A backlit keyboard is a staple on most laptops, even low end ones. You’d be hard put to find a laptop model released in the past few years that doesn’t come with one. For laptops that do come with backlit keyboards, not a lot of them let you dim or turn the light off when you don’t need it. Apple gives possibly the most control over the keyboard light on a Macbook. Not only can you turn it off, you can also choose how bright or dim it is.
Keyboard Light On A MacBook
If you look closely at the function keys at the top of your keyboard, you will see that the F5 and F6 keys have something that looks like the brightness control but with a little dash instead of the the circle icon you see on the screen brightness control keys.
The F5 key decreases the brightness of the keyboard light on a MacBook. If you tap it enough times, the brightness will dim to zero, effectively turning the light off.
If you tap the F6 key, it will turn the keyboard light back on. If it’s already on, it will increase the brightness of the keyboard. In both cases, the keys will display an on-screen HUD like it does for the brightness, and volume control keys.
If you look at the backlight HUD, you will see that there are over 20 levels of brightness that you can set for the keyboard. This is control over the keyboard backlight like no other laptop model offers. Dell will let you turn the light off, as will HP. On some laptop models there might be a dim mode for the keyboard backlight but nothing more.
These keys aren’t present on all Apple keyboards. The Bluetooth keyboards that Apple sells aren’t backlit so they don’t have these keys. The backlit controls may be absent on older models of the Macbook though recent ones will probably have it.
Apple also sells a few logitech keyboards on its official website and they appear to be backlit so perhaps they have similar control buttons. It’s worth checking out if you need a good keyboard that you can use in the dark.
If you use an iMac, or a Mac Mini, you have the option to use any keyboard you want with it. If you have to work in the dark, you’re not bound by the Apple keyboards that aren’t backlit and you can instead get either a wired or wireless keyboard with a backlight. It will work just as well.