CNET logo Why You Can Trust CNET

Our expert deal-hunting staff showcases the best price drops and discounts from reputable sellers daily. If you make a purchase using our links, CNET may earn a commission.

This LED backlit wireless mechanical gaming keyboard is now under $18

UtechSmart's keyboard ticks almost all the boxes: wireless and wired operation, 40-hour battery, LED backlight, and Cherry MX switches.

Dave Johnson
2 min read

The UtechSmart LED Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is a mechanical wireless keyboard you can get for under $18.


If the only kind of keyboard you've ever used is an off-the-shelf budget model, the one that came with your new PC purchase or the one built into your laptop, then you only know membrane keyboards. And while they're cheap and quiet, they're terrible. Just terrible. They're soft and mushy and imprecise, which is bad both for touch typing and computer gaming . If you want to experience how good a keyboard can be, you owe it to yourself to try out a mechanical keyboard -- which uses real spring-loaded switches under each keycap. High-quality mechanical keyboards can get a little pricey, but if you want to see what all the fuss is about, I've found a model that's so cheap it almost defies imagination. Right now, you can get the UtechSmart LED Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard for $17.49 when you apply discount code WF9P6GIN at checkout. That's 67% off an already very affordable price of $53.

I've never used a UtechSmart keyboard, so I need to take some cues from the keyboard's Amazon reviews. The good news is that it has a healthy four-star rating, and both Fakespot and Reviewmeta gave the reviews a clean bill of health, so I think these are trustworthy.

On paper, the keyboard reads like a more expensive product. It operates in both wireless Bluetooth and wired modes, and when wireless, the battery powers about 40 hours of use. It ha an LED backlight, and the full-size 104 keyboard has a dozen dedicated multimedia function controls. Don't get your hopes up about the LED lighting though -- it's red only, not programmable.

Read more: The best gaming chairs we've sat in for 2020

And while this isn't a showstopper, especially if this is your first mechanical keyboard, it's a bit of false advertising to describe this as a gaming keyboard. The switches are Cherry MX Blue, not Cherry MX Red. What's that mean? Well, Cherry MX Blue keys require slightly more actuation force and are both loud and clicky -- making them favored more among typists than gamers.  But considering this is an $18 keyboard, I'd say the difference between Blue and Red shouldn't be enough to keep you from grabbing one to see what all the mechanical typing fuss is about.

But perhaps you disagree with my take on the Cherry MX Blue. Let me know in the comments if you think this keyboard is worth grabbing. 

Watch this: Samsung's SelfieType is an invisible AI keyboard for your phone

Logitech's Ergo K860 brings a premium look and feel to ergonomic keyboards

See all photos

Read MoreAll the latest Amazon coupons

CNET's Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and check out our CNET Coupons page for the latest promo codes from Best Buy, Walmart, Amazon and more. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page.

Get the best price with CNET Shopping.
Love shopping online but don't have time to compare prices or search for promo codes? Our CNET Shopping extension does that for you, so you always get the best price.
Add CNET Shopping
Shopping laptop image