What is an 80% keyboard? (Complete Guide)

Author: Anirban Saha

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80% keyboards are usually used by people who do not use a full-sized standard keyboard and need to type on it lightly.

The keys are arranged on the sides of the keyboard so that the person who uses them can easily access them.

Some people have used 80% keyboards for a long time, and people like programmers widely use them, IT professionals, graphic designers, teachers, etc.

80% keyboards are a great alternative to the common full-sized keyboards that you know and use today.

It is an effective way of making your personalized keyboard, so the whole keyboard is tailored to your specific needs. 

This blog post will discuss what is 80% keyboard, its advantages, disadvantages, and more depending on your needs as a user.

80% keyboards

Let’s get started!

What is 80% keyboard?

The term “80% keyboard” describes compact keyboards that remove the number pad while still preserving the function row, arrow keys, and home cluster.

These are smaller than full-sized keyboards and typically have 87 keys.

These keyboards are often smaller than a full-sized keyboard and are popular among hobbyists who want a smaller keyboard that still retains many keys.

The main purpose of 80% keyboards is to allow users to keep their hands in front of them while they type without touching any keys.

As a result, 80% keyboards are generally easier on your wrists and arms than standard keyboards with their two-row layout.

80% keyboards also reduce wrist stress because no repetitive motion is done with your hands when using an 80% keyboard.

Unlike traditional two-row layouts, users don’t need their wrists bent at an angle for them not to hit any key as they type because there isn’t as much pressure on top of their wrists as when typing on a traditional keyboard with two rows of keys.

Are 80% Keyboards good?

80%keyboards are excellent and are good for gaming typing, and these are a great option for spacing saving.

It takes considerably less space as compared to a full-sized keyboard. Also, 80% keyboards look less cluttered and clean to use for a long time.

80% keyboard does not have any less functionality than a full-sized keyboard. It only lacks the Number Pad on the right, which is replaced by the Num keys on the top of the keyboard.

There are several great mechanical keyboards with 80% keyboard layout which are great for regular work and gaming.

Back in the day, we used to have these huge keyboards that would cover the entire desk. They came with a monitor and a mouse, and they were called a PC.

Things have changed, and now we have a desktop computer that is quite a bit smaller; that’s why we need a keyboard to make it fit on the desk, and there are compact keyboards like 80% keyboards.

First of all, your desk will look cleaner because you won’t have the huge keyboard that’s just taking up space. It’s also much easier to transport because you don’t have to carry the huge thing around.

Advantages of 80% keyboards

Here are the advantages of the 80% keyboards:

More Ergonomic

The idea behind 80% keyboards is more ergonomic and performs better than standard keyboards. 80% keyboards also reduce the strain on your wrists caused by typing on a 60% keyboard, leading to repetitive stress injuries.

Easier to Use

For most people using an 80% keyboard, it is about 2-4 times easier to type than traditional keyboards as it allows for shorter strokes.

So if you are into typography and text composition, you should consider this if you run a business or work at an office.

Saves Desk Space

One of the most underrated advantages is the space savings of 80% keyboards(a.k.a tenkeyless keyboard).

If you are short of desk space, you can consider buying a keyboard and mouse that have been designed to rest on your desk rather than being placed on it.

This will help you save space, but it can also make your work more efficient. 

If you’re a PC gamer, you’ve probably noticed that your keyboard covers about half of your desk, or if you’re a writer, you’ve probably noticed that your keyboard covers half the desk and your mouse covers the other half.

If you’re a gamer, you know how much room is taken up by the keyboard, and if you’re a writer, you know how much room is taken up by the keyboard, mouse, and mouse pad. 

Now let’s say you’re a computer programmer and want to use a keyboard for your programming, but you also want to use it for gaming.

You probably want to use the arrow keys and the WASD keys, but you probably don’t need the number pad. You also probably don’t need the function keys or any other keys.

That’s where the 80% keyboard comes in.

80% keyboards are Portable

80% keyboards make more efficient use of portability when you need to type something quickly while traveling somewhere where there isn’t any signboard which is usually essential for typing something here and there with a standard keyboard.

Disadvantages of 80% keyboards

There are several disadvantages of 80% keyboards too:

Difficult for NumPad users

The first and most obvious disadvantage of 80% keyboards is that they are difficult for regular NumPad users. 80% keyboards don’t have a numeric keypad.

Some people think the popularity of these keyboards is due to them being easier to type on than other types of keyboards.

However, these keyboards are also much more expensive than other keyboard types, making them not desirable for regular usage.

Requires a Learning Curve

The biggest disadvantage is the learning curve. It takes a while to get used to typing without the number keys.

This will be a challenging transition if you’re an old-school touch typist. The other keys are in different places than on a full-size keyboard, and the Fn key is used for other things.

How big is an 80 percent keyboard?

80% keyboard is smaller than a full-sized keyboard. It is a full-sized keyboard without the Numpad on the right. 

Here are the dimensions of some of the popular 80% keyboards:

Keyboard NameLengthWidth
RK ROYAL KLUDGE RK8715.6 inch7.17 inch
Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition TKL14.27 inch5.54 inch
AULA F3287 Wired TKL14 inch5 inch
Average Size of 80% keyboards14.6 inch5.9 inch
80% keyboard size compared to Full Sized Keyboard
80% keyboard size compared to a Full-Sized Keyboard in a simulation

The average size of 80% keyboards is 14.6 inches in length and 5.9 inches in width. (Calculated from the 80% keyboards in the market as in the table above).

So, in terms of dimension, if I compare 80% keyboards with Full-sized keyboards, they are comparatively much smaller.

Best 80% keyboards

Here are some of the best 80% keyboards on Amazon, which you can choose from:

SaleBestseller No. 1
HyperX Alloy Origins Core - Tenkeyless Mechanical Gaming Keyboard, Software Controlled Light & Macro Customization, Compact Form Factor, RGB LED Backlit, Linear HyperX Red Switch,Black
  • HyperX Mechanical Switches rated for 80 million...
  • Full aircraft-grade aluminum body
  • Ultra-compact, portable design with detachable...
Bestseller No. 2
Redragon K660RGB-PRO (K556 TKL) Wireless Gaming Keyboard, 80% 87 Keys BT/2.4Ghz Tri-Mode Aluminum Mechanical Keyboard w/Mac Function Keys, Hot-Swap Sockets & Noise Absorbing Form, Red Switch
  • 80% TKL Form Fact - The brand new K660 PRO...
  • 3-Mode Connection - Geared with Redragon...
  • YES! TRUE HOT-SWAP - The transformative innovation...
Bestseller No. 3
SteelSeries Apex 3 TKL RGB Gaming Keyboard – Tenkeyless Compact Form Factor - 8-Zone RGB Illumination – IP32 Water & Dust Resistant – Whisper Quiet Gaming Switch – Gaming Grade Anti-Ghosting,Black
  • The compact tenkeyless design is the most popular...
  • Our whisper quiet gaming switches with...
  • Designed with IP32 Water & Dust Resistant for...

Last update on 2024-07-24 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

FAQs on 80% keyboards

Q: Is there an 80 keyboard?

Ans: There are many 80% keyboards available in the market with great functionalities. Some of them are RK ROYAL KLUDGE RK87, Razer Huntsman TLK, and more.

Q: How many keys are on an 80-key keyboard?

Ans: 80% keyboards typically have 87 keys in them.

Q: Is 80% the same as Tenkeyless?

Ans: 80% keyboard layout is the same as Tenkeyless. Both the names are used interchangeably. Both lack the Numpad on the right.


Let’s conclude the post on 80% keyboards!

80% keyboards are amazing keyboards that you can use anywhere you want. If you want to do some programming on the go, you can use the keyboard.

After reading this blog, we hope you’ll be able to make an informed decision about whether or not an 80% keyboard is right for you.

We’ll also discuss what makes them different from a standard keyboard and why you might consider it.

I hope you enjoyed reading the post.

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