Pros: As a non-gamer who does a lot of typing I wasn't sure what to expect from this keyboard. My primary keyboard has been a Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000, which is not without its flaws, but is at least sculpted for a more natural typing position. After a week of use I'm happy to report that the Corsair K70 is an outstanding keyboard for touch-typists and it has replaced the Microsoft keyboard on my primary workstation.
The Cherry MX Red switches are very light with full travel. Unlike most membrane keyboards, the pressure required to depress these keys does not vary significantly from the center of the key to the edge of the key. I was immediately impressed with how fast this keyboard felt. I was a little surprised that my typing speed results did not change (~10 cps / 120 words per minute). However, it felt like a lot less effort and there was a lot less muscle fatigue after each test on the Corsair.
The keyboard base is very stiff and does not flex at all with the front feet raised.
Corsair advertises 104-key rollover, and I can confirm up to 10-key rollover is correctly implemented, with keystrokes reported in the order that the keys were first depressed.
The USB port is correctly oriented (right-side-up). When benchmarked with a USB 2.0 flash drive, the speed was the same whether connected directly to the computer or on the keyboard's USB port.
The individual key backlighting is very easy to configure. I appreciate that software is not required. I half-expected it to need some horrible Windows utility and was pleased that all configuration is performed directly on the keyboard itself. Everything also worked as expected under Linux, including the volume control, num-lock, and caps-lock.
The contoured keycaps for gaming are not installed by default, which was something of a relief. I don't think I could type with them and was not looking forward to figuring out how to change keycaps.
The switchable interrupt rate works, even on Linux. (To confirm, at least under Debian, look in /sys/kernel/debug/usb/devices. I found that changing the keyboard's switch from 8 to 4 did change the appropriate “Ivl=” lines from 8ms to 4ms.)
The volume roller is very responsive and much nicer to use than the typical up/down buttons that require 10+ presses to raise or lower volume significantly.
Cons: The white num-lock LED looks out of place among the red LEDs and it's consistently brighter than all the other LEDs.
I would have liked the front feet to be taller for a steeper angle when using this keyboard in a low tray.
The wrist rest pivots where it attaches to the keyboard, so the front edge must rest on the table or tray. In my opinion this makes the wrist rest not very useful when the front feet are extended, because it slopes directly down to the table or tray. On the Microsoft ergonomic keyboard the wrist rest is integrated so it changes angle along with the rest of the keyboard when the front feet are raised.
Overall Review: While most keyboards set the keycaps into some kind of frame, these keycaps float above the aluminum base plate. It's an aesthetic choice that doesn't really affect the use of the keyboard, and is really only noticeable between the cursor keys and Del/End/PgDn. It might even be a plus for cleaning debris out from underneath the keys.
I found the red backlighting to be plenty bright enough on the lowest setting, and overly bright on the highest. If you have the slightest hint of astigmatism you will find that the brightest backlighting actually makes the lettering appear less sharp.
The Cherry MX Red switches took some getting used to, particularly because unlike a membrane keyboard, there is a hard stop at the bottom of the keystroke. I learned to type on a manual typewriter and then moved to the IBM mechanical “click” keyboards, so I developed a heavy hand. I've had to adjust to a lighter touch for this keyboard to avoid hitting the hard stop. That's probably good for me, but it's something to keep in mind if you also tend to pound the keys.
Pros: Corsair put together a real nice keyboard with a lot of nice features:
4 Levels of Illumination. Off, Low, Medium and Hi.
For Gamers there is an option to easily select your choice as to what keys are or are not illuminated. A simple push of the button and it’s ready to set.
Changeable W, S, A, D, and 1-6 buttons for feel and different looks to separate them at a glance or touch, to find them better. The key removal tool makes pulling and swapping keys easy and seconds as a nice removal tool for when cleaning is needed.
Windows key lock button. It’s great to be able to turn on and off the ‘Windows’ key function.
Pass thru USB for at Keyboard access to a USB connection on the rear of the board.
A nice ‘Wheel’ for easy volume control and Media Buttons.
Removable wrist rest that has a nice texture to it.
Forward ‘Tab Feet’.. that’s 4 optional raise feet. 2 in the back as usual and 2 up front that changes how your hand lays. I find with the keyboard on all four feet and the wrist rest, I get less wrist fatigue gaming. When using the keyboard for typing the traditional rear feet use is comfortable (what we are used to).
I just love the looks, feel, options and functionality of this keyboard. Corsair did a great job of developing a Mechanical Keyboard that is a cross between a dedicated Gamers board and an everyday Home/Office keyboard. The ‘Mechanical’ 100% Cherry MX switches give an accurate response that Gamers want and 100% anti-ghosting 104 key rollover translates into being accurate and on time.
Cons: The changeable keys 1-6 do not have the upper symbols. I know the reason is typing or gaming, but I think the keys should have the symbols too. You’re not going to switch back to the regular number keys every time, all the time. The differences are nice for a gamer, I’m just saying, it’s not necessarily a con.
Overall Review: This keyboard just feels right when using and it not only has the typical rear flip feet, it has 2 up front tab feet that I find great for gaming and a tired left wrist. The keys react with the quick accuracy you expect and are smooth reacting for anyone fast on a keyboard.
This looks like quality and thought went into the design. The on the fly quick adjusting illumination has four levels: Off, Low, Med and a bright but not too bright hi setting. For gamers there is an option to illuminate any keys of your choice, it’s super easy to do and there is a Windows key kill button.
There are Media control buttons including Play, Pause, Forward and Backwards. I like the roll wheel volume control and the built in pass thru USB with the USB connector on the back of the keyboard. Corsair put a nice set of connector wires that are beefy, covered and well made.
It comes with a tool to remove keys and a selection of swappable keys for gamers. Numbers 1-6 and WSAD. There is a lip on the ‘W’ that lets you know your finger is on it. The keys make them stand out to see them quicker. The tool works well and can offer a second function for cleaning the whole keyboard when needed. The ‘Wrist’ support is removable, but when used it has a nice texture to the touch.
I really love this keyboard. I use this and the more I do the more I like the forward tab feet. Just something about how it’s raised up and yet a flat platform that allows me more hours using ‘WSAD’ and other buttons for many hours, I find my time less fatiguing. The light settings are nice; I find the medium setting to be comfortable on the eyes. The hi setting is bright and makes the keys stand out. I tried bright just to see if it was just bright just when a friend walked in and said wow that’s awesome. One of those that can type so fast you wonder how and it passed. I was told the keys feel smooth, a little clicker louder than a non-mechanical keyboard.
I agree with all the great review I have read. I didn’t open the box and write a review, I have been using hits daily and for 5-6 hours a day plus both gaming and general use. It is a Mechanical Switch keyboard, so the awesome benefits to me outweigh the clicking sound vs: a whisper quiet pressure switch keyboard. The response accuracy in gaming is paramount and in typing less errors.
It’s is quality made, I’m not nervous that the exchangeable keys will be a problem down the road. I’m the opposite, I like the key removal tool and ability. We all have had something to remove or just access for better cleaning. If you want a top of the line board, look no more. Buy it.
Pros: Heavy duty frame made with aircraft grade anodized brushed aluminum, which looks and feels great!
With the keys standing up clear of the frame, this board will be uber easy to clean any dust out from between the keys, unlike other boards where the keys are sunken down into the frame.
One touch keyboard lighting button switches lights from all keys to any custom per key lighting you set up! Light intensity button adjusts brightness with 4 settings, low, medium, and high brightness, or turns the lights off. Love the Windows Key lock button, most gamers will appreciate this feature, no accidental desktop dumps with fat fingers accidentally hitting the windows key!
Box also includes a key puller, and a set of red textured keys for placing on WASD, and 1 through 6 keys. Heavy duty cable is wrapped in braided fiber and will hold up well over time. One touch mute, with scrolling metal volume control is also a nice feature!
USB pass-through, which can be used for many things, in my case I placed my wireless mouse dongle on this USB port so that it is always closer to the mouse.
This board also has a Bios Mode and Polling Rate Selector switch on the backside with 5 settings. The 1ms, 2ms, 4ms, 8ms settings are for changing the refresh rate setting of the keyboard. Most gamers will prefer using setting 1 (1ms or 1000 Hz).
The BIOS setting of this switch is for older motherboards that do not support a gaming keyboard. So if this keyboard does not respond when booting into your motherboards BIOS by hitting delete, etc; set the switch to the BIOS setting and reboot. The BIOS setting may also allow for compatibility with some KVM switches.
Cons: No instructions in the box on how to set the key back lighting feature! This will confuse some people who are not familiar with this feature! I have posted instructions in the other thoughts section below for those who may need them.
Overall Review: ADJUSTING PER KEY BACK-LIGHTING
You can highlight important keys on the K70 such as WASD or others by turning the LED back-lighting on or off for individual keys.
SETTING UP YOUR CUSTOM BACK-LIGHT PATTERN
• Press and hold the Back-light Program key until the red ring around
the button lights (about three seconds)
• Touch the desired keys to turn the LED's on or off.
• Once the pattern is set, press and hold the Back-light Program key until the light goes off (about 3 seconds).
SWITCHING BETWEEN THE CUSTOM BACK-LIGHT PATTERN AND ALL LED'S ON
• Touch the Back-light Program key to toggle between all LED's on and the currently programmed back-light pattern.
Pros: +Great key feel and look for a gamers keyboard
+Backlit keys make late night computing easier
+Media control keys and volume roller
+Easy to clean
The other EggXpert Reviews on this product cover everything you might want to know about the K70 experience and I even learned that there is an inexpensive way to see which “key” is best for your style; three different key types are available for the K70. If you are on the fence and unsure about what to buy seek out the 6 key tester mentioned in another review and you can “try them all!” (For less than the cost of returning a few keyboards that didn’t quite suit you)
The keyboard is pretty much snack proof thanks to the open aluminum framed design. Crumbs can be blown out easily and you’ll never have a bit of peanut jam your spacebar at an inopportune time. A set of emphasis keys for FPS layouts and a key removal tool allows you to configure your board in serious gamer mode.
Cons: -Two USB ports needed for power (there is a pass thru that worked with my configurations)
-Lack of documentation of mode switch
-No Macro programming
-Glaring LED issue
The packaging has three languages, all except English indicated TWO USB ports are needed. Somebody will be surprised.
The mystery switch located next to the pass thru USB port controls the keyboard polling rate and a special legacy mode called “bios” Nothing at all in the included docs describing this keys function. It was however documented online. That omission and the bad English translation on the box could have nicked an egg off this product, but given the target market, no problem. There are a few gaming targeted keyboards in this price range, likely this segment is loyalty or price driven on future purchases. No doubt all angles are researched when dropping serious money on a keyboard.
I was puzzled why a gaming keyboard would have no macro software, my mouse did ( not that it worked well enough to bother with) So don't plan on using native software to program up some key combos. Not a real issue for me.
A bright white LED is used to indicate cap/numlock ruining the control room feel the softly glowing red keyboard gives you. My classic black tape solution used again (the last several products I’ve reviewed all had glaring led issues. Am I the only one on the plant that finds them annoying?)
Overall Review: Over the years I’ve used dozens if not hundreds of keyboards in all shapes and configurations.
The Corsair K70 was the first keyboard for a desktop system that I’ve used that had lighting features and an emphasis on the specific key switch type used.
I like it for the feel of the K70’s keys “classic first real computer”. You can impress your friends as even 30wpm typing sounds like you are a super hacker raiding numbered bank accounts.
As it turned out, the “MX” brand of switches have a long and illustrious history in computing that I was never aware of. Shows you how much detail I had been paying to keyboards over the last thirty years. I have noticed some keyboards were more clackity than others and never realized that the keyboard switches were a common item used across many brands.
As it turns out the specific type of keyboard switch used in the K70, the “Cherry MX” has a big influence on computing dating all the way back to 1953.
There is an onboard pass thru USB port at the top center of the keyboard, which supported my Steel Series Headphones with the USB Dolby dongle, or my Raflax mouse (there was a reported incompatibility with the pass thru for another brand of mouse), right next to a “mystery” switch. A mystery why something so important should go practically undocumented.
So far after close to 100 hours of Fallout 4 play all is good with this keyboard, none of the led failure issues mentioned in other reviews. I would venture to say that buying any new keyboard “blind” is a daunting experience. You might like the looks and comments made about this keyboard and find that it really doesn’t do it for you for a number of reasons after you buy one.
For the style conscious, with my case happening to have red led fans and my illuminated mouse being set to control room red my wife actually commented on the “color coordination” of my current pc last night. That alone was worth the price of admission.
Reading this review shows me you are serious about a keyboard. Given my lack of awareness on the entire MX key switch history, I sought out some web articles on the product. Some good info out there just a few clicks away.
If you’ve an old school PC user, you’ve likely typed on MX brand switches. There are a few variants used, the same K70 keyboard is available with the Brown and Blue versions which have a different feel and sound.
I’d rate the K70 a strong buy on what it does well and hope at some point the next round of engineers realize how important the lack of a blaring LED is to a product.
Subtle is the way to go. Too many LED’s demanding our attention these days. Black tape is still my friend.
Pros: First impressions (before powering up and setting up):
This seems to be a very serious keyboard… it’s very solid feeling.
It has some additional buttons that will definitely come in handy:
Windows Key Disable (I HATE hitting that during a gaming session!)
Dedicated Media Keys (including STOP, PLAY/PAUSE, SKIP FORWARD, SKIP BACKWARD)
Volume Roller (alright… that’s cool!)
Powering up and setting up:
Plug it in and just let it go! Windows 10 x64 grabbed a driver and the keyboard was off and running.
The keyboard is amazing for gaming! The Cherry MX Red’s are as light as a feather… making for quicker keystrokes = better gaming! Whenever I’m ready to game… I activate the WASD-123456-Arrow Key Illuminate button, which blacks out every key except those mentioned. In addition to that, I make sure I hit the Windows-Key-Disable button… just for safety’s sake.
Cons: None so far!!!
Overall Review: Packaging and Un-boxing:
Packaging is sufficient to make sure nothing is damaged in transit.
Corsair Gaming K70 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Soft touch, detachable wrist rest
WASD and 1-6 keys Textured keycaps
Quick Start Guide
Anyone who has researched the different Cherry MX key switches should know the difference between them all:
Cherry MX Red - Has the same actuation force as MX Brown’s (lowest out of the three)... being so light weighting allows for more rapid actuation = great for gaming. What these aren’t terrific for is typing… there’s zero tactile feedback.
Cherry MX Brown - Has the same actuation force as MX Red’s (lowest out of the three)... light weighting = great for gaming. In addition to light actuation force, these have non-clicky tactile feedback, making it good for typing as well without a ton of click noise.
Cherry MX Blue - Has tactile feedback and produces an audible “click” sound… excellent for typing. Has a heavier actuation force… so not ideal for gaming.
If you're all about gaming… this is the keyboard for you. And if money is not an option, pickup the RGB version of this keyboard to get even more programmable LED fun!!!!
Pros: I personally really prefer the MX Black switches for the extra weight in the keys, but Red is a close second (not a fan of the clicking on a partial press of the blue/browns). The design having the keys and switches completely above the aluminum backing rather than recessed makes cleaning a breeze. The included gaming keys are nice to keep your finger in place on WASD.
The lighting is plenty bright but can be dimmed to not be a nuisance. I like the option to program which specific keys you wish to have illuminated as well.
Cons: There's not as much customization as with other keyboards. I wouldn't mind having the option to have some lights brighter than others rather than just a select few on. I also wouldn't mind having a couple of USB ports rather than just a single pass-through.
Overall Review: I'm really liking this keyboard. I've got a pair of Thermaltake Meka G1s with Cherry Blacks and like the heavier weight, but I've ordered some .4mm O-ring bumpers and am looking forward to trying them.
Typing is great on this keyboard and I've actually brought it in to work to replace my standard old Dell keyboard. It's far more comfortable to use. Red switches are quiet compared to blues or brown, but they're much easier to bottom out generating a fair amount of noise that has not gone unnoticed by my coworkers. I'm fairly isolated in my office and I think part of the issue is that I'm accustomed to stiffer Black switches.
I really like this keyboard and if the budget doesn't allow for the RGB model with more lighting customization, this model will give you all the operation and still some customization with the backlighting to play with.
Pros: I was very excited to get this product to review. Out of the box, setup was easy, simple and connected to my computer with all functionality working great with the volume rocker and all of the other keys. It comes with Rigid Key Caps to replace the WASD keys and the 1-6 keys on the keypad to help you feel for those while gaming. The Cherry MX switches feel great and really are responsive to the touch. You can control the back-lighting with the LED's with I believe up to 5 different brightness settings and 2 different lighting settings. One light setting lights up all keys on the board, while the other setting lights up just the WASD and Keypad lights. The USB 3.0 pass-through is nice for my wireless mouse. The construction on the board is really solid with the board having a brushed aluminum chassis. The wrist-rest is really nice to lay my wrists on while typing. The USB cable is really well braided to make it feel really professional.
Cons: There are slight cons with this product, nothing to remove a star for. If you plan on typing with this and might have an active audience with streaming, it is a bit loud while typing. It is only built with red LED's, so if red is not your color, then this probably isn't the keyboard for you. Other than those, it is a great keyboard.
Overall Review: I would recommend to any gamer looking to step up there game or bring more red to their system.
Pros: + The included Cherry MX Red switches register the keystroke at the slightest press of the key, mimicking the travel distance of today’s laptop keyboards; therefore being an advantage when gaming. The cheaper membrane type keyboards register the keystroke at least 2x further down than this particular keyboard. Though the overall travel distance of this keyboard’s keys is very much similar to standard keyboards. With these MX Red switches there’s no tactile and no audible feedback as to the key press, they are linear switches.
+ Inclusion of a USB 2.0 port with its own USB cable connection as not to interfere with the keyboard USB connection.
+ Optional palm rest is included which features a rubberized finish.
+ Red LEDs which can be dimmed/turned off when necessary. A toggle switch is provided between all key illumination and WASD/1-6/Arrow key caps.
+ Volume control dial with a dedicated mute and playback switches.
+ Ability to disable the Windows key via a dedicated button.
+ Variable reporting/polling rates that are controllable via a switch in the back.
+ ‘Ergonomic’ WASD and 1-6 key caps are provided as an option with the included key cap removal tool.
+ Unlike some other mechanical keyboards that feature glossy finishes that are susceptible to scratches, this Corsair keyboard utilizes a brushed aluminum top in order to provide long term durability and maintain the original aesthetics.
+ The MX switches are ‘surface’ mounted which would make cleaning the keyboard a lot easier vs. the more standard ‘recessed’ switches found on most keyboards.
Cons: - The bottom row of keys (Ctrl, Windows, Alt, Space Bar, etc.) utilizes non-standard width key caps. If the there was a need to change out all of the key caps to ones with different color, letter printing, etc. then the availability of replacement compatible bottom row key caps would be very limited.
- Only USB 2.0 pass-through as opposed to USB 3.0.
- Whereas the top of the keyboard surface is aluminum, the base (chassis) is plastic. Corsair’s marketing is incorrectly specifying the chassis as being aluminum.
- Red LEDs produce a very faint buzz when dimmed.
- Cherry MX Red switches aren’t as well suited for typing.
Overall Review: Prior to investing the money in a Mechanical keyboard purchase, it’s highly recommended to purchase a 6-Key Cherry MX Switch Tester, which also includes a set of o-rings. This will allow narrowing down which mechanical keyboard would work best in the long term.
As far as customization goes, with this being a mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX switches, different key caps can be purchased as well as various o-rings in order to improve the overall feel of the switches.
Overall this is an excellent keyboard that would serve very well for gaming purposes.