A preface. This is definitely not a gaming review. I am a creative Mac user who doesn’t particularly like RGB. I purchased the keyboard at no discount, and received it early for the purpose of this review. With all that said, I will love and cherish this keyboard.
Though it isn’t perfect. There are a few issues and quirks that stand out to me on my unit, and some that others have pointed out on theirs.
First, the cons (and some easy fixes).
The fast forward button is mapped to the play function. (Karabiner Elements for Mac is a key remapper, and this is the only issue with key mapping I’ve noticed.)
The premium aluminum version does not have a white backlit version, and there is no setting for a pure white backlight with the RGB variants. A matter of preference, but I just don’t like RGB as much as people with a gamer-like aesthetic. (Use a static backlight setting, and deal with a color).
The orange escape key glows when set to a high brightness setting, making that key look cheap. Though they look good, the keycaps overall feel pretty cheap. One user on the Keychron facebook page managed to use acetone to remove the outer finish of a keycap to reveal a translucent keycap. (Maybe get different caps? I like how they look, regardless of how cheap they are.)
There is no light indicating that caps lock is on. (CAPS Wizard is a menu bar indicator of if your caps lock is on. Not the prettiest utility, but mostly functional.)
Some users from the user facebook group have reported some issues. Though most are very satisfied with their purchase. The people who took part in the Kickstarter campaign have reported that they were one of the most reliable and communicable campaigns they have ever taken part in. All of these issues seem to be isolated, and the general consensus of the group has been overall positive.
Left shift key tended to get stuck on a couple people’s units. (One user reported that removing and reattaching the key fixed the issue for him so far.)
Some people’s bluetooth connection is spotty.
One person reported that their Win/Mac switch is loose, and generally non-functional. (This seems to be an isolated incident, but worth mentioning nonetheless.)
Some people say that the keyboard is too tall for them to efficiently type on it. (If you are previously coming from a mechanical keyboard, then it shouldn’t be a huge issue.)
I’d been typing on a Logitech G413 on my Mac for most of the year. Romer G switches didn’t bother me as much as the community would suggest. And although it was a good looking board, I couldn’t get past the size, required remapping, and the Windows key where my Command key should have been. With all that, my biggest peeve was the attached cable. It just felt weird using it in my Mac setup.
I was on the quest for a nice keyboard with mechanical switches, a Mac layout, and no cable. That search lasted quite a while, but eventually, while scrolling through my Instagram, I stumbled across an ad for the Keychron K2. It looked like it would fit right in with my setup. I was right.
It checked all of the boxes.
Gateron Blue mechanical switches
To top it off, the build quality of the keyboard is something to be reckoned with. I received the premium metal framed version of the keyboard, and it is a tank. It is very sturdy and rigid. No deck flex here! It is definitely going to hold up to future use. Speaking of the future, USB C. It charges via USB C, and works wired if you’re into that sort of thing.
If there is one thing that I know about myself, it’s that I enjoy a healthy balance between form and function, with a slight emphasis on form. So this keyboard, for all its shortcomings, is definitely for me. I tried the Lofree Dot, and it was pretty, but the functionality was way off. I tried the G413. It was perfectly functional, but it was too big and didn’t match my setup. This one is small enough to fit on my small desk, pretty enough to fit in, and functional enough for my needs.
To briefly cover the RGB feature… It’s fine. I really didn’t like RGB going into this review (and still don’t for the most part) but it’s a fun gimmick when I’m producing music and want to feel like I’m in a nightclub and not my messy apartment. It’s somewhat dim of a backlight in a fully lit room, and I wish there was software customization for the backlight.
That brings me to my next point. I wish there was software for the keyboard. If not to control the backlight, just to tell me when caps is on, or to customize macros for the page up, page down, home, and end keys. I don’t really use them as such, and would like the option.
The community is very responsive.
The Keychron facebook user group is a place where many users come together, and talk about their keyboards and show off their setups. It is a very inspiring place. That being said, the tech community as a whole is often one of toxicity, and a surprisingly loud echo chamber. I joined the group to do research, and posted question if some people have had issues with the keyboard. To my dismay, I was given a barrage of angry comments, saying that the review is going to be a hit piece. I also received one from Keychron, warning that he would delete my post (for some undisclosed reason). This is purely a review for those who haven’t purchased the keyboard, and are interested in doing so. If quality control has minor slip-ups, then it should be public to the potential buyer, not just for a private group of current users and the company itself. I still do love this keyboard. That being said, I would love to see the community expand to a more open environment.
As I said before, I really do like this keyboard. The feel is fantastic, the build is amazing, and the design is unparalleled to me. It is a wonderful addition to my desk, and I see using it for a long time to come.
If you want to order the K2, click here. With all its shortcomings, I would absolutely recommend this keyboard for the aesthetically minded, and those who want a little extra from a Mac keyboard.