Tesoro Durandal Ultimate G1NL Mech. Keyboard ReviewBluePanda - March 7, 2012
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The Tesoro Durandal Ultimate G1NL 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. With the added functionality of macro settings, I also had to goof around opening Chrome with a random key or spamming the heck out of my friends with ASCII art.
Although a keyboard is a crucial part of any system build, there really are no concrete “tests” that can be performed to 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: Corsair Hydro Series H100
- Motherboard: GIGABYTE Z68AP-D3
- Memory: Mushkin 991996 Redline PC3-17000 9-11-10-28 8 GB
- Video Card: XFX HD 6970
- PSU: Antec TruePower New TP-750
- Hard Drives: SSD 2x Seagate Barracuda 7200.11 RAID 1
- Optical Drive: N/A
- Case: Corsair Graphite Series 600T
- OS: Windows 7 Pro 64-Bit SP1
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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 specific designed macro keys, are there many of them, and how easy are easy they to use? A scale of 1-10 is used with a score of 1 represents 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 the keyboard did score a bit higher than some of the others I have for comparison. One big reason for this is the ability to assign macros, whereas no other keyboard in the list has such ability. This gives it a gain in gaming and customization. Overall I really liked the way the keys felt, a little louder than reds or blues for me but the typing was smooth and free feeling. Unfortunately, I thought the actual positioning of my wrists was forced a bit high. I kept getting creases further up my arm from the edge of my desk, something that doesn't generally happen with slightly lower keyboards. It's about as accurate as any other mech I've used, it's nothing super special in that manner, rather than it's decent response rate compared to an older "loose" keyboard. I'm generally impressed by the keyboard as far as functionality is concerned.