In the lab: HyperX's Alloy FPS mechanical gaming keyboard

HyperX started as a line of high-performance memory modules all the way back in 2002, and it's blossomed into a gaming company with a full line of peripherals including gaming headsets, mice, and keyboards. We've got one of HyperX's newest clatterboxes, the Alloy FPS mechanical gaming keyboard, in the lab to put through its paces.

HyperX pared the Alloy of all unnecessary fluff. The space between the key blocks has been winnowed down to the absolute minimum in an effort to split the difference between a full-size keyboard and one of the popular tenkeyless (TKL) models. The Alloy FPS is free of RGB LEDs. Instead, its keycaps come backlit by a constellation of Perkinje-effect-appropriate red LEDs. HyperX even got rid of the almost completely useless scroll-lock light, using its customary spot on the keyboard to indicate when the Windows Key-disabling Game Mode is activated.

HyperX didn't cut out the important stuff, though, including the buyers' choice of real-deal, accept-no-imitations Cherry MX switches. Blue, Brown, and Red options are available. I chose the Red pill in order to maximize harmony between the switches and the illumination. The switches and their circuit board are mounted to a steel frame, the top of which remains exposed.

The Alloy name might stem from the packet of faux-aluminum alternative key caps that HyperX includes in the package. The keys stand in for the 1-4 number keys and the WASD block, with a distinctive texture reminiscent of the diamond plating used for truck tool boxes and the like.

We'll assemble a heap of words and disassemble batches of binary bad guys using the AlloyX and give you the full verdict on its performance and design soon. For now, the no-nonsense Alloy is available from Newegg for a round $100.

Tip: You can use the A/Z keys to walk threads.
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