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Saitek Cyborg Keyboard review

Like a disco on the desk but without the funk

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Our Verdict

The Cyborg Keyboard does offer gimmickry, like disco keys, but despite their appeal I think I’d stick with some of its classier rivals

For

  • Programmable keys
  • Responsive touch panel

Against

  • Plasticky look
  • Dead-action on keys

What do you need from a keyboard?

Well, obviously keys are a must, with comfortable ergonomics and responsive switches being equally handy. Multi-coloured backlights? Silver-painted WSAD keys? Cursor keys? Touch-sensitive control panel?

Realistically that's all gimmickry, and in that area at least the Cyborg Keyboard utterly excels; elsewhere though it's a bit of a mixed bag.

All about the gimmicks

Sitting alongside the more stylish Logitech G15 and Razer Lycosa keyboards the Cyborg looks like a Star Trek prop.

Normally, the gaudy aesthetics would put me off, but there's something I find quite charming about being able to have different areas of the keyboard lit up with different colours. Charming, but ultimately pointless.

One positive aspect, though, is the fact that the keys are backlit as opposed to the Lycosa's keys, which are unreadable during the day at more oblique angles than right on top of it. The touch sensitive buttons also feel more responsive than some rivals.

Keyboard modes

The extra macro keys are a bonus. Six keys line each end of the board like switches from an 80s cassette recorder, which are all programmable through the Saitek control panel. They're perfect for the MMO-obsessed, but less so for other games.

I was hoping that they'd be more configurable in Windows - if I'd been able to assign program executables to them I'd have been more impressed.

The ability to switch between normal and Cyborg mode is useful. In the latter it turns off the Windows keys avoiding stray presses. Still, the keys have a slightly dead action to them and the gaudy silver paint, sorry, hard-wearing metal-plated key caps don't scream style to me.