Keychron K1 Slim Wireless Mechanical Keyboard – Unboxing & Review


We all know our standard mechanical keyboards,
and even though low profile mechs have been around for a while now, we still haven’t
seen much of them. So today we check out the Keychron K1 slim
low profile mechanical keyboard. Initially this was the Keytron K1, but because
of name registration issues and stuff, they changed it to Keychron, and you’ll notice
that in some parts of the video, such as smacking on a new sticker on the box. This comes in a white backlit version, and
an RGB version. And you can either have it with Windows or
Mac keycaps. The one I have is the white backlit Mac version,
but they all should fundamentally be very similar. In the hands it actually feels awesome, as
it is mainly made from aluminium. So there’s no flex to it, and it feels very
sturdy, and comes in at about 630g, which is actually surprisingly hefty for what we
have. And yep, this only comes in black alumunium,
but it looks fantastic with a nice even and smooth anodised finish, which is on the top,
and the bottom. But the left and right sides are closed off
with black plastic, which you know, still fits in nice enough.` But what it’s all about is that slimness. So it’s not like a super slim keyboard like
an actual Mac keyboard, but it does of course still have these mechanical keyswitches with
still quite a lot of travel which should be around 3mm, which is only 1mm less than a
typical MX style switch. So we’re looking at about 22mm at its highest
point, which includes the keycap. And about 18.5mm at its lowest. But the enclosure itself is very thin, as
it also does have a floating key design, so the switches are exposed from the sides. But yeh, it looks great, and is super clean
especially with these flat laptop style or I guess we can say Mac style keycaps. And they are very Mac like in shape and with
the super clean font or typeface as well. And being the Mac version, we do have the
appropriate keycaps. So if you have a Mac, then you’d already
know all of these keys, like the command keys, option, and all the secondary functions on
the top row, which by the way, also work with Windows. As we do have just the white backlit version,
which I think it’s perfectly fine, and compliments the whole aesthetic of the keyboard, there’s
not a heap that we can do with the lights, but there are a bunch of patterns and effects
available. On the rear we have our USB type C port, which
is in a kind of weird position, pretty much just because this is where there’s actual
space on the PCB. Looks a bit weird but, it’s fine by me. And then we have some switches on the back. We can choose between bluetooth or cabled
mode. And despite having the Mac version, we can
still switch between Apple, and Windows slash Android. So on the 1 to 3 keys we can pair our bluetooth
devices. So to pair, make sure that you have the switch
on bluetooth mode, and then we hold Fn and one of those numbers, and you’ll find the
keyboard on your device. And that’s it. It’s using Bluetooth 3.0, and the performance
was absolutely fine. And finally I got Bluetooth working on my
laptop by updating the BIOS, so yeh, I was finally able to use it more in wireless mode. For casual use, such as typing this script,
and yeh just a whole lot of typing, it felt great, there wasn’t any noticeable lag or
latency. I didn’t use it for gaming, but perhaps
hardcore gamers may feel something there, but yeh, I didn’t get to test it like that,
as my poor laptop can’t take that on. ‘
As for battery life, they state that it can go up to 15 hours with the backlighting on. In my experience, I’ve used it for i’d
say 2 hours a day or so, and after a week it’s still going. But it does turn off the LEDs after a minute
of inactivity, so I guess that played a part as well. For the keyswitches, we have these blue low
profile ones that I don’t know who makes them, because they look pretty different to
the Kailh Choc ones. And these are pretty light clicky switches. I’ve used low profile clickies before, and
while at first they may seem pretty similar, they’re actually not. They still do use a click mechanism, but these
are actually quite damp. So when typing, the bottom out feels quite
soft, instead of sharp. Almost giving it this really weird pillowy
and mushy effect, while still being clicky. But the click is also not very sharp, and
actually relatively quiet. I desoldered a keyswitch to compare to a Kailh
Choc White, which is the equivalent, and you can really feel and hear the difference. I think as someone who has experienced proper
low pro clickies, these switches just feel underwhelming, and just not satisfying to
type on. It’s always difficult to say, as everyone
is different, and there may be people who prefer this. And even though it doesn’t make sense, it’s
like a dampened clicky. And here’s why. The actuation mechanisim is a bit different,
but it’s essentially the same. That extra bit in the stem houses this purple
piece that goes up and down, and has a spring action. And that’s what depresses the metal contact. However, because it has that spring action,
it’s like a secondary spring that you’re pushing, on top of main spring, which by the
way, looks a bit weird as well. And I believe that’s why it gives it that
cushiony effect. But to add to that, the click mechanism is
different. In the Kailh Choc switch, it’s quite large
and spans the switch, and we refer to this as a click bar. But in these, it’s much smaller, with just
this piece of metal, creating a dull kind of click. And it results in this. To take the keyboard apart, there’s a bunch
of Phillips head screws under some keycaps. There’s no header connection here, so the
battery is directly wired to the PCB. Alright, so here’s the bottom piece, and
it’s a nice solid piece of aluminium, being decently thick, and has some ribbing on the
bottom. There’s actually quite a lot of space here
for a slim keyboard, especially towards the back, as it does have that natural incline. The battery has a piece of plastic to protect
it from being punctured, and if we remove it, it does confirm that it is indeed a 2000mAh
lithium ion battery. They did route about .9mm from the case to
give it a bit more clearance, but you may perhaps be able to chuck a larger one in there. The mounting plate is made from about 1.1mm
aluminium, so it’s actually pretty thin, maybe because of the low-pro switches, so
it’s very light. The PCB look pretty normal and all. The big difference that actual matters, is
that the pins aren’t in the same spots. Therefore, you can’t put in the other Kailh
low profile variants, as they aren’t compatible with the PCB. I mean, there’s probably only a handful
of people that would do that, but I just found it interesting how different they are. So overall, this is a keyboard that I find
kind of difficult to understand. Aesthetically, I know that it will be very
appealing to many. When people think of mechanical keyboards,
they may think gaming, or they’ll think like chunky typists keyboards. So when you bring slimness, clean design,
Mac compatibility, and even bluetooth into the picture, you start to reach another side
of the market. And I think that’s great that you’re bringing
the mechanical goodness to a wider audience. And it really is a great keyboard for the
most part. But when I think of mechanical keyboards,
I think about the typing experience. And I’m a fan of Low profile clicky switches,
and honestly, I think they’re by far the best type for low profile, I don’t really
rate linears and tactiles for this. But these switches. Honestly I don’t know. If you’re gonna have clickies, they gotta
be clicky. I don’t want some dampened switch, because
it just feels weird to me. Especially after experiencing the Kailh Choc
clickies, they are just so much better. And yeh, I know, it’s a matter of opinion,
but, I feel pretty strongly about this. So as a device and its functionality, I love
it. But I just don’t like the switches, which
is what mechanical keyboards are all about for me. They’re not like bad, they’re still better
than say a laptop keyboard in my opinion. And I guess it’s pretty harsh, and I know
that many people will love this anyway. But it’s well done for their first keyboard
on the market, and hopefully they can improve on what is already a wonderful start with
this beautiful low profile board.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *