SteelSeries wireless mechanical keyboard can type 2 things with 1 keystroke

SteelSeries Apex Pro Mini Wireless Keyboard.
enlarge SteelSeries’ Apex Pro Mini Wireless keyboard connects via a 2.4GHz dongle or Bluetooth.

SteelSeries

Adjustable mechanical switches are an easy way to change the feel of different keys on a keyboard. These switches allow you to choose their trigger point, or how far you press the key before it registers an input, for a sensitivity that you can vary based on the key or application you’re using.

Peripheral Maker SteelSeries today announced new wireless and wired mechanical keyboards with mechanical switches that allow you to customize the actuation point of each key. the compact SteelSeries Apex Pro Mini Wireless and Apex Pro Mini also lets you program the keys so that a keystroke registers two inputs if you press the key far enough.

Adjustable Mechanical Switches

SteelSeries first began selling its adjustable mechanical OmniPoint switches in its SteelSeries Apex Pro keyboard in 2019. The OmniPoint 2.0 switches debuting in the Apex Pro Mini Wireless and Apex Pro Mini 60 percent keyboards released today are even more customizable.

An image of SteelSeries' OmniPoint 2.0 mechanical switch.
enlarge An image of SteelSeries’ OmniPoint 2.0 mechanical switch.

SteelSeries

The new switches are linear (see our guide to mechanical keyboards if you’re lost), with 3.8mm of total travel. The control point, meanwhile, is up to you. You can set it from 0.2 to 3.8 mm in 0.1 mm increments.

That’s a much wider range than what the Razer Huntsman Mini Analog offers (1.5–3.6 mm), but significantly shorter than the range of the Gateron X Lekker switches in The latest keyboards from Wooting (0.1–4.0mm). The switches in the Razer and Wooting keyboards also support analog or joystick-like input in the small number of PC games that support it.

SteelSeries, a PC gaming-focused brand, suggested using the feature to customize your gaming experience, such as setting a higher trigger point for “deep throws” and a lower one for “feather touches.”

I personally prefer a stiffer space bar, and while keyboards with space bars with higher actuation points or hot-swappable mechanical switches are available, something like the Apex Pro Mini keyboards do the same thing, easily changing my mind and feeling too. of a large number of keys can adjust , not just the space bar.

One push, multiple inputs

The Apex Pro Mini (shown) and wireless version use doubleshot PBT keycaps.
enlarge The Apex Pro Mini (shown) and wireless version use doubleshot PBT keycaps.

SteelSeries

SteelSeries picks up on a feature found in adjustable-switch keyboards by rivals including Razer and Wooting: mechanical switches that can input two inputs with the push of a button.

For example, you could program it so that pressing “A” will enter an “A” if you press the 0.5mm key, then a “B” (or something else) if you press the same key for another 0.5mm. mm.

SteelSeries’ announcement pointed to gaming combos, such as walk and run or pull out a grenade and then quickly throw it, as potential uses. Once I got used to running it smoothly, I found the feature useful in games where time is of the essence. But creative advanced users can also use the feature to hack some quick inputs outside the battlefield.

Unfortunately, SteelSeries currently limits its so-called Dual Action function to these new keyboards, and the lack of a numpad means the clackers are not suitable for all users.

How they work

OmniPoint 2.0 switches work like their predecessors using magnets and the Hall effect.

Typical mechanical switches are activated when two pieces of metal make contact. Each press of an OmniPoint 2.0 switch sends a magnet along the stem of the switch, bringing it closer to a Hall effect sensor at the base. Using the magnetic fields, the keyboard reads the distance between the magnet and the sensor, so it can see how far a key has been pressed and register an entry (or two) if necessary.

Because there is no physical contact between parts, the OmniPoint switch series can last longer than typical mechanical switches. Cherry MX Red linear switches and OmniPoint switches are both specified to last 100 million keystrokes each. However, there are some traditional mechanical switches with lower ratings, such as the Cherry MX Silent Red (50 million keystrokes).

If you set the switches to their lowest trigger point of 0.2mm, SteelSeries claims the switches have a response time of just 0.54ms. One of the ways SteelSeries says: OmniPoint keyboards increase speed by placing the analog-to-digital converter directly on the main keyboard chip instead of on the switches and scanning each key every 700 millionths of a second.

Prices

The Apex Pro Mini wireless has a suggested retail price of $240. The Apex Pro Mini costs $180making it slightly cheaper than the $200 MSRP of its full-size counterpart, the Apex Pro

The keyboards face direct competition in the Razer Huntsman Mini Analog, which features a $150 MSRPand the coming Wooting 60HE ($175).

And for those who prefer a numpad, the Razer Huntsman V2 Analog ($250) and Wooting Two HE ($195), which also support two-step activation, are worth noting.

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