Are you an aspiring writer? Or stuck at the office coding all week? Your wrists might thank you for switching to an ergonomic keyboard. Designed to reduce strain, these keyboards have unorthodox layouts but can be immensely comfortable once you get used to them. We have compiled a list of the best ergonomic keyboards you need to check out!
Should you buy an ergonomic keyboard?
Anyone with a job that requires a lot of typing can attest that long sessions can result in wrist pain. How can an ergonomic keyboard help with that? Some studies suggest that they promote neutral wrist posture, which reduces the risk of developing musculoskeletal problems. Ergonomic keyboards are designed to reduce strain — the keys are usually positioned so that typing requires minimal movement. This is why the two most common designs you will see are split keyboards or keyboards with curved key layouts. Cushioned pads are also a common addition.
Studies suggest that ergonomic keyboards promote neutral wrist posture.
The jury is still out on how beneficial ergonomic keyboards truly are, but even if they just feel better for you, they are worth investing in. A comfortable work environment always boosts productivity. So, without further ado here are the best ergonomic keyboards we have found.
Best ergonomic keyboards:
Editor’s note: We will update this list regularly as new and exciting ergonomic keyboards hit the market.
1. Microsoft Surface Ergonomic
- Price: $109.99
- Pros: wireless, slim, number pad, quiet
- Cons: pricey, only compatible with Windows 10 devices
If you are used to chiclet keyboards with flat keys but want to make the jump to ergonomic, this is one of the best choices on the market. Slim and expertly crafted, the Microsoft Surface ergonomic keyboard offers comfort in style.
It sports an arched shape designed to help your hands sit naturally when typing, with the added comfort of a double-cushioned palm rest and a split space bar. It doesn’t skip out on functionality either – there is a full number pad, as well as multiple media keys. The keys themselves are not only quiet but durable, with key life of up to 10 million actuations.
One thing that can be an upside or a downside depending on your preferences, is that the Microsoft Surface ergonomic keyboard is wireless. It comes with two preinstalled AAA batteries with a life of up to 12 months and it is Bluetooth Low Energy compatible 4.0/4.1. However, it has a major downside in its OS requirements – the Surface Keyboard is designed for and only compatible with Windows 10 devices. Sorry, Mac fans! If you want a similar experience although with a design that’s less premium, you should check out the Microsoft Sculpt ergonomic keyboard, which is compatible with more operating systems.
2. Logitech K350 Wireless Keyboard
- Price: $36.99
- Pros: cheap, number pad, wireless
- Cons: dated design, awkward media key placement
If you don’t need a portable ergonomic keyboard, but still want an affordable and wireless one, the Logitech K350 is your best choice. Its wave-style keyboard and wide palm rest make it comfortable and easy to use.
Unlike other ergonomic keyboards, it’s also suitable for experienced typists that don’t want to adapt to a radically different typing style. Functionality hasn’t been sacrificed either. The Logitech K350 has a number pad and a variety of media and customizable shortcut buttons. However, they might not be to everyone’s liking thanks to awkward placement that leaves a lot to be desired.
Nevertheless, this ergonomic keyboard is durable and reliable. It uses a 2.4 GHz wireless connection via a Logitech Unifying receiver and promises a battery life of up to three years. If you don’t mind the slightly dated look and if you’d sacrifice style for comfort, it’s the best cheap ergonomic on the market.
3. Mistel Barocco RGB
- Price: $164.99
- Pros: mechanical, portable, unique design, RGB
- Cons: no wrist rest, no number pad
If Cherry MX switches are your personal favorite, the Mistel Barocco RGB ergonomic keyboard should be one of your top picks. It offers a split design as well as a variety of features.
The Mistel Barocco RGB keyboard has a unique and eye-catching look. It resembles two separated puzzle pieces, but it’s nevertheless ergonomic and comfortable. As its name suggests, this keyboard sports RGB backlighting in all colors of the rainbow. You can set it to one unblinking color or choose from 9 colorful other modes, including ripple and breathing. But despite its appearance, this Mistel Barocco keyboard is not necessarily ideal for gaming. It does not feature a number pad or many extra buttons.
The Mistel Barocco RGB is the most durable keyboard on our list.
However, you can assign macros to any key and take the Mistel Barocco RGB on the go, thanks to its onboard memory. You can even use only the left piece of the keyboard if you set it up via the macro layer editing function. The best part, however, is that the Mistel Barocco can take quite the beating. It is temperature and friction resistant, making it one of the most durable and one of the best ergonomic keyboards on our list.
4. ErgoDox EZ
- Price: $270 standalone, $325 with extras
- Pros: extremely customizable, mechanical
- Cons: expensive, wrist rest and tilt kit sold separately
Dubbed “a keyboard for the pros”, the ErgoDox EZ is the most customizable ergonomic keyboard on our list and probably on the market. Just like the Kinesis Freestyle Edge, it is a mechanical split design keyboard. What makes it different is its unorthodox key layout – its linear key columns are designed to reduce finger fatigue and travel.
But it’s selling point is undeniably choice. You can choose between 12 different switches – quiet or clicky, soft or firm. You can even change them yourself without voiding the warranty. The extra tilt/tent kit also allows you to control the angle of your keyboard and position it in the most optimal way for comfortable typing.
The ErgoDox EZ is amazing but not suited for beginners.
The open source software, on the other hand, gives you the opportunity to remap the keys in any way you see fit. You can even tinker with the backlight. It truly is a keyboard enthusiast’s dream. However, the ErgoDox EZ is by no means cheap with a price tag of $270 for the standalone keyboard and $325 with the Tilt/Tent Kit and Wrist Rest included. You also shouldn’t underestimate the steep learning curve of using this key layout, if all you’ve used so far are standard keyboards. The ErgoDox EZ is amazing, but we don’t recommend it for ergonomic keyboard first timers.
5. Perixx Periboard-512 Classic
- Price: $34.99
- Pros: number pad, multimedia buttons, affordable
- Cons: Windows only, no programmable keys
If you are looking for a wired ergonomic keyboard that’s not split in two separate parts, the Perixx Periboard-512 Classic is one of your best choices.
This affordable keyboard has a contoured 3D build, as well as a split space bar. It is designed to conform to natural hand positions and reduce strain. The Periboard-512 Classic also features tactile keystrokes for maximum comfort. However, the palm rest is not cushioned, which might be a downside for some users. On the bright side, nothing is missing key wise — there is a full number pad, as well as seven multimedia hotkeys, which allow you to control the volume, put your PC to sleep and more. The keys are not programmable, but considering the Periboard-512 Classic’s price, it’s an easy thing to overlook.
The Periboard is an affordable and functional choice.
However, if you are a Mac user, you’ll want to skip the Periboard keyboard. It is only compatible with Windows (7/8/10). Yet, it is a Perixx best seller for a reason. It’s cheap and comfortable and if you are using a Windows PC, it is one of the best wired ergonomic keyboards you can currently buy.
6. MoKo Universal Foldable Keyboard
- Price: $26.99
- Pros: affordable, portable, thin
- Cons: not very sturdy, no number pad
Want an ergonomic keyboard you can easily bring with you to the office every day? Then the MoKo Universal Foldable Keyboard is the right choice for you.
Weighing in at only 6.2 ounces and just half an inch thick, this ergonomic keyboard is the most portable on this list. It can fit even into the smallest handbags! Just like the Surface, it’s a wireless keyboard. However, it’s not only much cheaper, but compatible with more operating systems – Windows, iOS and Android, to be exact.
The MoKo Universal Foldable Keyboard connects via Bluetooth and has a 110mAh rechargeable battery, which will see you through more than a day (40 hours) of intense typing. Charging it back to full, on the other hand, only takes two hours. Turning it on and off is also quite intuitive – all you need to do is open and close the keyboard. The only considerable downside of the MoKo Universal Foldable Keyboard is that it’s not very sturdy. However, when factoring in its price, it’s still an excellent ergonomic keyboard.
Not sure if any of the keyboards on our list fit your needs? If you don’t mind splurging and weird designs, check out the Kinesis Advantage2. The Microsoft Wireless Comfort is another great and affordable ergonomic keyboard you can add to your list. Finally, if you are a gamer that spends hours playing and clacking away at your keyboard, we recommend you check out the recently announced Dygma Raise ergonomic keyboard.
This is our list of the best ergonomic keyboards. We’ll update this post with new models once they are released.
Read next: The best ergonomic wireless mouse