What Is a 65 Keyboard?

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Updated August 5, 2022

The search for the top-rated keyboard can be an arduous one. There are so many different styles and sizes, which can make finding the perfect one difficult. One type of keyboard that’s been gaining popularity in recent years is the 65 percent model. If that has you wondering just what is a 65 keyboard, read on.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • A 65 keyboard gets its name because it is 65% the size of a full-sized keyboard.
  • The 65 keyboard typically comes with 66-68 keys.
  • Because of their customization benefits and sleek design, 65 keyboards are becoming popular among gamers and digital artists.

The 65 Percent Keyboard Explained

What makes a 65 keyboard special is its size, which is 65% the size of a full-size keyboard. A typical 65 keyboard eliminates the number pad and all the keys on the function row.

Insider Tip

Keyboard manufacturers typically make 65 keyboards in two layouts: one with smaller gaps between keys and a larger style that keeps gaps similar to larger-sized keyboards.

Another common question over any style keypad is how many keys are on the keyboard. In this case, a 65 percent keyboard has anywhere from 66-68 keys, a significant reduction from the full-sized keyboard that usually comes with 104.

Overall, this compact keyboard design has become very popular among those looking for a keyboard for gaming. And the reasons for this are many. Of course, if you aren’t convinced a 65 is small enough after reading about them below, check out our article on what is a 60 keyboard.

Compactness

In addition to eliminating keys, 65 keyboards also reduce the size of the gap space between each key. This spacing increases its already compact design, making it great for traveling. The reduced size also frees up a lot of desk space, making this model popular among office workers.

Additionally, for those interested in keyboards with particular types of switches and how they impact your experience, read our article explaining what a membrane keyboard is.

Key Layering

65 percent keyboards can function just as well as regular keyboards because they have what’s known as “layered keys.” Having layered keys means that users can program a specific key to have multiple functions if it is pressed in combination with others. Layering can help recreate the controls of the function row, along with other customized key combos.

So ironically, even though 65 keyboards have fewer keys than full-sized boards, with the customization and key layering, users can access more options if they so desire.

Warning

Because 65 keyboards are still less commonly produced than other types, the price of replacement parts will be higher than for more commonly used styles.

Aesthetics

65% keyboards generally have a sleek, minimalistic look. They are made to be stylized and customized both from a software and hardware standpoint. Many models come with RGB color-changing backlighting. And additionally, you can find websites that sell custom keycaps so you can style your keyboard according to how you want it to look.

STAT: The majority of 65 keyboards come with 68 keys. (source)

What Is a 65 Keyboard FAQs

Do any 65% keyboards come with a Numpad?

There are very few 65% options that come with a number pad. You will commonly find this feature with slightly larger keyboards, like 75s.

How many keys come on a 60% keyboard?

The 60% keyboard typically comes with 61 keys in all.

What is the price range for a 65% keyboard?

The average price range for this style of keyboard is $200-$600, depending on the quality.
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