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Best 40% Mechanical Keyboards

Nowadays, most small items are becoming more trendy due to its convenience. In fact, one of the things that most people wish to be small in size is a mechanical keyboard and innovators have heard this demand. From full sized mechanical keyboard to a 60% sized option. The good news is, aside from 60% option, you would also be able to find 40% version in the market. However, keep in mind that this version is unique and could be challenging to find and purchase one that would best suit your preference and need. Do not worry as through this article, you would be able to get useful information which you could use as a guide in choosing one that would best suit you.

How Big is a 40% Mechanical Keyboard?

40% mechanical keyboards are very small and tiny. They have space that could only fit over 40 keys and of course, in this case, they are also very light with them weighing only about one pound.

Though 40% mechanical keyboards are small, you would have to keep in mind that it only has the necessary keys that you would need. This means, some of the keys you would have in a full sized mechanical keyboard might not be available in the 40% mechanical keyboard.

Why Would I Want A 40% Mechanical Keyboard?

40% mechanical keyboard is everything a minimalist would dream of. It would help you save space on your desk and would make your desk look pristine, clean and clear. It also provides you more space for other things.

Will a 40% Mechanical Keyboard Function Like My Regular Keyboard?

Main functions that you would need and the necessary keys would be present in a 40% mechanical keyboard. This means that you would be able to use all the primary keys and you would not have to worry about any typing jobs.

Depending on how you use they keys on your keyboard, there are keyboards that allow its users to switch different function keys.

If I am Looking for a Unique Keyboard for My Setup, Is a 40% Mechanical Keyboard a Good Choice?

Yes, a 40% mechanical keyboard is a good option. In fact, we could say that there is always something that would suit your needs and preferences. What is more amazing about 40% mechanical keyboards is that there are customizable options where you could change keycaps, etc.

Best 40% Mechanical Keyboards

Vortex Core Aluminum 40% Dye Sub PBT Mechanical Keyboard

Features

  • 3 programmable layers
  • 48 keys
  • Aluminum frame

The Vortex Core Aluminum is one of the best options for 40% keyboard. It comes with 48 keys which are made of PBT. It has numerous different options and it has a DSA profile. This 40% keyboard, in fact, offers many varieties of switches such as the following:

  • Cherry MX clear
  • Cherry MX black
  • Cherry MX blue
  • Cherry MX brown
  • Cherry MX red
  • Cherry MX silent red
  • Cherry MX silver

The only downside of the Vortex 40% mechanical keyboard is that the board is not hot-swappable. This means, before you order one, you would have to be sure of your key choices. Though this is the case, its looks, we could say is cool with its silver aluminum body and grey and white keycaps. It aesthetically looks retro which means, if you like a keyboard that comes with RGB, you might have to consider another brand and model.

When it comes to its build quality, this keyboard is impressive with its aluminum frame which makes it very durable. Moreover, its PBT keycaps are made of high quality material which makes its lifespan longer compared to other keyboards.

The best and the coolest features that this keyboard have is its programmable extra layers. This means it allows you to have three different layers to customize. Moreover, through its software, you would be able to add different actions through series of function keys.

Pros

  • Aluminum body construction
  • Three programmable function layers
  • Affordable

Cons

  • No hot-swapping
  • Does not have LED backlight

Keychron Q9 40% Aluminum Barebones Keyboard

Features

  • RGB backlighting
  • Barebones body
  • Aluminum body

The Keychron Q9 does not come with keys or keycaps as it is offered in the market as a barebones keyboard. Though this might seem weird and unique, it provides users a great option especially if you want to create your keyboard on your own. With this type of option, you would also be able to customize your key and keycaps. Furthermore, its compatibility is not an issue as you could choose any 3-pin or 5-pin key and it is hot swap as well.

This keyboard comes with all black colored body which would allow you to mix and match with anything on your desk. It is very classy and yet it also comes with RGB LEDs which would allow you to have a cool looking keyboard.

As for this keyboard’s built, the quality is impressive with its all-aluminum body which makes it durable. Furthermore, aside from its high quality materials, this keyboard is programmable. In fact, it is possible for you to use QMK and VIA.

This keyboard is compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux devices.

Pros

  • Programmable knob
  • High quality built
  • RGB backlight

Cons

  • Keys and Keycaps are sold separately

Libra Mini 40% Acrylic Keyboard Kit

Features

  • Ergonomic layout
  • Needs to be assembled
  • Programmable directional joystick

If you are looking for something that looks unique, then, the Libra Mini 40% acrylic keyboard kit is a perfect option for you. It is considered as an ergonomic keyboard with split PCB which contributes to its overall shape and layout.

This keyboard is similar to Keychron Q9 which means, it is barebones type of keyboard. There are no keys or keycaps included when you purchase this keyboard. This allows you to be creative and allows you to use your preferred keycaps.

The body of this keyboard is semi-transparent and acrylic which allows you to see its internal hardware. Though this is the case, keep in mind that this version does not have any backlight. One unique feature of this keyboard is its gaming controller or joystick.

The downside about this keyboard is a bit labor intensive and there are some users which complain about the instructions being too difficult to understand.

Pros

  • Unique design
  • Four layers of programmability
  • Ideal for those that are looking for building their own keyboard

Cons

  • No background light

Kprepublic 43 Keys 40% Custom Mechanical Keyboard

Features

  • Unique looking keycaps
  • RGB backlighting
  • 43 keys

This keyboard has a standard with MX stem switches. It could be hot-swapped and they keycaps are multi-colored plastic. Its letters are large and it looks aesthetically amazing. Its key come in different colors of black, green and purple. Its build is completely made of plastic. Though this is the case, this keyboard is fully programmable and its software is the same as libra mini’s. This means, you have four programmable layers to swap. For you to be able to use this keyboard, you would have to plug it to your computer via USB-C.

Pros

  • RGB underglow
  • Hot-swappable switches
  • Four layers of programmability

Cons

  • Expensive

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