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Cooler Master NovaTouch TKL Keyboard Review

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Cooler Master NovaTouch TKL Keyboard Review

By David Ramsey

Manufacturer: Cooler Master, Inc.
Product Name: NovaTouch TKL
Model Number: SGK-5000-GKCT1
UPC: 884102026195 EAN: 4719512047200
Price As Tested: $199 (MSRP)

Full Disclosure: Cooler Master provided the product sample used in this article.

Premium mechanical keyboards have surged in popularity in the last few years as gamers and even casual users rediscover the joys of using a keyboard with the precision and feel afforded by mechanical key switches. The Cooler Master NovaTouch TKL uses a new type of mechanical switch based on capacitance detection rather than metal contacts. Benchmark Reviews checks out this minimalist typing machine to see how it compares to other mechanical keyboards.

Most mechanical keyboards use “MX” switches from the German company Cherry. Many different types of Cherry switches are available; the color of the key stem identifies the key type. Cherry MX Blue switches have a light touch and a distinct “click” noise, while Cherry MX Black switches have a heavier touch but no click noise. There are also red and brown variations, as well as new green, clear, and orange versions as well. Each type of Cherry MX switch has a different combination of actuation force, feel, and “clickiness”.

A less common alternative is the mechanical capacitive key switch developed by the Japanese company Topre. These have been around for some years but have not achieved the popularity of the Cherry switches, possibly because keyboards using these switches are significantly more expensive than those using Cherry switches.

cooler_master_novatouch_tkl_angle

Cooler Master uses a custom version of this switch developed in conjunction with Topre. Let’s see how it fares.

Features

  • Uniformly-weighted 45g switches
  • Compatible with Cherry MX key caps
  • Tenkeyless design allows for more comfortable positioning of the keyboard and mouse
  • N-key rollover with anti-ghosting
  • Adjustable repeat rate
  • Multimedia shortcuts + Windows key lockout
  • Detachable, angled micro-USB cable

Specifications

Key switch Hybrid capacitive
Key rollover NKRO (Windows only)
Polling Rate 1000Hz/1ms
Interface Micro-USB 2.0
Windows key lock Yes
Media keys Yes, via FN-key combo
USB cable 1.8M, braided, 18K gold plated connectors
Dimensions 35.9(L) x 13.8(W) x 3.9(H) cm
Weight 895g/1.97 pounds

Let’s take a look at this keyboard in the next section.


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2 comments

  1. aku

    I genuinely think this keyboard has the best stems currently available on the market. MX stems are the most common, but Topre and PFU make some really nice key caps too.

    1. aku

      I messed up a bit. I meant that this board has the best sliders found on Topre boards.

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