If you like the idea of a small and portable keyboard, then the 40% keyboard is probably the right choice for you.

A 40% keyboard is 40% smaller than a standard keyboard. That means it has fewer keys, with about 40–49 keys, giving it improved portability.

The 40% keyboards are designed by different manufacturers, though not many of them can be found in the market. As we proceed, we will attempt to list some of the best 40% keyboards available right now.

Comparison Table

Keyboard VortexGear Core YMDK  Qisan Omoton
Dimension 11.61 × 1.50 × 3.23 inches 9 × 6 × 0.5 inches 27 × 8 × 2.7 cm 11.2 × 4.7 × 0.2 inches
Weight 0.90 lbs 3.2 ounces 562 g 10.9 ounces
Mode of Connection USB cable connection USB cable connection Bluetooth connection (version 3.0)
Other Features
  • It has 47 keys
  •  PBT DSA keycaps
  • Aluminum frame

 

  • Laser-etched print type on the keycaps
  • PBT keycaps
  • It has 61 keys

 

  • Portable size
  • GATERON blue switches
  •  49 keys
  • ABS keycaps
  • Adjustable backlighting feature
  • It has 78 keys
  • Power saving mode
  • It can connect to a wide range of devices

Best 40% Keyboards for Your Day-to-Day Computer Operations

Usually, most 40% keyboards are designed specifically for work, so they are not suitable for gaming. Those who are into coding and programming will particularly find it more useful. Thanks to their great portability, you can access all the keys without moving your hands from one point to the other.

Their portable nature also makes it very easy to slot them into bags and work on the go. They also require less desk space to operate.

If you are a regular keyboard user who does not frequently use the Numpad, then this keyboard is a good fit for you. It reduces the excess space a regular-sized keyboard occupies without limiting its functions.

Generally, the best 40% mechanical keyboards you will find in the market today are notable for their exceptional qualities, including seamless key replacement, quality of switches and keycaps, portability, and the general quality of every other component.

When considering the best, making a choice can sometimes be daunting. Due to the number of keyboards available in the market, it is important to consider some factors before making a final decision.

These factors include the following:

Cost

An ideal 40% keyboard is not only incredible at a task, but it is also pocket-friendly. Apart from the 40% keyboard kit, which costs more than a prebuilt keyboard, a 40% keyboard need not be unaffordable. Even though value sometimes comes at a cost, most 40% keyboards should not cost more than $100.

Portability

This is one of the most notable features of a 40% keyboard. They are portable in size, so carrying them from one place to another should not be a challenge. They should be able to fit into a bag or pocket.

Its portability ensures its compactness, saving a lot of table space and also facilitating essential key placement. If you, therefore, require something of a minimal nature to add to your gaming configuration with a full capability, then you are looking at a 40% mechanical keyboard.

Keycap Quality/Switches

In as much as portability is to be admired, switches are also a vital part of every mechanical keyboard. Tight, sticky switches could result in a huge disappointment. Therefore, the quality of a keycap and their positioning is an important aspect of any 40% keyboard.

Most recognized high-quality keycaps are the double-shot PBT and the double-shot ABS. They are notable for their long-lasting attributes

Below is a list of the best 40% keyboards

1. Qisan 40 Mechanical Keyboard

Specifications at a glance

Manufacturer  Qisan
Number of Keys  49
Switch Type  Mechanical GATERON (clear, blue and brown)
Backlight  Yes (ice blue)
USB  YES (USB 2.0)
Size  10.6×3.1×1.1 inches
Weight  1.21 pounds

 

You’ll find value for this product based on its mechanical GATERON switches build that comes in various switches of blue, brown, and clear.

The GATERON mechanical switch directly compares to the Cherry MX Brown switches. The blue and brown are both tactile switches accompanied by a loud click sound. The clear is also tactile and represents a rigid edition of the brown switches.

Qisan has no doubt created something amazing in this powerful 40% mechanical keyboard. Its ice-blue backlighting feature is amazing, and it is supported by its ABS-built keycaps.

The Qisan keyboard is more or less a conventional 40% mechanical keyboard and does not make provision for programmable layers. The functions of the missing keys can be activated by combining the FN key with other keys. It comes with a dedicated arrow key despite its portability.

The bottom of the keyboard is supported by four tiny rubber pads to ensure a secure fit on any surface and prevent slipping. Even though its layout is equivalent to a standard full-sized keyboard, it has only 49 keys and was built with an emphasis on convenience.

If you consider the price of the Qisan keyboard, then you’ll agree that the build quality is pleasant, bearing a metal and plastic case. You can also control the lighting brightness of the keyboard using dedicated function keys.

The detachable USB cable makes it a lot simpler and portable to move around with.
If you were wondering if this keyboard can be used on multiple devices, the answer is, sadly, no. This appears to be one of its downsides, as it doesn’t support Bluetooth connectivity.

Its 1.21-pound weight means it is light and can effortlessly be carried about. That doesn’t mean it is not built with top-quality material. It is, in fact, constructed using quality plastic material.

The Qisan 40 Mechanical keyboard is incredibly amazing and satisfying to use. It is sturdy, durable, and comes with an adjustable lighting feature which allows you to customize the lighting effects to your preference.

Pros:

• Simple design and lightweight
• GATERON brown switches
• Adjustable lighting with LED Backlight
• ABS keycap and Floating key design
• Detachable USB

Cons:

• No Bluetooth connectivity

  • Bottom line

The Qisan 40 mechanical keyboard, across the board, is a great mechanical gaming keyboard. Even though it does not support wireless connectivity, it compensates by including some key features, including a floating key design to make for an excellent all-round keyboard.

2. YMDK

This is another keyboard kit which will delight you with its full customization features. As a keyboard enthusiast, YMDK gives you the freedom to select from varying keyboard layouts and also affords you the option to modify the keyset to suit your taste.

It comes with four layers and different color options, which you can easily reprogram to suit your preference. In terms of cost, the YMDK offers a better alternative to the Planck, costing about $80 for all the components.

The kit, however, does not come with stabilizers, keycaps, and switches. It has a CNC aluminum case, with multiple color selections. If you want to try your hand on your first custom build, the YMDK is a great place to start.

Pros:

• Full customization
• Cheaper
• Multiple CNC aluminum cases
• Different layers

Cons:

• Fewer components

  • Bottom line

The YMDK is a great and cheaper alternative to the Planck EZ. It also gives you full customization options that will appeal to anybody who wants to build something nice but less expensive. It is ideal for your first customization project.

3. VortexGear Core 40% Keyboard

Specifications at a glance

Manufacturer  VortexGear
Number of keys  47
Switch Type  Cherry MX (Blue, brown, clear, red and silent)
Backlighting  No
Bluetooth  No
USB  Yes USB 2.0
Size  11.6×1.5×3.2 inches
Weight  14.4 ounce

 

The VortexGear Core is one of the best-selling 40% mechanical keyboards currently. If you consider its features and design, you’ll find out that it meets our criteria of the best 40% keyboards.

It is built with the Cherry MX switches, giving you the ability to select between multiple switches depending on your preference. It is portable in size but isn’t cheap on quality and accomplishment.

The VortexGear core contains a maximum of 47 number of keys, and its keycaps are built using the DSA caps, which are remarkably excellent. However, you’ll require some time to adapt to them due to their sturdiness.

Because the VortexGear keyboards are renowned for quality, the quality of the VortexGear Core 40% is not in doubt. You’ll find its design and quality impressive.

The keyboard will definitely give you a soothing typing experience despite their sturdiness. You only need some time to adapt. It comes with a micro-USB feature for a seamless connection with your PC. It is detachable, emphasizing its portable nature.

The keyboard measures 11.6 x 1.5 x 3.2 inches in dimension and weighs only 14.5 ounces. This makes it pretty lightweight to carry around without any hassle.

The VortexGear Core 40% is also easily customizable, allowing you to reprogram its key functionalities to suit your needs. This means you can also reassign the symbol keys to carry out the functions of other keys.

The VortexGear compares to the Vortexgear POK3R, which is a 60% mechanical favorite for coders and programmers. Similar to the POK3R, the VortexGear core has four layers, three of which can be programmed.

It comes with a split space bar, with multiple-colored LEDs under it to specify the active layers.

If you are also concerned about its durability, the VortexGear Core 40% has a sturdy structure, yet feels great to use. It is no doubt produced to last for a very long time, using top quality materials.

Pros:

• Durable
• Quality build
• High responsiveness
• Onboard programmable layers
• Cherry MX switches

Cons:

• Non-programmable spacebars
• No Bluetooth connectivity

  • Bottom line

The VortexGear Core 40% selling point is its quality and build. However, the lack of wireless connectivity makes it ineligible for use on other devices like mobile phones and tablets. In a nutshell, if you need some sturdy and rugged keyboard for your gaming activities, it is a great choice.

4. Omoton Ultra-Slim Bluetooth Mechanical Keyboard

Pros:

• Small size
• Quite inexpensive
• Made of durable plastic material

Cons:

• Requires frequent replacement of the AAA batteries

The Omoton ultra-slim keyboard is a fantastic choice, and that is aside from their great price point. Thanks to its sleek and ultra-slim build, it can easily fit into smaller storage spaces, including backpacks and briefcases.

It comes with the QWERTY layout alongside unique keys for iPads, which control certain functions like volume, brightness, and music options.

The keys on this mechanical keyboard are more significant, making it very easy to type faster and accurately. They do not come with a connection cable. There’s no need for any since the keyboard comes with a Bluetooth connection technology.

With this Bluetooth technology, you can simply connect your devices with ease, as you don’t have to keep carrying cables around. The connection range is quite adequate since it operates within a distance of 10 meters (33 feet).

The Omoton ultra-slim 40% mechanical keyboard makes use of the AAA batteries. However, you have to purchase these batteries separately, as the stock keyboard kit does not include them.

Also, these AAA batteries only last for 30 days after a single charge. Hence, users can get pissed off with the task of frequently swapping out the batteries for new ones.

To make up for this downside, the keyboard has an intuitive power-saving mode which helps maximize and optimize the batteries for your various tasks. It automatically switches into the “sleep” mode once it is inactive for about ten minutes.

To remove them from the power saving mode, you just have click on any of the keys and wait for a few seconds, and it will come back on.

However, it is essential to note that this mechanical keyboard uses the old Bluetooth 3.0 technology. While it may connect with your smartphones, tablets, and iPads, you may experience some troubles connecting with some devices such as MacBook Pro, Mac mini, iMac, and Moto RAZR.

  • Bottom Line:

Are you in search of an excellent and very portable wireless mechanical keyboard that can connect with a wide range of devices?

The Omoton ultra-slim keyboard is very suitable.
Its super slim design is aesthetically appealing, and its wide range of features and support for multiple devices will sure enhance your productivity while typing.

Why are 40% Keyboards Awesome?

Most 40% mechanical keyboards are currently among the top choices of mechanical keyboard lovers. They offer several benefits and come handy in for various typing tasks. Here are some reasons why the 40% keyboards are unique.

They are Relatively Cheap

Unlike the full-form keyboards and others like the 70% and 60% keyboards, these 40% keyboards are not very costly.

Hence, they are among the cheapest classes of mechanical keyboards available. Even though they are not expensive, they still come packed with a lot of features which make them worthwhile.

They Increase Typing Efficiency

A 40% keyboard increases the typing efficiency of users, as it comes with larger keys for ease of access and enhanced visibility.

These sets of keys help increase accuracy and give a precise response. Although this keyboard lacks some other functional keys that are available on the full-form mechanical keyboards, you can still access a few of them by employing the use of the FN keys alongside other unique buttons.

Small Size

Having a mechanical keyboard that often fits into your purse or backpack can be useful on many occasions. Unlike the full form keyboards, you can always fit them into smaller storage spaces and move them from place to place.

Comfortability

Since these keyboards have a compact size, you can quickly get through to the characters on the keyboard without traveling a long distance.

Also, some of them come with the ABS and PBT keycaps. They all provide a smooth and comfortable feel on the users’ fingertips and reduce fatigue during the typing process.

Backlighting

The backlighting feature is the ability that enables the keys on certain keyboards to emit light. This feature comes in different forms, including the ability to customize their brightness level, and you can alternate the different lighting colors available.

Some come with a single color, and some come in varying colors, with the keyboard keys lighting up individually. While this does not apply to all 40% keyboards, this feature can be beneficial, as you can use them in poorly lit environments.

Connectivity Technology

A whole lot of these 40% keyboards come with a USB connection cable or a wireless means of connection.

Most people prefer the wireless connection, using the Bluetooth connectivity, as it provides them with a more flexible option.

However, the USB connection works well, as some are detachable, and even those that are “fixed” are quite long. Thus, connection across a room works perfectly, allowing for a farther link.

Their Sturdy and Long Lasting Nature

There is a variety of 40% keyboard, with most of them made of high-quality components and material.

With this durability feature, these mechanical keyboards can last up to several years if kept in good condition. They usually have an aluminum keyframe which protects the components, and a lot of them also have the PBT and ABC keycaps which last longer.

Furthermore, some of them come with dye sublimed printing, as well as others that are laser etched.

How to Choose the Right 40% Mechanical Keyboard

When considering the best, certain factors are worth looking out for due to the number of keyboards available in the market. Making a choice can sometimes be daunting.

Portability

This feature is one of the most notable of a 40% keyboard. They are portable in size, so carrying them from one place to another should not be a challenge. They should be able to fit into a bag or pocket.

Its portability ensures its compactness, saving a lot of table space while facilitating essential “key placement” and a lightweight nature. Therefore, if you require something of a minimal nature to add to your gaming configuration with a full capability, then you are looking at a 40% mechanical keyboard.

Keycap Quality/Switches

Inasmuch as we admire portability, switches are also a vital part of every mechanical keyboard. Tight, sticky switches could result in a huge disappointment. Therefore, the quality of a keycap and their positioning is an essential aspect of any 40% keyboard.

Also, you must ensure that the keycaps are of high-quality material so they can last for a more long time. Most recognized high-quality keycaps are the double-shot PBT and the double-shot ABS. They are notable for their durable attributes.

Keyboard Layout

In choosing a 40% mechanical keyboard, you should take note of the keyboard layout and choose those you prefer.

Typically, most mechanical keyboards have the QWERTY layouts, like the Omoton ultra-slim Bluetooth keyboard, whereas some others have the Dvorak layout.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What makes 40% keyboards better?

Most 40% keyboards are smaller-sized mechanical keyboards which would be very suitable for you if you have a preference for more modest-sized keyboards. They are unique and packed with a lot of features.

Hence, you can easily find those with individual keyboard switches, as well as others having the unique backlighting feature. A lot of them come with a wireless connection technology, hence, you don’t have to get worked up dealing with connection cables.

Even those that come with connection cables are still comfortable, as these cables can be very long, thus enhancing a secure connection. You can connect this mechanical keyboard to a wide variety of compatible devices. Furthermore, they are cost-effective since you can get them at a relatively affordable price.

2. I want to purchase a suitable 40% keyboard. What should I look out for?

Since these keyboards come with varying features, it can be quite challenging to choose the most suitable one. Hence, you must check out essential areas like the keyboard price, layout, durability, connection technology, keycaps material and printing types, and the backlighting feature.

Other factors you should consider are the switch type, number of keys, size, and weight. Choosing based on a proper analysis of the areas, as mentioned above, would be dependent on your needs and preference. Hence, you can look out for these features amongst various 40% features and choose the one you like the most.

3. Are smaller mechanical keyboards more suitable for gamers?

Having a compact size mechanical keyboard that leaves enough space for your other accessories like your mouse and headset can be quite helpful for gamers. However, this preference depends solely on the choices of individual users. Most people like smaller keyboards, whereas others do not.

With smaller keyboards, you can focus on the useful keys without searching for them farther. Overall, smaller keyboards keep you comfortable with their unique ergonomic designs.

Conclusion

Our compilation of the best 40% keyboards is no doubt insightful if you are thinking about getting one for yourself.

Regardless of your choice, be it a prebuilt keyboard or a customizable keyboard kit, a 40% keyboard like VortexGear Core offers great value for money far above many regular keyboards.

Its stylish, compact design and built-in battery allow you to enjoy a wholesome typing experience on the go without any disruption.

You can also check out some other top options on our list. Whether you are on a budget or willing to spend some dollars, there is always something unique for you to grab.

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