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Similar to 144hz monitors, mechanical gaming keyboards have been taking the spotlight as one of the most essential peripherals for PC gamers. This, in part, is due to the rise of professional esports and their requirements for tactile feedback.
I was first introduced to mechanical keyboards way back in 2012. One of my friends recommended me the Das Keyboard Model S. While not the most aesthetic looking keyboard, it’s Cherry MX Blue switches had significantly improved my reaction time and performance in the online games I played.
Many years later, my requirements for a gaming mechanical keyboard had changed. I wanted a keyboard with Cherry MX Red switches AND a red backlight to match my PC case. This is when I discovered the Corsair K70 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard.
After using this keyboard for both gaming and work, I feel it’s time for an honest review on the Corsair K70!
I’ll be going over at how the K70 compares to other popular mechanical keyboards, its build quality, the switches it uses, its features, and how to properly clean it.
Below are the specs for the Corsair K70 as well as some other very popular mechanical keyboards on Amazon.
|Model||K70||K552||Huntsman Elite||One 2 Mini|
|Key Switches||Cherry MX Red||Cherry MX Blue||Razer Optical Switches||Cherry MX Blue, Brown, or Red|
|Keyboard Backlighting||Red or RGB||Red or RGB||RBG||RBG|
|Programmable Macro Keys||Yes||No||Yes||Yes|
|Weight||1.2 Kg (2.65 lbs)||0.98 Kg (2.16 lbs)||1.71 Kg (3.77 lbs)||0.91 Kg (2 lbs)|
|Price||See Price||See Price||See Price||See Price|
Compared to your traditional keyboard, the Corsair K70 feels very premium. It is manufactured with an “aircraft-grade brushed anodized aluminum frame” that oozes with quality and sturdiness.
The keycaps are also made with care. They have a contoured/non-slip design that feels amazing when typing. I also really like the matte black paint used on the keys! The K70 also includes a keycap prong, for keycap removal, and textured WASD keycaps; Though I prefer the standard keys so I stuck with those.
Furthermore, the K70 includes a detachable wrist rest that is made with a pleather-like material. My previous keyboards never had a wrist rest, which made my wrists quite sore after extensive gaming sessions. After a few weeks of using the wrist rest on the K70, my wrists were not as red and no longer felt sore!
On the bottom side of the keyboard, the K70 comes with two sets of foldable legs. Two at the front and two at the back. For my ergonomic preferences, I have the back legs raised while the front legs are folded up.
Thanks to the weight of the keyboard, the K70 is very stable and doesn’t move when playing at a competitive level.
Let’s talk about mechanical switches!
As I previously mentioned, I was using Cherry MX Blue switches before purchasing the Corsair K70. Blues are known as “clicky” switches due to their distinct sound when you press down on them. They have an operating force of 60cN (Centinewtons) with an activation point of 2.2mm.
With the Corsair K70, it is equipped with Cherry MX Red switches. Red switches are known as “linear” switches. This is because there is little-to-no tactile feedback when comparing them to the other keyboard switches. Cherry MX Red switches have an operating force of 45cN and an activation point of 2mm.
Mechanical keyboards with red, brown, blue, or speed silver switches are among the most popular with PC gamers.
From my experience, red and speed silver switches are my personal favourites; which is why the K70 has been my go-to keyboard for years. The instantaneous feedback from keystrokes feel fantastic!
The K70 comes in two LED light options. Red or RBG. As mentioned before, I opted for the red version. With the RGB variant. You can customize the colours using Corsair’s iCUE software.
To control the intensity of the LED lights, you can press the brightness button located at the top of the keyboard. The brightness levels include low, medium, high, or completely turned off.
I never owned a keyboard with media keys built into the layout. After using the K70, media keys should be the standard with every keyboard!
I use Spotify all the time when I play games and while I work. With the K70 media keys, they have enhanced my music listening experience to a whole new level.
The keyboard includes the following media functions: Play/pause, forward, back, stop, mute, and a volume wheel.
Additional Functions and Ports
To the left of the media keys, there are three additional buttons on the Corsair K70. The first is a WASD and numbers 1 to 6 LED brightness switch (removed on the newest model). The second is the LED brightness controls for the entire keyboard. And the third is a Windows lock button.
The Windows lock button is very useful for games like WoW, League of Legends, and other games that involve the shift/Ctrl/Alt keys when playing. Accidentally activating the Windows start menu during multiplayer games is a bad time.
On the back, K70 also includes a USB passthrough port. In order to use this feature, you need to plug both USB cables (power and passthrough) into your PC. I use the passthrough port for my second mouse so I can hot-swap from my Logitech G403 to my Corsair Scimitar Pro!
To the right of the USB port, there is a polling rate switch. This is used to adjust the response rate of the K70 for computers with older motherboards. It can be set to 1ms, 2ms, 4ms, or 8ms. I keep my K70 at 1ms for the most lag-free experience.
Drivers and Manuals
Cleaning Your Mechanical Keyboard
I enjoy sharing a little extra in my product reviews. Whether its tips, tutorials, or other content, I like giving my readers something practical.
This time, I’ll be showing you a step-by-step tutorial on how to properly clean your mechanical keyboard.
Eating, drinking, sweating, and hair (especially cat hair) can leave grime on your keyboard. And in some cases, it can even hinder your performance. Without proper cleaning, your keyboard will become a breeding ground for germs and bacteria.
Personal hygiene is important, but cleaning your peripherals is equally as important. Microbiologists recommend you disinfect your keyboard at least once a week. A thorough cleaning (what I’ll be showing you) should be done every 4 to 6 months—or immediately after you spill any food/liquids on it!
Step 1 – Unplug your keyboard from your PC
Step 2 – Remove every keycap with a keycap puller tool and place them into a bowl
Step 3 – Fill the bowl with warm water and some dish soap. Soak the keycaps for about 1 hour
Step 4 – Clean the surface of your keyboard
I use a bottle of compressed air to remove any dust/hair.
Next, I use a damp cloth with 70% isopropyl alcohol to disinfect the surface.
For those hard-to-reach areas, I dip a cotton swab into some isopropyl alcohol to get the job done.
Step 5 – Dump your keycaps into a colander and rinse away any excess soap. Let the keycaps thoroughly dry
I recommend opening a window or using a hairdryer to let the keycaps dry quicker.
Step 6 – Once fully dry, place the keycaps back on their switches
The Corsair K70 mechanical gaming keyboard is a fantastic product. It has surpassed my expectations with its amazing build quality, Cherry MX Red switches, and abundance of features. Yes, it is pricier than other gaming keyboards. However, I don’t see myself replacing the K70 for a long time.
It’s just that good!