It's not stretching the truth at all to say that we adore the K90 Keyboard. Truly mind-blowing build quality is married to an excellent level of customisation and some of the finest lighting we've ever seen to create what is probably the finest keyboard we've ever reviewed.
Now we understand that not everyone requires vast quantities of macros, some people just want something that's glorious to type on and will last until 1TB SSDs are cheaper than a pint. Given that the K60 is just a cut-down version of the brilliant K90, this might be exactly what you're after.
The main difference, the lack of macro keys aside, is that the K60 comes with some sculptured keys for the major FPS ones. But we still have the Cherry MX Red switches, aluminium construction and a cable that could double as a tow-rope it's so well built.
- Light, responsive Cherry MX Red mechanical switches for fast, efficient gaming action
- 45g actuation Force. 2mm to actuation and 4mm to bottom. Rated for 50 million operations. Gold contacts.
- Tuned silicon dome keyswitches: F1 through F12, Esc, PrtScn, Scroll Lock, Pause/Break, Insert, Home, Page Up Page Down, Delete, and End.
- Ten (10) additional sculpted FPS keys (W, A, S, D and 1 to 6) for superior reaction and control — interchangeable with the standard keyboard keys Gaming palm rest with soft-touch surface for superior gaming comfort.
- Storage for ten (10) sculpted FPS keys.
- Key extraction tool included and storable in palm rest.
- Six multimedia keys — Stop, Previous, Play/Pause, Next, Mute, Volume Up/Down — with Solid metal, weighted volume "drum roller".
- Windows Lock key for uninterrupted game play.
- Metal top plate for increased strength, durability and rigidity.
- USB pass-through connector giving easy access to a USB port on the back of the keyboard (USB 2.0/1.1/1.0).
- USB Connector with gold plated contacts.
- 2m non-tangle cable.
Similarly to how the M60 is red compared to the M90s blue, so the K60 is red compared to the blue of the K90. The key (ahem) elements of the K60 being the sculpted WASD keys they're the highlight in the clear panel on the left.
The internal packaging is extremely sturdy, which matches the keyboard itself. You could drive over this without causing it any ill effects.
Without the need for the macro keys the left hand side of the K60 is obviously shorter than the K90, but besides that it's identical. The same gorgeous aluminium body and that beautifully crafted volume control, hewn from a solid barrel of aluminium.
Although the keys themselves stand proud, such is the low profile chassis, they require the same low 2mm actuation thanks to those Cherry MX Red switches. There is even a USB pass-through on the back should you require somewhere to quickly plug a stick in.
Up Close Continued
This is a very neat bit of kit. It's a palm rest for your left hand that slips neatly below the WASD keys but hides a cool secret. As well as holding all of the sculpted keys, or the standard ones if you've swapped, it also has the ever useful key remover. The last thing you want to be doing is using a screwdriver and gouge that aluminium finish.
It's not just a case of sculpting them all into the same uniform pattern either. They've all been tuned to fit perfectly.
Beneath the keys lie those great Cherry MX Red switches. Swapping keys couldn't be simpler and really is a couple of seconds per key.
Although there is no lighting on the K60 the rest of the top right hand corner is the same as the K90, with a Windows Key Lock, the media keys and the barrel volume control. You wont appreciate how amazing that feels to use without actually trying one, which we highly recommend.
Don't let the dual-USB fool you, one is solely for the USB port on the back of the keyboard, so if you don't plan on using that you're not taking up precious USB sockets on your computer.
It's difficult to sum up the K60 without repeating all that we've said about the K90, because it all holds true here too. So if you've already read that you can skip to the bottom.
The primary thing you come away from the K60 feeling is how incredibly well it's engineered. It reminds us of the SteelSeries 7H and we can't think of much higher praise. Despite being the 'lesser' of the two Corsair Vengeance Keyboards it hasn't lost any of the build-quality of its bigger brother.
The chassis is aluminium and not the thin type that fizz cans are made from, but really thick stuff that could probably double as a bullet-proof vest in a pinch. The media keys are equally hardy and the quality of the volume control has to be felt to be believed. It's such a well designed product that it will certainly last you for many many years.
As for the keys, those Cherry MX Red switches have earned their reputation as providers of a very tactile, enjoyable typing experience that requires far less pressure than you expect. So often people look at a mechanical keyboard and assume you need to press hard and deep for the key to actuate. This is piffle. 45g of pressure and only 2mm of depth will see your key appear, and that's equivalent to all but the extreme end of the laptop keyboard scale. Yes they can be pressed down a lot, but you don't need to.
The sculpted keys take a tiny bit of getting used to, but allow you to get quite vicious without fear of sliding off, if such a thing is your bag. The K60 can certainly take a pounding.
Unfortunately there is a slight fly in the ointment. The K60 is only £20 cheaper than the K90, currently retailing for £85 at Aria. Now you're getting a lot of keyboard for your money, but the K90 has 18 macro keys, software, lighting, three memory banks and yet only costs £20 more. So relative to another product we think the K60 is about a tenner too expensive. It's bulletproof and wonderful, but £85 is a bit steep for what is basically a standard keyboard just built extraordinarily well.
For that reason we can only award it our OC3D Silver Award. The product is definitely worthy of the Gold, just the pricing needs a tiny tweak.
Thanks to Corsair for providing the Vengeance K60 for review. Discuss in our forums.