Top 5 Best Backlit Keyboard Laptops 2021:
Backlit keyboards are not just a fancy feature – they’re also quite useful. If you’re someone who works or spends time in dark rooms, poorly lit areas, or you just prefer to turn off the lights while using a laptop, a backlit keyboard is your best friend.
Backlit keyboards are not something you usually find in budget laptops, but there are a few exceptions, of course. However, most of them are on the expensive side.
Needless to say, you have to consider many things when buying a laptop, not just the backlit keyboard. Laptops, in general, are an investment and you shouldn’t buy them willy-nilly. This is why we made this buying guide – to help you spend your money wisely.
So, if you want to know more about what features to consider, read our buying guide and take a closer look at our top 5 choices for the best backlit keyboard laptops.
To kick things off, here’s a comparison table for all you busy bees who don’t have time to peruse.
Best Backlit Keyboard Laptop – Comparison Table
|Product||Acer Swift 3 Laptop||Apple MacBook Pro||Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop||Apple MacBook Air||ASUS VivoBook|
|Size – inches||12.73 x 8.62 x 0.63||9.68 x 14.09 x 0.64||14.31 x 9.74 x 0.71||11.97 x 8.36 x 0.63||14.10 x 9.10 x 0.80|
|Weight – pounds||2.65||4.3||3.97||2.8||3.75|
|CPU model||AMD Ryzen 7 4700U||6-core 9th Gen Intel Core i7||AMD Ryzen 3 3200U||Dual-core Intel Core i3||10th Gen Intel Core i3|
|Hard disk memory||512GB||512GB||128GB||256GB||128GB|
|Display type||14” Full HD IPS LED||16” Retina Display||15.6” Full HD IPS LED||13” Retina Display||15.6” Full HD NanoEdge|
|Display resolution||1920 x 1080||3072 x 1920||1920 x 1080||2560 x 1600||1920 x 1080|
|Adjustable backlight brightness||No||Yes||No||Yes||No|
|Battery life||11.5 hours||11 hours||7.5 hours||12 hours||7 hours|
5 Best Backlit Keyboard Laptops In 2021: Detailed Reviews
1. Acer Swift 3 Laptop – Best Overall
The Acer Swift 3 has looks, typing experience, high performance, high-quality built, and long battery life and all that for a reasonable price.
Whether you need it for work or just to surf the Internet for fun, this laptop is a good choice. It has 8GB RAM and 512GB of hard disk space. It features the AMD Ryzen 7 4700U processor with Radeon graphics, and it has a backlit keyboard with a fingertip sensor.
The keyboard keys have ample spacing and there’s enough space below the keyboard to rest your hands while typing. The style of the keys resembles the keys on a Mac as they are slim and contoured to a more ergonomic shape to fit the fingertips better. The key travel is a bit on the shallow side, and the keys are satisfyingly clicky. The keyboard is also very quiet, so it’s a perfect choice if you’re annoyed by the loud pressing of the keys.
The backlight is easily turned on, and it’s white and bright, which can be a bit overwhelming since there’s no control intensity option. Still, the white light adds to the overall elegant look of this laptop.
The 14” full HD IPS LED display, the 11.5 hours of battery life, the lightweight and portable design, and the fancy white LED-backlit keys make this laptop a great choice for working, gaming, or entertaining.
- Ample spacing between keys
- Contoured ergonomic shape of the keys
- The keyboard is quiet
- White LED-backlit keys
- No control intensity option
2. Apple MacBook Pro – Premium Pick
The new MacBook Pro by Apple features the Magic keyboard – an updated version of the previous models. This one uses the new scissor mechanism and has 1mm key travel to provide you with a more comfortable typing experience.
The keys are slim and contoured. Pressing the keys is really satisfying as they’re neatly and conveniently spaced, and they’re very quiet. The matte black and white design of the keys fit the elegant appearance of the whole laptop.
The backlight is white LED, and the good news is you can adjust the brightness. This is a helpful feature, especially because the light on its max level is very bright. There’s also an option to turn the backlight off after a certain time of inactivity that you can also adjust accordingly.
The MacBook Pro is one of the priciest laptops out there. However, it has many incredible features, like the 16GB RAM and 512GB hard disk memory with the option to build up to 8TB SSD storage, which is higher than any other notebook. If plenty of memory space is what you need, MacBook Pro is the best choice for you.
The processor is the 9th Gen 6-core Intel i7. It also features a 16” Retina display with True Tone technology, a six-speaker system with force-canceling woofers, and up to 11 hours of battery life. Truth be told, the biggest downside of this laptop is the really steep price.
- White LED backlight
- Adjustable brightness
- 16GB + 512GB memory space
- Retina display
- It’s expensive
3. Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop – Budget-Friendly Choice
It’s not often that you find a backlit keyboard in a budget laptop, like in the Acer Aspire 5 Slim. This laptop is in the affordable price range, so you can’t really expect it to have specs like the high-end models, but it’s still worthy of your attention if you’re looking for a best-value-for-money kind of a deal.
The design of the laptop is simple and neat. It combines black and grey color, with the black keyboard keys. The spacing between keys is big though, so the keyboard is pretty wide, and key travel is on the longer side. Pressing the keys is a bit loud.
The keyboard is backlit with white LED lights, which aren’t as bright as some other backlit keyboards, but this is probably a blessing in disguise as there’s no option to adjust the brightness, so the lights are always on a mid bright level.
When it comes to other specs, the Aspire 5 is not bad at all, considering the price. It has 4GB RAM and 128GB disk space, a 15.6” full HD IPS LED display and the AMD Ryzen 3 3200U dual-core processor.
The battery life is mid-range, with 7.5 hours tops. Along with other features, this laptop is not the best choice if you need a powerful machine to undertake serious projects, but it’s good enough for simpler tasks. It’s also great for watching movies.
- Backlights are not too bright
- 15.6” full HD IPS LED display
- Really affordable price
- No feature to adjust the brightness
4. Apple MacBook Air – Great Choice for Apple Aficionados
A bit more affordable option (as far as MacBooks go) is the MacBook Air. This model was released in the first half of 2020, so it features the updated Magic keyboard. The flat, island-style keyboard is slightly raised compared to the previous version. It also features a scissor mechanism with a 1mm key travel, while previous models have a butterfly mechanism.
The keys are slim and ergonomically contoured, so pressing them is a real pleasure for the fingertips. The white LED backlights are adjustable so you can change the level of brightness as you wish.
As for other specs, the 2020 MacBook Air has 8GB RAM, 256GB hard disk memory, and the 13.3-inch Retina display with True Tone technology. It also features a 10th Gen Intel Core i3 processor and Intel Iris Plus graphics.
There’s also a 512GB version available, at a bit higher price. You can select from three colors, including gold, silver, and space grey, and you can choose to get the MacBook Air with AppleCare+.
This laptop is a good choice for work and it’s very lightweight, so it’s probably the best option if you need a laptop that you can easily carry in your briefcase. It’s also not too expensive, as far as Apple products go, but it’s still on the pricier side compared to many other brands.
- Adjustable brightness level
- Updated Magic keyboard
- Scissor mechanism
- 8GB + 256GB memory
- Lightweight and portable design
- It’s a bit pricey
5. ASUS VivoBook – Good Value For Money
ASUS VivoBook is another budget-friendly laptop with a backlit keyboard. This laptop has the latest 10th Gen Intel Core i3 CPU, 8GB RAM and 128GB hard disk space.
The design combines black with dark grey color, while the keyboard keys are black, so they don’t really stand out. They’re also a bit more rounded compared to keys on most keyboards. However, they are neatly spaced and very quiet for a pleasant typing experience. Plus, the 1.4mm key travel makes typing even more comfortable.
The bright white LED backlights are not adjustable, but this is to be expected in a laptop in this price range. To be honest, there aren’t many laptops with backlit keyboards that are as affordable as the ASUS VivoBook.
We really liked the fingertip sensor. It allows you to unlock your laptop without having to type the password every single time and it’s located right on the touchpad.
Besides the backlit keyboard, this laptop also has a 15.6 inch full HD 4-way NanoEdge bezel display. Audio features are also quite good. It ensures a powerful audio delivery and deeper bass thanks to the ASUS SonicMaster.
With 7 hours, battery life is not the greatest, so if you plan to use it outside of your home, make sure to take the charger with you.
- Comfortable typing experience
- Fingertip sensor on the touchpad
- 4-way NanoEdge bezel display
- Great audio features
- Affordable price
- No option to adjust the brightness
- Battery life could be longer
What To Look For In A Backlit Keyboard Laptop
If you want a laptop with a backlit keyboard, there are a few things to consider. Of course, you have to consider other specs as well, so you don’t waste money on an average laptop just because it has a cool keyboard.
- The brand is not the most important thing when buying a laptop. Instead, you should consider technical specifications, like memory, CPU, and so on. However, some brands are more popular than others, and research shows us that these where top vendors by the number of units shipped in 2019:
- All of these brands have both expensive and affordable models, some of which have backlit keyboards.
- Since most backlit laptops are on the expensive side, they also come with more memory storage. Usually, they have 8GB RAM, rarely below that. Some models, like the Macbook Pro, have 16GB RAM.
- Also, hard disk space in backlit keyboard laptops is almost always admirable. In most cases, they have 512GB, sometimes 256GB, but there’s always the option to get an external hard drive and increase it even more.
- There are a few budget laptops with backlit keyboards, and they have a bit less memory, but it’s completely understandable for that price range.
- In case you’re wondering how much RAM will suffice your needs, here’s a handy table that can help you figure it out:
|Office work/Document Handling||✔||✔||✔|
|Media Streaming (Audio/Video)||✔||✔||✔|
|Heavy Data Processing||x||x||✔|
3. Keyboard Specs
- Most backlit keyboard laptops feature white LED lights. There are options to change the color, but this requires taking your laptop apart and doing it yourself, so we don’t recommend you doing that. Besides, the white lights are usually pleasant and fit nicely with most laptop designs.
- One useful feature is the option to adjust the brightness. This, however, is not a standard feature and you can find it only in the high-end models, like the two MacBooks we included on this list. The good thing is that laptops without this feature usually don’t have too bright lights, so it’s not a huge problem.
- Some of the most expensive backlit keyboard laptops have the option to shut off the lights after the appointed time. For example, you can set that the lights turn off after 5 seconds of inactivity. This is another handy feature that you don’t find so often.
4. Battery Life
- Battery life is always an important feature to consider, especially if you’re paying a lot of money for a laptop. You want one that will be able to last at least 10 hours so you don’t have to worry about charging it if you’re working outside of your home or office.
- Most backlit keyboard laptops are pricey so they have good battery life, while the budget-friendly options usually have a battery life between 7-10 hours. Seven hours is still good if you always have a charger nearby.
Final Thoughts And Recommendations
Backlit keyboards are a fun and useful feature. They are especially handy if you have to work in dark rooms, poorly lit rooms, or during the night. Now that you’ve read about our 5 choices for the best backlit keyboard laptops, we’d love to tell you about our top picks, or the best of the best:
Best Overall: Acer Swift 3 Laptop
- Acer Swift 3 deservedly found its place as the number one on our list. It’s a mid-price range laptop with good memory, CPU, display, battery life, and it has a backlit keyboard. If you want a reasonably priced, powerful laptop, this is the one to go with.
Premium Pick: Apple MacBook Pro
- The MacBook Pro is the most expensive on our list. It’s also in the top thanks to its large memory space, fast CPU, the incredible Retina display, and the backlit keyboard with the option to adjust the brightness. If you can and want to splurge on a laptop, we highly recommend you go with this one.
Budget-Friendly Option: Acer Aspire 5 Slim Laptop
- Acer Aspire 5 Slim is surprisingly budget-friendly. It has a sleek and elegant design, with enough memory to support simpler tasks and watching movies, and a useful backlit keyboard. It’s unlikely you’ll find a better choice in this price range.