CM QuickFire Pro Mechanical Keyboard ReviewBluePanda -
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Cooler Master's CM Storm QuickFire Pro was put through over a full week worth of testing. During this time I did everything from writing school papers, random net surfing and most importantly some good casual gaming with some friends.
Although a keyboard is a crucial part of any system build there really are no concrete "tests" that can be performed that can really define this keyboard as better than any other. However, in a subjective manner it can easily be broken down into key categories that really show where a keyboard shines or fails miserably. The most defining traits of a keyboard can be summarized numerically under the categories of: Comfort, Customization, Gaming, and Accuracy.
- Processor: Core i7 2600K @ 4.4 GHz 100 x 44
- CPU Cooling: Noctua NH-U12P SE 1366
- Motherboard: GIGABYTE Z68AP-D3
- Memory: Mushkin 991996 Redline PC3-17000 9-11-10-28 16 GB
- Video Card: XFX HD 7970 Black Edition
- PSU: Antec TruePower New TP-750
- Hard Drives: Corsair Force GT 240 GB
- Optical Drive: N/A
- OS: Windows 7 Pro 64-Bit SP1
- Logitech Internet 350 keyboard
- Razer Lycosa
- Ozone Strike
- Zowie Celaratis
- Tesoro Durandal Ultra
- Corsair K60
- Corsair K90
Comfort personally is a major player when it comes to choosing a keyboard. If I need to spend 15 hours working on a report I want to be miserable from the report itself, not because my hands are cramping from the unusual keyboard design. If the keys are too far apart or it has a sharp edge where my palms sit then I probably will not be much of a happy camper. With this in mind, comfort is measured on a scale from 1-10 with a score of 1 being, "Are you sure this is even a keyboard?" and a score of 10 as, "This keyboard was molded to fit my hands." A 5 shall represent your typical quote stock keyboard.
In a gaming situation it might be nice to have a few keys on a keyboard that are designated for weapon selection or giving commands. The ability to assign macro keys can be the difference when you are being beaten by someone who simply does not have to click to do every action. Therefore a scale of 1-10 is assigned with a value of 1 representing, "There are fewer keys than an average keyboard," and a value of 10 as "WOW! Where are my normal keys, there are SOOO many." Again a 5 is representative of the "stock" keyboard (including media keys). This category also covers the options of appearance customization (i.e. replacement keys, lighting, and other color options)
Gaming plays in hand with customization. Being able to assign macros can make some games much easier to play – especially if it replaces scrolling through several menu options. This category for rating is based on the concept of the keyboard being designed for gaming or not. This category is based completely on the compatibility to play with games. Does it have specifically designed macro keys, are there many of them, and how easy are they to use. A scale of 1-10 is used with a score of 1 representing a keyboard with only the main keys (no media keys, no number pad), a score of 10 means the keyboard was designed solely for a gamer.
No matter how fast a keyboard can respond or how fast you can type, writing up papers and maneuvering the battlefield both require great accuracy. If you can't get your point across in an email because you had to spend half your time going back to retype words because a keystroke was missed or over typed then why even bother. Same goes for in game – pressing the correct key should always, always, always produce the correct response. A scale of 1 – 10 was used to rate accuracy; a score of 1 represents you might as well give up, and a 10 means your keyboard knows what you were thinking before you typed it.
Overall I find it harder and harder to assign numerical values to keyboards after looking at different ones. It becomes harder and harder to compare one to the next. With it all being subjective my opinion can only matter so much to even begin with. I like the way it feels. It's quick to recognize a wrong key press and quick to fix. I have a concrete feel of the keys and can easily tell when the key has been pressed. The MX CHERRY Browns have a lot to do with the feel. It's a different feel if all you are used to are Reds. The media keys as function keys aren't my favorite as it requires two hands or at least full attention to complete a song switch. I'd say it's on par with other mechanical keyboards on the market with cable routing and lighting being the only real difference between the next one for bid.