The SteelSeries Apex M750 ($ 139.99) is an excellent customizable gaming keyboard that meets even the most demanding customization needs of professional gamers. Whatever your game or style of play, you can probably find a way to simplify your strikes with this model. As with other high-end gaming keyboards, you can choose from an almost unlimited number of color combinations for each key, but you can also use the backlight to display incoming chat notifications, as an audio viewer, and much more. And it’s even before diving into the rest of the settings. There is, however, a major potential drawback: the Apex M750’s only switch type selection and physical compactness make it uncomfortable for normal typing sessions.
Simplicity of play
SteelSery brings this card to the market among esports professionals, but of course, it will sell much more to fans and players who strive to become a professional once. This positioning means that fast keystrokes and lighting adjustments can be used plumb, but in addition, the Apex M750 can be almost as barebones as the game keyboards. Aside from a single key with the SteelSeries logo printed on it. next to the right Windows key, the M750 does not deviate from the standard layout of the American keyboard, which means that there are no special multimedia keys or other buttons.
Some function keys operate twice as media and brightness controls, but you must first press the SteelSeries key to use them, which makes it impossible to adjust the volume or brightness of the backlight in the fire. ‘action. There is a 10-key numeric keypad on our review unit, but you can also buy a version of the M750 without one if you want even more simplicity. The overall result is a counterpart to the Corsair K95 RGB Platinum edition of Amazon’s $ 149.99 publisher, with its special media buttons and a row of six G-keys.
Because there are no additional controls, the design of the Apex M750 is also extremely simple. It measures 1.84 by 6.04 by 17.87 inches (HWD) and weighs 2.2 pounds, about the same as the Amazon’s $ 84.99 SteelSeries Apex M500. There is no USB throughput to add volume, and the 6.5ft non-detachable cable is of the ordinary, thin-coated plastic variety, not the thick braided type you’ll find on cards like the Das Keyboard X40 Pro. Under the keys is a matte black aluminum alloy without contours, with the exception of very small edges at the top and bottom. This means that you can not place your wrist anywhere, which many players will find uncomfortable. SteelSeries apparently recognizes this and currently has a free wrist rest with the M750, although it’s an add-on of $ 14.99. There are also no adjustable feet, which means that you can not change the orientation of the keyboard if you find it uncomfortable. The combination of fixed-angle orientation and the absence of a wrist rest means that I typed this review on the Apex M750 with my wrists slightly raised from the table, which was uncomfortable and almost certainly ergonomic incorrect.
The simplicity of the Apex M750 continues with its switches, designed by SteelSeries internally. They are called the QX2 linear mechanical RGB switch and they are designed to do one thing: a lightning fast linear operation. They are fine; the operation is similar to the Cherry MX Red, the selection switch for many MOBA players, and indeed both switches have the same 45 gram drive power. People who play games like Dota 2 prefer this type of switch because they are not interested in physical clicks telling them when they pressed a key; Instead, they just want a quick and smooth trip.
However, for long typing sessions, the lack of feedback becomes tiring and you will find that you want more “clicks”. This means that the Apex M750 is excellent for serving the esports community, but relatively poor as a multifunctional mechanical keyboard. A good compromise between fast travel and feedback is the Cherry MX Brown switch found on signs such as the Logitech G610 Orion Brown $ 98.87 at Amazon. Unfortunately, unlike the Apex M500 or G610, both of which can be ordered with Cherry switches of your choice, the only option for the Apex M750 is the QX2.
For a non-touch switch, the SteelSeries QX2 design is exceptionally strong. There are no clicks, but every time you press a key, there is a hollow and noticeable sound. The Apex M750 also has a rollover with n-keys, so you can theoretically mow each key at the same time and save them all as a keystroke.
Assuming that the QX2 switches and the minimalist physical design of the Apex M750 work for you, you can expect an incredible number of different customization options. You can now forget the simplicity; The SteelSeries Engine software is built around precise control of all aspects of lighting and keyboard keys. The main control panel of the Apex M750 consists of three tabs. At the first, the keyboard shortcuts, you can assign a key (such as the letter “I”, Page Up or Caps Lock) to each key in the table. You can also include a macro and assign a key to a key, and set the behavior of the function (do you want it to be played once, a set number of times or repeated until you press again? the button?). You can even specify whether the function is saved when you press the key or after releasing it.
In the Lighting tab, you can choose from 12 lighting modes, including a Static Key mode that allows you to change the color of a single key or group of keys. Fine-tuning options include adjusting the speed and direction of effects such as waves or ripples. You can also activate and set any of seven Reactive Lighting effects that are played each time you press a key. Finally, there is a tab with different settings, with which you can adjust the polling speed of the Apex M750, change the default keyboard layout for US English and even adjust the colors of the SteelSeries Engine software you- even. When you have finished customizing, you can save your configuration so you can restore it if you later change an individual setting.
But the pleasure of adaptation does not stop there. In the main window of SteelSeries Engine, a new section is exclusively dedicated to third-party integrations. They include applications that allow you to use the backlight of your keyboard to display information about the state of the game (think kill, help and health) in Dota 2, Minecraft $ 26.95 with Amazon and other games. There is also an integration of Discord, so that you can flash a series of keys when you receive a new message in the popular game chat service.
If you sign up for a SteelSeries account, you have access to your cloud-based configurations on each computer, so you do not have to rebuild everything when you buy a new PC.
A well-stocked niche
Apex M750 adds a significant advantage as the flagship of the company’s gaming keyboard series, located above the M500 top, which is almost identical, except for the choice of Cherry MX switches Red or Blue, the level of $ 99 lower price and lack of customizable backlighting. The M750 is worth $ 40 more (or $ 20 more for the non-keypad version), assuming you can take advantage of more robust customization options. But the appeal is limited to professional gamers and enthusiasts who need quick and easy keys, do not care about G-keys or special media controls, and have a second keyboard with more comfortable switches for input and output. daily use of PCs. If it’s you, the M750 is a great choice, but be sure to take advantage of the free wrist support offer. If you are a nonchalant gamer planning to use a single keyboard for gaming and productivity, you should consider the Corsair K95 RGB Platinum on the other side.