We’re lastly getting into the “comically tiny and quick” period of mechanical gaming keyboards. SteelSeries simply launched the brand new Apex 9 TKL and Apex 9 Mini, two compact keyboards that boast customized optical switches and a surprisingly customizable design.

Ignoring variations in form-factor, the Apex 9 TKL and Apex 9 Mini are an identical. Each keyboards use Double Shot PBT keycaps, replaceable switches, adjustable legs, and an aluminum prime plate. They hook up with your pc by way of USB-C cable and provide customizable RGB lighting (managed via SteelSeries GG software program).

However extra importantly, these are the primary Apex keyboards with SteelSeries’ OptiPoint optical switches. They actuate at simply 1.0mm and have a response time of 0.2ms with zero debounce. And whenever you desire a much less delicate keyboard, you’ll be able to toggle the switches to actuate at 1.5mm utilizing SteelSeries’ software program. (I counsel creating customized “profiles” to make toggling simpler.)

It’s clear that SteelSeries has one thing attention-grabbing on its palms. The corporate explicitly states that these keyboards are made for (and impressed by) skilled esports champions, who’ve lately turned their backs on clunky full-sized keyboards. A compact design isn’t simply moveable—it additionally offers you extra room to swing a mouse round.

The Apex 9 TKL and Apex 9 Mini each value $130. Once more, the one distinction right here is within the form-factor. I counsel shopping for the Apex 9 TKL for those who want a multi-use keyboard, because it has arrow keys, a operate row, and a handful of extra buttons.

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