IOGEAR Announces the GKB610R – A 65% Mechanical Keyboard
I love technology, and I am “that guy” who waits for new software updates on devices and loves getting the latest tech. But I also love to go down niche rabbit holes, and it probably surprises no one that I have a clicky mechanical keyboard on my office desk. So when IOGEAR announces a 65% mechanical keyboard, I jump at the opportunity to take a first look. Aimed at gamers, the IOGEAR GKB610R offers a compact design, wired and Bluetooth connections, RGB (duh!), and red mechanical liner switches topped with PBT keycaps! All for under $80? Oh, baby, this nerd is excited! Let’s discuss!
IOGEAR GKB610R At A Glance
So I realize that only a few people are as into mechanical keyboards as I am. I will explain all the jargon and make it more understandable.
Switches And Keycaps
First off, mechanical keyboards use mechanical switches and not plastic membranes. This switch gives a mechanical keyboard its clicky sound. Gamers also love mechanical keyboards because they are responsive, more durable, and have reliable tactile feedback so you know you are pressing a button.
There are a ton of different switches, but IOGEAR used red linear switches in the GKB610R. Red switches are the quietest of the group, making it (more) ideal for an office setting. Let’s be honest; mechanical keyboards are louder than their membrane cousins. But reds are the perfect compromise between performance and sound.
The keycaps are double-injected PBT (Polybutylene Terephthalate), which means they are tough and will never wear off. While that doesn’t seem necessary to the average person, remember that games often bind the duplicate keys, so after striking them repeatedly, you can wear off the face, meaning you have to replace them.
The IOGEAR GKB610R is a 65% form factor, meaning it has 65% of the 104 keys found on a standard keyboard, which is about 67 or 68. This compact form means that it cuts out keys not used by gamers – mostly the Numpad.
I have a full-sized mechanical keyboard on my desk, but that is only because I routinely use a Numpad for spreadsheets. But if I were just gaming or writing, 65% is a PERFECT size. Plus, it takes up less desk real estate, which is excellent for my minimalist setup!
Any gamer worth their salt will prefer a wired connection. It ensures you have a solid connection, minimal input lag, and never worry about charging the batteries. On the more practical side, cables get in the way. It makes more sense to have everything Bluetooth. You get a solid connection, low (but not no) input lag, get rid of wires, and minimize your setup.
Well, guess what? The IOGEAR GKB610R has you covered with both a USB-C and Bluetooth connection. It features a lithium-ion battery with 15 hours of continuous use and a 60-hour standby time, which is perfect for the office worker. The USB-C connection both charges and gives you a hardwired connection.
Gaming Features On The IOGEAR GKB610R
So this is a gaming keyboard at its core, and it has to have some gaming features. Enter RBG! I am not a fan of RBG (I turn it off), but I am a fan of a backlit keyboard. I am often the first one in the office, and I like to start my day with my lights low, scanning my email. A backlit keyboard makes this possible and is one of those quality-of-life additions that so few experience.
The IOGEAR GKB610R features full per-key RBG lighting. IOGEAR didn’t specify how the GKB610R controls lighting, but it’s safe to assume it uses the same software solution as their full-sized keyboard. The software allows you to create your own lighting and use pre-loaded stuff.
The IOGEAR GKB610R also has a volume control knob. Of all the features I wish my mechanical keyboard had, a volume knob is at the top of my list. Sure I can use Function keys, but a volume knob is more convenient. Well done, IOGEAR!
Lastly, the IOGEAR GKB610R features a windows key lockout and full N-Key rollover. An n-key rollover means that you can press multiple keys at the same time and have them register. This feature aims at gamers who may have to press several keys together or in quick succession. It’s a commonly overlooked feature of mechanical keyboards.
So if it’s not apparent, I am excited about this news release. The IOGEAR GKB610R has everything that a nerd could want. RGB, clicky linear switches, a volume knob, multiple connections, and a minimal footprint. So when IOGEAR announces a 65% mechanical keyboard, this nerd listens!
IOGEAR has set pricing for the GKB610R at just under $80. That’s crazy good. Packed with features, it looks as if it might be a “must-have” for the holiday season.