Especially durable with a great fit and finish. The most important feature is definitely the Kailh Brown switches, which provide tactile feedback and make very little noise. Because of the pleasant typing experience and unobtrusive design, it's ideal for professional use. Has copy, paste, cut and backspace keys in a row on the top.
Backlight color can't be changed but otherwise has no major flaws.
Affordable. Wired model is fully powered via USB. 18 keys. Includes a 3-foot cord. Lightweight design with an ergonomic tilt. Easy to install. LED light shows when the keyboard is powered up and ready for use.
Some reports of faulty keys.
We love this sleek, brushed aluminum, 20- key design and included LED power indicator. A winner in our book for its easy set up and its ability to work seamlessly with both Mac and PC products.
Lightweight design sometimes causes keypad to shift when typing quickly.
Boasts easy set up via 36-inch USB cord, allowing users to use this 18-key device. Has handy bottom switch to indicate use with a “PC” or “Mac.” Works with myriad of operating systems.
May be taller than your standard Mac keyboard. No equal or clear keys.
A total of 32 keys allows this comprehensive model to greatly expand your MacBook keyboard, making it easy to use the arrow and navigation keys. Bluetooth connection is robust and free from noticeable lag. Comes in silver and gray versions identical to MacBook finishes.
Doesn't have the most premium typing feel and isn't ideal for Windows PCs.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
Numeric keypads are prized by accountants, financial analysts, and others who find themselves working extensively with figures. In the past, the majority of computer keyboards came equipped with a built-in numeric keypad made up solely of numbers and related keys. Today, however, full-size keyboards often leave off the numeric keypad.
If you’re really missing a numeric keypad, you may want to pick up a standalone version. While similar in size and appearance, numeric keypads vary in the number of keys contained, how they are powered, and even in the operating systems with which they are compatible.
Some numeric keypads work with a variety of operating systems while others are specific to one system, like PC/Windows. In addition, some numeric keypads only work with specific versions of operating systems (usually newer ones).
Your numeric keypad will be much more versatile if it has the ability to work with the widest variety of operating systems. Find out which systems and versions a numeric keypad is compatible with before getting it.
Some numeric keypads plug directly into a computer using a cord. Others have built-in Bluetooth or other wireless capabilities. While this is often a matter of preference, wireless can provide benefits that a wired keypad does not, and vice versa.
With a wireless keypad, you are not limited by cord length, which makes the unit more versatile. Wired cord lengths can be short, sometimes just 2 or 3 feet, while wireless distances can reach 30 feet or more. One downside of wireless keypads is that they require batteries, either disposable or rechargeable, to work.
All wireless numeric keypads require some form of battery to operate. This is often in the form of disposable batteries, although some keypads feature rechargeable battery packs.
Wired numeric keypads have an advantage in that they are often powered solely through the USB cable, so you are never left scrambling for batteries. That said, some wired keypads also require batteries to operate.
Numeric keypads are generally quite lightweight, but that does vary a bit. A super lightweight numeric keypad may be a better option for those who travel frequently with their computer, but be careful about going too light. Keypads with too little weight can move around easily when you are trying to use them.
Numeric keypads should require little in the way of setup. They are typically plug-and-play items, requiring no driver installation to use. Those who seek to use the keypad via Bluetooth will need to pair the keypad with their computer’s Bluetooth receiver for it to work.
While rare, some numeric keypads employ mechanical switches. These offer a firmer feel and a louder click that some people prefer.
The number of keys on a numeric keypad typically ranges from 18 to 22, with 18 being the baseline. The keys should be large enough to comfortably use, and they are usually concave for finger comfort.
While not a feature of wireless numeric keypads, the cord will be a consideration for wired ones. Some cords for wired numeric pads can be quite short, in the 2-foot to 3-foot range. The longer the cord, the more versatile the numeric keypad will be.
While numeric keypads are not massive in size, some are slimmer and more stylish than others. Much like standard keyboards, numeric keypads are often black, although some have a few other options, such as a brushed aluminum appearance.
Some numeric keypads include an LED light to alert you when the keypad is powered up and ready to use or when the battery is low. Some also feature backlit keys, which is a huge plus for some.
While rare, some numeric keypads feature built-in ports. These allow you to extend the keypad by plugging in flash drives, a mouse, or other devices.
Also included with some numeric keypads are rubber feet, which can help prevent the keypad from sliding around when you’re trying to use it.
Low: At $10 and under, numeric keypads are typically wired and offer a minimal build. These are typically only designed to be used with PCs.
Mid-range: For $10 to $30, you will find the majority of numeric keypads. These typically work with a variety of operating systems, can be wired or wireless, and have some advanced features, such as backlighting.
High: For $30 or more, you will find the best-quality numeric keypads. These tend to be more stylish and often include advanced features such as Bluetooth connectivity, rechargeable batteries, and mechanical/backlit keys. Numeric keypad/mouse combos also exist in this range.
If you plan to use your numeric keypad in low light, choose one that is equipped with backlighting.
A. Some numeric keypads are easier to use than others. There are several factors to consider.
A. Generally, yes. Wired numeric keypads require a USB port to work, as do wireless keypads that include a dongle to plug into a port. One way to avoid this is to buy a Bluetooth-capable keypad to use with your Bluetooth-equipped computer.
If you are one USB port short, you could try using a USB hub to increase your number of ports. Some numeric keypads also have built-in USB ports so you can unplug, say, a mouse from your computer, plug in the numeric keypad, and then plug the mouse into the keypad.
A. A numeric keypad should not interfere with your current keypad or other devices. These keypads are essentially just another input device and should work next to all the other devices plugged into your computer without any problems.