Game Rant's Matt Rowland reviews the Raptor-Gaming LK1 Gaming Keyboard
Gamers on a tight budget still enjoy decent peripherals, and the Raptor-Gaming LK1 gaming keyboard fits into this category.
It is a no frills keyboard that is extremely quiet when pressing keys, features anti-ghosting technology (more on this in a minute), removable keys, is water-resistant, but also has a different, slightly modified keyboard layout that might frustrate North American gamers.
Key responsiveness is one of the features that the LK1 does extremely right. Keystrokes feel firm but are also quiet, and where as other budget keyboards sometimes feel that one is pressing down they keys into a bowl of applesauce (you know what I’m talking about!), the LK1 has none of that, which earns it higher marks.
Complimenting they keystrokes is the anti-ghosting technology of the LK1, which allows users to input 6 simultaneous keystrokes — a function that comes in handy when playing a first person shooter or action-RPG where gamers are forced to issue several commands at once. The annoying “PC Beep” that follows illegal keyboard commands is virtually non-existent on the LK1.
The LK1 also features red WASD and Arrow keys, and comes with a key removal tool and spare keys for the aforementioned WASD and Arrow keys, though the replacements are black. The red keys make it easier for those oft-used buttons to stand out in low light environments which are highly preferred by PC gamers. The key removal tool is incredibly easy to use, and because of the LK1’s “Fast-Mover-Technology,” keys that are removed are automatically locked and can receive no input. Those prone to fat-fingering keys when playing can take advantage of this feature and simply remove all the keys around WASD when playing a game.
When a key is removed, the gamer will see no circuitry below the key; instead they’ll find a small keyhole on top of a plastic cover which protects the “guts.” This is what provides the water resistant structure, though Raptor Gaming does say that players are advised to not spill liquids on the keyboard. The LK1 is also relatively inexpensive. One can typically find a new one for approximately $35 USD.
Beyond the intrinsic benefits that the keyboard offers, there is nothing else here. No shortcut buttons, no media buttons, no hotkeys. Despite the adjustable tilt legs, there is no ergonomic support for users. Users will need to have a good wrist support for long periods of time when at the keyboard, fragging their friends to kingdom come. The keyboard is also corded, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but in an age of gaming where gamers desire wireless devices for portability and mobility, having a cord, even a 3 meter cord, to tether one down to the desktop is a hindrance.
The one aspect of this keyboard that continually frustrated us was the keyboard layout itself. We tried this keyboard on more than just games - trying it for daily use. The Left Shift key is truncated — basically half the size that most users are accustomed to. There is a new key below the A and left of the Z: the \ key. On most North American keyboards, this key is directly above the ENTER button and below BACKSPACE. We were continually hitting this key when trying to capitalize a letter. In a game environment, this is not a big deal since grammar is not important, but outside that setting, it’s incredibly annoying.
Speaking of that ENTER key, the shape of it is irregular for these same North American users. Instead of wide and short, it's narrow and tall. The perpetrating key to its left? Another / key! The German engineers must have felt the / key was so important to users that they included two of them, both in places that will undoubtedly hinder users. Relying on muscle memory to type is very common to those who spend a lot of time on a keyboard, and its an aspect of the LK1 that we simply cannot get around.
The Raptor Gaming LK1 is sturdy, quiet, inexpensive and well suited for those gamers who are on a tight budget. The keys are responsive and feel good under hands, that is, as long as you’re pressing the right one. The layout is frustrating however, not exactly suited for users who will be using the keyboard for tasks other than gaming. That said, if you can get around the layout of the keys, you’ll have a solid budget gaming keyboard.
The Raptor-Gaming LK1 Gaming Keyboard is available now.