I. Introduction

A. Brief Overview of the Corsair K100 RGB Gaming Keyboard

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Welcome to the advanced gaming keyboard experience world, where the Corsair K100 RGB stands as a colossus. This keyboard is a testament to Corsair’s commitment to delivering top-tier gaming performance through innovative design and cutting-edge technology.

The Corsair K100 RGB is not just a keyboard; it’s a highly customizable control panel designed to give you an in-game advantage. Its 110 keys, including six dedicated macro keys, offer a comprehensive interface for gaming and typing tasks. The keys are equipped with Corsair’s proprietary OPX optical switches, providing smooth linear travel and hyper-fast input.

The keyboard also features a unique iCue control wheel, a first in Corsair keyboards, allowing you to perform custom actions and complex macros with a simple spin. The RGB lighting, which can be customized through the Corsair iCue software, adds to the aesthetic appeal of the keyboard, making it a centerpiece of any gaming setup.

B. Price and Availability

With all its features and advanced technology, the Corsair K100 RGB Optical Mechanical Gaming Keyboard comes at a premium price. As of the last update, the keyboard is priced at around $229. It’s a significant investment, but it’s a price worth paying for the dedicated gamer or the professional requiring a high-performing keyboard.

Availability can vary depending on the region and the retailer. It’s always best to check Corsair’s official website or authorized retailers for the most accurate and up-to-date information on availability.

Stay tuned as we delve deeper into the design, key features, performance, and software of the Corsair K100 RGB in the following sections. Whether you’re a seasoned gamer, a typing enthusiast, or someone searching for a high-quality mechanical keyboard, this comprehensive review will provide you with all the information you need about this top-of-the-line Corsair keyboard.

II. Design and Build

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A. Physical Description and Dimensions

The Corsair K100 RGB is a full-sized keyboard boasting a robust and durable aluminum frame. It measures 18.5 x 6.5 x 1.5 inches (470 x 166 x 38 mm), making it a substantial presence on any desk. The keyboard’s 2.98 lb (1.35 kg) adds to its solid and premium feel.

B. Key Layout and Additional Features

The K100 RGB features a traditional 110-key layout, including a number pad and a row of six dedicated macro keys, labeled as G keys, on the left side. These G keys can be programmed through the iCue software for various functions, providing a level of customization that’s a boon for gamers and power users alike.

One of the standout features of the K100 RGB is the iCue control wheel located on the upper left of the keyboard. This textured aluminum wheel allows you to control various programs and functions, adding another layer of customization and control to your keyboard experience.

The keyboard includes a set of dedicated media keys, and a volume scroll wheel on the upper right, providing easy access to media controls without interrupting your game or work.

C. Quality of Materials

The K100 RGB is built with a focus on durability and longevity. The frame is made of brushed aluminum, giving it a premium look and feel while ensuring it can withstand heavy use.

The keycaps are double-shot PBT, known for their durability and resistance to shine over time. Corsair claims that these keycaps can withstand up to 150 million key presses, setting a new standard for durability in the keyboard market.

D. Wrist Rest

Comfort is a critical consideration in the design of the K100 RGB. The keyboard comes with a detachable cushioned wrist rest. This wrist rest is designed to provide comfort during long gaming or typing sessions, helping to reduce wrist fatigue and promote a more ergonomic typing position. The wrist rest is easily detachable, allowing you to customize your typing experience based on your comfort needs.

III. Key Features

A. Corsair OPX Optical-Mechanical Switches

1. Actuation Force and Distance

At the heart of the K100 RGB are Corsair’s proprietary OPX optical-mechanical switches. These switches are designed for speed, with an actuation force of 45 grams and an actuation point of just 1.0 mm. This means the keys register a keystroke with a light press, making them incredibly responsive and ideal for fast-paced gaming.

2. Comparison with Cherry MX Speed Silver Switches

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Compared to the Cherry MX Speed Silver switches, which have an actuation point of 1.2 mm, the Corsair OPX switches are even faster, providing a noticeable advantage in games where every millisecond counts. However, the choice between the two will ultimately depend on personal preference, as some users may prefer the slightly higher actuation point and tactile feedback of the Cherry MX Speed switches.

B. iCue Control Wheel

1. Functionality and Customization

The iCue control wheel is a unique feature of the K100 RGB. This wheel can be customized through the iCue software to control various functions such as brightness levels, track jogging, vertical scrolling, zoom, and more. Each mode is color-coded through its ring of RGB, providing a visual cue of the current mode.

2. User Experience

The control wheel adds another dimension to the user experience. The textured aluminum wheel provides tactile feedback, enhancing user interaction with the keyboard. While it may take some time to get used to, it offers a level of control and customization that can be invaluable in specific applications.

C. RGB Lighting

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1. Customization Options

The K100 RGB offers extensive customization options for its RGB lighting. Whether you want a simple, single-color backlight or a complex, multi-color light show, the K100 RGB covers you. Through the iCue software, you can customize the lighting effect for each key, allowing you to create a truly personalized wireless lighting setup.

2. Impact on Aesthetics

The RGB lighting of the K100 RGB is not just about functionality; it also significantly contributes to the keyboard’s aesthetics. The vibrant lighting can transform the keyboard’s look, making it a standout piece in any gaming setup. Whether you prefer a subtle, understated look or a bold, eye-catching display, the K100 RGB’s lighting can match your style.

IV. Performance

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A. Typing Experience

The Corsair K100 RGB offers a unique typing experience thanks to its OPX optical-mechanical switches. These switches provide a smooth linear travel, resulting in a fast and responsive typing feel. However, they are also susceptible, which may lead to occasional mistypes, especially for those used to more tactile switches.

The keyboard’s full-sized layout and the inclusion of a detachable cushioned wrist rest contribute to a comfortable typing experience, even during prolonged sessions. The double-shot PBT keycaps are durable and provide a satisfying feel under the fingers.

B. Gaming Performance

When it comes to gaming, the K100 RGB truly shines. The fast actuation of the OPX switches, combined with the keyboard’s high polling rate, ensures that every keystroke is registered instantly, giving you an edge in fast-paced games.

The six dedicated macro keys and the iCue control wheel add another level of functionality, allowing you to efficiently perform complex in-game actions or quickly adjust settings without interrupting your game. The keyboard’s full RGB lighting can also enhance your gaming experience, adding an immersive element to your gaming setup.

C. Responsiveness and Polling Rate

The K100 RGB features a hyper-fast polling rate of up to 8,000Hz, four times faster than most gaming keyboards. This means the keyboard checks for key presses 8,000 times per second, resulting in incredibly responsive input that can make a noticeable difference in fast-paced games.

The OPX optical switches also contribute to the keyboard’s responsiveness. With their low actuation force and distance, these switches register keystrokes almost instantly, ensuring that your inputs are reflected in your game or work as quickly as possible.

V. Software

A. Overview of Corsair iCue Software

The Corsair iCue software is a powerful tool that allows you to unlock the full potential of your K100 RGB keyboard. This software serves as the control center for your k 100 keyboard, enabling you to customize various aspects of its functionality and aesthetics.

iCue is user-friendly and intuitive, making navigating through the different settings and options easy. It provides real-time updates, ensuring that any changes you make are immediately reflected on your keyboard.

B. Customization Options

With iCue, you can customize almost every aspect of your K100 RGB. This includes key remaps, macro programming, and RGB lighting effects. You can assign different functions to each key, create complex macros for the G keys, and design your lighting profiles.

The software also allows you to adjust the functionality of the iCue control wheel, enabling you to choose from various functions and modes. Whether you want to control media playback, adjust brightness levels, or navigate through your documents, the control wheel can be customized to suit your needs.

C. Integration with Elgato Stream Deck

One of the standout features of the K100 RGB is its integration with the Elgato Stream Deck software. This software allows you to easily program the six dedicated macro keys (G keys) with various functions, from launching applications to executing complex in-game commands.

For streamers, this integration is beneficial. You can set up the G keys to control your stream, switch scenes, adjust audio, and even interact with your audience, all at the press of a button. This level of control can significantly enhance your streaming experience, making the K100 RGB a valuable tool for any streamer.

VI. Pros and Cons

A. Advantages of the Corsair K100 RGB

The Corsair K100 RGB boasts several advantages that make it a standout choice for a gaming keyboard:

1. Highly Customizable: With the iCue software, you can customize almost every keyboard aspect, from key functions to RGB lighting effects. This level of customization allows you to tailor the keyboard to your specific needs and preferences.

2. Fast and Responsive: The OPX optical-mechanical key switches, and the high polling rate ensure that every keystroke is registered instantly, providing a fast and responsive typing and gaming experience.

3. Quality Build: The durable aluminum frame and double-shot PBT keycaps ensure the keyboard can withstand heavy use, making it a long-lasting investment.

4. Unique Features: The iCue control wheel and the integration with Elgato Stream Deck add unique functionality switch options that can enhance your gaming and streaming experience.

B. Disadvantages and Potential Concerns

Despite its many advantages, there are a few potential concerns with the Corsair K100 RGB:

1. Price: The K100 RGB is a premium keyboard with a price tag. This may put it out of reach for some users.

2. Size: The full-sized layout and including a number pad and macro keys, make the K100 RGB quite large. This could be a problem if you have limited desk space.

3. Learning Curve: With its many features and customization options, the K100 RGB can take some time to get used to. Notably, the sensitivity of the OPX switches may lead to occasional mistypes once you adjust to the feel.

4. Software Required: To unlock the full potential of the K100 RGB, you need to use the iCue software. While the software is powerful and user-friendly, some users may prefer a keyboard that is fully functional out of the box without the need for additional software.

VII. Conclusion

A. Overall Assessment

The Corsair K100 RGB is a keyboard powerhouse, offering many features and customization options that set it apart from competitors. Its high-quality build, fast and responsive OPX optical-mechanical switches, and unique features like the iCue control wheel and Elgato Stream Deck integration make it a standout choice for any serious gamer or power user.

While its premium price tag and large size may deter some, its performance and durability make it a worthwhile investment for those who demand the best from their peripherals.

B. Ideal User Profile

The ideal user for the Corsair K100 RGB values performance, customization, and a quality built-in keyboard. This could be a competitive gamer who needs fast and responsive keys, a power user who values customization and control, or a streamer who can take advantage of the Elgato Stream Deck integration.

If you spend much time on your computer for gaming, work, or content creation and are willing to invest in a high-quality keyboard to enhance your experience, then the K100 RGB could be the perfect fit.

C. Comparison with Alternatives

When compared to alternatives like the Razer Huntsman, the K100 RGB holds its own with its unique features and superior build quality. While the Huntsman also offers fast and responsive optical switches, the K100 RGB goes further with its iCue control wheel, dedicated macro keys, and Elgato Stream Deck integration.

In terms of price, both keyboards fall into the premium category. However, considering the additional features and the quality of materials used in the K100 RGB, it offers similar gaming performance and good value for the price.

In conclusion, the Corsair K100 RGB is more than just a keyboard and mouse. It’s a highly customizable control panel that can enhance your gaming, typing, and streaming experience. Whether you’re a seasoned gamer, a power user, or a content creator, the K100 RGB has something to offer you.