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Which keyboard should I get??? My brain is going crazy!

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October 14, 2011 9:47:57 PM

I don't know which keyboard to get to replace my Dell keyboard that messed up lately. I'm using my backup PS/2 keyboard that loves to ghost when playing FPS games.

Saitek Eclipse III?
Uses 1 USB port, has 2 audio ports on it but uses the audio ports on the back of PC(no biggie). Lights up blue(I love blue), but has useless keys on the sides(hot keys/macro keys) that route to "Refresh", "Windows Media Player", "Back, "Forward", "Calculator", things like that... Reviews say they can easily be bumped which is annoying.

Saitek Cyborg V.7?

Uses 2 USB ports, but has 1 USB port on the keyboard. Uses the audio ports so it has audio ports on the keyboard like the Eclipse III. No blue =[ really depressing. Has hot keys/macro keys that can route to whatever you wish (unlike the Eclipse which is fixed to all those semi-useless routes.)

Logitech G110?
Uses 1 USB port is all, and has audio ports in the keyboard like the previous two but doesn't use the ones in the back so it has its own audio card or something to support the two ports on the keyboard itself. CTRL key is cut off a bit and I use the CTRL key for jumping(important in UT2004) so it'd probably irritate me. Has blue though =] but from what I've seen in videos the lighting from the keyboard is not too bright(I want it bright, looks cool).

Thermaltake CHALLENGER Ultimate?
Uses 2 USB ports but has 2 USB ports on the keyboard itself. The keyboard has 2 audio ports and does not use the ones in the back, basically like the G110 from Logitech I previously mentioned. Crammed keys though it seems, and the top row of F# keys are crammed with the ESC key and media keys too. Has blue though, but crammed keys may be a pain. It has a fan to cool off hands.. Might as well take it if it comes with it.

IF ANYONE has any of these keyboards please tell me the good and bad things about them from your user experience. I'm really interested in the Saiteks, and the Logitech... and the Thermaltake too though >.<... Please help!

I've decided not to get the last two I mentioned.. G110's backlighting is weak, just doesnt seem comfy for me. Tt's Ultimate keyboard seems to crammed. Now I don't know between Saitek's Eclipse III, or Cyborg V.7..

***Has anyone found a way to re-route/re-map the Saitek Eclipse's semi-useless hot key/macro keys, so it'd be like a Cyborg's hot key/macro keys?

More about : keyboard brain crazy

October 24, 2011 1:10:16 PM

Get Saitek Cyborg V.7
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October 24, 2011 3:39:00 PM

get whichever keyboard matches your wants/needs and ignore aesthetics. this is what you are buying the keyboard for. you aren't buying it just because it looks pretty.

you might not like the lighting on the logitech offering but most of their products are pretty solid for the price range. its hard to go wrong with them.

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you're getting ghosting in games from a ps2 keyboard? even a cheap chinese made $5 keyboard we have doesnt ghost even at high speed input. if anything usb keyboards should be having the issues.

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i dont bother with rubber dome switch keyboards anymore. once you've tried a mechanical style keyboard you will realize why. you might not get all the fancy lights and shortcut keys on them but the typing and gaming experience is second to none. das, unicomp... two major contenders.
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October 25, 2011 1:45:25 AM

I'm actually trying to decide between these very 2 same keybaords myself... How is the typing experience on them? Is it identical for both, since they seem to be the exact same keys and such on both boards? I know alot of people swear that the Eclipse Keyboards have a real nice typing feel, so it would be nice to know that the Cyborg has the same nice experience (I have seen some people really complaining about the typing experience on the cyborg though.... hmmm). I would probably just get the Saitek 3, but I too agree that those buttons on the side are completely useless and should be able to be reassigned as macro keys (which is what is holding me off from getting it). Not trying to hijack the question here but I have the exact same one so I would like to know too :) 
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October 25, 2011 3:25:28 PM

@green

it all comes down to the individual.

what works great for me might not work so great for you and vice versa.

if you can find a retail store with them on display then perfect. if not, you can buy one and return it if you are unhappy.
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October 25, 2011 5:54:26 PM

@ssddx

Your absolutely right :p  What is great for one person may be horrible for another, however I still do appreciate what other people's experiences have been with the product. Things like how responsive the keys were, how they feel when pressed, if they feel like quality or just cheap plastic, if the keys/paint wear out quickly and things like that.

I'm also curious to know if the keys on the Cyborg and Eclipse feel/are indeed the same, as I said before they look like they would be the same. I would check myself, but these keyboards are unfortunately not on display or even for sale in my local stores :/ 

I'm also curious to know if the metal plated keys (WASD, Space bar and number keys) on the cyborg detract or feel weird when you try to type on the keyboard.

In the end I might be forced to go with the Eclipse III since it's really hard to find a place to order the Cyborg from within Canada :/  (I'm Canadian eh! :p ), the only things holding me back from getting the Eclipse right now is the mainly useless hotkeys on the side, and it's missing a USB plug on the back of the board. If it is indeed possible to turn those useless keys on the Eclipse to programmable macros (maybe you can install the Cyborg software for the Eclipse? The boards are almost Identical, although that probably won't work...), then I would almost definitely just get it)

Buying a keyboard is such a big deal to me, I just don't want to make a poor decision is all :/ 
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October 26, 2011 1:23:59 PM

@green

i've seen the cyborg keyboard up close. to be honest it looks just like every other crap-wanna-be-gamer keyboard i've seen. i definitely wouldnt spend big money to get one. but as i said, we all like what we like.

i dont remember what the saitek was like, as i dont remember any distinguishing features unlike the cyborg.

newegg ships to canada i believe.

is a usb port on a keyboard that important? personally i think its just a gimmick as most cases already have at least 2 on the front.

buying a keyboard is a big deal. it and your mouse are your primary input devices so you want something that is comfortable and easy to use. personally i would highly suggest a mechanical keyboard if you want the best of the best. most models are a bit noisy, but the experience is much much better. most keyboards out there are rubber dome switch, fyi. not sure about your two choices here but just something to look into.
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October 26, 2011 4:48:02 PM

@ssddx

Ya I was afraid of that for the Cyborg, some people say that and others say that it's really high quality and really well built. I have to rely on others experiences since as I have said before, I'm pretty sure none of my local stores carry either of them :/ 

The Canadian Newegg and Amazon both list the Cyborg as out of stock, so that's a no go, I have to order from some other random online store that I have never used before, and that I don't necessarily trust. A USB port on the Keyboard isn't really that big of a deal, but it is convenient to have is all - it's not a deal breaker in any way.

I know most keyboards are of the rubber dome variety (the Eclipse and Cyborg both are), those are essentially the only keyboard type that I have ever used TBH (I have an old Dell keyboard that I got from my father, but I've never used it as it's just kept as a backup, so I don't even know if that one is mechanical or not). I keep hearing how mechanical keyboards work and feel so much better, are they really THAT much better? I have also tried to read up about the different switch types and such. Ultimately I didn't know which switch type was best suited for me, and I didn't know what to start looking for (in terms of brand, features etc.) or even where to start looking.

I don't want to go much above $100, are there good choices of mechanical keyboards for ~$100? I would really like to have programmable macro keys, and back-lit keys. Noise isn't an issue, as long as it isn't so loud that it gives me a headache XD :p 

As I said I tried to look into it but ultimately didn't know where to start or which switch type I would prefer, if you could give me some suggestions or even point me in the right direction I would gladly spend some time trying to find one.

Also, are there any drawbacks to using a Mechanical keyboard?

Any help is greatly appreciated :) 
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October 26, 2011 5:40:01 PM

At worst, u could exchange it, if u would not like it : )
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October 26, 2011 6:02:10 PM

@nikorr

Do you own/use a Cyborg V7? I seen you said to get it up above. If so do you like it? Can you tell me anything else about it?
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October 26, 2011 6:11:16 PM

I don't, but my brother in law does, after I gave him one as a gift.

Its a very personal preference on keyboards (IMHO). What looks great, might not be what u had in the mind.

It looks great.
Many options to adjust height of keyboard and palmrest.

The pass through USB connection is great, here u can use a USB headset, external HDD, camera, cell phone, USB stick or anything else.

That is great and handy.
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October 26, 2011 6:36:18 PM

I decided to do some more in-depth research into mechanical keyboards, and found a great article explaining each switch type. I think the blues or clears are best for me.

I came across the Razer Blackwidow Ultimate edition and it seems pretty dang good. It's got back-lit keys and (i think) a USB port on it, as well as macro keys.

From my quick searches, the keyboard seems to be built very well and feels excellent, although some people are complaining about sticking keys?

Anybody have any experience with this product?
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October 27, 2011 1:06:26 AM

Thanks everyone for the answers, and the extensive responses. After all though, I found an old Compaq keyboard I used to use. I pulled a key off and noticed underneath that this keyboard is mechanical. Its got a very, very little bump when pushing down the keys. The reason why I put it in the back was because I was a noob about keyboards and that the Enter key and the Shift key were messed up because the metal brace underneath was broke. I fixed it up super quick, it was simple, and it works real good. I can't find any key blocking or ghosting. I don't think I'll go back to membrane/rubber dome keyboards. They really do seem to just lose the feel and the "newness" after a while. Not after a day or a week, but after a long period of time things really start getting wore out. After looking at a website(probably the same one as GreenSnake750 found) I learned fairly quickly what mechanical keyboards are basically about. They are much better for the time being and the future, other than the price which is a bit more expensive than ordinary dome/membrane keyboards, but its really worth it I'd say.



GreenSnake750,

I'd try to get something else other than the Razer line-up that are in stores now. People are complaining about how the series just seems on the more lower end of quality. Flimsy, trying to look nice but cheap quality. You may end up with a good one and get a flawless one, but I wouldn't take risks when you don't have much to worry about when you get a mechanical keyboard. Try looking at the new Steelseries G7. Pricey, but you dont have to worry about getting another keyboard probably again haha.. The reason why I recommended that one is because it has 2 USB ports(I think its 2) and it has your two audio ports. The big wrist rest is removable if your wondering about that clunker, it surrounds the keyboard and comes off like a big frame. Look it up on a video for more info if you'd like. One thing though, it has Cherry MX Blacks, very different from the Blues. You may come across a Cherry MX Blue keyboard on Steelseries' website.
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October 27, 2011 2:26:45 AM

@hyrule571

Thanks :p 

For curiosity sake, is THIS the article about Mech keyboards you read as well? :p 

When I was searching for keyboards I did come across the Razer Lycosa and Arctosa, which both admitted have quality control/build issues. Although the Blackwidow is indeed a mechanical keyboard, with cherry MX Blue switches. The only faults that I could find with the board was something with the Space bar hitting against the ALT key in some boards, although the problem is easily fixed with a little sanding of the key. Other than that the board actually looks to be of very high quality. Especially after reading THIS review on it. Which if you will notice is by the same person that gave the breakdown of what mechanical keyboards are (my first link). After reading that and a couple other reviews I'm almost completely sold on this board TBH. Only other thing is how LOUD the keys are on that thing (I watched a couple of YouTube videos of it), I just don't want to wake up the whole house and have headaches and stuff all the time is all XD

The BlackWidow actually has everything I wanted, Back-lit keys, macro functionality, pass through USB and around ~$100.

Of course I will still take your suggestion and look at what SteelSeries has to offer, although I think my personal style is more suited for Cherry Blue type switches.
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Best solution

October 27, 2011 1:05:02 PM

most of the mechanical keyboards i recommend are plain jane styles with no macro keys or other goodies like backlighting. they work well and should last for a good long time. we are talking about keyboards (at least in unicomp and ibm keyboards) that can last for several computer upgrades. i have a 1990 ibm and it still works. before that i had a 1985 model. 21-26 years? thats a very long time for a keyboard to work!

unicomp makes replica copies of the original ibm model m keyboards. they might not be quite as well built as the originals but are 90% identical. they feature a steel plate inside them and can be used as a weapon! the customizer is a great choice.

das makes a nice keyboard as well. prices are a bit higher but i've heard great things about them

personally i'd recommend such a keyboard over anything else on the market.

razer in general makes mediocre products, not the high end you would expect from the price. do they work? sure. are there issues? sometimes. i myself have the razer deathadder as my main mouse and it works fine. a few driver irritations and the rubber surface is crap but it works great. two things to note about the keyboard: the backlighting is uneven, and the rubber on the keys will wear off after time.

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now as to are mechanical keyboards THAT much better than rubber dome switches? without a single doubt.

how loud are they? you can find soundclips on the internet. personally i own the loudest type of all.... an original ibm model m with buckling spring keyswitches. its about as loud as a stapler's mechanical action if you just squeeze it a few times in the air. most of the other mechanical switch types aren't near as loud.
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October 29, 2011 2:37:40 PM

Sure GreenSnake750, np..

ssddx is right. Older mechanical keyboards still are working fine today! I'm using an old cream colored Compaq we had gotten at a garage sale. <3 it..

Cherry MX Blue switches make that clicky noise and you shouldn't worry about the noise if thats what your accustomed to(blues). Yes it was that article LOL.

I guess I Looked through Steelseries' products... Their keyboards with macros I think are membrane/rubber dome keys. I guess the BlackWidow is a good keyboard. Get it, try it! =D
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October 29, 2011 2:38:21 PM

Best answer selected by hyrule571.
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