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January 10, 2018

The best keyboards at CES 2018

by John_A

If you’re on the market for a new mechanical keyboard, the Consumer Electronics Show is a great place to see what’s coming this year. All keyboards on our list target gamers, but they also work just fine in your typical home or office environment. That said, our list of the best keyboards at CES 2018 derive from well-known manufacturers such as Asus, Cooler Master, and HyperX. 

You’ll also see the return of Mad Catz in the PC peripherals arena. The company took a “break” after filing for bankruptcy in March of 2017, but now the brand is back under new management and packing a new portfolio of products. In addition to the mechanical keyboard listed below, the company also introduced a new ratty mouse we covered in a separate rodent-themed article. 

That said, three out of the five products on our list rely on Cherry MX mechanical switches, while all have customizable illumination. Several models attempt to push the mechanical keyboard form factor by providing unique features new to the peripheral market, such as analog movement control and gas pedal-like key presses. Take a look at our list of the best keyboards at CES 2018! 

Asus ROG Strix Flare 

Highlights


Cherry MX RGB switches 


Dedicated media keys and volume wheel 


USB pass-through port 


Customizable Aura Sync RGB 


Launch date: 1H 2018 


Price: TBD 

 

This new mechanical keyboard built for gamers relies on Cherry MX RGB switches with surface-mounted RGB LEDs. The company doesn’t list the exact types the keyboard will offer, but the MX RGB family includes Blue, Red, Brown, and Black flavors providing different styles of feedback and actuation force. Outside the switch aspect, the Strix Flare packs all the media keys you need into the upper left-hand corner, including a volume wheel – perfect for right-handed gamers. Unfortunately, there are no dedicated macro keys. 

Gamers will find an embedded, illuminated acrylic “badge” towards the upper right side sporting the ROG slash design. You can swap out this badge with another blank badge provided with the keyboard, which can be used to display a team logo, or a unique design. Other features include a USB-A pass-through port for connecting a mouse, USB headset, or some other peripheral, support for the Aura Sync platform, programmable RGB backlit keys, and a detachable wrist rest. LEDs are mounted under both sides of the keyboard for an awesome desktop illumination effect, too.

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