Backlit keyboard

Updated: 12/31/2020 by Computer Hope

A backlit keyboard, also called an illuminated keyboard or backlit gaming keyboard, is a keyboard that features lights inside the keyboard. The lights provide illumination behind and around the keys so they visible in low light or dark environments. The light source is often composed of mini LED (light-emitting diode) light bulbs for energy efficiency and increased brightness. Backlit gaming keyboards are popular amongst computer gamers, but can also be used for any other computer work. Below is a picture of a multicolor backlit gaming keyboard from G.SKILL.

Backlit gaming keyboard from G.SKILL

How to enable and disable a backlit keyboard

The backlit feature is often activated by touching the keys or around the edge of the keyboard. The lights automatically turn off after a short period when the keys or keyboard edges are not touched. Automatically turning off the lights helps to conserve battery power, extending the life of the batteries between charges.

Laptops and desktop backlit keyboards can also have special keys or FN keys to turn the backlit on and off permanently and may allow the color to be changed. The special key or FN key to press on a keyboard differs by keyboard or laptop manufacturer.


Most new PC laptops can adjust the keyboard backlighting in the Windows Mobility Center. On Dell laptops its often Fn+F10 or only F10. With Lenovo laptops, the hidden key to adjust the backlit keyboard is Fn+Spacebar.

How much does a backlit gaming keyboard cost?

Backlit gaming keyboards are more expensive than standard keyboards, usually costing $90 or more. They are available as wired and wireless. Wireless models require batteries to work and may include a USB cable to plug the keyboard into the computer to charge the batteries.

Many keyboard manufacturers make backlit gaming keyboards, including Corsair, G.SKILL, Logitech, and RAZER.

Backlight, Game terms, Keyboard terms, LED, Light, USB, Wireless