Aorus are back on eTeknix again today, following a long hiatus from our last review of theirs, the rather stunning Aorus Thunder M7 Gaming Mouse. In the office today, we have their new flagship gaming keyboard, the Thunder K7, and it’s packed to the brim with high-end features that are sure to excite professionals, gamers and well, many other people too!
- World’s 1st Mechanical gaming keyboard with detachable Macro keys
- Superior CHERRY MX Mechanical Key-Switch
- Absolute Anti-Ghosting Multi-Key press Capability
- AORUS Macro Engine
Equipped with a split design that allows you to not only detach the number pads completely and turn the main keyboard into an 80% width design, you can also attach the number pad on the left side of the keyboard and use it as a macro pad, or for any other purpose for that matter, and even then, you can also use the number pad all by its self if you really wanted! Of course, a funky modular design isn’t the only thing you can expect from this keyboard today. Equipped with Cherry MX Red switches, N-key rollover, anti-ghosting, LED lighting, macro engine, detachable wrist rest, and more, the K7 is sounding like strong competition for many other high-end keyboards on the market today.
The box for the Thunder K7 is absolutely huge, it may actually be the biggest keyboard box we’ve ever seen, and not by any small margin either!b There’s a huge image of the keyboard don the front, as well as a badge telling us this is the orange light edition, not the blue one in the big picture.
Around the back, a quick rundown of the main features, such as the modular design, Cherry switches, and the powerful macro engine.
The box opens up to reveal just why it’s so big in the first place. The keyboard is exceptionally well padded and the main keyboard, number pad and wrist rest are all separated by thick foam to ensure they stay secure in transit. Each component is wrapped in plastic bags to keep them dust free and there’s a large plastic shell over the top over everything to protect it from damage.
In the box, the keyboard, which comes hard-wired with a good quality USB cable and custom USB 2.0 gold-plated head, as well as a secondary cable for when you’re using the number pad independently.
The detachable wrist rest is pretty durable and has a good width to it. It is worth pointing out, however, that it’s the full keyboard size, so may look ridiculous if you’re using it in 80% mode.
There are some rubber grips on the bottom to keep it in place, but you’ll notice the lack of clips as the whole unit connects to the keyboard magnetically.
A Closer Look
The keyboard looks really nice, with a durable frame and a shorter 80% design. This is great for freeing up more desktop space for your mouse, and also ideal for LAN gaming, as the keyboard is small enough to easily fit in your backpack.
First things we noticed on this keyboard are the two scroll wheels, which are pretty similar to those found in a gaming mouse. The left on is for LED lighting brightness and the right controls your systems master volume. The F1-4 keys are a little different too, offering up Google and social media shortcuts.
The key caps are very nicely finished, with a clear font and an anti-slip UV coating that gives them a premium look and feel. Of course, with Cherry MX Red switches on the underside, you know they’re going to perform great too.
A few basic multimedia controls along the top row.
What’s really cool is that the keyboard doesn’t need tools, screws, clips or anything else to be modular, just this little magnetic strip and connector.
There’s one on each side too, so you can literally plug and play the number pad as you wish.
On the base, more firm rubber grips as well as those ultra-wide feet.
These have to be the widest feet I’ve seen on a keyboard, and that’s great for extra stability when you’re using them.
The number pad keeps the same styling, with another LED scroll wheel as it’s lighting is controlled independently, and more magnetic plug-and-play ports on the side.
The big difference here is in the key caps, as they’re dual-designed as both a number pad and a macro pad to facilitate using it on the left or right side of the keyboard.
Another durable and wide kickstand on this part too, as well as more of those thick rubber grips.
As I said before, simply put the number pad next to the keyboard and the magnetic mount will snap it perfectly into place and it’ll work right away, no extra drivers, software or anything needed.
The magnetic wrist rest immediately locks firmly into place too, this thing really couldn’t be any easier to configure.
When you fancy a change, perhaps switching from your work day to an evening of gaming, just pull the number pad off.
Then simply snap it into place on the other side.
And again, snap your wrist rest into place too if you want it.
The number pad can also be used independently, this means you don’t even need the keyboard, it can be used as a dedicated mini macro launcher or anything else you want on its own or perhaps you don’t want them snapped together. Just grab the magnetically attachable USB cable.
Snap it on to the side and you’re good to go once again.
The key caps can be removed and you’ll find a full complement of Cherry MX switches with orange LEDs equipped. You don’t see many orange LED mechanical keyboards these days, and I rather like them, sure you’ve got RGB, but we all know how much those three letters can impact the RRP of any product.
The lighting is nice and clear, with a soft under glow and clear lettering. The scroll wheels have their own LED effect too and you can even adjust the brightness of the number pad and keyboard separately if you desire.
Performance isn’t even in question on this keyboard, it’s an incredibly durable design and versatile too. The keys are Cherry MX, so if you’ve ever laid fingers on MX Red before, you know with 100% confidence the kind of typing and gaming experience you’re going to find here. What’s really special about this keyboard is the macro engine and that movable number pad, as it opens up a lot of possibilities for work and gaming. Having a 20-key programmable and movable pad at your disposal is simply awesome for MMO and sim gaming, and you’ll wonder how you ever did without it. Pulling the number pad away and turning it into an 80% design is great too, as it frees up a lot of desktop space, makes the keyboard easy to move around and once again, it opens up a lot of possibilities that you normally wouldn’t have with a full-size keyboard.
The Aorus Thunder K7 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard is currently available from Overclockers UK for a very reasonable £129.95. Now, that is a lot of money, but when you factor in the build quality, and the modular design that this keyboard offers, you’re getting great value overall and it’s a rock-solid contender for the numerous other £100+ enthusiast keyboards on the market today.
This is truly a fantastic keyboard to use, both for daily work tasks and for competitive gaming. It ticks all the right boxes that a pro-gamer would be looking for, with lightening fast Cherry MX switches, good quality key caps, clear LED lighting, a powerful macro engine, anti-ghosting and more. Of course, the real star of the show is the modular design and while it’s not the first keyboard in the world to do so, it’s easily the best integration of such a feature we’ve ever seen, mostly due to the instant locking magnetic mounts that allow you to chop and change the layout so quickly, you could very easily do it right in the middle of a game!
I use a TKL keyboard for my day-to-day work, as I like the desktop space it gives me to play around with. However, there are times when I could really do with a number pad, so having a keyboard that can be my TKL product of desire 6 days of the week, and then become a full-size keyboard within seconds is a huge bonus for me and my work. The same goes for those who like to travel with their keyboard, as you can have the full size one at home, but just take the main keyboard section with you to gaming events, as it’s much more compact and easier to transport.
The overall build quality is rock solid, with a durable housing, firm rubber grips on the base to keep everything in place on my desktop and easily the widest and most durable kickstands you’ll find on any keyboard. The addition of good quality cables, Cherry switches, and those UV-coated key caps only adds to the overall assurance of quality on offer.
Many keyboards have an air of “well, it’s not for everyone” about them, but this one really does fit the bill for virtually everyone. It configures to the form factor you need, the button configuration you need and it does so for a competitive price, easily one of the most fun keyboards we’ve seen this year.
- Durable build quality
- Tool-free modular design
- Detachable wrist rest
- N-Key rollover
- Macro engine
- LED lighting
- Fully mechanical
- Competitive price
“From pro-gamer to accountant, the Aorus Thunder K7 has all the features you could wish for, backed up by rock solid build quality and flawless performance. If you’re looking for a keyboard that’s as dynamic as your work and play schedule, the K7 is the perfect addition to your desktop.”
Thank you Aorus for providing us with this sample.