Which Keyboard is Right for You

By James Cao, on September 25, 2013

When we designed our vast line-up of keyboards, we ensured that we would meet everyone's needs. Our Vengeance mechanical keyboards needed to have amazing performance, clean aesthetics, and high durability. Corsair Raptor membrane keyboards would bring the same functionality at a lower cost, but without any compromises in quality. Whether you want macro keys or a compact layout, we have the right keyboard for you.

Therefore, we made this guide as a reference. Below is a quick chart that lists what keyboard has as a feature. To read more about a specific keyboard, click on the name of the keyboard you're interested in, or just scroll down for your perusal.

 

  Corsair K95
K95
Corsair K70
K70
Corsair K70
K70
Corsair K70
K70
Corsair K65
K65
Corsair K50
K50
Corsair K30
K30
Key Switch Type Cherry MX Red Cherry MX Red Cherry MX Blue Cherry MX Brown Cherry MX Red Membrane Membrane
Backlight Yes (White) Red or Blue Blue Blue RGB Red
Macro Playback Yes Yes Yes
USB Passthrough Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Color Black Black or Silver Gunmetal Gunmetal Silver Gunmetal Gunmetal
Size Extended Standard Standard Standard Compact Extended Standard
Price $149.99 $129.99 $129.99 $129.99 $89.99 $99.99 $59.99

 

A

 

Corsair Vengeance Mechanical Keyboards as a premium peripheral offer as features both durability that will stand up to heavy usage through Cherry MX key switches. They also provide a solid feel when you press on the switches that allow for quick and accurate typing, both equally important traits for typists and gamners alike.

 

Corsair Vengeance K95:

123

  • Size: 19.76" x 6.54"
  • Macro Functionality: Yes
  • Backlighting: Yes (White)
  • Key Switch: Cherry MX Red
  • MSRP: $149.99

The Corsair K95 is the flagship of our keyboard lineup and also our largest keyboard. The keyboard is fully mechanical with Cherry MX red key switches with an additional 18 mechanical switches for macro playback. It also comes with a full length wrist rest which screws on to ensure it does not slide off the base of the keyboard. To compliment the black anodized aluminum, the keyboard is lit with white LEDs so you can adjust up to 3 different customizable lighting profiles.

Is it right for you?

The K95 has massive utility for both gamers, and for people who desire macros for their applications. As a gamer, especially if you play MMO's, there often will be situations where you need additional keys for your spells/abilities/etc. While you can bind shortcuts to other alphanumeric keys, it is not as convenient in comparison to being able to use additional keys to the left of the standard WASD 1-6 keys. This is where a macro keyboard offers the advantage. If you're someone who needs a specific key remapped to the G-keys for ease of use, or if you're someone who wants to be able to cast a spell while constantly running, the software will allow you do just that. On top of that, the keyboard supports 3 separate memory banks so when you change the macro banks, you can load the macros you need specifically for that game under the same profile, or you can increase the number of macros on hand for that game exclusively.

The macro keys are not only for gamers, however. In truth, many users who buy our macro keyboards use them for a variety of tasks, such as creating unique key bindings, record combinations of shortcuts for programs like Office and Photoshop, record keystrokes to avoid typing out the same message over and over for desktop publishing. Our K95 also has the ability to save macros and key bindings directly to the keyboard as well. This means you can setup all your macros to a profile, save it to the keyboard, and then bring the keyboard to wherever you want to use it at without actually having to install the software to utilize the saved macros. If you worked in an office with a machine that has no administrative rights, this would definitely be a real boon for you.

The aesthetics are also subtle so that even if people who may not like LED lights on the keyboard can come to appreciate the white non-glaring LEDs, and the black anodized aluminum makes it easy to compliment your system and any other peripherals at your workstation.

 

Corsair Vengeance K70

465

  • Size: 17.24" x 6.54"
  • Macro Functionality: No
  • Backlighting: Yes
  • Key Switch: Cherry MX Red/Blue/Brown
  • MSRP: $129.99
  • Amazon Best Seller (Gaming Keyboards)
  • Winner of PC Gamer Editor's Choice: award

Our newest offering of Corsair Vengeance K70 is a premium combination of aesthetics and functionality. As the premium 108-key keyboard, we took the feedback we got from the K60 and added the features most users wanted. We incorporated customizable led backlighting, a full length wrist rest, and full mechanical layout like the K65. The keyboard also features contoured textured keycaps similar to the K60 with the addition that they remain transparent enough for the LED's to shine through, and are laser etched to prevent wear and tear.

For aesthetics, we released the K70 in two different colors for Cherry MX Red Switches. Using black anodized aluminum and red LED's on the key switches, it gives off an amazing red and black look that will match many computer systems that use the same theme. If red and black is not for you, we also offer it with a silver frame and blue LED's. For the K70 Cherry MX Blue and Brown versions, we used a gunmetal gray brushed aluminium color with blue LED's to distingush it differently from the Cherry MX Reds.

Is it right for you?

If you as a user desire no compromises into what comprises a 108-key keyboard, this is the keyboard for you. We loaded the K70 with everything you can put on a keyboard to ensure that it looks amazing in addition to making it comfortable to use to meet both form and function. If you're the type of person who plays in a darker environment, the backlighting is a huge perk to have on a keyboard. On top of that, the K70 allows you to enable which LED is on or off so if you're worried about glare, you can adjust it only for the keys you want lit.

Unlike the other keyboards, the K70 also conforms to your preference with the availability of three variants with different Cherry MX switches.

Our K70 Cherry MX Red remains the most popular as Reds are considered "gaming" switches due to the sensitivity and linear feel, making actions like a double-tap easier to input. It also registers a key-press even with a slight touch so you do not have to worry about missing the key-press when it really counts in a game.

For those who prefer some type of tactile feedback, the K70 is also available with Cherry MX Blues. This key switch is not as sensitive as the Cherry MX Red and offers a tactile feedback (similar to a click) when you press down on the key. While you may not get the same smooth feel from the reds, there is a slightly stiffer feel to them.

Finally, the K70 also has a variant that comes with Cherry MX Browns. This can be viewed as a middle of the line key switch between the Cherry MX Red and the Cherry MX Blue. It is not as light as the red but it is not as heavy as the blue. The difference also resides in the feedback being similar to a bump rather than the click of a blue.

If you like the K60 but wanted even more features, this is it. Whether for gaming or for the office, this keyboard will fulfill any task you ask of it, and complement any setup with it's sleek looks and functionality.

 

Corsair Vengeance K65

789

  • Size: 14.0" x 6.54"
  • Macro Functionality: Yes
  • Backlighting: No
  • Key Switch: Cherry MX Red
  • MSRP $89.99

Otherwise known as a TKL Keyboard (Ten Key Less) the Corsair Vengeance K65 uses a short-body design and was designed to be a fully mechanical keyboard compact in size but retains all the features of it's bigger brothers. The K65 it retains the Cherry MX Red key switches, adjustable polling rate, aluminum uni-body found on all Corsair keyboards, and full n-key rollover.

Is it right for you?

Ask yourself these questions: Do you have a small desk? Do you constantly bring a keyboard with you around? Are you a minimalist and only need a keyboard for typing? Do you desire a larger mousepad and don't have the space? If any of these is yes, then this keyboard is for you.

On top of that, the portability of the K65 would make it easy for people who need an external keyboard with their laptops. If you are you using a gaming laptop for example, you'll want the K65 as there is nothing that comes close to it in terms of comfort and performance on your system. With the removable braided cable, you would not have to worry about unsightly wires hanging from the keyboard as well. It really is as easy as plug and play.

Finally, the comfort of typing on a TKL is well known to a select few as it keeps your hands closer together when using it with a mouse. Most users who have experienced using a TKL keyboard will tell you that during long gaming sessions, especially for MOBA games (League of Legends, DOTA 2) that rely more on mouse movement than key pressing, a TKL will be easier on your shoulders and give you an edge that a larger mouse pad can afford. For MMO gamers, most people have transitioned away from using the numpad to mouse key bindings instead with a MMO mouse further making the numpad redundant for key bindings.

 

B

 

Corsair Raptor gaming keyboards use membrane switches. It is the most common type of switches one will find in a keyboard and are generally inexpensive. Membrane keys offer a quieter experience and does not require a learning period to get adjusted to the keyboard.

Corsair Raptor K50

101112

  • Size: 19.7" x 6.4"
  • Macro Functionality: Yes
  • Backlighting: Yes (RGB)
  • Key Switch: Membrane
  • MSRP: $99.99

A bigger brother to the K30, the Corsair Raptor K50 takes what the K30 had and expands on it. The 6 macro keys on the K30 expand to 18, the single backlit LED is now customizable to any color you prefer (using RGB), there is a built-in USB pass-through so you can connect extra peripherals, and it comes with a full size wrist rest for additional comfort. In addition, it has full anti-ghosting capabilities while resting on a large gunmetal uni-body aluminum frame.

Is it right for you?

The Corsair Raptor K50 makes no compromises even though it does not use mechanical switches. Instead, this flagship membrane keyboard was designed for the gamers and typists who want a full function macro keyboard but may prefer quieter typing. Like the K95, the software will allow you to either record your macros on the fly or through using the software and then saving them to three different memory banks. For those who like to bring their keyboard back and forth to different machines it also retains the onboard memory to save your profile directly to the hardware so you will not need the software.

For those looking to customize their keyboard, the Raptor K50 also is the only Corsair keyboard to allow for RGB customization lighting. You can set the backlight to a light of your choosing, and set it to pulse and change colors as you use it. With this feature, you will have no problems matching any of your other peripherals if they use LED lighting as well.

 

Corsair Raptor K30

131415

  • Size of the Keyboard: W x L
  • Macro Functionality: Yes
  • Backlighting: Yes (single color)
  • Type of Switch: Membrane
  • MSRP: $59.99

The Corsair Raptor K30 is one of our newest additions to the product line. The K30 was designed to be one of our premium membrane keyboards that offer red LED illumination, six programmable macro keys (with 18 presets), and anti-ghosting keystrokes for proper input when using multiple keys. It also comes with multimedia keys so you can listen and play your tracks without having to bring up the software to do so. It retains the standard 108-key layout (though very slightly extended with the addition of a column of macro keys) for those users who do not want or need an extended macro keyboard even though they want the macros.

Is it right for you?

Even though it is the lowest priced keyboard, the K30 is not an entry –level keyboard. This keyboard was designed to use membrane keys for our users who do not like the sound of mechanical keys, but still desire all the functionality of a gaming keyboard. In designing our Raptor K30, we made no compromises to the functionality of the peripheral by including the features gamers need: anti-ghosting for simultaneous key-pressing, backlighting for visual appeal, and macro keys for shortcut binding and key press combinations.

The keyboard is also a combination for those who want to switch between layouts for MMO and FPS games without requiring two different keyboards. The K30 is basic enough for FPS games where macro keys usually aren't as essential, but still have enough keys for those who require it.

The best benefit of this keyboard is that it is low cost in comparison to our competitors without sacrificing utility. For those who work in quiet environments, this keyboard is also beneficial with its membrane keys being significantly quiet. Membrane keys would also feel familiar since most people use it already with their keyboards at home or in the office.

 

End Note

We designed our keyboards to meet the needs of everyone. When you requested different Cherry MX keys, we listened. When you wanted a membrane keyboard with macro functionality, we agreed. When you demanded backlighting, we included it in almost every keyboard.

Whether you choose our high performance mechanical keyboards, or our lower cost membrane keyboards, we do our best to pack as much as we can into it so you will get the options you want and more. As one of the most used peripherals for a setup, the keyboard must also remain reliable so we stand behind our products and back every one of our keyboards with a two year warranty.

We are always listening so let us know your concerns and feedback. Perfection can never be attained but we can definitely try to be close to it.


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