Are you on the hunt for a reliable gaming keyboard that won’t break the bank? The AZIO Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard might just fit the bill. This review will provide an in-depth look at its features, build quality, and performance to help you make an informed decision.
Solid Build Quality and Aesthetic Appeal
The AZIO Mechanical Gaming Keyboard boasts a robust build with a metal body that adds weight and stability. It sits firmly on your desk or keyboard tray, eliminating any unwanted movement during intense gaming sessions. The sleek and stylish design enhances your gaming setup’s aesthetics, making it an attractive addition.
The inclusion of a volume roller adds a touch of convenience to your gaming experience, allowing for quick and precise volume adjustments. The well-placed wrist rest ensures ergonomic comfort during long gaming sessions. Furthermore, the braided USB cord strikes a balance between durability and flexibility, while the keyboard’s backlighting is thoughtfully designed for just the right amount of illumination.
The Switch Conundrum: AZIO Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Now, let’s delve into the details that might affect your decision to invest in this keyboard. It’s important to note that despite being marketed as having Kailh Blue switches, they do not exactly mimic the Cherry Blue switches. The latter are celebrated for their tactile feedback, producing a satisfying “click” sound upon key press. In contrast, the AZIO keyboard’s switches resemble Cherry Brown keys. These switches have a lighter initial actuation force and produce a subtler “click” sound. Additionally, they travel a bit further before bottoming out. While this may be ideal for gaming, it may not suit those who do a lot of typing. Typists often prefer keyboards that provide feedback before bottoming out, which can help prevent wrist strain.
Key Placement Quirks on AZIO Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Another aspect to consider is the key placement. If you examine the number row, you’ll notice that punctuation marks appear below the numbers. Although they function as expected, this layout can be disorienting, especially if you frequently use these symbols. For instance, pressing the key with a “2” yields a “2,” while holding SHIFT while pressing it produces an “@.” While the functionality remains intact, this unconventional arrangement may take some getting used to.
Mac Compatibility and NKRO Mode
For Mac users, compatibility can be a concern. The keyboard functions seamlessly with Mac systems, but there’s a catch: the operating system cannot recognize it when it’s in full NKRO (N-Key Rollover) mode, which happens to be the default setting. Initially, this can be a source of frustration, as it may prevent you from logging into your computer. To resolve this issue, you must manually switch to 6KRO mode every time you boot up your Mac. This is an important consideration for Mac users, as it requires an extra step to ensure proper functionality.
Backlighting: A Mixed Bag
While the backlighting on this keyboard is visually appealing and adjustable in terms of brightness, there is a notable drawback. Keys that display two symbols, such as the “2” and “@” keys, only illuminate the top symbol. This means that in dimly lit conditions, you’ll need to rely on your memory for the location of punctuation symbols, as they won’t be clearly visible. This could pose challenges for those who frequently use these symbols.
Final Thoughts on AZIO Backlit Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
In conclusion, the AZIO Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is a budget-friendly option that offers a solid build quality and striking aesthetics. However, it’s important to consider your specific needs and preferences. If you’re primarily seeking a gaming keyboard with a unique switch feel, this keyboard may suit your requirements. On the other hand, if you’re an avid typist, you may find the switches less satisfying for extended typing sessions. Mac users should be aware of the compatibility issue and the need to switch to 6KRO mode. Additionally, the unconventional key placement may require some adjustment.
Ultimately, the decision to invest in the AZIO Mechanical Gaming Keyboard depends on your priorities and usage. While it offers several advantages, it may not be the perfect fit for everyone.