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Corsair is releasing a new brand of gaming-grade keyboards and mice called Vengeance, with models for FPS and MMORPG games bearing distinct characteristics. The first one we tested is the K60 mechanical model for shooter games, with no illumination or programmable keys. It’s just a highly accurate peripheral with a robust chassis, as we will see later. Let’s first describe its physical characteristics.
Since it doesn’t feature an extra cluster of programmable keys, the K60 is a conventional-sized keyboard, going against the market trend of massive gaming-grade keyboards that take up a lot of space on the table. It has a 2 mm-thick brushed aluminum chassis where the keys lie on the board. Since they’re not embedded into the board, it’s easy to clean the peripheral with a brush or a can of compressed air.
Almost all the keys are mechanical; that is, they are not part of a whole ensemble resting over a circuit board as on membrane keyboards. Here, they work independently from each other. Only the ESC, function and page navigation keys are regular membrane keys.
On the right upper corner, the user can find the Windows key lock button, multimedia controls and a volume control roller. There are three small white LEDs for the Caps, scroll and number locks.
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The K60 comes with a small wrist rest for the left hand and has a niche in the middle for the thumb. The wrist rest also doubles as a case for a set of extra red keys (WASD cluster and numbers 1-6), more used in FPS games. The keys, however, are far from being mere replacements. They actually provide a small degree of customization since the keys are rubberized and more rounded. The set comes with an extraction tool.
On the backside of the keyboard there is a USB port so the user can plug in a mouse or some other peripheral (a digital headset with a USB connector, for instance). The cable has two USB connectors, one for the keyboard connection itself, and the other functions as a USB pass-through connector for the port on the back of the keyboard. Both connectors are blue, making them easy to single out in the knot of cables behind the PC.
The underside comes with four retractable feet, two above and two below the board, and the latch for the wrist rest.
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The main characteristic of the Vengeance K60 is that it is a no-frills mechanical keyboard for FPS games, without illumination or programmable keys. However, it’s not a simple peripheral; it comes with an anti-ghosting technology that registers up to 20 key presses at once. Of course, this is more than the user could press if he or she used all the fingers on both hands at the same time.
With its brushed aluminum chassis, the K60 is a little heavy, but the excess weight is compensated for by its compact body. In addition, it makes for a more stable keyboard on the table.
Since it doesn’t feature programmable keys, the K60 is a plug-and-play device. Of course, this means it doesn’t have a separate cluster of dedicated keys for macros, used more on MMORPGs. However, the user can still assign special actions to several regular keys inside a game’s interface, like on Battlefield 3 where he or she can set the R key for reloading a weapon, for instance.
[nextpage title=” Testing the Vengeance K60″]
In the beginning of this test, we talked about the keyboard’s high level of precision. This is a normal trait for mechanical keyboards, and one of the reasons why they are now so in vogue among gamers. The difference in response between the Vengeance K60 and the other membrane keyboards we’re used to testing is notable and enormous. It actually exceeded the other mechanical keyboards we’ve already tested here in terms of our preference. It quickly responds to two, three rapid presses on the same key.
Our gaming performance is the best proof. Over the weekend, we put the K60 to test. We invariably ended up at the top of the rank of players on several Battlefield 3 matches, and we actually won the title of “killing machine” on a particular match, much to the chagrin of our adversaries. We can’t recommend the Vengeance K60 enough for FPS players.
The left hand wrist rest is a great idea. It’s located just under the WASD cluster, where the left hand always sits during the matches. It’s very comfortable, and the niche for the thumb is a nice touch. The wrist rest makes a difference.
Since they’re mechanical, the keys make a lot of noise to the point of being heard by our fellow players over the Skype teleconference. This is more notable when we stopped playing to type on the game chat interface or on the Skype chat itself. The simple pressing of the keys during gameplay wasn’t overheard, though.
Speaking of typing, the K60 feels like an old typewriter when we put the game aside to work on this test. By the resistance offered by the keys, prolonged typing can get a little tiresome. If the user doesn’t have the habit of typing huge volumes of text, the K60 can even be used as a regular keyboard (and there’s the nostalgia of the clicking sound of an old typewriter).
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The main specifications for the Vengeance K60 keyboard include:
- Mechanical keyboard for FPS games
- Brushed aluminum chassis
- USB port: one
- Anti-ghosting capability
- Changeable keys: 10
- 45 g actuation force
- Response time: 1 ms
- Left hand wrist rest
- Connectors: 2 gol
- Dimensions: 17.7 x 7 x 0.9 inches (45 x 18 x 2.5 cm)
- Cable: 6.5 feet (2 meters)
- More information: https://www.corsair.com
- Average price in the U.S.*: USD 110.00
* Researched at Newegg.com on the day we published this review.
The Vengeance K60 is a high-performance keyboard with sturdy keys. The left hand wrist rest makes it easy and comfortable to play for hours on end. Unfortunately, there’s no illumination, but the elevated keys make cleaning the board easy. Since the keyboard doesn’t feature programmable keys, we recommend getting a high-precision gaming-grade mouse. (Corsair itself has released a companion mouse for the keyboard, the M60 mouse, which we’ll test later.) As for performance, this is absolutely the best keyboard we’ve tested so far for this style of game. If it had illumination, it would be the perfect 100 score keyboard.
- High precision mechanical keys
- Easy to clean
- Comfortable hand rest
- Comfortable replaceable keys
- USB port on the backside
- Blue connectors are easy to spot
- No illumination
- Requires a programmable mouse
- Mechanical typing can get tiresome