Keyboard Latency Test | Best For MAC & Windows

As gaming takes over the modern world today, new equipment is being designed to cater to these growing needs. If you’re a gamer, you’d understand the importance of lightning-fast reactions because even the littlest lag can be the difference between a win and a loss. The last thing a casual or competitive gamer needs are slow reactions to their commands. In a PC gaming setup, several different pieces combine, each of which has its lag in latency input that creates the difference between when a command is registered and when it is implemented on the screen. Now, the recipe to victory is having the lowest latency that is possible. What is keyboard latency and how does it matter? What is the Keyboard latency test? If you’re here to find out, you’re at the right place.

What Is Keyboard Latency?

Keyboard latency is defined as the time taken for a keyboard to register one stroke. It is a measurement from the time when a key is moved to when the relevant USB packet makes its way to the USB bus. This is, therefore, the difference between when a key is pressed and the time when the action is registered on the screen. To avoid a false precision, the numbers will be rounded to the nearest 5ms. The latency keyboard test is a way to measure the latency of your keyboard. 

in addition to keyboard tests, keyboard latency is very important for people because a good latency is needed for gaming, office work, programming, etc. where a little lag can cost a lot. The keyboard is one of the things, amongst others that can cause a lag between your input and the completion of your action. While no part of your PC can be entirely lag-free, gaming keyboards are designed with the lowest latency that is possible to reduce lags.

How is Keyboard Latency Calculated?

The calculation of test latency for the keyboard is checked by measuring the frames that come between when input is given, and when the flash on the display is seen. This value is then adjusted to account for display and system latency and the pre-travel time. The results show an average of 12 measurements per type of connection. Multiple sites are available where you can easily check your keyboard latency. 

Factors That Contribute To The Keyboard Latency

Multiple factors are known to affect the latency of your keyboard. These include the connection type because wired keyboards tend to have a lower latency with Bluetooth ones having the highest. So, while wireless keyboards are good for typing, they aren’t suitable for gaming. Some factors affect keyboard latency. 

1. Wired Latency

One thing that affects the latency of your keyboard is whether it is wired or wireless. The type of connection is a contributing factor. Keyboards with wired connectivity are considered to have the lowest latency, making them a suitable option for gaming. The latency with wired keyboards is lower because they are connected directly to your computer, so it takes less time for your input to be registered and displayed on the computer screen. So, you can use a USB keyboard latency test for testing your wired keyboard. A wired keyboard is better for gaming since it offers the lowest latency.  

2. Wireless Latency Over The Receiver

Wireless keyboards, regardless of supporting the latest technology, are known to have a higher latency than wired keyboards. This is why, while these keyboards are suitable for typing, they may not be the best choice for gaming. For wireless keyboards, if you wish to get low latency, you can connect them via a proprietary USB receiver. Over the years, manufacturers have worked to improve the latency of wireless keyboards to the point where they can not offer the same latency as a wired keyboard, and sometimes even lower. For achieving the lowest possible latency with a wireless keyboard, place the receiver extender at 20cm from your keyboard.  Wireless keyboard latency test will help you check the latency of your keyboard.

3. Wireless Latency Over Bluetooth

Talking about the Bluetooth connections, they have usually been kept for office and mobile keyboards since they have the highest latency. While any delay is not noticeable during typing, these are not suited for gaming. So, if you wish to use a keyboard for gaming purposes, we suggest you choose a wired one unless your wireless one can give you the same latency as a wired keyboard. 

Are Gaming Keyboards Faster Than Other Keyboards?

Before saying anything with confidence, several more tests should be conducted, but it can generally be said that gaming keyboards aren’t usually faster than regular keyboards. Gaming keyboards are usually designed with features that help to reduce latency like USB connection and a polling rate of 1000Hz. The low USB specification shows a low time between the packets that is 100Hz. But these devices often round down to the nearest two power i.e. 125Hz. While this is an important factor in lowering the latency for a keyboard like the Apple magic keyboard, several other factors also contribute. Most gaming keyboards that have yet been tested for latency are slow and don’t show much improvement in latency than a regular keyboard. Hence, we cannot assuredly state that a gaming keyboard is faster than any regular keyboard. 

Keyboard’s Latency Comparison

Here is a look at some of the keyboard latencies compared and their connectivity. 

  • Apple magic (USB) – 15 ms – USB FS 
  • Hhkb lite 2 – 20ms – USB FS
  • MS natural 4000 – 20ms – USB FS 
  • Das 3 – 25ms – USB  
  • Pok3r vortex – 30ms – USB FS
  • Logitech k120 – 30ms – USB 
  • Ergodox – 40ms – USB FS
  • Razer ornata chroma – 35ms – USB FS – gaming keyboard 
  • Logitech K360 – 60ms – unifying 
  • MS comfort 5000 – 40ms – wireless 
  • Dell OEM – 30ms – USB 
  • Chinfai silicone – 35ms – USB FS 
  • Kinesis advantage – 50ms – USB FB 
  • Olkb planck rev 4 – 40ms – USB FS

How To Get The Best Results?

What can you do to improve the keyboard latency of your device? Well, there isn’t a lot that you can do at an individual level to bring the latency down. One thing that can be useful is to switch from a wireless connection keyboard to a wired one as this may reduce the latency. Moreover, you can check your keyboard’s polling rate or debounce settings to improve your latency. If you still believe that your keyboard is causing too much lag and is affecting your gaming experience, you should try checking your monitor and PC settings. If you are using a TV, don’t forget to turn on the “Game” mode. With the few methods above, you can get the best results for latency, and get a better, improved gaming experience. 

Conclusion

When it comes to enjoying a good gaming experience, keyboard latency is very important. Only a gamer can understand how a little lag can be the difference between winning and losing. So, a keyboard that offers a low latency can be very beneficial for gamers which is why it is necessary to know a keyboard’s latency before purchasing one. Since your keyboard is an important part of your gaming PC setup and plays an important part in the total latency, showing the difference between when you give input and when it appears on the screen, you must make the right choice in choosing a low-latency keyboard. 

FAQ'S

Bluetooth keyboard latency test is a tool designed for Bluetooth keyboards where you can easily check the latency of your keyboard. Keyboard latency test online is available as well. Just open an online site and check your keyboard latency there. 

The keyboard scan rate tool allows users to calculate the latency of their wireless keyboard by calculating the difference in time when keyboard input is given and when it is registered on a monitor screen. You can use this method to test the latency of your wireless keyboard.

A keyboard latency above 100ms is not considered as good because the delay is quite noticeable, but anything below this latency value can be considered as a good value since the delay is not very apparent.

Not 100ms or anything above it because at this latency, the delay is noticeable, but at a latency below 100ms is good because the delay cannot be seen very clearly. So, 100ms keyboard latency is jarring and the delay is also noticeable, hence it is not a very good option. 

The latency of your mouse or keyboard is a performance test of the device. This is used to check the time delay that comes between your input being given with the keyboard or mouse and the registering of the action on the monitor or screen. You can check your mouse or keyboard latency using an online test mouse and keyboard latency test.