Five Mechanical-Switch Keyboards: Only The Best For Your Hands

Zowie Celeritas: Test

Detailed test results

Zowie Celeritas

Single Key:
Cherry MX Brown
- Cylindrical key design
- Good traction against slippage
- Fine lettering, non-illuminated

Distance to actuation point:
- 2 mm from starting position
- 4 mm Hub

Operating force:
- 45 g to overcome spring resistance
- Approximately 55 g top value to exceed to the actuation point

- Tactile switches
Overview of test results

Thanks to the Cherry MX Brown keys, the Zowie Celeritas is good all-around. It weighs the least of all of the candidates in this test, but it's still heavy enough not to slip while typing.

The keyboard is smaller than the other candidates, so the keys are a little closer together than on the other keyboards we've tested. This is not a major disadvantage, but it requires a slight adjustment for users accustomed to keyboards wider than 40 cm. Only gamers with very large hands or strong fingers would be better off with another product. But this keyboard was designed with a generous height to simulate a palm rest, which is a nice feature.

It's a pity that this keyboard doesn't have a backlight. The comparatively delicate lettering is difficult to read in dim light and impossible to read in the dark.
- Suitable for office use
- Very well suited for gaming
- Very precise tactile keys
- Relatively quiet
- No extra drivers required
- Little space between keys
- No additional function or macro keys
- Lettering difficult to read in poor light
Overall rating:


175 of 200 Points

(Diagram Source: Cherry)

This thread is closed for comments
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  • "You will find keyboards even pricier than these, but that's a consequence of built-in special functions and gimmicks, not better quality or suitability."

    That's a bit ignorant, since you didn't test them. Try a Topre Realforce and tell me it's a gimmick.
  • skaz
    Great write up! I have a tenkeyless Leopold cherry brown and love it.
  • leather_daddy
    Where is the Filco Majestouch in the product list?
  • steve11
    Poorly done overview. A lot of keyboard missing in action.
  • stiehl
    Hmm looking at those keyboard's layouts make me wince. I don't think I could stand a huge enter key, a nonexistent "\", Y and Z being switched, and a funky shift key. I'm happy with my blank das keyboard, thank you very much.
  • michaelahess
    I actually went away from mechanical keyboards about 7 years ago. I really prefer a solid rubber dome keyboard. I currently use a Logitech MX5500 for gaming and a Logitech Wave for typing. Never had any issues with either for their purposes. I do miss the tactile feel, but honestly the 5500 is a MUCH better gaming board, plus the noise doesn't drive me crazy.

    For all of you with exotic keyboards, you must be extra special picky ;) I type 110 wpm without error and have no trouble with the wave or 5500.
  • Stardude82
    My Model M is too cool for this review.
  • fakie
    wheres the das keyboard model s ultimate?
  • mortsmi7
    I kind of wished they had compared them to some mainstream keyboards like the cheapy walmart logitech, dell keyboard, or ibm. Sure they work great, but compared to what. I'm not a fan of loud and clicky ibm, but thats as far as my interest in key-presses goes.

    I bought my G110 for the extra macro keys that I never use. In fact I use the onboard volume control more often.
  • Where is the Model M? Is it too cool for this review?
    And it's "buckling spring", not "bent spring"
  • Luay
    You did miss one criteria for comparison and that's typing noise. SteelSeries went through allot to successfully keep typing noise at a minimum while the Razer is a screamer! It would suck to invest in a quite rig and then end up with a keyboard like that.
  • dragonfang18
    I wish they gave out sample for me to try before buying....
  • TheProfosist
    Its more about the switches than the keyboard brand/manufacturer. there is a good explanation of how the different Cherry MX switches work at EliteKeyboards. I would have to say picking the switches is defiantly personal preference over anything else. For me its Topre 55g all the way!
  • faresbg
    It should be 50 000 000 not 50 000!
  • pocketdrummer
    I would only buy the Ione based entirely on the fact that they didn't flub up the layout. Seriously, what's with the enter key from these other companies? Why would I want to reach my pinky finger FARTHER to reach a commonly used key? I see no benefit to those layouts.
  • dragonfang18
    What about daskeyboard? I saw a pic while looking at cherry MX keys yet no review?
  • aaron88_7
    My $30 wireless Logitech is still better
  • TheProfosist
    dragonfang18What about daskeyboard? I saw a pic while looking at cherry MX keys yet no review?

    they choose the keyboards based on the switches inside. there was no real need to review multiple boards with the same switches for their purposes because it was more a review/explanation of the different switches than of the keyboards.
  • I have an old MS Internet Keyboard Pro from 2000 - does anyone know what kind of switches it uses? Are they mechanical?
  • You should specify that the macro 'functionality' of the Razer Blackwidow Ultimate is actually done through their windows software and does not work on OS X or Linux, which makes the feature kind of useless for some people.
  • iamtheking123
    michaelahessFor all of you with exotic keyboards, you must be extra special picky I type 110 wpm without error and have no trouble with the wave or 5500.

    Your Logitech board won't last 10+ years like my mechanical board will. Mechanical boards are also *always* the exact same stroke for every single key, and the consistency makes them a bit more pleasurable to type on.
  • slyphnier
    personally, topre realforce is the best keyboard
    to bad their availability is really limited and the price is expensive but worthed
    although you can find it rather easy if you in japan

    -the switch is topre switch not cherry switch
    -made in japan
    -recent version have soft weight switch thinggie to set the weight 45,55,60gram
  • "Bent Spring" ? , This is known as the bucking spring used for model m keyboards which are extremely popular and still made by unicomp. The review also doesn't have the Das Keyboard.
  • reasonablevoice is a website with user generated information and images. You should have attributed those images to the user in question and linked back to the Mechanical Keyboard guide you took them from.
    If anyone wants a more in depth guide go search for Mechanical Keyboard guide on Manyak put a lot of time into it. Also user Ripster has a lot of good info.