What Is an RGB Keyboard?

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Updated July 29, 2022

When looking for premiere keyboards, some shoppers prioritize aesthetics. In the past few years, keyboards with programmable backlights have sharply risen in popularity. Now, RGB technology has taken the possibilities to new heights. However, many still find themselves asking what is an RGB keyboard.


  • RGB keyboards are an advanced backlight technology that offers users top-of-the-line customization.
  • RGBs can increase the gaming experience by letting users program in lighting to highlight essential key patterns.
  • Lighting from RGB keyboards can also alert users when the computer is overheating or has a poor wireless connection.

If you want an excellent primer on keyboard lighting technology, read our article explaining what a backlit keyboard is.

Insider Tip

Most experts recommend avoiding cheaper models of RGB keyboards because they are known to burn out fast.

RGB Keyboards Explained

Basic keyboard backlights used a simple white LED light to illuminate all the keys and were the first available. Multicolor keyboards, which advanced backlight technology and featured specific preprogrammed lighting effects and unique sequences, followed soon after.

While both of the above are still available, the next generation of backlighting arrived with RGB keyboards, the most customizable lighted keyboard options yet. RGB stands for “red, green, blue,” which are the colors each key’s light combines, just like a TV pixel.

RGB backlit keyboards are popular among gamers and live-streamers because they allow programmable colors to match their brand or game profile color schemes. Each key has its own multicolor LED light. Because of the individual light, the number of effects and custom colors available for programming is essentially limitless. But on top of the crazy palette of colors, RGB keyboards come with many benefits.

RGB Keyboard Benefits

After you’ve figured out how to turn on the keyboard light, you can experience the splendor of RGB lighting. One primary reason why many RGBs are marketed as gaming keyboards is that you can program color-coded key sequences. This function allows gamers to model things like their favorite firing patterns, which is excellent support in competitive gaming that increases real-time performance.

RGB keyboards can also change color whenever the computer begins to overheat or when there is a weak wireless connection. And lastly, with such excellent control of brightness levels, RGB keyboards allow users to play with the lights completely off, enhancing the game environment.


Double-check that the keyboard you buy is an RGB model and not a rainbow multicolor unit. Consumers often make this mistake because they look very similar.

If you’re in the process of looking for a gaming keyboard, we have a great review on the Tt eSports Meka G Unit Wired Keyboard. And anyone out there experiencing keyboard issues, RGB keyboard or otherwise, we have great resources helping users diagnose problems before taking any drastic steps. For example, we have an article explaining what keyboard ghosting is and another explaining what to do when your keyboard beeps when typing.

STAT: The best RGB keyboards allow users to select from over 16 million different colors. (source)

What Is an RGB Keyboard FAQs

Are RGB keyboards good for non-gamers?

Because RGB keyboards warn users when their computer is overheating, anyone using high-capacity software or working with crucial combinations can reap the benefits.

Does the extensive lighting affect keyboard performance?

Lighting will never hamper the performance of the keyboard, and it's much more likely that the capabilities of RGB will work to enhance performance.

Are all RGB models mechanical keyboards?

Most RGBs are mechanical keyboards, but you can also find membrane options.
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