AZiO L3VETRON GM2000 Gaming Mouse and AZiO L3VETRON Mech5 Mechanical Keyboard ReviewBluePanda - February 19, 2013
» Discuss this article (4)
L3VETRON Mech5 Gaming Keyboard Closer Look:
Starting off with what I'll call the accessory features, we've got the six button macro pad. Hanging from it is the USB connector that neatly plugs into the back edge of the keyboard (look for the picture ahead). Being USB also means you can stick it anywhere you desire – as long as it can reach your USB hub or keyboard connection. It pivots on one axis to allow it to fold over the function keys at the top of the keyboard when attached. The back side shows the fold-out rubber edged foot that holds it up from pressing the function keys in even the most epic macro battle.
The detached number pad is next. It looks a bit like a standalone pad that you might buy for your laptop or in place of you lacking a number pad. It has a little button below the zero and decimal key that looks a little like a mobile phone – you'd almost think it was a mute button, but it is of course a calculator button. Pressed in Windows you'll receive your Windows calculator to get number crunching immediately at your fingertips. It can be connected to the keyboard, shown ahead, or can be plugged in as a standalone option as well. It's completely up to you – this keyboard is starting to remind me a bit of LEGOs – just with only a few pieces; like a starter kit. The back has a dual foot that allows for two heights above the standard keyboard height. Both match up with the keyboard adjustments so it can have added support when attached. Nifty!
Here's where the fun begins. You've got the keyboard; then you have the keyboard with the right flap up; then the keyboard with the left flap up; and then finally the keyboard is ready for flight. The two rotating arms pivot to reveal a hidden USB connection that allows you to physically add the number pad to the keyboard.
When united the keyboard looks as if the number pad was a part of it all along – well almost. As you imagined it can be mounted on the right side, the left side (which looks like the keyboard is upside down at first glance), and of course completely free to go where ever you decide. This last picture here shows off the dual USB plugs on the top of the keyboard supporting both the number pad and six button macro pad. So perhaps even on a small desk this may be feasible.
I think with the number pad attached to the right, the normal position, it looks alright for a keyboard. Close up you can see that's still its own piece, but it works out okay.
Looking at the six button addition in place it actually really looks the part – it fits the keyboard design well. Besides the extra cable mess to clutter your desk it is a bit interesting. I'm not sure how much I'll use it but the concept is kinda cool.
Now showing off some of the details you can see those two USB ports I've yammered on about again and again. You can also see where the craftsmanship of this keyboard might not be the finest. The braiding ends short and the non-glued rubber hat did not quite hide it well. The front edge of the keyboard shows a bit of the cheapness associated with it. Despite the $110 price tag the plastic appeal isn't much more than just that – plastic. The pretend bolts are embarrassingly fake and would probably be better off not there at all. They aren't quite as crappy looking as stickers but they don't appeal to me at all. It steps down the keyboard a couple notches and gives it a toy-like feel. I'm starting to wonder if it's a pretend keyboard or demo model for a furniture store – okay I exaggerate a bit, but this isn't impressing me.
Moving up top into the details you can see the AZiO logo volume knob. It rotates in both directions infinitely allowing you to easily control your volume level without being limited by the upper and lower bounds of the knob. You'll find that it increases/decreases the volume in small increments making it easy to find the perfect level. I like it! To the left are the indicators for both the CAPS lock and Scroll Lock.
Looking at the middle of the keyboard just below the spacebar you'll find the L3VETRON logo in a silvery gray and MECH sported in red. Two plastic bolt chunks sandwich it up with low class however, to match up with the Mech5 logo on the number pad (also sandwiched between the stupid faux bolts).
Up top next to the ESC key there is a toggle for the Windows key. A red indicator light will show whether or not it is enabled or disabled. Another simple hard click button presses to enable the A or B macro options. You are able to have up to ten set at a time with the two profiles and five macro settings. The Escape key comes off easy enough to reveal the black switch underneath. Though the switch type is there, the actual keys themselves feel rather cheap and still just not what I was expecting at this price range – nonetheless, it'll be up to how it actually types to judge the feel.
The number pad sports the same Cherry MX Black switches providing a uniform feel across the board. The six button macro pad, on the other hand, has rubber dome switches hidden beneath providing a very different feel up top. They are rather tight rubber dome keys and take a bit of effort to press compared to your standard keyboard keys. You definitely won't be pressing these by accident.
The back of the keyboard is actually where all the magic happens to hold the keyboard together when adding the number pad to the mix. There are actually two toggle style clamps that hold both the number pad to the keyboard and the arm to the number pad. To unlatch them, you simply press the toggles to release it. They surprisingly hold on rather tight, though if determined you can remove it without toggling the clamps – they do their job well.
The USB connector for the keyboard naturally has two USB plugs to plug in. One powers the actual keyboard itself, while the other provides power to the low-powered USB hub on the rear of the keyboard. It's just enough power to run the keyboard, number pad, and six button macro pad. The dongle is nice enough that if you don't want to use the added features it simply hangs out of the way unlike some others we've seen here before. An odd male/male connector cable is supplied to plug the number pad in wherever you desire. Just make sure that is all you use it for; though it really can serve no other purpose.
Plugged in and ready to go, the keyboard lights up with red behind the A/B Macro buttons. A hint of red runs the circle of the volume knob to let you know you've got power. It's overall not too shabby looking – but the overall quality is lacking a little. Let's hope the actual use makes up for this.