Best split mechanical keyboards

A split keyboard is two halves with buttons connected by a wire. It allows you to straighten your hands, remove strain from your wrists and work more productively. With a split keyboard, you can forget about tunnel syndrome, arm pronation and elbow deviation – common problems among office workers.

In addition, ergonomic keyboards allow you to better organize your workspace. In the space between the two halves you can put your phone, put a mug or use it for a mouse. Divided models are good for programmers and copywriters. Gamers are better to buy a one-piece keyboard.

Important: in order to use split model normally, you should have a proper blind typing, otherwise you will have to get used to the new button layout for a long time.

The best split keyboards

Main Features

Model Switch Backlight Size Weight, kg Connectivity
Mistel Keyboards BAROCCO MD770 (RGB(BT)) Cherry MX RGB 75% 0.81 USB Type-C, Bluetooth
Matias FK403 Matias Quiet Click Нет 60% 1.58 USB Type-C
Royal Kludge RK829 Kailh RGB 110% 2.34 USB Type-C

 

Selection parameters

When selecting models, we relied primarily on user feedback. We also took into account three parameters:

  • The manufacturer of the swipes.
  • The material of the keycaps and manufacturing technology.
  • Price.

What to look for when choosing?

There are fixed split keyboards and adjustable keyboards. The first are parts that are rigidly connected to each other, the second are connected only by a small wire. Adjustable models are useful for people with a wide shoulder girdle. You can adjust the position of the keyboard parts under you so that elbow deviation does not occur.

You can also find Clockenburg keyboards. These are models that have the central part slightly elevated. Because of this arrangement, the index finger is higher than the little fingers. The design of most devices allows you to change the height of the central part. Some manufacturers go even further and create vertical keyboards.

The best split keyboards: review and recommendations

The best overall: Mistel Keyboards BAROCCO MD770 (RGB(BT))

Features:

  • Size: 75%
  • Weight (kg): 0.81
  • Switches: Cherry MX
  • Backlight: Yes, RGB
  • Connectivity: USB Type-C, Bluetooth

Pretty good 75% keyboard for typing. Also suitable for gaming. Extra keys for Numpad keyboard and navigation unit, puller, extra legs and USB cable.

The case is made of durable PBT plastic, completely covers the switches. The stabilizers are lubricated, so they will last longer. The switches are mechanical Cherry Red. The top of the switches are covered by DoubleShot keycaps. They are 1.49mm thick. The caps are perfectly cast: there are no burrs or chips on their surface.

The most ergonomic: Matias FK403

Features:

  • Size: 60%
  • Weight (kg): 1.58
  • Switches: Matias Quiet Click
  • Backlight: no
  • Connectivity: USB Type-C

This 60% size keyboard is great for programmers and copywriters. Thanks to its ergonomic design, it will significantly reduce the strain on your hands. Each part has a wrist rest. Also on the bottom of the case there are feet that adjust the position of the case.

The switches used here are Matias Quiet Clicks. These are reliable switches that provide good feedback. You can feel the click before you push the button all the way down. In addition, Matias switches are very quiet, which is especially important when working in the office. This is the difference from Cherry MX.

Parts of the keyboard can be connected into one if you want. Between them they are connected by a fairly long USB cable, which is compactly rolled into a special coil. In addition to the standard buttons, the manufacturer has added four additional buttons: copy, paste, cut and cancel. Also here the size of the digital block is significantly reduced.

The only disadvantage is that the keycaps are made of ABS plastic. But, the manufacturer used laser engraving to mark the characters on the buttons. The functionality of the additional block on the left, F1-F12 keys and the space bar can be changed. Key combinations are used to program the keyboard.

Best for gaming: Royal Kludge RK829

Features:

  • Size: 110%.
  • Weight (kg): 2.34
  • Switches: Kailh
  • Backlight: Yes, RGB
  • Connectivity: USB Type-C

RK829 is suitable for gaming and word processing. Due to the separation in two parts, your wrists will not get tired during long games. In addition, there is a hand rest and adjustable feet. RGB backlighting with 18 patterns is supported. The user can also add their own pattern. The brightness and pattern can be changed with a central button. It is also used to change the volume. The manufacturer added an additional block of keys, which is very rare in split models.

However, this device also has disadvantages. Parts of the keyboard are connected too small cable, its length is only 4 cm, although the manufacturer says about 18. As switches are used rather loud Kailh.

Overall, it’s not a bad model for gaming. For typing it will also do, but typing will be uncomfortable because of the Kailh switches.

FAQ

Is a split keyboard better for my wrists?

Numerous reviews say that split keyboards do help reduce hand strain while working. There are also several studies that prove that splitting a device into two parts has a positive effect on the wrists. However, all of them do not take into account many factors like human anatomy. In addition, these studies are sponsored by keyboard manufacturers, which significantly reduces their representativeness.

How long does it take to get used to a split keyboard?

You can find many reviews on the Internet from people who have not learned the split and switched to the regular model. However, there are about as many comments where people describe their positive experience with the split.

The adjustment time is up to you. If you’ve been typing correctly with a 10-finger print, getting used to the new key layout shouldn’t be a problem.

What are layers?

If you want to use a small keyboard like 60% or 75%, you’ll have to master working with layers. Each layer contains different keys. For example, when you are on the first layer, each key will be responsible for a different letter, the second may contain numbers and F11-F12, the third – the navigation box.

Layers help add buttons that are not physically present on the keyboard.

How well are split keyboards suitable for gaming?

Manufacturers of split models don’t make devices specifically designed for gaming. You’ll also never find a split keyboard that uses the latest technology like switches that work with Hall sensors.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t play on such a keyboard. On the contrary, you have the option of connecting only one part. By doing so, you will free up extra space on your desk for your mouse.

Why aren’t split keyboards so popular?

First of all, the low popularity of split models is due to the high entry threshold. To start typing normally here, you’ll have to spend time getting used to it. In addition, you must be proficient in proper 10-finger typing. Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

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