The GMMK gaming keyboard is fantastic — but not for the reason you might think

GMMK keyboard
Credit: PC Gaming Race

I consider myself a gamer. I’m not professional or cool enough to stream, but I enjoy it as a hobby. I build my own gaming PCs, and I have bought pre-built rigs. 

One thing I never put much stock in are the peripherals. I find it hard to believe that a keyboard or mouse will change the way I game. Until several weeks ago I used a standard Microsoft keyboard for gaming and work. I thought I liked my keyboard. It was inexpensive and it did the job. I pressed a key, it recorded my action, and I moved on. I didn’t think I needed anything else. 

Until now. I tried the GMMK keyboard recently (which stands for Glorious Modular Mechanical Keyboard), and I will never go back.

This is a keyboard meant for gamers. It is designed to impress and add colorful ambiance to a gaming rig. What I discovered is that this keyboard is great for everyday use with the added bonus of gaming. I tried out the GMMK for several weeks, and in this review, I examine its build, customization, and performance.  

When I opened the GMMK Keyboard box, I was impressed. The box is unassuming and plain considering what is inside. Its contents include the keyboard, extra replacement keys, tools for replacing or swapping keys and switches, and a Glorious PC Gaming Race sticker. 

The keyboard itself is solid. I noticed this the moment I picked it up. It has an aluminum build and a polished silver strip around the edges that add to the premium feel. It comes with a braided cable. I’ve read that some people have been frustrated with it, but I really like it. It feels durable, adding value to the product. 

Windows immediately recognizes the keyboard, and I notice how much fun it is to magically have 16.8 million color options for backlighting the keys. 

I tend to game in a darker setting and the extra light helps set an exciting tone for short or long sessions. I notice how loud the keys sound when I quickly tap shift to power slide across the pitch in Rocket League. Contrary to what you might think, this is a good thing! I love the way they feel. Audible clicks are intentional for this type of switch. The sound assists in letting me know I have taken action and I rarely need to look to determine where my hands need to be. 

The keys are Gateron Brown switches (for more information on switches see this video) with black keycaps. Basically, switches determine how easy it is to press a key and the volume of the click that occurs.  I can easily swap both the keys and switches. If the Gateron Brown switches become a nuisance at some point, I’ll swap them for something else. The customization options are endless.

While I enjoy the Gateron Brown switches, the keyboard allows switches from the brands Cherry, Gateron, and Kalih. The customization options don’t end with keys and switches. I backlight specific keys I use for gaming. This is great when I switch from a game like Rocket League or PUBG (Player Unknown Battlegrounds) to a more complex game with additional hotkey options such as Civ VI. I can digitally backlight specific keys I use, or use the preset backlit options the software includes. 

The software is easy to find on the website. It is a minor nuisance, but to install the proper drivers (software that enables devices to work with your operating system), I had to know the serial number (this is found on the back of the keyboard). I ran the software, and the interface was simple. 

I selected FPS (First Person Shooter) mode for most of my gaming and changed backlit colors to my preference with a few clicks. FPS mode auto-backlights the WASD control scheme to ensure accuracy. I even tried backlighting a different control scheme to try out the ESDF keys. It isn’t for me, but it is nice to know I have options should I want to change. For work, I love the look of the preset “Glorious Mode” which fades to a variety of backlit colors. It is – dare I say it – Glorious indeed. 

Okay, backlighting and customization options are great, but is this keyboard just for gaming? Absolutely not. In fact, this is where the keyboard surprises me the most. 

Pointedly, I am more impressed with this keyboard for everyday function than I am for its gaming options. When I was a child, new shoes meant I could “run faster.” At the risk of sounding like a child, I think this keyboard improved my typing accuracy. I didn’t believe it at first. I’m no professional typist, but I’m not terrible, either. 

I have noticed I don’t make as many typing mistakes using the keyboard. It’s anecdotal evidence, but additional research shows this could be the case. A mechanical keyboard with audible keys can improve typing performance and accuracy.

The GMMK boasts 100% anti-ghosting. This basically means it registers multiple keys presses at one time. Generic keyboards don’t typically allow for this. Why does it matter? It can be helpful for gamers and musicians alike. I will use this in the future adding drum loops or key tones while recording music. For example, playing chords would not be an option without this feature. I look forward to trying some new beats and sounds with my limited musical experience. In the end, gaming didn’t change much for me outside of my customized hotkeys. Typically mechanical keyboard users report better response time for games. I didn’t notice a change, but I play more strategy-based games than quick response shooters. The surprise is in the daily function and capabilities of this modular keyboard.

In summary, the GMMK Glorious keyboard is a great piece of hardware to add to any repertoire. Its design, easy customization options, and performance make it a must-have item for any PC rig. I have fallen in love with it and will be using it in work and play for years. Its premium build ensures longevity for my busy fingers. I like having the power to turn it into an entirely different keyboard with minimal effort. I’ll never go back. Game on my friends.