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Today we have been given the pleasure to take a deep dive into the MK850, one of Cooler Master’s latest offerings in the mechanical keyboard arena. The MK850 with it’s “Aimpad” technology and low actuation cherry MX switches place it comfortably in the mid-range space.

Cooler Master, the Taiwan based OEM most famously known for it’s Hyper EVO 212 has been manufacturing keyboards since 2012 under it’s CM Storm brand. Can the MK850 with it’s extensive feature list give CM a lasting foothold in the peripheral space? Ladies & Gentleman, change your favorite RGB presets and let’s see what team purple has to offer.

Key Features

The MK850 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is fully featured with exclusive Aimpad technology for analog control.

 

Unboxing

The MK850 comes packaged in the black and purple signature colors of CM which highlight all of the included features this keyboard has to offer. They aren’t shy about advertising the Cherry MX brand and include the feature list in 9 languages showcasing how widely distributed this product is. The keyboard itself is snuggly fit into it’s box and protected by a matching plastic cover. The wrist guard is independently wrapped and a layer of cardboard hides the accessories and manual.

The keyboard itself has a heavier weight than I am used to, combined with the beautiful layout and gunmetal finish it gave me a sense of fine craftsmanship and a high expectation before I put it to use.

Removal of the stock black keys using the included tool was seamless and revealed the pristine Cherry MX switches I was hyped to see from the cover of the box. I never thought I would dig the look of purple so much, but damn if it doesn’t look great with the black.

Included Accessories

– Keyboard
– Wrist pad
– USB-C Cable
– Vacuum sealed purple replacement keys/tool
– User manual
– Aimpad manual

Companion Software
(Download)

Immediately upon opening the software, the keyboard was detected and a firmware update was initiated. This is fantastic and exactly what I want to see when installing a new product as it confirms continued support by CM. The overall feel of the UI is minimalistic, functional and practical. I really enjoyed the simplistic layout without accompanying bloat I had become used to.

There are 5 settings under the aimpad section, with advanced flight giving you the closest feel to using a controller. You are able to change sensitivity and actuation points for precise control. To my dismay, I wasn’t able to test this in any of the games I tried (Hell Let Loose, Space Engineers, Squad). It would seem this feature is only supported in specific titles and it took a google search to get these keys functioning. The M5 (MOBA) effectively de-activates the aimpad and I used this setting the majority of the time. The “|” key located above NumLk turns on and off aimpad, I was not able to find this in the manual.

The remainder of the software included lighting, key mapping, macros and profiles. This is pretty standard among companion software. The lighting on this keyboard is exceptional and I was pleased with how many different choices I had.

 

Sound & Lighting 

It is sometimes not always enough to simply read about a keyboard, sometimes a short video can better help demonstrate the lighting effects and the sound of the chosen Cherry MX switches

 

Conclusion

I was impressed with the overall build quality and feature set of this keyboard and it’s the nicest one I have ever played with. The limited instructions on using the featured “Aimpad” technology left a slightly sour taste in my mouth. The clean precision of the switches and RGB integration appeased my frustrations with the former. With a $154 price point, I would be happy if this was my 1st keyboard purchase for browsing and gaming.

Pro'sCon's
Fine craftmanship"Aimpad" Non-functional in titles I played
Cherry MX switchesCord would not stay in holders on backside of board
Rich feature setManual lacks content
Comfortable to use

Product Link | Where To Buy

 

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