Corsair Okay70 RGB Professional overview: A traditional that’s falling behind

Corsair K70 RGB Pro review: A classic that’s falling behind

Corsair Okay70 RGB Professional

MSRP $160.00

“The Corsair Okay70 RGB Professional is a stable gaming keyboard, nevertheless it’s beginning to really feel stagnant.”

Execs

Real Cherry MX switches

Wonderful RGB lighting by means of Corsair iCue

Ample on-board space for storing

Devoted media buttons

Cons

Costly

eight,000Hz polling charge does not matter for many

Plastic wrist relaxation

The Corsair Vengeance Okay70 was the primary mechanical keyboard I ever owned. On the time, it was the uncontested champion of mainstream gaming keyboards, fitted with an aluminum body, real Cherry MX Purple switches, and both purple or blue backlighting.

Nevertheless it has been nearly 9 years since Corsair launched the Okay70, and we’ve seen numerous iterations since. Now, we’ve the Corsair Okay70 RGB Professional, introduced in time for CES 2022, which is a keyboard that takes the perfect of earlier variations and places them in a single spot.

It’s essentially an awesome keyboard as a result of it’s constructed on the bottom of probably the greatest gaming keyboards ever made. Nevertheless it additionally feels stagnant, caught up within the design language and options of years previous. It’s an enchancment over earlier variations, nevertheless it’s not the landmark product Corsair launched in 2013.

Design

Cable for the K70 RGB Pro.Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

Should you’ve seen any of the earlier Okay70 variations, you’ll have a common thought concerning the design of the Okay70 RGB Professional. It’s nonetheless constructed on a brush aluminum body with per-key RGB lighting, with the sunshine spilling out because of the flattened key mattress. This can be a design from 2013, nevertheless it nonetheless appears to be like nice in 2022.

There are some notable modifications, too. My favourite, and the one you’ll discover instantly, is the removable cable. The Okay70 RGB Professional makes use of a removable USB-C cable that matches right into a barely embedded gap within the board. The perform buttons on high of the board are flatter and pushed to the sides, and the RGB Corsair identify has been changed with Corsair’s flag brand. Subsequent to this space, you’ll additionally discover your standing indicators (caps lock, and so on.), cleansing up the highest portion of the board an awesome deal.

The place’s a pleather wrist relaxation?

I really like these modifications. However the design hasn’t improved throughout the board. The plastic wrist relaxation that has include earlier variations of the Okay70 is current once more. It’s now longer and has a slight redesign, nevertheless it nonetheless haphazardly snaps to the underside of the keyboard with magnets. The place’s a pleather wrist relaxation like Corsair’s personal Okay100 RGB gives?

The cable channels beneath the board are useful for routing, however they’re nonetheless a ache to make use of. I struggled to snap within the braided USB-C cable included within the field, which itself is stiff with chunky connectors. Even the budget-oriented Akko World Tour features a cable that doesn’t stick out of the again of the board.

Routing channels on the bottom of the K70 RGB Pro.Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

I’m nitpicking, however not only for the sake of it. At $160, Corsair is pitching a premium wired gaming keyboard with the Okay70 RGB Professional. It doesn’t really feel practically as premium because it may, taking inspiration from Okay70 fashions from years previous fairly than the place the remainder of the mechanical gaming keyboard market is at.

Though I’ve some points with the design, there’s little question that the Okay70 RGB Professional is a good trying keyboard. Corsair clearly took time to make a keyboard that’s acquainted however refined, and aesthetically, it appears to be like nice. Kind and performance meet with the Okay70 RGB Professional, however kind nonetheless takes precedence.

Options — the great things

Media buttons on the Corsair K70 RGB Pro.Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

The Okay70 RGB Professional has some beauty modifications, however most of the additions are beneath the hood. Maybe the largest distinction is the AXON processor, which permits a polling charge of eight,000Hz on the Okay70 RGB Professional. Most gaming keyboards solely attain 1,000Hz.

That’s a plus, however just for machines that meet the really helpful spec. Sure, this gaming keyboard has its personal really helpful specs. For eight,000Hz, you’ll want a Ninth-gen Intel i7 or 2nd-gen AMD Ryzen 7, or newer. The keyboard nonetheless works with older CPUs, however you’ll be locked to a decrease polling charge (2,000Hz you probably have lower than an i5 or Ryzen 5 from the above generations).

Corsair bought the options proper years in the past.

One among my favourite options is the match change. Corsair launched this characteristic with the Okay70 RGB TKL, and I’m completely satisfied to see it current right here. Flipping the change disables customized actions and macros, modifications the backlighting to a static shade, and disables profiles. It’s a pleasant characteristic to have round if you end up in aggressive settings, although I think about most customers will depart it turned off.

As is the case with different Corsair peripherals, the Okay70 RGB Professional gives per-key RGB lighting, macros, and as much as 50 on-board profiles, all enabled by Corsair iCue. I’ll discuss extra about iCue in a later part, however spoiler alert: It’s actually good.

In any other case, the keyboard is similar as earlier fashions, which isn’t a nasty factor. You continue to have entry to a clean steel quantity wheel, full media buttons, on-board profile choice, and a devoted Home windows Lock key. Corsair bought these options proper years in the past. There’s no cause to vary them.

Switches and gaming efficiency

Retaining with the custom of Okay70 fashions previous, the Okay70 RGB Professional options quite a lot of Cherry MX switches. You’ve got the selection between Reds, Browns, Blues, Silent Reds, or Silent Silvers, and as I do with each mechanical keyboard, I went with the Browns.

Switches on Corsair K70 RGB Pro.Jacob Roach / Digital Traits

I used to be a bit upset switching over to the Okay70 RGB Professional after utilizing the Glorius GMMK for a few months. I’d forgotten the distinct really feel of Cherry Brown switches over their Gateron counterparts, which I’ve put in in my GMMK. The Cherry switches really feel stiffer, as if mud has labored its means into the change housing.

This isn’t on Corsair. That is how Cherry Browns are, and lots of people like them this manner. For me, I’d wish to lube the switches of the Okay70 RGB Professional to get them nearer to the sleek really feel of the Gaterons.

Even when you like Cherry Browns (or the opposite switches the Okay70 RGB Professional can ship with), they expose a difficulty with the Okay70 RGB Professional. It doesn’t have hot-swappable switches. That is nonetheless principally a distinct segment characteristic, nevertheless it exhibits up on keyboards that price round $50 lower than the Okay70 RGB Professional – the Glorius GMMK, Akko 3068B, and Keychon K8, to call just a few.

There are some mainstream choices with this characteristic, too. Sizzling-swappable switches are additionally accessible on the Logitech G Professional X and Drop CTRL. This seems like a missed alternative. That is purported to be the Professional model of the Okay70 RGB, and hot-swappable switches would go an extended solution to differentiate the keyboard from rivals just like the Razer Huntsman V2.

Sizzling-swappable switches could have been a missed alternative, however don’t let that distract from the Okay70 RGB Professional’s gaming prowess. This is a superb gaming keyboard. I used it solely for gaming over the course of every week, and it felt like revisiting an previous pal. It’s snug, responsive, and the RGB lighting appears to be like nice.

You shouldn’t get too caught up within the polling charge, although. The Okay70 RGB Professional can report inputs at as much as eight,000Hz. Between the upper polling charge, enhancements in debounce delay, and enter processing time, Corsair says that it may possibly obtain latencies of lower than zero.25ms. Corsair claims that different performance-focused gaming keyboards can attain as much as 2ms of enter latency.

For most individuals, the eight,000Hz polling charge doesn’t make a distinction.

Latency makes a giant distinction in aggressive video games. However the polling charge doesn’t really feel like a defining characteristic of the Okay70 RGB Professional. The Okay70 RGB TKL and Okay100 each include the identical eight,000Hz polling charge, and the TKL mannequin might be higher fitted to aggressive settings. In the meantime, we don’t have a wi-fi model of the Okay70. Corsair lately launched the Sabre Professional Wi-fi, which is a wi-fi model of Corsair’s aggressive gaming mouse. I hoped the Okay70 RGB Professional can be an identical replace.

An eight,000Hz polling charge makes a distinction in latency, however that doesn’t matter for almost all of individuals From Halo Infinite to Future 2 to Valorant, I by no means observed the distinction between eight,000Hz and 1,000Hz. The upper polling charge appears higher fitted to mice, the place minute inputs could make the distinction.

The place eight,000Hz turns into problematic is with the system necessities. The Okay70 RGB Professional is releasing amid the worst chip scarcity we could have ever seen. Exterior of the truth that the upper polling charge doesn’t matter for everybody other than probably the most aggressive players, I’d wager that lots of players don’t have the required hardware to make use of it. You possibly can all the time default to 1,000Hz, however then you definitely’re losing cash.

Software program makes the distinction

Corsair K70 RGB Pro in iCue software.

Because it normally does, software program makes the distinction for the Okay70 RGB Professional. If Corsair didn’t have iCue, I’d give the Okay70 RGB Professional a decrease rating. It’s straightforward to complain concerning the lack of hot-swappable switches, the cheaper-feeling wrist relaxation, and the dearth of wi-fi. However keyboards that provide these options for a similar or much less normally include horrible software program.

iCue isn’t solely good, it’s the perfect peripheral software program accessible. I don’t even use Corsair peripherals with my private rig, however I nonetheless use iCue to regulate my fan, GPU, and motherboard lighting.

Lighting is the primary draw. iCue has nearly an infinite variety of methods to customise your RGB on a per-key foundation, and it consists of a number of pre-baked results that look wonderful. For the Okay70 RGB Professional, specifically, you possibly can add as much as 20 lighting layers on the identical time.

I take advantage of iCue day by day even and not using a Corsair keyboard and mouse.

As with different Corsair keyboards, you possibly can remap any of the keys, and you may arrange infinitely lengthy macros. You possibly can retailer all your iCue changes into 50 onboard profiles, permitting you to take your lighting, macros, and all the things else between units with out downloading iCue.

In reality, you don’t want to make use of iCue in any respect. You possibly can nonetheless document macros and alter lighting results on the Okay70 RGB Professional, even when it’s extra limiting than utilizing the software program. Corsair has the perfect peripheral software program available on the market, nevertheless it doesn’t drive you to make use of that software program. That’s an method I can get behind.

You completely ought to use iCue, although. I take advantage of it day by day even and not using a Corsair keyboard and mouse, which ought to converse volumes about how nice it’s. It’s advanced, nevertheless it by no means sacrifices instinct for that complexity.

Our take

The Okay70 RGB Professional is a good gaming keyboard, nevertheless it’s not the landmark product Corsair launched years in the past. It mainly provides a quantity pad to the Okay70 RGB TKL, which most players don’t need. It’s not dangerous, nevertheless it’s too iterative to justify the excessive value Corsair is asking, particularly within the crowded mechanical keyboard market of 2022.

Are there any alternate options?

The Razer Huntsman V2 is probably the most direct competitor because of its eight,000Hz polling charge.

I’d additionally suggest the Corsair Okay70 RGB TKL, although. It’s as a lot as $60 cheaper, and it doesn’t have a quantity pad taking over valuable mouse area.

How lengthy will it final?

Cherry MX switches are rated for 60 million keystrokes, so the Okay70 RGB Professional may final as a lot as a decade or extra. You’ll most likely wish to improve to a brand new keyboard earlier than the switches give out.

Do you have to purchase it?

No, purchase the Corsair Okay70 RGB TKL as a substitute except you completely want a quantity pad. The Okay70 RGB Professional isn’t a nasty keyboard, nevertheless it’s not price its asking value.

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