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Pros: I’ve been a long time user of the Corsair K70 RGB (cherry red), now I get to try the K70 GRB LUX (cherry brown)
*SAME PROS* as its predecessor:
Great keyboard- sturdy feel – brush steel has sleek look
Removable keys make it easy to clean
Cherry MX switches are of good quality
RGB LEDs allow you to basically customize any fathomable design of color on the keyboard - just search some videos for ideas
Maybe the best RGB LED keyboard on the market
*DIFFERENT PROS* than its predecessor:
Also, this LUX keyboard is somehow cheaper than its predecessor (K70 RGB) which is somehow listed at $250. I paid $170 for it 2 years ago.
The LUX keyboard has a USB pass-through, unlike its predecessor, the K70 RGB
This doesn’t have the ‘Corsair Gaming’ logo that a some hardcore fans disliked
This LUX keyboard is supposed to fix the 16.7 million color flickering debacle with the K70 RGB hardware (the K70 RGB could only do 512 colors, which, in my opinion, is enough)
Textured space bar
Comes with grey key caps for WASD, FDERQW (yes I got 2 different grey W’s) and easy-key-removal tool
Cons: Small complaint- would have liked to see some innovation around the palm rest. It’s decent. It’s the exact same as the K70 RGB. But, the palm rest could be bigger, in my opinion and a softer, rubberier plastic would have been a nice touch.
Corsair, I hope you are reading this. Get your software situation sorted out.
I am reviewing the LUX keyboard, which is *hardware*, but the big attraction of keyboards like this are the RGB LEDs and the ways you can make them dance with *software*. You might as well get a non-RGB keyboard if you aren’t going to use the RGB software. I haven’t used the Razer Chroma software or any other RGB LED mechanical keyboard’s software, but as a software developer, and long-time user of a K70 RGB keyboard, I can’t complain enough about the Corsair software, Corsair Utility Engine, or CUE. It’s so bad that I’ve tried writing my own software from the ground up. Other developers have too- just search Github, et al. We have small victories, being able to light the keyboard in the ways we want, and then realize programming the lighting algorithms from scratch is about the same level of difficultly as using CUE, but at least custom software would allow us to make the keyboard react to in-game events.
The software for these keyboards leaves A LOT to be desired. When I got the K70 RGB 2 years ago, the software was absolutely terrible. It was very hard for the average user just to make something simple happen with it, and the defaults profiles were underwhelming. Some brave souls who had spent I'm sure *hours* working with CUE had posted good profiles on the forums. At the time, Corsair didn’t facilitate submitting and searching for profiles, so the end user spent a lot of time searching for and testing each and every user submitted profile. Corsair, your software already simulates a profile on screen. I suggest you put that on a web interface so people can preview user-submitted profiles. This 'no preview image available' on most of the top 5 profiles on your leader board website shows that putting the onus on the developer is not effective. It should be simple to implement a simulator on the website as the software does. Not much has changed in the 2 years I've owned a K70 RGB. The new (as of Sept 2016) beta driver is starting to make things better.
I upgraded my desktop to Windows 10 v1607 and the Corsair Utility Engine stopped working. I open it from the start menu, I can see the process running from Task Manager, but no window appears and no icon appears in the tray. I’ve tried opening it multiple times and multiple re-installs. So, I am currently *forced* to use the beta driver. Yes, it is beta, so it can be expected to have flaws. I will point out the ones I have found so Corsair can fix them. The beta driver cannot currently update itself. ‘Check for updates’ always results in a very clear ‘experienced an error’ message.
Again, the beta is taking steps in the right direction. The defaults are much more elaborate than the non-beta driver. The defaults still be better. Somehow, the *easiest* profile ‘Static Color’ I cannot get to work. I made the ‘Color Shift’ profile shift between the same color to achieve a static color. The Rainbow Swirl and Rainbow Wave highlight a flaw that the Menu key and Left Arrow key stand out among their neighbors (they are green when the neighbors are red). The Playback Visualizer (keyboard changes with music) only works when I send audio through the Corsair Void headset. I wanted to get a Corsair mouse so CUE would be able to control my mouse, keyboard, and headset. But, applying a Windows update, or switching the 1-4 mode on the back of the keyboard can make the keyboard start repeating keys, randomly blinking on/off and not responding to input. If I had been using a Corsair mouse, I believe CUE would have forced me to use a different mouse and keyboard to get my computer back to a usable state.
For years, these premium, expensive keyboards have been awaiting a decent software interface and online community.
Other Thoughts: I’ve been a long time user of the Corsair K70 RGB (cherry red), now I get to try the K70 GRB LUX (cherry brown)
Although I get to try reds and browns, don’t take my advice on what Cherry switches to get. I’m not an expert on Cherry switches. Only one out of five computers that I use has a mechanical keyboard, so I still have a bad habit of bottoming keys out. I couldn’t stand the noise generated by Cherry blues and returned the Razer Blackwidow that had Cherry blues. Searching the net should point you in the direction of the type of keys that you would most desire. The browns have more actuation force and a tactile feedback point compared to the reds. I have the o-ring mod (1 per key) on the reds, so I can’t directly compare the difference in noise generated by these keyboards, but they seem to be similar.
If you feel you don’t need the number pad or audio controls, get the K65 RGB and save yourself some desk space! Sometimes I think the K65 would have suited me better.
Pros: Heavy duty, solid built drive
1M hours MTBF
3 year limited warranty
180TB/year user workload rate
Rotational vibration (RV) sensors mitigate vibration in multi-drive systems (perfect for NAS boxes)
Enterprise grade drive specifically designed for NAS boxes
The Register says the 10TB Iron Wolf drive is helium filled and spins at 7200 rpm
Cons: Warranty isn’t as good as some of Seagate’s other offerings (BarraCuda)
Other Thoughts: Tested in a Seagate STBP8000100 NAS box (4 bay) – fast copy times – depending on the file size being copied, up to 6-7MB/s over the network (limited by 10G router, NICs, etc)
For this to be fully compatible and supported in a RAID NAS environment, you probably want to buy more than one to make sure that the sector size, disk size, cache size are all the same. If you are using RAID this is especially helpful because if the disks don’t have the same cache sizes and sector sizes the software or hardware raid controllers may have trouble syncing data.
Unfortunately, the MTBF of two or more of the same model of drive is usually about the same, so it may be tempting to get drives of different brands or wear levels so that their MTBF is different (so they fail at different times and you have time to replace one). But if you do mismatch models, make sure they have all the same specs (sector size, disk size, cache size).
To test out the drive in a system that is faster than a NAS box, I decided to throw this in my personal desktop to get some rough benchmarks over SATA.
Zero’ing the drive out over SATA on my desktop I was seeing consistent speeds of 230MB/s
Using a Windows software mirror, the drives sync’d at about 150MB/s… that is fast, but if you are syncing even just a 4TB volume, you are still looking at roughly 7 and a half hours of sync time.
Windows seems to decide to re-sync the mirrored volume at random times- even during a reboot initiated by the start menu (seemingly safe shutdown). This may have to do with the different disk caches flushing?
I can’t recommend using a Windows software mirror. This drive is obviously meant for hardware RAID, and NAS box configurations that use RAID.
Copied about a terabyte of files from a 4TB WD Black to this in preparation to setup a mirror. The copy happened at ~115 MB/s and when looking at Windows 10 Task Manager, the WD Black drive was at about 80% utilization (just doing reads) while the IronWolf was at about 40-70% utilization (writing).
The Seagate BarraCuda Pro 10TB Desktop Drive is a similar price, runs at 7200rpm and has a 5 year limited warranty. That drive may better suit anyone who is not running a NAS box.
The Register claims the IronWolf Pro is coming in autumn 2016
Desktop rig: Asus sabertooth z77, Intel i7-3770k, 16GB RAM
Pros: Very affordable drive, decent performance
I read that people had good experiences with customer service
Great for laptops- shock resistant, 7mm footprint
Cons: Performance isn’t great, but that’s understandable when considering the price of this drive
Other Thoughts: I had not heard of the company Silicon Power before I got this drive. Wiki says they were founded in Taiwan in 2003 and had USD 213 million in revenue in 2010. They make flash for consumer and industrial products.
The SP240GBSS3S55S25, not the SP240GBSS3S55S25FR (this product) seems to have bad reviews/feedback. I'm not sure how this drives compares to it, besides having a very similar look and S/N. Maybe this one had better quality assurance before leaving the factory, but Silicon Power seems to have taken notice to the negative feedback of its possible ancestor and put effort into to making this drive more reliable
I tested this drive with a USB 3.0 SATA adapter- another review posted numbers using a SATA connections
Using defraggler to run a quick ‘benchmark test’ with a completely empty file system, default 4k allocation unit size, and NTFS filesystem- the drive did 87-93 MB/s random read
I copied 200 seperate 2MB video files at 93 MB/s. Copying larger video files (hundreds of MB) this drive started copying at 160 MB/s then leveled off to 90 MB/s
I copied a bunch of music files onto it. When 60 GB of the drive was used, I re-ran the defraggler test of random writes and now got 68 MB/s This kind of performance degradation is normal in SSD- as the flash fills up the controller has to make more decisions about how to optimize writes/reads
For comparison, my 4 year old, 200GB, Micron SSD boot drive (running over SATA connection) clocked in at 80 MB/s random read with ~50% used space during the same defraggler test
Has 223.4 GB of usable space with NTFS filesystem
Test rig: Intel i7-3770k CPU no overclock, ASUS Z77 motherboard, 16GB RAM @ 1600 MHz