August 21st is a big day for the folks at HyperX. It’s on this day they introduce not one, but two new mechanical gaming keyboards to the consumer market. Following the successful launches of the Alloy FPS keyboard and Pulsefire FPS mouse, HyperX is set to launch a second Alloy FPS model, this time tenkeyless, as well as their Alloy Elite. We’ve spent the past couple of weeks playing with their top-of-the-line board. How does the Elite stack up against its high-end gaming keyboard competition? Without further delay, let’s take a close and detailed look in this HyperX Alloy Elite keyboard review.
Key Features of the Alloy Elite Keyboard
- Red LED illuminated backlighting and light bar
- Six lighting effects
- Cherry MX Blue, Brown, or Red switches
- Anti-ghosting functionality
- N-Key rollover
- Media controls
- USB 2.0 pass-through
Per Marcus Hermann, Senior Business Manager at HyperX, “Further raising the bar for personalization and comfort, HyperX is excited to reveal the new Alloy Elite Keyboard with Cherry MX Mechanical switches, detachable palm rest and custom lighting features. Ensuring that gamers connect and play immediately, keyboard customization options can be accessed without the assistance of software via keyboard functions.”
HyperX Alloy Elite Keyboard Review
- Very nicely packaged with excellent use of wording and imagery.
- Keyboard has a sleek, steely, modern, top-mounted look.
- Cable is braided and centered; two USB desktop connections and a USB 2.0 pass through.
- The red LED lighting and light bar look great. They illuminate nicely, especially in a dark setting.
- There’s a well-balanced layout with lighting effects on the left and audio controls on the right.
- Partially textured palm rest feels great and holds on tight.
Alloy Elite Design and Features
If there’s one thing I dislike about specifications, it’s the use of the Metric System. So for all of you in North America, here are the standard units. The keyboard measures 17.48″ x 8.93″ x 1.43″, and weighs in at 3.23 lbs.
If you’re familiar with the Alloy FPS keyboard, then consider this second keyboard release from HyperX the big brother. The Alloy Elite not only looks similar to the Alloy FPS, but it has nearly every feature of it too, plus some more of its own.
There’s the same beautiful matte black finish, top-mounted and steel frame appearance, Cherry MX switches, USB pass-through, red LED lighting, and dynamic lighting effects. What’s new is the red 18 LED bar, dedicated Game and lighting mode/effect buttons, media controls, and a detachable palm rest. The location of the braided cable is now dead-center.
On the underside, there are two rubber foot pads and two retractable legs. Alloy Elite package contents include the keyboard, palm rest, eight platinum key caps (WASD are textured), one key cap puller, quick installation guide and warranty policy.
It has all these features for a hair under $110. This is in line with high-end mechanical gaming keyboards from other top brands. What is doesn’t have, and I’m sure others will note this, is macro recording capability and pre-configured lighting zones for different genres of games.
There were some issues with the media controls, and we’ve yet to get all four buttons to work simultaneously. Using Amazon Music and Nero MediaHome, I was unable to get the Rewind, Play/Pause, and Fast Forward buttons to work. The Pause button worked without a hitch. And the Volume Wheel worked well with all but one speaker. It wasn’t able to adjust the audio of the Libratone One Click speaker. We’ll continue to play around with the media controls and update this post accordingly.
Performance Testing – Everyday Use
As a daily keyboard, this Alloy Elite with Cherry MX Red switched keys worked flawlessly. The surface of the key caps are soft and the sound they make when pressed is minimal. Conversely, if you were typing with Cherry MX Blue switches, then you know how loud they can be.
There’s no noticeable resistance between keys. I’m sure this is due to the optional change between the gaming mode and the typing mode. More keyboards should seriously have this feature–it’s incredible!
I don’t think I’ve ever loved it more; it allows one to have regular keys and then super reactive keys.
Performance Testing – Gameplay
Gameplay consisted of the following games: Rainbow Six: Siege, RimWorld, and Titanfall 2.
Unlike the Tt esports MEKA PRO, I didn’t notice as much of a disruption with the F2 Key when playing Rainbow Six: Siege. Regardless, the keys are quick and responsive. I truly like the way this keyboard is designed.
With RimWorld, the keys are nice, snappy, and move quite accurately. When compared to the MEKA PRO, I enjoy and prefer the snappiness of the Alloy Elite’s keys. It feels much more organic rather than as if I were pushing super hard keys. However, RimWorld is a strategy game, so there isn’t much that’s noteworthy. It works, so that’s what matters.
On Titanfall 2, here’s where the keys shine. I found the controls were quick and snappy; it’s just what you would want from a gaming keyboard. The Alloy Elite made it easy to move around the map, and I’ve dodged more than one artillery round from a titan. Once again, the keys are quick and responsive in the gaming mode. I love the ability to switch between Gaming and Standard Mode with the use of the Game Mode button.
- The custom LED settings. These are impressive settings; one lights up all the way, one turns off LED features, one causes a wave, one causes dimmer settings, one “explosion feature” (lights up rest of the keys when one key is pressed, and one causes only the AWSD keys to be lit up. Overall six different LED options. Very much enjoyed the ability to change up the lighting features.
- The threaded cable screams “Nice Keyboard” along with its decent length. The feel of the keyboard is most pleasant on the fingers, plus there’s that steel frame.
- Custom gaming mode allows toggling in between Game Mode and normal typing. It’s a feature which helps when you’re typing up a letter/resume versus swinging around in Titanfall 2.
- Keys during Gaming Mode are friendly and responsive. Excellent accuracy when moving around; a lot of quick tapping helped. I never had one case where I felt it was the keyboard’s fault.
- The removable palm rest is a comfortable addition for those who use them. It appears to be fingerprint-proof.
- No software needed to operate the keyboard. It’s Plug-n-Play.
- The keyboard is a bit larger than we would have liked, but that’s what you get when there are so many buttons and keypads.
- It’s a bit heavier than most gaming keyboards, but you have to weigh that against the use of great materials of construction. Maybe it’s not so much of a Con.
- There’s no travel pouch like with the Alloy FPS.
- There are no programmable macros.
- Media controls didn’t work under all conditions.
• Usefulness (gaming): 9/10
• Overall: 9.1/10
• Usefulness (Typing up essays and whatnot): 9/10
If you couldn’t tell by now, we truly enjoyed testing this keyboard. For the record, we feel it’s in a tie with the Corsair K70 LUX for our favorite mechanical gaming keyboard of 2017. We’ve performed more than a handful of gaming keyboard reviews this year, and to date, nothing else even compares. You need to put the HyperX Alloy Elite on your radar and wish list.
The Alloy Elite mechanical gaming keyboard has a list price of just under $110.
What do you think of this Hyper Alloy Elite keyboard review? Do you agree or disagree with our verdict? Let us know in the comment section below or via social media. We’re eager to hear your thoughts.
Don’t hesitate to head over to the HyperX homepage to see their current line-up of products. The HyperX Alloy Elite gaming keyboard comes with a 2-year warranty. Should you need to reach Customer Support, feel free to call one of these two numbers: 714-435-2639 or 800-435-0640 or check out their Support page.
This review was co-written with Gamer Jack Yang. All photographs are the copyrighted property of Kingston or Beantown LLC © 2017.
FTC Disclosure: HyperX provided Beantown LLC with one (1) Alloy Elite mechanical gaming keyboard sample for review purposes. Both writers opinions are 100% their own, and neither are paid product ambassadors.