Keychron is making sure they have the right size mechanical keyboard for everyone. The adored keyboard maker just released the Q3, an 80 percent or TKL layout keyboard. The look is pretty much unchanged from the previous Q2 and Q1 models, which were beloved by mechanical keyboard enthusiasts and our reviewers for their affordable price and outstanding build quality.
Going off its previous designs, Keychron kept all the good stuff for the Q3, like the full aluminum frame, the double-gasket design for the case, and the ability to customize all of its keys with hot-swappable switches. Keychron went with a more compact 65 percent layout for the Q2, but the Q3 brings back all those sorely-missed F and media keys for more customization.
Red, blue or brown — Like the Q2 though, the Q3 brings back the Gateron G Pro switches in red, blue, or brown so you can decide if you want a more clicky or thocky typing experience. Keychron even put out a short sound demo on YouTube, just to help us decide better.
Not much has changed with the Q3 besides its expanded layout. It still has double-shot OSA PBT keycaps, an optional customizable knob, and south-facing RGB lights. The Q3 is also hot-swappable and has both ANSI and ISO layouts. Like its predecessors, the Q3 was built with a Mac layout in mind, but you can switch it to Windows with a toggle at the top of the keyboard.
The only difference with the Q3’s interiors is that it’s powered with a new ARM-based microcontroller unit that’s ultra-low-power and has 128KB of flash memory. The chip gives the Q3 a polling rate of 1,000Hz, which should make it more super responsive for fast-paced competitive games.
Bigger than TKL — The Q3 is available on Keychron’s website in black, gray, and navy blue, with the barebones version starting at $154. The fully assembled version instead starts at $174. For those of us who didn’t like the 65 percent build of the Q2, the Q3 could be the goldilocks fit with those extra keys in the same build quality.
But if an 80 percent layout still isn’t big enough for your productivity needs, Keychron is working on its 100 percent Q6, which is expected to release by next month. And just a smidge smaller, Keychron is also planning to release the slightly more compact Q5, which has an 1800 layout, around the same time.