Logitech G915 Lightspeed TKL long-term evaluation: The Magic Keyboard for gaming

Logitech G915 Lightspeed TKL long-term review: The Magic Keyboard for

Logitech G915 Lightspeed TKL long-term evaluation: The Magic Keyboard for gaming

MSRP $230.00

“The Logitech G915 TKL is an costly gaming keyboard, but it surely simply earns its value.”

Professionals

Excellent typing expertise

Vibrant RGB lighting

Quick wi-fi expertise

Lengthy battery life

Bug-free, helpful software program

Cons

Costly

Incompatible with most mechanical keyboard equipment

Logitech’s G915 is for the gamer who desires the aesthetics of Apple’s Magic Keyboard with the texture of a mechanical swap (plus dose of RGB). I’ve searched far and extensive for a keyboard that nails the appear and feel, and after scouring dozens of low-profile choices, I settled on the Logitech’s current G915 TKL.

It’s not as sturdy as a full-size board, and the pric, like a variety of Logitech peripherals, e is simply too excessive. Nonetheless, the mixture of the Lightspeed wi-fi expertise, pretty distinctive low-profile switches, and rock-solid construct make the G915 really feel prefer it earns its asking value.

It’s a keyboard that manages gaming and typing effectively, and it’s a showstopper within the visible division. Though it took some time to regulate to the low-profile keycaps and Logitech’s switches, I’ve grown to like the steadiness that the G915 presents — and after months of steady use, I’m not returning to a full-size keyboard any time quickly.

Design

Logitech G915 TKL on an orange background. Jacob Roach / Digital Developments

The Logitech G915 is on the market in two variations: Both full-size or a tenkeyless (TKL) design. I received my palms on the TKL model, which ditches the quantity pad that normally occupies the correct aspect of the board. TKL boards have gotten extra widespread over the previous few years — take the Corsair Ok70 RGB TKL, for instance — and that’s a pattern I can get behind.

A little bit further area in your desk goes a great distance in gaming, and the general slim design of the G915 TKL makes it really feel a lot smaller than it really is. Logitech sells a model with a quantity pad, however except you want one for decent keys in applications like Adobe Premiere or Professional Instruments, you must persist with the TKL mannequin.

The G915 TKL’s design is primary however stunning. It’s a slab of brushed aluminum with some keys caught to it, but it surely nonetheless manages to look higher than boards just like the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini.

There are a few the explanation why. First, the RGB lighting. Even at full brightness, the lighting simply barely spills out of the perimeters of the keys, with a lot of the mild targeted towards the highest of the keycap. Second is the restricted variety of extra buttons, which helps it stay practical with out going off the deep finish.

The G915 TKL’s design is primary however stunning.

Outdoors of the keys, you’ve entry to 4 media buttons, 4 operate buttons, and a quantity wheel. The 4 operate buttons do just a few various things. There’s a brightness button that permits you to cycle via 5 brightness ranges (together with off), in addition to a Sport Mode swap that disables the Home windows key. Via the included G-Hub software program, you should use Sport Mode to disable any keys you need.

The opposite two buttons are for inputs, both Logitech’s personal Lightspeed wi-fi expertise or Bluetooth. You may seamlessly swap between Lightspeed and Bluetooth on the contact of a button, which is an enormous win for the G915. It’s sufficiently small to make use of on the sofa with one thing just like the Nvidia Protect, and I appreciated with the ability to bounce backwards and forwards with out reconnecting dongles or fussing round with pairing.

Function buttons on Logitech G915 TKL.Jacob Roach / Digital Developments

Logitech sells a model of the G915 with a wire (known as the G815), but it surely’s solely barely cheaper than the wi-fi model. Wi-fi peripherals have gotten loads higher over the past a number of years, and Lightspeed is a showcase of that. It’s not possible to inform the distinction between wired and wi-fi, even in twitchy shooters like Counter-Strike: International Offensive. 

The quantity wheel feels nice. It’s steel and offers clean adjustment over the sting of the board, making fast quantity modifications a breeze. I simply want that high quality carried over into the media and performance buttons. They’re manufactured from a comfortable rubber materials and really feel mushy to the contact. I by no means missed an enter whereas utilizing them, however they nonetheless don’t really feel nice.

Along with the keyboard, you additionally get a Logitech-branded micro USB cable, the Lightspeed USB receiver, and a USB vary extender within the field. Critically, the G915 TKL is lacking a wrist relaxation, which is hard to swallow at $230. I didn’t miss a wrist relaxation whereas utilizing the G915, although.

I take advantage of a desk mat for my keyboard and mouse. Given the G915’s slim type — it’s solely zero.9 inches tall — my wrists comfortably relaxation on my desk mat with no need to bend upward. That’s nice in my state of affairs, but it surely’s not very best when you don’t have a desk mat. Slim wrist rests are solely about $15, so it it might’ve been good to see one within the field.

Switches and efficiency

Switches on Logitech G915 TKL keyboard.Jacob Roach / Digital Developments

I desire a standard Brown swap for typing, because it presents the tactile suggestions of a Blue swap with out the annoying click on. The G915 TKL doesn’t use a Cherry MX mechanical swap or one in every of its derivatives, however fairly one in every of Logitech’s GL switches that approximate the texture of a full-size Cherry swap.

There are three choices out there: Clicky, Tactile, or Linear, which approximate a Cherry MX Blue, Brown, or Crimson swap, respectively. I settled on the Tactile swap for a steadiness between my day-to-day writing duties and gaming. Though Cherry makes some low-profile switches, it doesn’t make a Brown variant, making the Tactile swap an ideal match for my functions.

I’ve at all times struggled between balancing writing and gaming, and the Tactile swap makes compromises I can stay with. It’s not as nice to sort on as a full-size Brown swap, and the gaming expertise doesn’t get close to approximating a Crimson swap. However the steadiness between the 2 is superb. Gaming feels higher because of the decreased journey distance, and writing nonetheless feels tactile.

The thinner profile took some time to get used to, although. The G915 itself is angled, however the keys stay on a flat airplane. That will increase the probability of accidently slipping up or down a row whereas typing or gaming, which I discovered myself doing usually after I first picked up the G915 TKL. Fortunately, after a few weeks utilizing the keyboard, I received used to the marginally completely different typing expertise.

Profile of the Logitech G915 TKL keyboard.Jacob Roach / Digital Developments

Though the Tactile swap will get near a Cherry MX Brown, it’s not a precise copy. Logitech’s swap has an actuation distance of 1.5mm whereas a full-size swap has a distance of 2mm. In case you bottom-out the important thing, Logitech’s swap can journey as much as 2.7mm whereas a full-size swap can journey 4mm.

The bigger distinction is available in pressure. The Logitech Tactile swap requires 60 grams of pressure to achieve the tactile level, whereas a Cherry MX Brown is just a little lighter at 55 grams. It’s a small change, however the further little bit of stress makes a distinction in a low-profile design. The additional pressure makes the Tactile swap really feel nearer to a full-size swap, regardless of a a lot smaller journey distance.

Logitech’s switches maintain up effectively in opposition to the Cherry competitors.

Though the swap carries Logitech’s GL branding, it really comes from Kailh’s Choc sequence. There are only some keyboards that include these switches, and no choices that I may discover from main manufacturers. There are extra boutique boards just like the Morgrie RKB 68 that use them, nevertheless, and that board is cheaper than the G915 TKL.

Nonetheless, the G915’s switches carry a compromise. They’re not good for gaming, they usually’re not good for typing, however they do each effectively sufficient to earn their preserve. So long as you’re prepared to regulate to a barely altered typing expertise, Logitech’s switches maintain up effectively in opposition to the Cherry competitors.

Sadly, these are nonetheless Logitech switches, and like earlier designs, they aren’t appropriate with different keycaps. There aren’t a ton of low-profile keycaps proper now, however it might have been good to see extra common help when extra units inevitably pop up down the road.

That makes mechanical keyboards just like the Roccat Vulcan TKL and Cooler Grasp SK630 just a little extra engaging — particularly with how low cost they’re in comparison with the G915. Each of those keyboards use the usual cross for Cherry switches, making keycap swaps a breeze.

G-Hub software program

I don’t mess with bundled keyboard software program a lot. Normally, I set the lighting I need and let the software program quietly eat up system assets within the background. Logitech’s G-Hub is completely different. It’s practical, straightforward to make use of, and — critically — freed from bugs. That is the way you do peripheral software program.

Animation panel in Logitech G-Hub.

Lighting breaks down into three classes: Presets, freestyle, and animations. Presets offer you entry to straightforward RGB results like respiratory and a colour wave, Freestyle enables you to paint colours on any key you need, and animations allow you to create a series of distinctive modifications between colours.

Though there are different items of software program with extra choices — Corsair iCUE, specifically — G-Hub nonetheless presents degree of customization. It’s straightforward to make use of for somebody who desires to set and overlook RGB, whereas nonetheless providing some completely different results and animations. You may even arrange the lighting to match no matter’s in your display or to operate like an audio visualizer.

You may as well routinely sync the G915 with different Lightsync merchandise from Logitech, in addition to use particular lighting results in supported video games. You may see your ammo bar in Borderlands three, for instance, in addition to instantly view your important keys in Ultimate Fantasy XIV. Solely a small variety of video games are supported, but it surely was a pleasant deal with every time I booted up a supported title.

Lighting is what will get you into G-Hub, however that’s not what’s going to preserve you there. You may remap any key, arrange macros, and map system features like copy and paste. That’s nothing out of the unusual for a gaming keyboard, however G-Hub makes mapping macros really feel easy. You may rapidly drag features like Alt + Tab to a operate button from a pool, in addition to modulate between instructions and macros with an optionally available G-Shift button.

Macro panel in Logitech G-Hub.

After getting the whole lot arrange the best way you want, you may retailer three macro and two lighting profiles on board and cycle via them with a key you choose (the primary 4 operate keys by default).

Lastly, you may view your battery degree in G-Hub, in addition to your remaining battery life. Logitech charges the G915 TKL for 40 hours of use at 100% brightness (30 hours for the full-size model), however you’ll get far more than that. The keyboard routinely enters a relaxation mode after some time, saving your battery life once you’re away out of your desk.

I’ve used the G915 TKL at 50% brightness for months, and with semicontinuous use for 10 to 12 hours a day, I normally must prime up the battery each couple of weeks. That point shrinks considerably at full brightness, however the keys nonetheless put out loads of mild on the decrease brightness ranges whereas saving you a variety of battery life.

The G915 makes use of a Micro USB cable for charging, and you may proceed utilizing the keyboard whereas it’s topping up. Though Logitech features a Micro USB cable within the field, I’d’ve preferred to see USB-C for charging. In my case, not less than, USB-C has change into the usual throughout all of my gadgets, so I can rapidly swap in a brand new cable every time I inevitably lose the one which got here within the field. With the G915 TKL, I’ve to dig via a pile of three-foot micro USB cables to search out one that can really stretch to the port.

That’s a little bit of a testomony to the G915, although — I cost it so sometimes that I don’t preserve a devoted cable on my desk. Nonetheless, USB-C isn’t too massive of an ask for a $230 keyboard, particularly one which’s nonetheless pretty new.

Our take

The Logitech G915 TKL is simply too costly in comparison with different keyboards that present the identical or the same low-profile expertise. Nevertheless, the mixture of wi-fi connectivity, helpful media and performance buttons, a strong construct, and bug-free software program make the G915 TKL earn its asking value.

It strikes a steadiness between typing and gaming that I get pleasure from, and it appears to be like unbelievable sitting on my desk. Adjusting to the low-profile switches takes a while, however I’ve by no means felt the necessity to return to a full-size switches in my many months of utilizing the G915 TKL.

The draw back is that, like different Logitech peripherals, you don’t have choices for third-party equipment. As somebody who likes swapping out keycaps and experimenting with completely different switches, I do know the G915 TKL will, in some unspecified time in the future, relaxation in my keyboard graveyard. It hasn’t made its method there but, nevertheless, and that’s signal.

Are there any alternate options?

Sure, however not loads. The Roccat Vulcan TKL and Cooler Grasp Cooler Grasp SK630 are each cheaper low-profile alternate options, although they lack wi-fi and use completely different switches. The G915 is pretty distinctive with its mixture of switches and wi-fi expertise, however there are boutique choices that use the identical switches with a wire.

How lengthy will it final?

Logitech’s GL switches are rated for 5o million actuations. After all, the variety of actuations is dependent upon how usually you utilize your keyboard. Assuming common use, the G915 will final a number of a long time, and even then, it would nonetheless have just a little life.

Do you have to purchase it?

Sure, however search for it on sale. The G915 has some apparent oversights, and it’s incompatible with most mechanical keyboard equipment. It’s a unbelievable low-profile choice, however Logitech is ready to cost a excessive value given how few true opponents it has on this class.

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