I’ve had my Sidewinder x4 for nearly 3 years and and and it’s finally staring to show signs of wear.
The keyboard itself is still in working wonderfully but the continually use of certain keys has meant the plastic coating on the lettering is slowly wearing away. This appears to be due to the letter printing being on the outside of the key
It doesn’t seem like I’m the first to experience this and as there are a few for sale on ebay that look to be suffering from the same problem. I have been watching for a second-hand one in good condition but the product looks to be discontinued as it’s out of stock everywhere, thus the chances of finding one with keys intact is proving rare.
I previously contacted Microsoft to see if I could purchase replacement keys but that was pretty much a dead end.
Out with the old
So in preparation for purchasing a replacement I’m on the hunt for some new hardware and have shortlisted some that interest me. For me there are a number of features that I would like, first is is dedicated media keys, I dislike having to perform some key combo just to mute sound. secondly nothing over the top, like the Madcatz Strike 7, and last I have limited space so nothing crazy wide like some of the old Razer products measuring over 50cm, which almost places my mouse in the next room.
- Aorus – Thunder K7 – Gigabytes gaming brand is new to the scene but the build quality looks to be good and there are a number of features that appeal to me, like the de-attachable numpad/macrobank, however wrist support only works for the complete keyboard
- Corsair – Vengeance K70 – A solid mechanical keyboard that comes with a few options of Cherry MX switch types, has media keys/volume wheel and a wrist support
- Ducky – Shine 3 - I do like the look of these and they come in a mix of MX switches and backlighting but the lack of dedicated media keys is quite off-putting
- Logitech – G710+ – Standing as Logitechs first Mechanical keyboard the G710+ has very mixed reviews. Only in Cherry MX Brown with a very high price tag. Does have media keys and volume roller.
- Razer – Various – I have owned 2 Razer keyboards and despite being nice they are very bulky, which isn’t good for me requirements. However the newer boards have swapped from Cherry to their own switches which they are reporting have been designed for gaming.
I may have to put a little more time into working this out.
What are you using?