Epomaker sent me this funky mechanical keyboard the other day and it’s the subject of my latest review.
When I was younger a mentor once guided me to never oversell once a customer is on board. And that’s my impression of this keyboard – they throw everything but the kitchen sink at users from a feature standpoint but it really excels at just being a keyboard.
The keys on this one use Epomaker’s Sea Salt Silent switches (say that three times fast) – they have a great mechanical feel with a deep 4mm of travel yet remain as silent as a membrane keyboard. They had me right there. But as any good overselling salesman says “wait, there’s more!”
The keyboard can operate wired or wirelessly supporting not only its own USB 2.4ghz dongle but also bluetooth. It’s also possible to use the keyboard with two devices by having one wired via USB and the other on a wireless connection. The keyboard has a 5000 mAh battery which should last quite awhile between charges.
And of course they have to throw in the RGB backlighting. Unfortunately the keycaps are opaque so the backlight doesn’t help identify any of the keys in a dark room. So you’ll just see the silhouette of your keys offset against the color of your choice. The keyboard will operate with one of a multitude of special effects or remain at a static color. It’s not possible to set individual colors per key.
But we’re not done yet!
The keyboard also comes with a tiny OLED display that can bolt onto the left hand side of the keyboard. It can display a static image of your choosing or animations that you can draw yourself with the included software or upload from an animated GIF file. It will also indicate the keyboard’s battery status along with CPU utilization and temperature. I found this to be as useless as the lighting system but it is a neat gimmick I haven’t seen on a keyboard before.
The driver software is a bit unintuitive especially for creating advanced macros. But it does offer similar functionality to other higher end keyboards. But on Windows the driver software needs administrative access to provide the system information to the display in the background. On the Mac it wants the ability to record the screen in order to match its backlighting to the image on screen for one of its special effects. No thanks.
So in summation they had me at the keys. The rest of the stuff just isn’t necessary. I wonder what it would have cost without all the added bells and whistles?