Over recent months, Atomic has reviewed various offerings from Corsair’s peripheral lineup, and the last of these is the K90 keyboard, targeted at the MMO and RTS markets. It is a largely mechanical design, with Cherry MX Red switches used for almost everything; excepting the pgup cluster, function keys, and macros. This is a sensible approach that we suspect keeps costs down, while still providing some of the best linear mechanical action on the keys that matter.
Corsair’s design is somewhat radical, with the keys sitting above a metallic baseplate. This means that the K90 isn’t as much of a crud gatherer as most keyboard designs, as well as allowing for a quite striking splash effect when the blue backlight is activated. It connects via a solid, braided cloth covered USB cable, with two plugs. One drives the keyboard itself, while the other feeds a USB passthrough port. The keys themselves are coated in a matt black paint, which seems to be a lot more durable than it initially appears. It does tend to pick up a bit of finger grease during long play sessions, but we haven’t seen any sign of it wearing down after several weeks of intensive gaming.
One of the nicest aspects of the K90 is that the 18 macro keys on the left side lay flat, effectively sitting below the angled level of the main keys. The macro functions themselves can be set on the fly or in software, however it is important to note that some of the more advanced functionality like recording mouse button presses wasn’t yet implemented in the software when we tested it, though Corsair is working on adding functionality to the software.
The K90 really is a joy to use, not only is it one of the best feeling keyboards we’ve encountered thanks to the anti-ghosting, 20 key rollover and Cherry Red switches, but the metal plate, ancillary buttons and volume control are nice and responsive. As long as you keep in mind that the advanced macro functions are still beta, then this is a spectacular keyboard.