aggressively you may type.
Other Important features:
There are numerous aspects in which mechanical gaming keyboards have an upper hand over standard membrane ones that people utilize for regular use. Other than the reasons mentioned above, mechanical gaming keyboards also support programmable keys which saves time by introducing shortcuts for everyday activities such as copying/pasting and opening/closing windows.
You can also enjoy the customizability and optimization that comes with software included in branded mechanical gaming keyboards such as Razer Synapse or CORSAIR’s iCUE. There are countless other features included in mechanical gaming keyboards that add to the convenience of users such as USB ports, media controls, and headphone jacks.
While it is important to know the advantages of using a gaming keyboard as a regular, you should also keep in mind the drawbacks of purchasing mechanical gaming keyboards instead of regular ones. First off, they are considerably more costly than standard keyboards. Some even cost more than $150.
However, the longer lifespan and increased durability of gaming keyboards make them worth buying however expensive they might be. Another downside of using a mechanical gaming keyboard would be that they are relatively noisier. This can pose a potential issue if you use these keyboards in an office setting.
Nevertheless, this issue can be resolved as well. Many mechanical keyboards are recognized as the best quiet keyboards, for instance, Razer’s BlackWidow Elite or Cherry MX Red/Brown Switches. If you still feel that your gaming key switches are loud, you can place O-rings under the switches to further reduce noise levels.
Perhaps the best part of buying mechanical key switches is that you can use a switch tester to fully satisfy yourself before even making a purchase!