Corsair’s Vengeance K60 and K90 mechanical keyboards

Wow, it’s been a long time since I sat down to review a mechanical keyboard. Just over three years, in fact. The last clicky keyboard I looked at was the ABS M1, which was a fantastic bargain… right before it mysteriously disappeared from e-tail listings in late 2009.

Things took a turn after that. Enthralled by the snappy chiclet keys on my MacBook, I grabbed one of Apple’s full-sized aluminum desktop keyboards. My interest in mechanical key switches promptly plummeted. Somehow, the Apple contraption took some of the things I loved about mechanical designs—crisp tactile feedback and a sturdy, no-nonsense layout—and combined them with a very short actuation distance and quiet operation. I was hooked. Still am.

While I was caressing those milky white Apple keys, mechanical keyboards grew in popularity among geeks and gamers. Most enthusiast-focused PC hardware vendors worth their salt started to offer products along these lines, typically with Cherry MX switches and price tags upward of $100. If you’d predicted that outcome to my IBM Model M-toting self five or six years ago, he wouldn’t have believed you. The pleasures of mechanical keyboards were known only to a select few back then. But today, the release of a non-mechanical keyboard from an enthusiast hardware vendor has become noteworthy in itself.

This new breed of mechanical keyboard is pretty much the antithesis of the Model M, though. Where IBM’s buckling springs trumpet each actuation with tactile and acoustic feedback, most of the gamer-friendly mechanical keyboards out there have non-tactile, non-clicky Cherry MX black switches, which seem prized largely for their rapid actuation in games. Typing comfort, it seems, has taken a back seat. As a writer, I’m not all that thrilled with this development.

There is a silver lining of hope for those who type more than they game, though: another type of key-switch, forged from the same non-tactile non-clickiness as the Cherry MX blacks, but with much less springy springs that beckon typists rather than repel them. This key-switch design has substantially reduced actuation force, which in turn reduces muscle fatigue, yet it retains the linear response curve so loved (or so I’m told) by gamers.

I’m talking, of course, about Cherry’s MX red switches.

Today, we’re going to be looking at a pair of keyboards from the fine folks at Corsair. Both of those keyboards feature MX red switches, and both of them do it in style, hoisting the reds on brushed aluminum bases and accompanying them with macro keys, custom palm rests, audio volume wheels, and more.

The switches

Before we study the keyboards themselves, I feel compelled to ramble on for a little while about key-switch designs and their various pros and cons. So, what is it that makes Cherry MX red switches different from their siblings?

Switch type Actuation

force

Bottom-out

force

Feedback Clicky Target market
MX blue 50 g 65 g Tactile Yes Typing
MX brown 45 g 60 g Tactile No Gaming/typing hybrid
MX black 60 g 80 g Linear No Gaming
MX red 45 g 60 g Linear No Gaming

In the table above, “tactile” feedback refers to the presence of a bump in the feedback curve. In layman’s terms, that means as you push down, your finger is going to feel resistance increase, and then the key will suddenly give way. You’ll feel a sort of jolt, and that jolt will tell you the key-switch has been actuated. The jolt is sometimes accompanied by a click (as with MX blue and IBM buckling spring designs) and sometimes isn’t (as with MX brown switches).

True to their descriptor, linear switches like the red and black Cherry MX have linear feedback curves. There’s no bump, and there’s no click, either. Your finger just meets increased resistance the further down you go, and the key-switch actuates somewhere along the way. The only feedback is when something happens on the screen. The following response graphs from Cherry illustrate the difference very well:

Response curves for MX black and brown switches, respectively. Source: Cherry.

MX red switches should have the same feedback curve as in the left graph, but lower along the Y axis, since they require only 45 grams of force to actuate. In a nutshell, MX red switches don’t give you the same satisfying tactile and acoustic feedback as old-school clicky keyboards—or even more modern ones. The only click you hear is from the keys bottoming out. Nevertheless, the reds require no more force to actuate than MX brown switches, which are notoriously soft, so typing should feel fairly effortless.

The old-school IBM Model M’s buckling spring switches, in case you’re wondering, should require around 65 g of force to actuate. They’re both tactile and clicky.

Now, there’s a lot more to keyboards than their switches alone, of course. The sturdiness of the frame, the key layout, and the quality of add-ons like media keys can make or break a keyboard just as much as its key-switches can. Still, with both of Corsair’s Vengeance keyboards, the Cherry MX reds are going to be central to the experience, and we’re curious to find out whether they really blend typing comfort and gaming responsiveness.

Corsair’s Vengeance K60

The K60 is the cheaper of Corsair’s two Vengeance keyboards. You can nab it at Newegg for $109.99, although it seems to collect discounts and rebates on a regular basis. Right now, for example, Newegg offers a 20%-off promo code and a $20 mail-in rebate. Even if you account for the $8.50 shipping fee, you may be in for a substantial discount. Those lucky enough to take advantage of both offers before they expire may only end up shelling out $76.49 for the device.

That’s a steal considering the K60’s rather impressive build quality. All of its key-switches hover over a thick, brushed-aluminum frame, with gaps of about 6 mm between the frame and the bottom of each key cap. The appeal of that design should be obvious. Cleaning dust bunnies, hair, and crumbs out of a regular keyboard usually involves popping off the key caps one by one, but with the K60, a few well-placed jets of compressed should do the trick. Heck, you might be able to get away with just tilting the keyboard on its side and letting debris slide free.

Wrapped around the metal frame is a plastic base, which has little flaps at the front and back for height adjustment. You’ll find a USB port at the rear, too. Part of me wishes Corsair had put the port on the side to make it easier to reach. However, the company had the wisdom to put the port on an embossed piece of plastic that’s very easy to locate by touch alone. No need to turn the keyboard around to find it.

A few inches to the side is the K60’s thick, braided USB cord, which is hard-wired into the base and splits off at the end into two plugs: one for the keyboard itself and one for the extra port. The cable is about 6.5 feet long—kind of a lot, especially considering how rigid the cord is. When it comes to keyboards, though, too much cable length is undoubtedly better than too little.

 

Surprisingly, not all of the K60’s key-switches are MX reds. Well, almost all of them are, but the top row (from Esc to Pause/Break) and the paging block all have the same kind of rubber-dome switches found on el-cheapo Dell keyboards and the like. You might not notice when gaming or typing, but it can be unsettling in some situations, like when you’re writing a message and happen to hit the Del key. Your finger expects precise mechanical feedback but encounters mushy rubberiness instead. Yuck.

Speaking of mechanical feedback, how does typing on the K60’s Cherry MX reds feel?

I think “satisfying” is the most accurate adjective. The red switches feel great, with a very light touch and great accuracy. I still believe the lack of tactile and acoustic feedback is unfortunate—compared to the venerable Model M, the linear response gives keys a sort of bouncy feel, since the actuation point is hidden somewhere in the feedback curve instead of being clearly delineated by a click and a tactile jolt. Still, the Cherry MX reds feel less bouncy than the tactile, non-clicky Alps replica switches on the ABS M1, so they’re not the worst in that respect.

Corsair’s decision to lay the key-switches bare on an aluminum base has some merits, too, because it seems to reduce noise and resonance. The click-clacking of keys is much sharper and less hollow than on other mechanical designs I’ve played with, and I can detect none of the faint ringing that follows rapid rattling sessions on both the ABS M1 and (to a much greater extent) the Das Keyboard. Compared to those offerings, typing on the K60 has an almost surgical feel. The metal base also makes the keyboard seem and harder to shift accidentally, even though the device is technically lighter than the ABS M1 by a few ounces.

I tried the K60 in games, as well, and the Cherry MX reds definitely have some merit there. I’m not the twitchiest kind of gamer in first-person shooters, but in TrackMania 2, a racing game designed to be played with the arrow keys, the difference is palpable. It’s just much easier to make minute corrections, since there’s no increase in resistance or very much travel in the way of each actuation. The K60 feels even more precise in that game than my Apple aluminum keyboard, which has a shorter key travel distance.

Unlike some of the more bare-bones mechanical keyboards out there, like the Model M and Filco-derived offerings, the Vengeance K60 provides the comfort of media buttons. Corsair has gone the extra mile there, offering not only the usual assortment of stop, back, play/pause, and forward buttons, but also a mute button and a completely awesome little volume scroll wheel. The wheel is made of textured aluminum and feels very precise, a bit like the volume knob on an expensive stereo.

For someone like me who games with headphones plugged right into a sound card, the volume control wheel is a godsend. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to Alt-Tab out of a game to raise or lower the volume. Yes, I know I could probably set up some keyboard shortcut application to take care of that. I could even buy a headphone amp. But having a dedicated control on the keyboard is a lovely, hassle-free alternative.

Another nice addition is that little round button you see above the Scroll Lock key. Pressing it will disable the keyboard’s Windows keys, so you can game away without worrying that an accidental keystroke might toss you back to the Windows desktop. A little blue LED lights up behind the button when the lock feature is enabled.

The K60 has even more goodies in its bag of tricks. Oh, yes. Corsair ships it with a little palm rest that snaps in right under the WASD keys. Inside the palm rest are red key caps with sloped and textured tops designed specifically for gaming. As you can see in the image above, the W key cap is sloped downward, while the A and D key caps slope to the right and to the left, respectively. The 1 and 6 keys are also sloped. Corsair includes a key puller to make key cap substitution relatively painless.

Now, I hate to be a killjoy, but those add-ons just seem unnecessary. The slope of the WASD caps doesn’t really match the way I position my fingers, so the A key feels higher up than the rest, which is a little awkward. To make matters worse, the palm rest isn’t completely steady, so it makes the keyboard feel less precise when gaming. After trying both setups, I found that the standard black keycaps simply felt better and more comfortable in games. Sorry, Corsair. Maybe some users will love the red key caps, but I think they’re just inconvenient—especially when you’re trying to type and they get in the way. The same goes for the mini-palm rest.

Corsair’s Vengeance K90

The K90 is the higher-end of the two Vengeance keyboards. It costs $20 more than the K60 at Newegg (though, right now, it can benefit from similar discounts), and Corsair pegs it as an ideal solution for avid fans of massively multiplayer and real-time strategy games. The main differentiator is the K90’s array of macro keys: 18 of them in total, all placed along the left edge of the keyboard.

Corsair has also swapped out some bells and whistles. There are no red key caps or WASD wrist rest, but the K90 has a cool blue blacklight, and it ships with a palm rest that covers the whole length of the keyboard. On paper, the full-length palm rest seems like something Corsair should have offered with the K60. In practice, though… Well, Corsair made the thing too steep. Palm rests are supposed to prop up your wrists securely so keys are easier to tackle, but this one just doesn’t do that. At all. The angle of attack is more or less the same, but it feels like you’re fighting gravity to keep your wrists from sliding down and away. Good idea, very poor execution.

I like the backlight, though. It looks cool, and Corsair lets you toggle between three brightness levels or switch the thing off entirely, via a button next to the Windows key lock.

Disappointingly, the K90 uses rubber-dome switches in the same places as the K60 (top row, from Esc to Pause/Break, and the paging block) as well as in the macro keys (more on those in a minute). The company has also added little clear rubber dampers or stops to each red Cherry MX keyswitch. I’m not sure why. They make the keyboard quieter, but they also make the bottoming-out of each keyswitch feel less crisp and distinct. It seems like a step in the wrong direction—toward the ugly mushiness of silicone switches, rather than toward the clicky precision of the Model M and its tactile descendants.

I don’t play MMOs or RTS games, so I didn’t have much use for the Vengeance K90’s macro functionality. I can certainly appreciate what Corsair has done here, though.

There are 18 macro keys and four special macro buttons: MR, M1, M2, and M3. The MR button lets you record a macro, even when the keyboard’s control panel software isn’t running. Just press MR, press one of the G macro keys, and enter the keystroke you want repeated. Press MR again, and boom, your macro is saved and usable.

The M1, M2, and M3 buttons effectively triple the number of macros at your disposal. A macro saved on a given G key is tied to the M button selected during recording. Press a different M button, and you can assign a completely different macro to the same G key. I suppose you could say this scheme is like having three virtual pages of macros laid out along one physical set of buttons.

The control panel software takes some getting used to, but it augments the hardware functionality. You can adjust delays, set macros to repeat, and call special commands like launching a given program, saving, or locking your PC. The software also lets you export individual macro configs as XML files, which is no doubt handy if you’re ever going to switch computers or use a different K90. Quite nifty.

Conclusions

Considering the Vengeance K60 and K90 are Corsair’s first keyboards, I think the company deserves a lot of credit. These are fantastic products, and the K60 in particular feels a lot more polished than entry-level mechanical keyboards in the same price range. The only real tradeoff is those rubber-dome switches along the top row and paging block, but frankly, those don’t bother me much. They’re a minor inconvenience, if that. I do wish Corsair did offer a more expensive option with 100% mechanical switches, though.

The K90 is somewhat less impressive than the K60. Those nifty macro keys may justify the higher price tag, but why couldn’t Corsair include the same add-ons as with the K60? Even if I didn’t like those personally, it seems odd to have a flagship offering lacking some of the features of its lower-end sibling. Also, I was disappointed when I found out that the K90 uses rubber-dome switches for not just the top row and paging block, but also for all of its macro keys. Twitch response may come in handy with some macros, and silicone domes are ill-prepared for that task.

Those are but minor nitpicks, though. My only real beef with the Vengeance K60 and K90 has to do with the bundled palm rests. The K60’s WASD palmrest wiggles too much to be of any use, and it’s entirely useless—a hindrance, even—when typing. Meanwhile, the K90’s full-length palm rest is too steep and, for that reason, equally impractical.

I really, really wish both keyboards came bundled with a full-length, ergonomically sound palm rest; it would make typing considerably more comfortable, and what does the WASD palm rest do that a full-length one couldn’t? Typing with one’s wrists straight helps ward off injuries like RSI and carpal tunnel syndrome, and it’s a shame Corsair doesn’t have users’ backs there.

Having said that, I think the K60 is worthy of TR’s Recommended award. It’s one good palm rest (and perhaps some more mechanical switches) away from being Editor’s Choice material, but I’d choose it over competing, Cherry MX black-based designs any day of the week. The relatively low price and the discounts it seems to attract on a regular basis are just icing on the cake.

Comments closed
    • rjseo1
    • 8 years ago
    • rjseo
    • 8 years ago
    • tater2sacks
    • 8 years ago

    Would love to Win a k-90
    How?
    “Join us as we rattle away on the lovely mechanical keyswitches of Corsair’s aluminum-clad Vengeance K60 and K90 keyboards.”

    • merryjohn
    • 8 years ago
    • rimsha
    • 8 years ago
    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 8 years ago

    Macro keys are probably one of the coolest most powerful toys a keyboard can pack beyond basic functionality. The annoying thing is you’ll never use them if you don’t spend enough time in front of that computer. The ability to copy macro’s between keyboards is huge since you can setup one board and copy to another, if you use a keyboard at work and home.

    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 8 years ago

    Macro keys, not mechanical and not back lit… WTF? Seriously silly omissions that dilute the relevance of many design elements. The absence of mechanical keys for the top row and the fact that the macro keys are not mounted on the aluminum frame, the palm rest etc. its like what are you guys thinking.

    If they only sold it as a mechanical keyboard with back lighting all mechanical Cherry MX black keys except for the media keys(dome is fine) and back lighting. BAM! I’d pay 150. Adding poorly realized gimmicks the fill out your desktop etc. or waste your time/money is annoying.

    • clone
    • 8 years ago

    so about 8 years ago I bought this Microsoft ergonomics board for $6.99 and the letters are worn off it, it’s probably got a colony living under the keys as it’s never been blown with a can of compressed air and when the sunlight hits it right you see the shiny on top of the “gaming keys” because they get used the most.

    I’m not saying this because it was a fantastic deal, $6.99 was better than some out in the wild but it wasn’t the absolute best deal and even after 8 years all of the keys work.

    I just don’t see the value in a $100 keyboard… that’ s an SSD, it’s 16 gb’s of ram, it’s the extra $100 for that $32gb kit you always wanted, it’s the $100 for better video, it’s……. got so many other places it can go and serve better.

    nostalgia makes for bad purchasing decisions I guess.

      • just brew it!
      • 8 years ago

      [quote<]I just don't see the value in a $100 keyboard... that' s an SSD, it's 16 gb's of ram, it's the extra $100 for that $32gb kit you always wanted, it's the $100 for better video, it's....... got so many other places it can go and serve better. nostalgia makes for bad purchasing decisions I guess.[/quote<] Some of us just care what our keyboards feel like more than others, and have different priorities.

      • merryjohn1
      • 8 years ago
    • TheBob!
    • 8 years ago

    I have asked before and google searched and can’t find the answer. What keys are mechanical and which ones are rubber dome?
    I saw someone saying keys like shift, spacebar, ctrl, and so on are rubber dome. That would kill this keyboard for me. Some of my most often used keys.

    I currently use the ABS M1 and like it a lot. I care very little to buy a keyboard that has random rubber dome keys and not know which ones are. If it’s function keys fine, but if it’s the list above deal breaker.

      • JohnC
      • 8 years ago

      The “cost cutting” rubber dome keys are all of the “F”-keys (F1-F12), the “PrintScn”, “Scroll Lock”, “Pause”, “Insert”, “Home”, “Delete”, “End”, “Page Up” and “Page Down” keys. Plus all of the programmable macro keys on K90 model. The rest are mechanical.

    • just brew it!
    • 8 years ago

    Haha, they stole my idea! For a couple of years now, I’ve had one of [url=http://www.radioshack.com/product/index.jsp?productId=2102975<]these[/url<] attached to the side of my keyboard with double-sided foam tape, to plug my headphones into!

    • Meadows
    • 8 years ago

    [quote<]but with the K60, a few well-placed jets of compressed should do the trick.[/quote<] Cyril, you never disappoint. Where can I purchase a can of [i<]compressed should[/i<]? 🙂

    • DarkUltra
    • 8 years ago

    I hope you’ll review more flat keyboards. I prefer the flat and quiet laptop style keyboards like the Logitech Illuminated Keyboard. I would have bought that one if it didn’t have problems with simultaneous keypresses.

    [url<]http://forums.logitech.com/t5/Keyboards-and-Keyboard-Mice/BEWARE-Logitech-Illuminated-Keyboard/td-p/509008[/url<] My current keyboard is the PSK-5000, but after seven years its buttons are less tactile. I also miss a Norwegian layout. [url<]http://www.pstc.com.tw/homepage/WiredSlim.htm[/url<]

      • KorruptioN
      • 8 years ago

      I love my Illuminated Keyboard… but this is a problem for me as well. Fortunately, my style of gameplay means this is not a really big deal. Still, a highly recommended keyboard if you can keep the above in mind.

    • Arclight
    • 8 years ago

    If these keyboards are oriented towards gamers, why do they keep putting the damn numpad? What gamers uses it or enjoys the extra length of the keyboard robbing you of mouse space?

    Am i the only one here troubled by this?

      • HisDivineOrder
      • 8 years ago

      A lot of use the numpad for… things that do not involve gaming. Keyboards are not gaming controllers. They are multipurpose. Hell, half this review talked about using the Cherry keys to “type.” Typing being something you do more often when you’re doing things other than gaming…

      • JohnC
      • 8 years ago

      I do like numpad on my keyboard, I always did. I don’t use my PC as a “gaming console”, I do other things as well, including typing text and numbers into various programs, and it is much more convenient for me to use numpad for that. As for increased size – I have a large desk space, the size of the keyboard is a no issue for me. Don’t judge all of the people by yourself and stop asking these idiotic questions.

      • Decelerate
      • 8 years ago

      I have a tenkeyless (no numpad) and I for one miss it…

      • kamikaziechameleon
      • 8 years ago

      I’ve never found real use for the num pad.

    • d0g_p00p
    • 8 years ago

    I use a SteelSeries 6Gv2 at home for all my gaming and a Happy Hacking keyboard at work. I actually used the Z-Board that I won from a giveaway from here years ago as my main keyboard and I loved it. No fancy switches or anything but I took the keyboard and the various templates it came with and built a custom keyboard for myself. I loved that thing.

    I personally love basic keyboards I don’t need LED’s, macro keys or anything like that. The volume +/- is always nice as well as the option to disable the Windows key but again I like simple keyboards that are built sturdy and you can brain someone with if need be.

    • Tony Neville
    • 8 years ago

    I wanted to try out a mechanical keyboard after reading so much praise about them and so I splashed out on a K90. The key presses on the K90 feel quite different but I can’t say whether the experience is better nor worse than when using a Sidewinder X4. Maybe it’s just me. I lack any discerning taste when it comes to beer and this might extend to keyboard ergonomics, too. The blue LEDs under the keys are not centered so that while the top character of all the dual character keys is bright, the bottom character is poorly lit. In fact, these characters have the level of brightness of the non-mechanical keys which, incidentally, have white LEDs. I wear headphones when gaming so I can’t hear the clickity-clack noise above the bang bang bang ratatatatatatat ka-bOOOm gurgle-gurgle-gurgle uggh sounds of war and I’m oddly not bothered by it while typing. The volume roller is such a brilliantly well designed concept that the roller instinctively becomes the first port of call for changing the volume in hardly anytime at all. The stuff I dislike: There’s no audio when my headphones are plugged into the keyboard’s USB socket even though storage devices work fine. The Windows key disable button’s back-light will survive a reboot while Windows key disable activation does not. Oh, and Corsair’s quality control. My first K90 arrived with a dead LED under the ‘4/$’ key. My current K90 became unusable one day when after booting into windows a bunch of keys became disabled. It was out of the blue. The issue disappeared when I re-attached the keyboard the following day. I have a hunch that it might be very sensitive to noise or low voltage spikes through the USB port but there’s no way I can be sure.

    • BoBzeBuilder
    • 8 years ago

    Great review. I walked into our local NCIX shop to test the K60 and K90 keyboards. I didn’t really like them, walked out with a Razer Blackwidow to replace my $10 Microsoft keyboard. Now I need to find a good palm rest for it.

      • End User
      • 8 years ago

      Holy smokes. I just came back from the Markham NCIX and tried them out at the display they had set up.

      I’ve been keyboard crazy for a while now. I just finished up some spring cleaning and I donated a bunch of gaming keyboards that I no longer use. I now look for minimalist short travel keyboards. At the moment I am using Apple keyboards on all my PC’s.

    • kamikaziechameleon
    • 8 years ago

    As a designer I was immediately attracted to these keyboards. I am however let down by some of the very uneven production on it. The addition of dedicated media keys goes a long ways for me though as the flipping function option for my Razor BWU drives me insane. I’m considering doing as other have posted and trying out one from Best Buy.

    Edit:-1 oh yeah!

    • anotherengineer
    • 8 years ago

    Cyril

    When are you going to do a review of one of these with the Cherry Browns????

    [url<]https://secure.trulyergonomic.com/index.php[/url<]

      • derFunkenstein
      • 8 years ago

      The fact they’re backordered probably makes it hard to get a review sample.

      Nice looking keyboard, but no 10-key = no sale for me.

    • Duck
    • 8 years ago

    Any chance of getting a Microsoft arc keyboard for review? I’ve heard it compares very favorably to the Apple wireless keyboard.

      • kamikaziechameleon
      • 8 years ago

      The keyboard is great. I love it. No complaints its ergonomic good looking and feels good. One of the only glossy things I’ve held that doesn’t seem to smudge ridiculously and the finish on the keys plus the feedback/actuation is great for what it is. I use mine with the blasted horrible arc mouse for my HT setup. horrid mouse, awesome keyboard. If you goof around with it at a BB and don’t find anything you don’t like grab it, its a quality product.

    • Pantsu
    • 8 years ago

    I’ve been using the K60 since January, and there’s only a few complaints so far. The wrist rest isn’t all that useful for me, and I doubt anyone is really using it other than to hold the extra keys.

    The rubber domes on function keys doesn’t really bother me either, but it’s obviously an issue in terms of build quality. They should’ve just went all mechanical, they’ve certainly priced that way.

    Also there’s been a few times some key keeps on actuating after I release it and won’t stop until I press the key again. This happens fairly randomly and not that often, but none of my cheaper non-mechanical keyboards had this sort of issue.

    Other than that, the K60 is my favorite keyboard so far. I especially like the aluminum construction and the media keys are a must, I simply can’t live without them!

    • JohnC
    • 8 years ago

    It is amusing how Corsair still falsely advertises (and forces their retailers to advertise) this keyboard as “mechanical key”, even though not ALL of the keys are mechanical. It is also highly amusing to read on Corsair’s own blog that they went with silicone dome keys “because they couldn’t tune existing mechanical keys to specific feedback for those specific keys” even though the very obvious logical explanation for it is a simple “cost cutting” (same reason for no full-length armrest for K60 model).

      • squeeb
      • 8 years ago

      Yea, I’m not a fan of semi mechanical KBs. Sad, cause it seemed to have a good build quality, but I couldn’t get used to the gap between keys and the bottom, the back lighting was also weak imo. So it went back and I’m enjoying my Razer BWU (until it breaks at least, those reviews are concerning.)

    • Bensam123
    • 8 years ago

    I had been looking at these two keyboards for months and went out and bought a K60 from BB as soon as they came out. I ended up returning it a couple days later. I bought them specifically from BB so I could return them without a restocking fee too.

    I ended up buying the K90 specifically because the K60 does not have a backlight and it doesn’t have a wristrest. I could’ve bought a mismatched wristrest, but I decided against that. Really the wristrest should be included with all keyboards this expensive, it’s a shame it’s not included. I could honestly careless about the programmable keys on the side. I play MMOs and I’ve only ever set them up once with my G15 back when I thought they were useful. They never got used and I still don’t use them. If people want extra keys there is a whole set of them right of the arrow keys, which are almost never set to anything in games.

    Honestly I really wish they had both been made with browns. I’m not for audible feedback at all, but even as a gamer you need the tactile feedback as it offers a hover point. Where as with the tactile-less keyboards, you’re more or less left in the dark as to where the actuation point is. You end up bottoming out keys no matter what instead of hovering gracefully around the actuation point.

    Most definitely all the keys should be mechanical. While I see the logic behind making other keys non-mechanical, it doesn’t work out quite the way Corsair had planned.

    All of the keys should have backlights in both the K60 and K90 models and the arrow keys below the insert cluster need to be readjusted. They’re at different heights, I’m sure by design, but it once again didn’t work out the way Corsair had envisioned it.

    I do really enjoy my K90 though… Perhaps in a few years I’ll be able to find a very nice looking keyboard with browns on it. It’s a shame that all the gamer and non-gamer mechanical keyboards look really bland or just plain stupid.

      • just brew it!
      • 8 years ago

      [quote<]Honestly I really wish they had both been made with browns. I'm not for audible feedback at all, but even as a gamer you need the tactile feedback as it offers a hover point. Where as with the tactile-less keyboards, you're more or less left in the dark as to where the actuation point is. You end up bottoming out keys no matter what instead of hovering gracefully around the actuation point.[/quote<] Even if you're into audible feedback, Cherry Blues have a feature where the actuation point is at a noticeably lower point (on the downstroke) than the de-activation point (on the upstroke). For typing this generally isn't a problem (Cherry Blues are in fact my preferred type of keyboard), but some gamers find it annoying. Other people are bothered by the fact that the tactile/audible feedback point does not *exactly* correspond to the point at which the keystroke registers. For those people, buckling spring is probably the only viable option...

        • Bensam123
        • 8 years ago

        I don’t like audible feedback, not sure if that was a typo or not.

        All of the gamers I know in real life use rubber domes, which have feedback almost immediately when the dome pops down. With Reds, which I’m using on the k90, you still have to mash the keys as it’s really hard to find the actuation point and rock on it unless you concentrate on it quite a bit. It doesn’t have any feedback like a dome does. It’s not annoying at all, it’s almost a necessity…

        I could see it being a problem if the actuation point doesn’t coincide to when the switch trips, but I don’t imagine that happening on a cherry switch…

          • just brew it!
          • 8 years ago

          [quote<]I don't like audible feedback, not sure if that was a typo or not.[/quote<] Hence my "[i<]even[/i<] if"... [quote<]I could see it being a problem if the actuation point doesn't coincide to when the switch trips, but I don't imagine that happening on a cherry switch...[/quote<] With the blues, the de-activation point on the upstroke occurs slightly below the point at which you feel the tactile "bump" and hear the click. That's what I was referring to.

    • sli
    • 8 years ago

    I picked up the K90 a month back to give it a try. The bottom of the board is made of thin plastic, the left hand maco side of the keyboard is all plastic, not all keys are mechanical, backlighting doesn’t look even and cherry mx reds are way too over hyped.

    I have used a Razer Black Widow Ultimate in the past. Yeah the BWU get’s a bad rap, but I guess that I got a newer revision that worked fine. The BWU felt leagues better than the K90, but needless to say both boards went back and I ended up picking up a backlit Ducky with blues.

      • tay
      • 8 years ago

      Whats the difference with the MX Blue vs the Red? I was thinking of picking up a MX Red based keyboard.

      BTW TR, thanks for your keyboard reviews.

    • dpaus
    • 8 years ago

    No scatter-plot….?

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