In maximum keyboard opinions, the intro provides you with the spiel on how necessary it’s to have a “gaming” keyboard to be able to play PC video games. Such keyboards emphasize the X choice of milliseconds their fancy switches will prevent on response occasions. If you’re one of the most many of us who’ve switched from rubber dome to mechanical switches, you’ll understand an obtrusive distinction in typing high quality that incessantly interprets into advanced convenience and accuracy. However, until you’re a top-level skilled gamer, chances are high that you gained’t understand a lot of a distinction for your response time—or any of the opposite attributes that gaming keyboard producers promise their merchandise will strengthen. The simplest actual benefit introduced by means of gaming keyboards is anti-ghosting.
So, now that we’ve shot this whole class within the leg, what about gaming keyboards makes them price purchasing? Their feel and appear no doubt assist. Nobody needs to turn up at a LAN birthday party toting the $20 keyboard they borrowed from an accounting division, and a few comfort options do come in useful whilst enjoying. However, such variations, and the affect they have got at the ultimate gaming enjoy, have a tendency to faded when in comparison to instrument.
Today’s gaming keyboards and mice come provided with systems that assist you to customise and give a boost to your enjoy past what a matte-black end and fancy switches can give. Of path, no longer all configuration instrument is created equivalent. Some config systems don’t be offering a lot customization. Some are simply glorified settings menus. But different systems, just like the Corsair Utility Engine (CUE), supply a nearly countless quantity of customization that in reality does give a boost to the gaming enjoy.
We’re going to take a detailed take a look at Corsair’s $119.99 Ok68 RGB, however perceive our biases stepping into. Bells and whistles are cool, however instrument will make or smash the enjoy.
When disconnected, the Corsair Ok68 RGB seems like a regular mid-range gaming keyboard, aside from the grip-textured house bar…
The keyboard is matte-black, with the Corsair emblem focused above the operate keys, and the fastened, non-braided USB cable focused in the back of the brand. To the best of the brand, you’ll discover a brightness adjustment button and Windows lock key, in addition to indicator LEDs for Num, Caps, and Scroll Lock. Keep going to achieve the quantity regulate buttons, which might be backlit, as are the media regulate buttons immediately below them. Keycaps are concave, with the symbols on each and every key (numbers and F keys integrated) etched so they enable the backlighting to polish via.
The keyboard comes with a removable, grip-textured wrist relaxation…
Unlike maximum wrist rests at this worth fluctuate, the Ok68’s isn’t magnetic. It attaches by the use of two pinchable plastic prongs that clip into the Ok68’s underside. Unlike some magnetic wrist rests, this design gained’t unintentionally detach while you bump it. On the opposite hand, it’s tough to glue or take away. The wrist relaxation is textured for gripping, nevertheless it’s nonetheless arduous plastic, making it simplest incrementally extra at ease for typing than the brink of your table.
The keyboard’s bottom is not anything fancy…
Two rubber toes connect close to the ground, and a collection of flippable toes recess on the peak. Only one peak surroundings is obtainable, so that you move both increased or flat. A chain of small holes dot the bottom of the keyboard.
Performance and Features
The Ok68 is impressively difficult. Both the pink and RGB fashions have been constructed with resistance in thoughts, incomes an IP32 certification. This implies that the Ok68 will have to be safe towards harm from water sprayed as much as 15 levels from vertical. Essentially, its spill-proof (formally an identical to rainfall of as much as 3mm in line with minute), however no longer water resistant—an invaluable function for avid gamers who experience their power beverages all through gameplay. According to Corsair’s documentation, the Ok68 has two strains of protection towards spills. A sheet of rubber silicone protects the interior spaces of the keyboard, and the keyboard’s innards function channels that redirect your beverage from necessary parts to drainage holes within the backside of the keyboard.
Under its sturdy external, we discover one of the most keyboard’s peak points of interest: Cherry MX Red switches, which function an actuation drive of 45g and an actuation level of 2.0mm…
Cherry Reds are normally most well-liked by means of FPS avid gamers for his or her fast, quiet responsiveness.
Alongside its advantageous switches, the Ok68 has 100 % anti-ghosting with complete key rollover. When a secret’s “ghosted,” the keystroke doesn’t sign up and thus is going undetected. This usually happens when a couple of keys are pressed immediately. Key rollover refers to what number of keys may also be pressed immediately and nonetheless sign up within the machine. Full key rollover permits all keys to be pressed concurrently and nonetheless be detected.
The unique Ok68 is similar to the Ok68 RGB, save for the loss of RGB backlighting and attendant Corsair Utility Engine instrument that makes the RGB lights, neatly, shine. What makes CUE so fascinating? The in depth regulate it gives customers over backlighting and macros.
Admittedly, after we downloaded CUE for the Ok68 RGB, we discovered the customized key lights a little of a ache to determine. Corsair advertises that the keyboard’s backlight colours may also be custom designed right down to the person key, and that is completely true. It’s Corsair’s implementation that’s so unintuitive. Like apparently each and every different keyboard configuration app, CUE supplies a chain of preset patterns from which customers can make a choice. All the standard faces, equivalent to “rainbow spiral” or “ripple,” are provide. Note that those elementary lights modes may also be activated and manipulated (velocity, period, and route) by the use of function-key shortcuts, although you don’t set up CUE. However, CUE supplies much more customization. For instance, you’ll layer a couple of lights results and get them organized by means of precedence. Lighting layers at the peak could be extra visually obvious than decrease layers.
While having “ripple” play over “spiral rainbow” was once cool, we nonetheless sought after to set our personal patterns. Individual key lights choices are situated within the “static color” preset. In different keyboard programs, static colour permits you to make a choice one colour for the entire keyboard. Corsair’s tackle “static color” is way more fascinating however relatively hidden. The infinitely helpful Help Text button knowledgeable us that shall we assign a colour to a key or teams of keys. We discovered that if, with colour project engaged, you click on on one key, that key takes at the decided on colour. If you click on and drag, a field seems that permits you to choose a couple of keys. From there on, it’s a easy subject of dragging your mouse over a gaggle of keys and choosing the right colour. While that is reasonably easy, it could had been helpful if the Help Text button defined totally how you can use this selection.
Now, possibly you’re like us, and also you suppose it could be cool to have WASD lit in an edgy pink whilst the vintage “rainbow spiral” endured within the background. But wait, you’ll’t simplest drag over WASD with out additionally settling on Q and E. But should you click on one key, after which click on some other, it deselects the primary key. It seems you’ll dangle the Ctrl key to choose a couple of keys by the use of click on—an excellent function that will be even higher if the instrument defined how you can use it.
With the lights options totally discovered, the chances for personalization and customized patterns are just about countless. You can remove darkness from any key you want in over 16 million colours and use the presets to fill in clean spots for your keyboard while you run out of inventive concepts. With the preliminary ambiguity of navigating the instrument’s interface out of the way in which, CUE’s lights machine delivers just about countless probabilities.
CUE has one of the vital fleshed-out macro configuration equipment round, loaded with quite a few fancy options. The macro textual content function means that you can input our bodies of textual content as one macro somewhat than having to file the person movements of each and every keystroke. This proves in particular helpful for RPG avid gamers who’d love to arrange their talents with out cluttering their macro profile. The remap key function does simply what it says. For those that desire arrow keys over WASD, remapping the arrows to operate as WASD prevents you from having to modify the regulate scheme for each and every new sport you play. Like maximum macro editors, you’ll have a couple of profiles, letting you simply transfer to another set of macros for various video games. The media release utility timer means that you can set a timer that may play a valid, permit an choice, or cause a lights impact. For example, we had a good time putting in media timers to modify our keyboard lighting to tell us when the cooldown on talents results in Overwatch.
The macro editor additionally information mouse motion, clicks, and scroll wheel motion. Our favourite use of this selection was once surroundings a macro to in no time make Team Fortress 2’s Scout carry out a handy guide a rough 180 and hearth his shotgun to take out pesky Spies making an attempt a backstab. CUE’s macro editor additionally means that you can set a double macro, this means that you’ll bind two macros to the similar key, executing each concurrently. Example: We added a complicated lights impact on our keyboard each time we used our 180-degree anti-Spy spin.
Moving on from the macro editor, the Performance tab means that you can disable sure key bindings whilst “Windows lock” is activated. The Windows lock function prevents the Windows key from getting used. Without Windows lock, you could unintentionally decrease your sport by means of urgent the Windows key while you intended to press Ctrl, which is usually the “crouch” key in lots of FPS video games. The listing of bindings that may be disabled comprises Alt + Tab, Shift + Tab, and crucial one, Alt + F4. Alt + F4 is the combo that closes your present window, so retaining that one disabled is a great concept.
If the entire above feels like a referendum on CUE somewhat than the Ok68 RGB , please needless to say, in our minds, the 2 are inextricably connected. If you simply wish to communicate concerning the , yeah—the Ok68 is a good unit. The MX Red keys are clean and at ease. Build high quality is Corsair’s standard, which means very good. Now, for $90, would we think the Ok68 to function extra fascinating options than backlighting, media keys, and a somewhat unimpressive wrist relaxation? Not essentially. For a no-name emblem seeking to achieve a foothold within the gaming keyboard marketplace, we’d be expecting to look $60 to $80 for mechanical switches with those specifications and spartan options. For a top rate call and construct like Corsair, particularly with the IP32 resilience thrown in, $90 turns out truthful.
That takes us to the Ok68 RGB. Now, we’re asking: Is the RGB lights and regulate price an additional $30? We’ve proven sufficient use circumstances above to provide you with a way for a way you could resolution that query for your self. For us, the solution broke down to 2 parts: it’s amusing to look at, and it improves the readability of our sport play. Not the efficiency —the readability of our talent to look what’s what and the place to press. More readability method fewer errors and thus higher effects. Is it a night-and-day distinction? Of path no longer. But are the ones in large part intangible advantages price $30? For many, together with us, sure.
Of path, the CUE lights customization is going hand in hand with Corsair’s macro editor. We love the timers for switching lights profiles, and that function that executes two macros with one key will have to be same old factor for each and every severe gaming keyboard. Fortunately for Corsair, it’s no longer. If Corsair simplest did a greater task with its UI and/or documentation, we might name the instrument facet of this product downright impossible to resist.
In the top, what you actually get with the Ok68 RGB is the standard of a $160-to-$170 gaming enjoy for more or less 50 greenbacks much less. If you prefer a Cherry MX Red really feel, and if the CUE utilization described right here begins you salivating, we might be arduous pressed to counsel a more sensible choice.
Our Verdict: This sturdy mechanical keyboard gives nice instrument. The customized lights is a little tough to start with, however while you determine it out, the chances are never-ending.