A great keyboard for the price, but let down by limited lighting and easy to damage keys.
Roccat pitches the Suora as the ultimate pure, undiluted performance keyboard for people who don’t care about extra bells and whistles. The design is indeed comparatively light on frills when sitting next to premium keyboards, but when pitted against other keyboards at the same price, it’s surprisingly one of the more feature-rich offerings you can buy.
You get the full complement of conventional keys, with the addition of four keys above the numeric keypad. Rather than simply being programmable gaming keys, by default, these extra keys provide volume up and down, mute and a Game Mode functions. The latter is for switching off the Windows keys so you don’t accidentally exit a game if you hit them.
A host of secondary functions joins these extra physical keys, with the F5-F12 keys all performing a range of duties, such as multimedia control and opening apps such as the Windows calculator. The Insert, Home, Delete, End, PgUp and PgDn keys also double as macro keys.
The above list already includes more features than many keyboards at this price, but that’s your lot. You don’t get any extra USB ports or other physical features, and you can’t even program the blue backlighting. Despite the fact that each key has its own light, you’re only given the option of 11 brightness levels and a breathing effect.
Without RGB LEDs, programmable backlighting isn’t generally that useful anyway, but some other competitors do offer this feature in this price range.
Roccat’s Swarm software gives you flexibility elsewhere, though, enabling you to program macros, change key functions and gain access to all the usual gaming keyboard functions.
In terms of the design and build of the Suora, Roccat has gone for a bare bones approach, with the keys mounted proud of the surface of the base, and with no protective edge.
This approach has a couple of disadvantages. The first is that the light from the keys spills out onto the grey base below in a rather haphazard manner, making the lighting effect look less cohesive than the Corsair on test this month.
It also leaves the keys exposed to knocks, a point that was perfectly demonstrated when initially removing the keyboard from its box – we inadvertently grabbed the spacebar rather than the base of the keyboard and pulled it right off. We’ve seen several keys get knocked loose or break on previous keyboards with this type of design, but it should be fine as long as you’re careful with it.
Otherwise, build quality is decent. The top surface of the base is made from metal, which gives the whole unit a surprising amount of rigidity, considering its relatively slim profile. The result is a sturdy, stable typing platform. You also get proper Cherry MX Brown switches, which provided an excellent typing experience, although you can’t choose to have Blue or Red switches.
There’s also no noise dampening, so you get the full mechanical keyboard clatter sound, but that’s to be expected at this price. Overall, the design doesn’t quite have the aesthetic appeal of the compact Corsair K63, but the Suora does offer a minimalist simple look that will appeal to some people’s tastes, especially if you prefer blue lighting to red or white.
The Roccat Suora is a good-quality mechanical keyboard, and it has a great price. Its stable base, Cherry MX Brown switches and full array of keys means it provides as good a typing experience as any alternative, and it costs a few dollars less than the aforementioned Corsair keyboard too.
The exposed keys and uneven backlighting put it behind in the points a little, but if you can’t afford the extra few dollars, the Suora remains a fantastic keyboard for the money, particularly if you like blue.
A great-value, full-sized mechanical keyboard with good build quality and solid performance.
[relatedYouTubeVideos relation=”postTitle” max=”1″ class=”horizontal center bg-black”]