COOLER MAS­TER MASTERKEYS PRO L

HWM (Malaysia) - - TEST - RGB MECHANICAL GAMING KEYBOARDS SHOOTOUT -

Cooler Mas­ter's new MasterKeys Pro key­board line comes in two vari­a­tions: L and S. The Pro L is a full-sized key­board, while the Pro S is a tenkey­less op­tion. In ad­di­tion to a num­ber­pad, the Pro L also gets four ad­di­tional pro­file switch­ing keys in the top right cor­ner.

Both key­boards use a sim­ple, matte black two-part plas­tic frame, with a steel plate in­side for sta­bil­ity. The plate is painted white to bet­ter re­flect the LED light­ing. On the bot­tom of the key­board, two flip-out plas­tic feet let you ad­just the typ­ing an­gle. The key­boards con­nect through a de­tach­able braided Mi­cro-USB ca­ble, which is nice since you can re­place it if it gets dam­aged. Both key­boards are avail­able in Cherry MX Brown, Red or Blue switches and use stan­dard Cherry MX stems. On all three ver­sions, the switch hous­ing is trans­par­ent, which helps the LED light­ing shine through. Cooler Mas­ter has also re­designed the PCB with smaller cutouts to let the LEDs sit snugly against the switches. This re­sults in much brighter and more uni­form back­light­ing. In fact, the MasterKeys Pro L is prob­a­bly the bright­est key­board in our shootout. The key­board also has full N-key rollover and anti-ghost­ing.

In­side the key­board, a 32-bit ARM Cor­tex M3 pro­ces­sor and 512KB of mem­ory are in­cluded for stor­ing and play­ing back cus­tom macros, which can be pro­grammed on the fly with­out the need for any soft­ware.

The ARM pro­ces­sor also con­trols the key­boards light­ing op­tions. By de­fault, press­ing Fn and F4 will cy­cle through var­i­ous pat­terns and modes, in­clud­ing wave, static and re­ac­tive ef­fects, as well as some silly op­tions like be­ing able to play Snake on the key­board with the ar­row keys. In most modes, you can con­trol the color us­ing Fn and F1, F2 and F3, which rep­re­sent the red, green and blue chan­nels re­spec­tively. You can mix and match these lev­els to cre­ate pretty much any color. You can also cre­ate your own per-key pat­tern. In this mode, the Fn key will light up in the cur­rently se­lected color, and you then tap any keys you want in that color.

While the key­boards don't re­quire any soft­ware to use, Cooler Mas­ter does pro­vide soft­ware for users who pre­fer an easy-to-use GUI to cus­tom­ize their macros or light­ing op­tions.

The MasterKeys Pro L has a braided re­mov­able Mi­cro-USB ca­ble.

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