A Closer Look

At first sight, the Raptor K40 is remarkably similar to Corsair's mechanical Vengeance keyboards. In fact, some could easily mistake the K40 for a Vengeance K70 Black, if they are unaware that the latter has an aluminum frame. The frame and all of the parts of the Raptor K40 are all plastic. It has a full 104 key layout with additional dedicated multimedia keys and six programmable macro keys. The keys are surprisingly well made for a rubber dome keyboard, with minimal wobble and good response. Of course, if you have used a mechanical keyboard before and especially one with tactile switches, the rubber dome keys of the Raptor K40 will feel overly soft and mushy; however, they still feel much better than the typical $15-20 basic keyboard.

Most of the standard keys of the Raptor K40 are black, with the exception of the WASD and the arrow keys, which are silver. This is obviously part of Corsair's branding of the Raptor K40 as a gaming keyboard, and these are the two dominant sets of keys for direction control in all kinds of games. Of course, action RPG, RTS, and MMO gamers might be a little disappointed, as other keys are frequently used in such games, and anyone that uses something other than WASD will feel left out.

It's worth noting that the lowermost series of keycaps have their bottom edge slightly inclined downwards. As these keys are most usually pressed by the user's thumbs (particularly the space bar, but also during gaming), the thumb will press against the edge of the key rather than the top. Although this may look insignificant, it will increase the comfort level for gamers after prolonged use.

Seven dedicated multimedia keys sit along the top right corner of the keyboard. Three keys are for volume control and four are for media control. A circular key can also be seen, which is used to change the backlighting setting. A few more extra keys that are circular can be found at the top left corner of the keyboard. The four M keys are for control of the onboard profiles and the fifth key locks (disables) the Windows buttons. Six macro keys can be seen at the left edge of the keyboard. Six macro keys may be a bit too few for fanatic MMORPG gamers but they should be more than adequate for most users.

The rest of the Raptor K40 is relatively uninteresting. There are no extra USB ports or other features on the sides or the rear of the keyboard. Four anti-skid pads are installed on its bottom and two standard flip-out feet can be used to increase the tilt of the keyboard. The cable is a thick, standard USB cable with a red connector. There is nothing of great importance beneath the plastic shell of the Raptor K40, as removing it only reveals a typical circuit board.

The software of the Raptor K40 is simple, clean and straightforward. It allows the user to program the macro keys and save them as profiles into the keyboard's memory. The macro programming options allow the user to choose different playback options and adjust the delay times, or the keys may be programmed to perform other functions (e.g. launch an application). You can create any number of software profiles but only three can be loaded into the keyboard. It's worth pointing out that the profiles programmed into the keyboard will function regardless of the system OS or software, but Corsair's software is necessary for the creation of macros and is currently only available for Windows.

Finally, there are the backlight settings. A different color/brightness can be programmed for each profile. There are also two Light FX modes, one that will make the keyboard pulse and one that will cycle through different colors. Both the pulse and cycling are more useful for demonstration purposes as opposed to being practical during normal use, but what's a gaming keyboard for if not to show off?

Introduction and Packaging The Backlighting and Final Words
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  • SodaAnt - Thursday, April 10, 2014 - link

    I have two different mechanical keyboards, and I've never even paid the same amount as this keyboard for them. I'd much rather get a barebones mechanical keyboard than a full featured but mushy keyboard. At the end of the day the point of a keyboard is to hit the keys, and rubber domes don't do a very good job at that.
  • EnzoFX - Thursday, April 10, 2014 - link

    Same here, would never get or recommend something like this. With great mechanical ones going for ~$60 (Looking at Coolermaster, but not Rosewill) there's just no point in these mushy ones for me.
  • cbrownx88 - Thursday, April 10, 2014 - link

    Whats wrong with the Rosewill's? I have two of the RK-9000's, one blue for work, browns for gaming at home, and they're wonderful.

    No gimmicky features, full NKRO, and HEAVY. Sounds like a wonderful recipe to me
  • Ammohunt - Monday, April 14, 2014 - link

    I own two rosewills myself with Cherry red switches best money ever spent on a keyboard..clickity clack.
  • CleavonBuford - Wednesday, April 23, 2014 - link

    Ain't a thing wrong with the Rosewill mechanical keyboards. I've got an RK-9100 MX Blue (blue backlighting too) and it is fantastic. I got it on sale so I paid about $85-90 for it. Money well spent. I love the clickity clack.
  • chrome_slinky - Saturday, May 10, 2014 - link

    There are MANY complaints on Newegg about the Rosewill Mechanical keyboards. They seem to have a mini-USB connection on them, and it gets difficult to keep the keyboard plugged in.

    Had there only been a few of these, I might have purchased one, but there are more than a few, and I really don't like to return things, especially when some of those people have stated that because the problems set in after 30 days use, Newegg was not helpful whatsoever, and Rosewill was difficult to deal with.
  • Mr Perfect - Saturday, April 12, 2014 - link

    Yeah, no kidding. There's clearly a market for boards in between bottom of the line $12 throw-aways and the expensive mechanicals, but an $80 rubber domer isn't anywhere near that. That's more then some mechanicals!
  • Alexey291 - Saturday, April 12, 2014 - link

    Gaming with a mech keyboard is often considered to be very awkward (I share that view). Typing with a loud and clicky keyboard always feels silly (especially if you're not some shut-in and have others in your household).

    Oh and mech keyboards usually hold minimal extra features yet present manufacturers with amazing margins.

    Great deal for us consumers all in all.
  • LordOfTheBoired - Sunday, April 13, 2014 - link

    Not all microswitched keyboards click.
    And I doubt the profit margins on microswitched keyboards are that much larger than their rubber-domed brethren. I'd wager the situation is actually the opposite in most cases, just because materials and assembly costs are so insanely low for a rubber-dome keyboard.
  • Mr Perfect - Sunday, April 13, 2014 - link

    Right, there are people who will want something like this, but why the hell is it $80? It's entirely made of plastic, macro keys are par for the course, and there's no mention of NKey. Something like this would probably be worth $40 or maybe $50 if you really wanted the customizable backlighting.

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