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Corsair K70 vs K95 Mechanical Keyboard Review and Unboxing
I recently purchased the Corsair K70 mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX brown switches. This keyboard typically ranges in price from $100 to $130 and is probably the best mechanical keyboard for the money under or around $100.
This is an up close look, unboxing, and review of the K70 as well as a comparison to its predecessor, the Vengeance K60.
Corsair Vengeance K70 Review - Is it the best Mechanical Keyboard Under $100 to $150?
K70 Standard Features:
Multimedia Controls: The K70 features a stop, fast forward, pause, rewind, and volume control slider.
USB Pass Through: This keyboard actually comes with two USB cables. One registers the keyboard and the other is an optional USB pass-through. Plug it in and you have a pretty convenient USB hub right at your fingertips.
Textured Buttons: The K70 comes with additional play keys for those that want to switch out their directional WASD and 1-6 keys. I find this especially handy for FPS games.
Wrist Rest: If you'd prefer to not have your keyboard sitting flat, then you can use the K70's optional soft-touch wrist rest. While I prefer to keep this particular option off it is appealing to those who would prefer that their wrists sit up higher.
Full Key Matrix Anti-Ghosting: The K70 allows you to press as many keys as you want and won't miss registering one. This comes in handy for those games where numerous button presses mean that other keyboards can't keep up.
On-board memory: Another really nice feature for this keyboard is the on-board memory which allows you to customize which LED keys are lit. This is nice at night when you don't necessarily want a lot of light shining back at your face in the dark but still need to know where your keys are.
Corsair Vengeance K70 Vs. K60
What originally drew me to it was not only the Corsair name, but also the look and feel of previous generations of Corsair keyboards. The version of this model, the k60, hit the previous market by storm but had a few problems that gamers didn't seem to like.
One was that it wasn't fully mechanical including the F keys, escape keys, and 9 keys in the delete group. Another was that it only came with cherry red switches. If you didn't want to use that kind of switch, then you were simply out of luck.
In addition the K60 came with an awkward wrist rest that appealed to vary few. While it did have these flaws this keyboard was and still is generally available for under $100. If you want Cherry Red switches and don't mind the 22 less used rubber dome keys, then it might be something that is worth looking at if you want to save some money.
Enter the K70.
While the flaws to the K60, in my opinion, were minimal, Corsair put out the K70 to alleviate all of the concerns that gamers had about their previous product.
The K70 is a fully mechanical version this time and comes in 2 colors, black and white, rather than the silver design used for the k60. In addition, Corsair branched out to include brown MX switches as well as Blue MX cherry for those who would prefer those types of switches.
Corsair Vengeance K70 Vs. the K95 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Along with the Corsair Vengeance K70 Corsair also released K95, a larger keyboard available in the $150 price range.
While these keyboards are very similar the K95 includes 18 programmable G-keys dedicated for those looking for preset macros. The K95 is a bit more limited in it's color and switch options and is only available in the black design with red switches.
Both keyboards are built with a solid aluminum brushed chassis and include similar specifications other than the design and additional keys.
While the K70 comes with a solid blue LED backlighting system the K95 comes in white. Both are programmable for not only their brightness, but also the keys that you want lit up.
Mechanical switches can be a big deal these days and most people, just like sandwiches, have a preference on which one they like the most. While the K95 comes in cherry MX red only, you can actually get the K70 in Red, Blue, and brown.
The K70 comes with red removable keys that can be put in place of the W, A, S, D keys as well as numbers 1-6. The K95 does NOT come with this feature.
The K95 comes in a solid black brushed aluminum whilte the k70 comes in that color as well as a gunmetal and silver colors.
My Final Thoughts:
The Corsair K70 appeals to a much larger audience with its multiple design and switch colors while the K95 appeals specifically for those looking for G keys and a red cherry switch. Both are well made and should last you years to come.
My Video Review and Unboxing of the K70 and K95 Corsair Vengeance
Blue Vs. Red Vs. Brown Switches
Which is the Best for You?
Three of the more popular switch types in the gaming realm are the MX Cherry Blues, Reds, and Browns. While all of these keys bottom out between 0 and 4mm, there's a lot of differences that happen before bottoming out. That being said what's the difference between them and which one will you like better?
Red: Smooth and fast would be a good way to describe a red switch. Like the early black switches, the red is linear as it has no bump or tactile feedback before it bottoms out. Red differs from black in that the force used to actuate the switch is much smaller at 45cN which ends up being half of the distance to bottoming out.
Red switches are very light to the touch thus making them very popular among competitive gamers. Unlike Brown or blue switches they do not have a tactile feedback or bump feel to them that comes before bottoming out.
Brown: Brown and blue keys have tactile feedback represented by a small bump you can feel before bottoming out entirely. Brown has a similar actuation as red at 45cN and gives a soft click when depressed. Brown switches activate halfway down (at 2mm) making them fairly simple to double click when compared to the blue.
Blue: Requiring a bit more force to actuate at 50cN and 60cN to bottom out, blue switches are usually referred to as clicky because of their increased high pitched sound. They are a bit more difficult to double click than the brown switches as their release point is above the actuation point which means most times you'll end up letting go almost entirely before being able to click again. In my opinion this makes them less ideal for games where you need to double click a lot.
I've really enjoyed using the Corsair Vengeance K70 and highly recommend it for those who are looking for a brown, blue, or red switch option. Corsair's no nonsense approach to this keyboard has made it one of the more desirable options in the $100 to $150 price range.
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© 2014 Brandon Hart