Their first true test in the mechanical keyboard market, Logitech’s G710+ is a device aimed at capturing both the heavy writers/typers as well as the hardcore gaming community.
By being industrially designed though still being aesthetically pleasing, Logitech is hoping that that G710+ can carve out a major base in the market. The question is, would it hold up to the other high-end mechanical keyboards available on the market.
Design & Features:
The G710+ is a mechanical keyboard which means that each key has an individual switch underneath it to guarantee a key registers when pressed. Compare that to typical membrane keyboards, and you have a much more reliable device in terms of key functions and response.
The keyboard comes with six macro keys on the left side that can each be programmed up to three times, making for a max of 18 macros.
The device itself is a nice looking keyboard that looks like an industrial machine while still being small enough to fit on even the smallest of desk setups.
There isn’t an LCD readout on the G710+ like past Logitech keyboards, but it’s clear that that option was one of the casualties from going with the mechanical design. The board also comes with a detachable wrist rest that is recommended for use to provide comfortable usage. Without it, you have to deal with an inch drop off from the board to the desk.
In the multimedia section of the G710+ there are the standard media controls as well as a scrollable volume wheel which turned out to be one of the better, more underrated features this device has. The only other feature better is the game mode key that allows you to deactivate the Windows key to avoid accidently minimizing your game in the heat of a battle.
A big negative in terms of aesthetics with this device is the size of the power cord. A thick black cable with a large orange splitter near the end makes for an ugly look that takes away the nice design of the keyboard itself. However, once you can find a place to hide the cable, it becomes an afterthought to most.
The keyboard uses the same Logitech Gaming Software that the G602 Mouse – and other G products – uses. The software allows players to customize the 18 available macros for as many different profiles as they choose. Logitech Gaming Software will search out the games you have installed on your machine, and you can then choose macros based on pre-determined in-game commands.
You can also set macros for programs like Sony Vegas and Adobe Photoshop if you tend to be a heavy editor.
There is a USB 2.0 pass through on the back of the keyboard next to the where the cable enters the keyboard. If you are trying to plug in a wider device to the slot, you’d be better off simply plugging it into the tower itself.
The feel of the keyboard ranks among other high-end mechanical designs. When you press a key, you know you pressed that key. It gives off a strange sense of relief knowing that you don’t have to worry if the key made contact with the circuit board.
The macro keys can be a bit of a pain to reach, especially the top two keys, when you have small hands like myself. That caused a few problems when playing games that required quick movements and strokes to the macros.
The keys are grooved to avoid as much potential finger slipping as possible though due to the plastic used for the keys, your fingers will slip as soon as a little perspiration builds up. Again, this caused a few problems when gaming.
The backlighting of the keys makes playing in low lighting pretty easy. The only backlight color is white, and it ranges from dull to blinding bright. There are five different lighting brightnesses to choose to make sure you get the perfect backlighting. A nice touch is that you can separate the backlighting of the WASD and cursor keys from the rest of the board.
One of the biggest features boasted by Logitech with the G710+ is the keyboard being quieter than most mechanical boards. They weren’t understating when they said it’s quieter. With a rubber softening underneath the keys, the board is as quiet as most membrane keyboards.
While the Logitech G710+ has plenty to like, there are quite a few things that keep this from being a top-tier mechanical keyboard offering. The easy-to-macro “G keys”, helpful backlighting and the feeling of the keys are big plusses with this keyboard. However, the thick and hard to move cable, poorly placed USB pass-through and hard to reach “G keys” keep this from being as good as it could be.
That being said, the G710+ isn’t a bad device by any means. Though it’s not up to par with offerings from Corsair or Steel Series, Logitech makes a good first impression with a keyboard that can be tweaked and built upon for future versions.