The SteelSeries Apex M750 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Review: Set Apart by Softwareby E. Fylladitakis on September 7, 2018 9:00 AM EST
- Posted in
- Cherry MX
- Mechanical Keyboards
Mechanical keyboards may be a relative new market trend but they definitely are not a new technology. Actually, most of the first PC keyboards back in the 70’s and 80’s were mechanical. Their use dwindled after the introduction of electronic keyboards because of their much lower cost. Electronic keyboards served their purpose for decades and had their part in lowering the overall price of a PC to make it affordable by the masses, yet early-day enthusiasts and professionals never forgot how much better the feeling of a mechanical keyboard was.
This style of keyboard was reintroduced into the consumer market almost a decade ago, after several patents expired and the overall production cost of mechanical switches was lowered, allowing the design and creation of affordable products once more. As the cost of a mechanical keyboard still was many times that of a common electronic keyboard, their market growth was slow, yet steady. The market kept growing and ever more manufacturers introduced new products. Nowadays there are dozens upon dozens of mechanical keyboards available, for every user and budget.
SteelSeries is one of the most renowned manufacturers of advanced PC peripherals, including several mechanical keyboards. Recently, the company introduced not only new keyboards but also new mechanical switches of their own design, the QX1 and the QX2. In this review, we are having a look at one of their most impressive mechanical keyboards, the Apex M750, which also gives us the chance to test their new QX2 switches.
Packaging and bundle
We received the SteelSeries Apex M750 Mechanical Keyboard in a well-designed, strong cardboard box. A vibrant image of the keyboard dominates the front side of the box, surrounded by abstract shapes and very succinct information about the main features of the keyboard. Detailed information is printed on the sides and the rear of the box. The box is very sturdy, offering ample shipping protection to the keyboard.
Inside the box, we only found a simple manual and two rubber feet for the keyboard. There are no keycap pullers or other accessories and the software has to be downloaded from the manufacturer's website.
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timecop1818 - Saturday, September 8, 2018 - linkSo hold on, is menu button completely gone to be replaced with their Fn key equivalent?
wavetrex - Saturday, September 8, 2018 - linkYes, there is no "menu" button.
Which I found inconvenient as well, but resolved it quickly by remapping the right "Windows" key to be the "menu" button".
The "Steelseries" key cannot be remapped, but every other one can.
This is an absolutely excellent keyboard and I've been enjoying it since March 2018, and to this day nothing else to complain about it.
It looks great, works great, easy to maintain (clean), software is awesome (and could be improved even more).
timecop1818 - Sunday, September 9, 2018 - linkThank you. that seems like a decent compromise, I do use left winkey as well as menu (a lot), but can't recall many cases where right winkey would be in use.
wavetrex - Saturday, September 8, 2018 - link@E. Fylladitakis
Some people (that includes myself) like and want the minimalist design, which still keeps full ANSI compatibility.
I bought this keyboard especially for this, it has the minimum size for a full-104 key keyboard and fits my desk well.
Other mech. keyboards might have extra functions, dedicated media or macro buttons, but they are also significantly BIGGER, and that becomes a problem for many people.
The position of the media combo-keys make it easy to distinguish between "Play/Pause - F8" and "Next - F9", since there's that gap between them, and these are basically the most useful ones.
Volume Up/Down are also well placed, at the end of Fn row, making them easy to find blindly.
Finally, you seem to have missed in your article the fact that lighting can be controlled through the keyboard itself as well, not just the software.
Pressing "SS Key" + Print screen / Scroll Lock / Insert / Home / Delete / End changes lighting modes and adjust parameters (like color, speed)
Even without installing the software, it's possible to switch to a more "pleasant" lighting, like "Starlight" mode. The keyboard remembers the last setting event through power-off, so moving it to a computer without the software installed is nice.
E.Fyll - Sunday, September 9, 2018 - linkThere is no need to try and justify your purchase to anybody. Every product has a potential market - if it didn't have any potential at all, nobody would bother reviewing it anyway. I am just highlighting what I think it is important, from my point of view. Readers are free to decide themselves whether the product fits their wants and needs.
About this however:
"Other mech. keyboards might have extra functions, dedicated media or macro buttons, but they are also significantly BIGGER, and that becomes a problem for many people."
That's not even remotely true. There are at least a dozen mechanical keyboards available with dedicated media keys/volume control knobs which are not even bigger than the M750. The dead space occupied by the company's logo would be enough to host at least dedicated volume controls.
Finally, that's a gaming keyboard and its target group is, well, gamers. I really don't think that a gamer cares about being able to switch to "starlight mode" without the software if plugging in the keyboard to another computer. I just never fathomed that someone would buy such an expensive keyboard for that feature. But thank you for pointing that out, just in case someone actually does care about that.
Sarah Terra - Saturday, September 8, 2018 - linkSad how badly Ian Cutress has run this once great publication into the ground. Irrelevant, boring articles combined with endless keyboard reviews....ladies and gentlemen, I give you the result of liberal millennials "at work"
m16 - Sunday, September 9, 2018 - linkIt just so happens that the majority of people happen to use keyboards and there's a lot of new offerings showing up.
If you want to talk about drivel and politics, there's a place for you, fox is elsewhere on the internet, and it includes retirees.
imemerson - Sunday, September 9, 2018 - linkThis site still does amazing work, including reviews of keyboards which are the most important peripheral for any computer. To make this site more useful to those of us that are here to learn and use it correctly, please remove yourself. I'm sure you can find plenty of low-quality "liberal millenials are ruining everything" places to spout your nonsensical drivel (try InfoWars or anything under the label of Fox News) and please stop slandering a site that actually engages in high-quality reviews and writing with a long history of excellent and truthful reporting.
Ryan Smith - Sunday, September 9, 2018 - link"Sad how badly Ian Cutress has run this once great publication into the ground."
Hey, credit where credit is due. I'm the editor-in-chief, I am the one who's running it into the ground! =P
But in all seriousness, if you have specific concerns about the site I'm more than happy to hear them.
However as far as keyboard reviews go, I am very satisfied with them and intend to continue. They are a nice way to mix things up in terms of content, and they draw reasonable traffic and reader interest.
Ian Cutress - Monday, September 10, 2018 - linkWhat's been irrelevant and boring recently? Lots of investigative work and new launches, as well as extensive show coverage in the past few weeks