Steelseries Apex 9 TKL gaming keyboard overview – Tickling your fancy


For those who did not already know this, there are a ton of gaming keyboards on the market. I’ve reviewed a few them myself for Gaming Pattern, and fortunately I’ve had the pleasure of coping with good ones. The issue you’ll be able to run into with the intense number of decisions is discovering out which of them will work finest for you, and evaluations will not at all times let you know that. Even so, I’ll attempt to just do that and let you know why you must choose up a Steelseries Apex 9 TKL, which is an exceptional piece of kit.

Within the field, you may discover the Apex 9 TKL keyboard, a removable braided USB-C cable, and hidden in a intelligent compartment on the again, a keycap puller. It would not sound like a lot, however even with out the keycap puller you’ve got bought every thing it’s essential to get issues rolling. Steelseries additionally presents alternative keycaps to buy individually and their “pudding caps” for $30, which is not unhealthy. The one factor I do not like as a lot concerning the keycap puller compartment; it has a rubber cowl, and with its location on the again it will probably choose up mud, grime, or crumbs out of your desk.

When you get every thing arrange, it is fairly apparent how simply this keyboard suits on virtually any desk. It is fairly small, and even in comparison with a 60% (of which Steelseries has a type of too), it is not a lot greater. As with most keyboards it is about optimizing your area, and every thing feels good and tight on the Apex 9 TKL. For those who’re like me, you are going to have a number of mind farts with adjusting, given the smaller measurement pushing every thing a bit nearer collectively. However, as soon as you’ve got gotten all of it down your fingers will skate throughout this keyboard. Apart from the moments you attain to your ten keys.


The texture of the Apex 9 TKL is unquestionably going to be one among its main attracts. For one thing that’s plastic past the aluminum prime plate, I am shocked it is as dense as it’s, together with feeling extraordinarily sturdy whereas nonetheless being gentle. Together with that discovery, I’ve discovered the matte keycaps on the 9 to be unbelievable. It is like the right skateboard, the place it is gripping you versus you doing all of the work. It makes every key press really feel actuated as an alternative of you having to return to re-enter one thing. Even after I hit a mistaken key, I really feel it and understand it earlier than I see what is going on by way of on my monitor. That is the mark of an awesome keyboard in my view.

Past that’s the efficiency of the Apex 9 TKL. The Optipoint switches are wonderful linear optical switches that present practically instantaneous responses to your clicks. Moreover, you’ll be able to even modify the actuation of your keys, with a gaming mode that responds to the lightest of presses and a typing mode that requires extra effort. For each, you are not going to need to strive too exhausting although, saving your fingers from put on and tear and hopefully lowering your probabilities of carpal tunnel syndrome. I sort up so many issues at my day job and for Gaming Pattern, and that is not even together with gaming, so this keyboard looks like a godsend. What’s even higher, you’ll be able to even change out your switches, a primary within the area. No longer solely are you able to repair a nasty key, you’ll be able to determine what switches work finest for you and alter them out, though for now you must keep on with the official Steelseries ones.

Whereas I am a bit dissatisfied in no wi-fi or Bluetooth modes for this specific keyboard, the compact nature does make this one as simple to hold as a 60%. I have been utilizing this at dwelling and at work, and I have been in a position to unplug it, wrap my USB cable up, and stick it proper underneath my arm to take with me. It’s going to additionally slot in a backpack simply. Between the design and the braided cable staying untangled, this may be the right wired gaming keyboard to hold with you in case you do not wish to downsize so far as a 60%. It additionally works together with your PlayStation or Xbox, so the advantages of its measurement will be realized extra than simply taking it from PC to PC.

As per regular, all Steelseries merchandise get an additional enhance from the GG software program. The Apex 9 TKL is not any completely different, with the addition of profiles to arrange for various video games. Need your Q key to be M? It is all doable right here, and with profile switching accessible straight from the keyboard, you’ll be able to have 5 completely different ones and have the ability to change video games with out even booting up GG or having to make modifications manually. Apart from that, you’ll be able to even arrange macros on the fly, all by a combo button press. Steelseries has simply made every thing really easy with regards to having issues set your means, and it is appreciated.

Lastly, you realize we won’t get out of right here with out speaking RGB. The Apex 9 TKL has fairly good RGB, though in a properly lit room it would not stand out as a lot. Within the GG app there are many choices for enjoyable lighting, and that is at all times a bonus for me. I am utilizing the “Chasing Ghosts” one, the place completely different colours pulse from left to proper. The truth that if I solely need my T key to be purple, I can do it, is superior. Customization, particularly a excessive degree of it, provides a lot worth to your equipment, and Steelseries is doing that proper by way of the GG app.

The Steelseries Apex 9 TKL is simply an throughout implausible keyboard. It is a workhorse that is available in, does its job, after which places within the hours the subsequent time you want it. The keypresses (and keycaps) are the very best round, the design is clear and compact, and it is simple to take with you if the necessity arises. Steelseries not often misses, and the Apex 9 TKL is a bullseye.

—David Burdette

David Burdette is a gamer/author/content material creator from TN and Lead Editor for Gaming Pattern. He loves Ps, Star Wars, Marvel, and lots of different fandoms. He additionally performs means an excessive amount of Name Of Obligation. You’ll be able to chat with him on Twitter @SplitEnd89.

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