Getting a 60% keyboard is quite exciting. Who doesn’t want a compact and efficient layout that saves a ton of desk space?
Today we are looking at our favorite 60% mechanical keyboard picks for 2020.
We’ve tried and tested each keyboard, so we’ll give you our honest hands-on opinion.
The Best 60% Mechanical Keyboards
|The Award||The Keyboard||Special Features|
|Favorite Pick||Ducky One 2 Mini||Custom keycaps and spacebar|
|Best Budget 60% Keyboard||Royal Kludge RK61||A value-packed keyboard|
|Best 60% Keyboard for Typing||Durgod Venus||Buttery smooth stabilizers|
|Best Hot-Swappable 60% Keyboard||Kemove Shadow/Snowfox||Easy to try new switches|
Let’s look at each keyboard individually and compare them based on price, features, and how fun they are to use.
Each keyboard on the list brings its own unique feel and experience, so make sure to check them all out.
Let’s get started.
1. Ducky One 2 Mini: The Best All-Around Keyboard
The Ducky One 2 Mini is a fan favorite that has been around the block for a while now.
This keyboard is an excellent companion for whatever purpose you plan on using your keyboard for, whether that be work, gaming, typing, or programming.
The Ducky One 2 Mini does everything very well.
The keyboard comes in a variety of great switch options including Cherry MX and Kailh options.
Cherry MX switches are a great option because they are incredibly well-produced and have a lifespan of 100 million keystrokes.
Not to mention, you have the option between the entire lineup, including the specialty switches.
Kailh switches are also a good option if you’re into clicky switches.
Kailh clicky switches come in a click bar design which means they make a clicking noise in both the up and down direction for the ultimate auditory feedback.
Here are all of the switches available:
- Cherry MX Black, Red, Blue, Brown
- Cherry MX Speed Silver
- Cherry MX Silent Black, Silent Red
- Kailh Box White, Speed Copper, Speed Pro Burgandy
The case design of the Ducky One 2 mini is all plastic, which feels well-assembled and adds a nice bounce when typing.
At the price point, I would’ve liked to see an aluminum frame, but if you have the extra dough you can opt for the Ducky One 2 Mecha Mini instead.
One of the coolest aspects of the Ducky One 2 Mini is that it comes with additional keycaps in a random color, which allow you to customize the aesthetic.
The stylized Zodiac spacebar is also thrown in which adds a nice touch to the design.
Overall, you can’t deny that the Ducky One 2 Mini is an awesome keyboard that does not dissapoint, you can find it on mechanicalkeyboards.com for a good price.
2. Royal Kludge RK61: Best Budget 60% Mechanical Keyboard
The RK61 is one of the most budget-friendly mechanical keyboards you can find, coming in at a low price.
We included the keyboard at number two because for the price it’s one of the best keyboards on the list.
TheRK61 comes with Outemu switches, while not being the best, are an excellent option if you’re looking for a cheaper keyboard. The switches have a lifespan of 50 million keystrokes.
The keyboard has some interesting features such as Bluetooth wireless connection. If you like to take your keyboard on the go or enjoy having a portable set-up, this RK61 can be a great choice.
That being said, we don’t recommend gaming with a wireless connection as it results in extra input delay. Not the best for super competitive gaming.
In addition, the RK61 comes with easy to access lower layers printed onto the front side of the keycaps in a really easy to read way. The keycaps overall are high-contrast and satisfying to use.
The only downside is the keycaps are made from ABS plastic which tends to wear down more quickly than PBT, but they don’t get the usual greasy shine found on ABS.
For a keyboard in this price range, you can’t complain about the keycap material.
The RK61 also has a center-mounted detachable USB-C charging cable which makes it easy to charge and unplug. Plus with USB-C you don’t need to worry about plugging the keyboard in upside-down. It’s reversible.
A downside to the RK61 is the backlight only comes in a blue color which makes it look quite professional, but if you enjoy a multitude of colors a 60% option with RGB could be better.
Overall, we were impressed by the quality of the RK61 considering the price, but if you have a little extra to spend there are better options on the list.
3. Durgod Venus: Best 60% Keyboard for Typing
I’m not going to lie, I was blown away by the Durgod Venus.
This keyboard has the best typing experience of all the 60% keyboards on the list.
The Durgod Venus has buttery smooth stabilizers that make typing feel like a dream. The keyboard makes the perfect *thocc* sound we all want to acquire. The stabilizers are pre-lubed and have absolutely zero rattle.
The keycaps are also a point of interest for me.
The keycaps are made from PBT plastic which is much more durable than the standard ABS, in addition, they come in the Cherry profile.
It’s very uncommon to find a stock keyboard come with keycaps in the Cherry profile, usually it is OEM.
Cherry profile is different because it has a slightly lower profile and a more aggressive incline on the keycaps which make it more comfortable for gaming and typing.
I stand firmly by my belief that Cherry profile is the best and usually you have to buy the keycaps separately and replace them. Not with the Durgod Venus.
The case construction is quite impressive as well. The keyboard comes in a full aluminum case which makes everything feel really sturdy. There is no flex.
The RGB also really pops on this keyboard due to the white color. The RGB has a nice fuzzy glow to that really pops on your desk.
There were a few small nitpicks about this keyboard that I didn’t like.
The case design has a small forehead which takes up precious desk space, in addition the power cable is recessed which makes it difficult to use a custom USB cable.
You can find the Durgod Venus on Amazon, we highly recommend that you check this one out.
4. Kemove Snowfox/Shadow: Best Hot-Swappable 60% Keyboard
The Kemove Snowfox was a keyboard that I really enjoyed using for a period of time.
The keyboard comes in a plastic case with an aluminum top plate. The overall case design is pretty good, but nothing special.
The PBT keycaps are high-quality. You know they won’t wear down slowly over time and develop a greasy shine to them. Plus, the rough texture feels nice.
The arrow keys are located on a lower layer but are really easy to access. This keyboard puts them all on the right side of your keyboard so you can use them without needing your left hand.
The only downside to the Kemove Snowfox/Shadow is the strange case design. It has this weird inner-layer that looks kind of strange.
Not to mention, it’s really easy to scratch the backplate when adding and removing the switches.
If you’re looking to get a keyboard that you can easily mod, this keyboard is an excellent option.
You can do a bunch of mods without needing to solder or desolder anything.
You can check out the Kemove Shadow/Snowfox on Amazon.
5. Razer Huntsman Mini: Best 60% For Gaming
The Razer Huntsman Mini is a 60% keyboard that made some waves on its release.
The Huntsman Mini is the first 60% keyboard from one of the major keyboard producers. Not to mention, it comes out-fitted with optical switches.
The optical switches are screaming fast and the perfect fit if you’re a hardcore gamer.
The response time on them is much faster than mechanical.
The only problem with the Huntsman Mini is it’s not the best for anything other than gaming.
The stabilizers and switches are quite uncomfortable to use and type on. If you need to write essays for school or send out emails, we do not recommend this board.
The stabilizers are super rattly and the switches don’t feel the best.
The overall case design is very light and flimsy, which makes it light to carry around in a backpack, but also feel kind of cheap.
This keyboard is perfect if you want a specialized keyboard just for gaming, but we can’t really recommend it for any other purpose.
An upside to the keyboard is the PBT keycaps which have a very clean font on them. The material is satisfying to touch as well.
You also have RGB lighting which makes the keyboard light up your desk and illuminate the legends on the keycaps for easy typing/gaming in the dark.
You can find the Razer Huntsman Mini on Amazon. If you’re a hardcore gamer, you can’t pass up on this one.
6. Anne Pro 2: An Excellent Wireless Option
The Anne Pro 2 is one of the more popular mechanical keyboards on this list.
The keyboard was made to be a direct competitor to the Ducky One 2 Mini and it follows a lot of the same design choices.
Coming with replaceable colored keycaps, you are able to customize the look of the keyboard and go for a multi-color design that is sure to impress.
The keyboard comes with Bluetooth which is perfect for those who want to use their keyboard on the couch and don’t want to be stuck using a desk. The Bluetooth was a little difficult to setup, but easy to use afterwards.
The Anne Pro 2 comes with your choice between Cherry MX, Gateron, or Kailh switches. We went with the Gateron switches because they are more budget-friendly and tend to feel the best.
While not being the most durable, Gateron switches tend to feel the smoothest (especially if you lubricate them).
In addition, the keyboard has an easily accessible lower layer which makes it convenient to use the less common keys.
The battery life is a little short, with a size of 1900 mAh.
The battery will usually last around 8 hours which is enough to get you through a work day, but you’ll need to charge often.
Overall, the Anne Pro 2 makes for a decent option if you’re looking for a keyboard that’s similar to the Ducky One 2 Mini but for a slightly cheaper price.
7. Redragon Draconic K530: Surprisingly Fun to Use
The Redragon Draconic K530 actually surprised us.
In the past, we’ve only used the budget keyboards from Redragon, such as the K552, K551, and K582. To our surprise, the K530 was quite impressive.
The keyboard comes with a wireless Bluetooth connection, perfect for taking your keyboard on the go. Also nice if you don’t want to have to deal with pesky cable management.
The keyboard has a very sturdy build which makes it rigid and fun to use. I’m always a sucker for a keyboard with a nice build.
The PBT keycaps are also super interesting.
Instead of the typical PBT keycap design, these come with glossy sides that are smooth while the tops are a rough texture. Feeling texture differences is quite satisfying.
If you’re interesting in taking your keyboard to the next level, we have a ton of guides on how to mod your keyboard.
The switches in the keyboard are Redragon branded, but they are basically Outemu switches.
You can only use Outemu switch types on the keyboard, so unfortunately Cherry MX or Gateron does not work with the hot-swappable sockets.
Overall, the Redragon K530 was a great keyboard. We highly recommend it if you’re looking for your next 60%.
8. HK Gaming GK61: A Budget Optical Hot-Swappable Keyboard
If you’re looking for a budget 60% hot-swappable keyboard with optical switches, look no further (that was a mouthful).
The GK61 comes with all sorts of cool features, and for a super budget price you can’t complain.
The switches are optical and easily removable with the hot-swappable PCB. Perfect if you want to test out a multitude of switches.
It’s worth noting this keyboard is only compatible with other optical switches, not mechanical.
The optical switches are a bit faster than mechanical which make them a great option for gaming.
For that reason, this keyboard is quite popular for those that play Fortnite as the optical switches are great for building walls quickly in-game.
The arrow keys are also very easy to access. Having them all located on the bottom-right side of your keyboard makes it easy to use them on the lower layer.
The keyboard is also water-proof.
If you tend to spill water or soda on your keyboard when gaming, this can be a great option if you don’t want to break your keyboard.
The only downside to the GK61 is the optical switches feel strange almost fake. Mechanical is definitely preferred if you’re looking at how they feel.
The keycaps are also made from ABS which wear down easily and can look greasy/shiny after touching them.
The GK61 is an excellent budget gaming option if you can’t afford a keyboard such as the Razer Huntsman Mini.
9. Blitzwolf BW-KB1: 60% Keyboard with Dedicated Arrow Keys
In a sea of 60% keyboards that all have the same layout, the Blitzwolf BW-KB1 separates itself from the pack.
The keyboard makes a bold move and goes with dedicated arrow keys instead of placing them on a lower layer. This puts the keyboard technically somewhere in-between a 60% and 65%.
I’m a big fan of dedicated arrow keys because it makes it easy to navigate a page without using the mouse, so this keyboard definitely peaked my interest.
The only downside to the different layout is it places the question mark further away and the right shift is tiny.
If you are not willing to put in the time to learn a slightly different layout, this keyboard may not be for you.
An awesome feature is the Bluetooth wireless connection. I’ve never used a keyboard before that allowed you to connect up to five devices. Usually you can only set three devices.
It’s perfect if you constantly need to connect your keyboard to different devices and want to swap between them seamlessly.
The stabilizers are also nice to use which make the keyboard very enjoyable for typing once you can get used to the layout differences.
10. Epomaker SK64: An Interesting Layout
If you’re looking for another optical option, the Epomaker SK64 could be a great pick.
The upside to this keyboard is the fact that it has dedicated arrow keys and a delete key. Both of which are not usually found on a compact 60% keyboard.
The SK64 also has hot-swappable optical switches which makes it super easy to remove and replace them with another optical switch variant.
You can easily mod the stabilizers or add foam inside the case if you’re looking to improve the keyboard with no desoldering required.
The keycaps also come in a unique 3-color design which really spices things up a bit. Instead of the typical ABS black keycaps, the SK64 opts for PBT.
The shape of the keycaps is also slightly different. Instead of the sculpted profile, they come in a uniform shape.
Usually keycaps have a slight angle to them to make them easier to type on, but on the SK64 they are all the same shape and height.
This makes it a little strange to get used to typing on and I found it to be uncomfortable.
The keyboard also produces a hollow sound when typing, so it could really benefit from a desk mat or from stuffing foam inside of the case.
Overall, the keyboard is still a good option, especially if you like uniform keycaps and want dedicated arrow keys with optical switches.
11. Epomaker SK61: Cool Keycaps with Optical Switches
Similar to the SK64, the Epomaker SK61 is basically exact replica except the layout is different.
Instead of the dedicated arrow keys, the SK61 opts for the standard 60% layout. This makes the design slightly less unique in my opinion.
The keycaps come in a similar 3-color uniform profile design. This means all of the keycaps are the same height.
The keyboard is also Mac compatible and comes with additional keycaps so you can swap between Windows and Mac without needing to reprogram the software.
The switches are also optical and hot-swappable so you can change them out easily. Just beware the optical switches feel different than mechanical are have a hollow sound to them.
The keycaps also don’t have any sub-legends to them so you can’t see exactly what letters are on the lower layers. This makes it difficult to use keys that don’t have a dedicated button.
Overall, the keyboard is still a good option, but it’s hard to recommend it when you have the SK64 out there.
You can find the SK61 on Amazon for a good price.
Instead of 60%… Check Out 65%!
60% keyboards are a great option if you’re looking for a compact keyboard, but I have found 65% do a better job.
While being ever-so-slightly larger, 65% keyboards come with dedicated arrow keys which make them much more comfortable and user-friendly.
There are a ton of 65% keyboard options out there too, we have a whole list of our favorites.
As a big fan of 65% keyboard, I can’t rave about them enough, so make sure you at least explore them as an option!
They are much more user-friendly and easier to start using as the arrow keys can be crucial for using a computer effectively.
One of our favorite 65% keyboards is the Keychron K6, available on Amazon.
Custom 60% Keyboards
If you’re looking to build a custom mechanical keyboard, there are a ton of different options out there. We recently built the DZ61 from the Kebo Store and really enjoy it (actually typing this article on this keyboard).
The only major downside to the DZ61 is the micro-USB port, USB-C is better any day of the week.
But for a custom keyboard build under $200, you can’t complain too much.
60% keyboards are the most accessible layout and the easiest to build as there are a ton of different PCBs and build options.
We highly recommend you explore custom keyboards as an option as they are a ton of fun to build.
What is a 60% Keyboard?
A 60% keyboard is a compact layout that does not come with the standard number of keys.
On a 60% keyboard there is no number pad, arrow keys, function row, or navigation cluster. This makes the keyboard size super efficient, lean, and will save you a ton of space on your desk.
A 60% keyboard is typically outfitted with the following parts:
- Number of keys: 61
- Stabilizers: 2u x 4, 6.25u x 1
- Switches: 61
If you need a compact keyboard that you can use for working in a tight space or something that is super portable a 60% keyboard is an excellent option for you.
Just keep in mind, 60% can be quite uncomfortable to those who are not familiar with the layout. Not having access to so many normal keys can make it difficult to use at first.
After some usage, the layout size should get more comfortable.
Why Get a 60% Keyboard?
60% keyboards have been popularized recently, especially by gamers.
Many people like to game with their keyboards tilted which makes it difficult to use a large keyboard such a full-sized, because the number pad will hang off the desk.
Instead, gamers have opted for a smaller layout where they can tilt their keyboards and still have it rest fully on their desk.
Due to the rise in popularity of the keyboard size, it has become more accepted for every day usage as well.
Many enjoy the extra desk space and portability that comes along with a smaller keyboard. If you need to take your keyboard with you to a coffee shop or want to work in a small home office, a 60% keyboard will fit nicely in a small space.
60% keyboards are also much easier to build.
Instead of having to order all of the switches and parts for a massive full-sized keyboard, instead you can just get the parts for the smaller size. This makes it cheaper to build and saves time on the building process.
Which is a win-win.
There are a ton of benefits to 60% keyboards, it all depends on what you’re looking for in your keyboard.
We looked at a ton of 60% mechanical keyboards and picked out our top three. We have spent the last few weeks testing out all of these keyboards so we could put this list together for you.
Our favorite keyboards include the Ducky One 2 Mini, Royal Kludge RK61, and the Durgod HK Venus.
I believe that every keyboard on this list fills its own niche depending on what you might be looking for, but you really can’t go wrong with any of the top 3.
If you need to save some money, the RK61 is an excellent budget option, while the Durgod HK Venus is perfect for those who type a lot.
The Ducky One 2 Mini is the all-around winner.