I love switching up peripherals and testing out new gear that hits the market. While not everything is worth writing about, sometimes you come across a few new products that are worth celebrating. This week I paired two of Corsair’s more recent releases, the K70 RGB Rapidfire Mechanical Keyboard, and the M65 PRO RGB Gaming Mouse and I really enjoyed the new setup.
I paired the two under one review for a specific reason. Not only did I want to spend some quality time with the company’s latest offerings, but pairing the two together offers a few extra benefits that are worth pointing out.
Starting with just the K70 RGB Rapidfire, users will find the usual gold-standards. The device comes equipped with Cherry Key Switches, a must if you’re shopping around, and it also features the highly popular RGB LED backlit option. There are a ton of color customization options with these two devices, even more when paired together, but I’ll get to that later.
Reading the fine print on the company’s website, you will also notice that the Rapidfire offers 100% anti-ghosting, and it has a passthrough USB port so you can save a USB port on your rig. While the anti-ghosting is a technical bonus that comes with quite a few high-end keyboards, if you’re shopping around make sure you keep an eye out for the USB passthrough. It’s a great feature to have on-hand and one that sometimes isn’t highlighted as well as they should be. In this dual Cosair setup specifically, you’ll soon see why it’s such a great feature to have.
Two extra bonuses that I always enjoy seeing on a keyboard are a windows lock key, and braided fiber cables. I understand that the braided cable adds a little extra to the manufacturing costs, but these should really be standard on all peripherals at this point. They are wonderfully well made and easy to tie-off and stay organized when snaking them to your rig. You’ll need two USB ports for the keyboard alone, so keep that in mind when planning out your purchases.
There’s a full-length detachable wrist-rest as well in this option. It comes with the keyboard but it is optional if you don’t want to use it. I personally loved it, not so much for gaming, but for working it’s a must have.
Other key points that I liked are the six dedicated multimedia keys, and the volume roller was a fantastic find. I know that you can easily control the volume on your headset, but if you get into the habit of using the volume rocker on this keyboard you will be controlling all of the system sound at once. This is perfect for anyone that also has an external speaker setup. The volume rocker helps stop you from having your headset at 30% when the system is at 100%. You’ll notice this when you scare yourself out of your seat when the headset is unplugged later on and the 100% volume comes blaring at you through your system devices. It’s just an optional touch, but one that I would love to see become a staple in Corsair’s designs.
On the back near the USB input, you’ll find the selectable 8ms, 4ms, 2ms and 1ms BIOS modes. Odds are you will never have to deal with these, but if you get serious about your gaming then you’ll enjoy the leverage and the options.
This is a personal note but I wanted to point out that this is a “standard” size keyboard (coming at 436mm x 165mm x 38mm), and it’s great to see that these are coming back in style. I had a few extended models previously, offering everything from extra macro-keys to LED touchscreens, and they were never worth the extra space on my desk. Corsair’s software allows you to modify any key for macro use, so you should have plenty of keys available for your macro-craftsmanship, and the standard size keyboard won’t take up that much room at your workstation. Add the eight-button mouse that we have paired in this article, and you should have all the customization options you need in a compact form.
The M65 PRO RGB FPS Gaming Mouse that I tested out this week was actually a pleasant surprise. In the past the FPS mouse devices that I’ve tested have been spectacular in-games, but weren’t the most comfortable or easiest to use in my day-to-day operations outside of a game. The M65 PRO was just a perfect fit, and it has stayed on my desk well after testing.
If you’re looking for DPI control this mouse has you covered with flying colors, offering a range of 100 dpi all the way through 12,000. There are even two buttons that allow you to switch which DPI setting you are using on the fly. While this isn’t completely new to the Gaming Mouse industry, I did like that you can assign a color to each of your preset custom DPI settings. I chose a dark red to brighter red setup, that way it was easy to see which setting I was on at any given time. You can adjust each of the settings using the free Corsair software to find your best speeds.
Like I said before there are a lot of color options with these devices, but on the mouse itself has a 3 Zone RGB setup. You can assign pulsing lights, rain, solid colors and more, and you can pair this with the keyboard, but I’ll get into that in a bit.
The eight customizable buttons are a huge plus, the sniper button (which by default enters you into an extremely high DPI mode for sniping) is fully customizable. You can also remap the DPI buttons if you want. You’ll also find a 1.8m Braided Fiber cable on this device as well and you already know my thoughts on them.
While the software has amazing customization options and runs quietly in the background of any game, the UI is a bit of a chore. It gets the job done, and one application can control everything from Corsair headsets to mouse devices to keyboards, but it’s just dated. There are a lot of checkboxes and text to scroll through, it could use a better design but once you get the hang of it you’ll spend little to no time fine-tuning any of your setups.
With the specs and details squared away, I can talk about why I want to stress pairing the two devices in a purchase. The benefits of having both devices are pretty fantastic, but you don’t have to have these exact models to enjoy many of the features.
Both of the devices are CUE Software Enabled, meaning that you can set a standard profile that will control both devices and both devices support on-board memory. The software will also allow you to instantly pair any of the standard lighting effects and have them perfectly sync across your workstation. I’ll use a recent game of Overwatch I played as an example. Using just one ‘Overwatch’ profile on the Corsair app, my mouse, keyboard and Corsair headset were synched and ready for that exact game.
In my instance I had a custom color scheme of orange and white that pulsed across the keyboard. The mouse was also synched to this thanks to the Cue system, and when the beam of colors bounced to the end of the keyboard the mouse would follow suite and send the colors back the other way.
Again these are all finishing touches, but it’s a terrific bonus to have on a great performing keyboard and mouse. The one-shop system also had all of my keybindings, mouse button customizations, mic settings and color settings switch to this “Overwatch Mode” I created in just one keystroke. You can even set the profile to launch when you launch the game, though that’s not a Corsair exclusive. It’s wonderful to launch a game and have all of your devices instantly ready themselves to play it, the color options are great for showing off your rig, but they also helped me remember which mode I have them set up in. When I saw the orange and white visor flash across the keys and mouse, I knew my workstation was ready for some Overwatch, if it was solid white keys and a flashing white mouse, I knew I was in the standard “Desktop” mode I created. You can even assign colors to different key, so I had an all Imperial Red mode for Battlefront with the W,A,S,D keys in white. Just some fun touches that paired really well with the optional textured and contoured keycaps. If you play a lot of keyboard and mouse games, they are perfect and I wouldn’t go back to gaming without them. As an extra bonus, they also allow color to pass through, so having them on won’t interfere with your customized lighting setup.
Choosing to pair the two together isn’t only about uniformity and colors, using one program to control all of your peripherals saves a lot of time and even some RAM. In the past I would have my mouse and keyboard from different manufactures, meaning I would have to have both of their software apps running while I played. It became a chore, and I didn’t like having to keep both updated and while running all of those extra processes in the background of my game. This setup will have you running lean with a minimum of downtime. You’ll also have all of your updates, including firmware updates, options and bindings in one place under one profile, and that was enough to put these two devices at the top of list of recommendations.
On top of all that, going with a trusted brand like Corsair has other benefits as well, mainly a two-year warranty and a support staff that won’t leave you hanging in the breeze. As for pricing the keyboard itself runs at about the same other high-end devices are going for these days. The K70 RGB Rapidfire costs about $169 on Amazon, while the M65 PRO FPS mouse is practically a steal at $59 on Amazon.