Keyboards come in all kinds of styles these days, and the features you select absolutely matter. A quality keyboard that fits your preferences can not only lead to more immersion and comfort, but also superior gameplay. If you’re the type that likes to play fast-paced games like shooters, a smaller keyboard can also feel more manageable. Corsair created the K65 RGB Mini as a competitive, premium 60% mechanical keyboard and sent us one to review. While it’s small in size, it has a lot going for it in terms of features.
Corsair clearly tries to deliver the full premium experience for its various gaming products. The box itself has some sleek branding and feels good to open up. Once you have the keyboard in hand, you can immediately feel and see the quality. The build is solid, the keys are quiet (for mechanical switches), and the RGB effects are brilliantly bright. The Corsair K65 RGB Mini does great with first impressions, and fortunately continues to impress.
You’ll find that this keyboard packs in all of the premium performance gaming features you could want and more. It features Cherry MX Red mechanical switches for smooth responsive feedback, PBT double-shot keycaps, plenty of shortcut keys that you can access via the FN key, and a .125ms response time (at its max setting). When it comes to the actual feel of this keyboard, it has the fastest response time we’ve ever tested. I took the board on a spin through Apex Legends and felt like every input registered the moment I thought about pressing the key. When you’re in the heat of combat, the added level of connectedness provided by the sharp response time really helps you focus.
Additionally, ghosting is non-existent, and there is full N-key rollover. The keys don’t feel oversensitive, but each intentional press registers like lightning. Full depresses feel satisfying, and are more quiet than the 2018 K70 Cherry MX Red switches we had on hand for comparison. The K65 space bar is notably better.
Reclaim your desk without killing utility
One of the main things to note with this 60% keyboard is that it feels very different due to the limited 61-key design. The Corsair K65 RGB Mini sheds a lot of commonly-used keys to meet its form factor. You’ll want to keep in mind that this is a keyboard for gaming and not work. All of that space you give up makes it feel amazing on smaller desks though, as you gain a lot more potential range for mouse flicks. This keyboard also works for vertical keyboard warriors, though I noted that the USB connection is centered, whereas an offset plugin would have been better for keeping the cord out of the way.
Another thing you’ll want to take note of in the design is that it only has a single angle and this keyboard does feel small when in use. Those with wrist pain or extra large hands may not find this condensed form factor ideal.
When the sweat stops dripping though and you go into chill mode, you can still access plenty of media commands via the onboard shortcuts. You can pause, mute, adjust volumes, use arrow keys, scroll up or down, and more. If you’re familiar with Corsair keyboards, you’ll also be pleased to know you can lock the Windows key as usual. Corsair also offers up to 50 onboard profiles plus custom macros. Those can easily be switched on the fly as well.
The light shows get better every year
Of course, it wouldn’t be a premium Corsair keyboard without the RGB. Fortunately, the K65 excels in this category with plenty of onboard options that only get better when used with the iCUE software. You can mix and match countless combinations with the redesigned iCUE UI that displays in real-time. If absolute control over customization doesn’t matter to you though, you can simply toggle the onboard options via the C,V, and B keys. There are plenty of colors and patters that look great and can be changed on the fly.
Corsair also included a unique spacebar that allows the RGBs to shine through and it looks great. If you don’t want your spacebar to be too bright, you can swap it out for a more subdued space key. As for RGB functionality, I like how the Windows lock and caps lock keys turn red when active. The glowing lights make it a lot easier to keep track of what you’re doing.
Speaking of glowing lights, I do have to point out something that would of made this keyboard near perfect for what it is. The onboard shortcut commands are impossible to see in the dark, and I think translucent etchings would help. Onboard shortcut keys are still relatively new, so it’s probably something that could be added in future iterations. I also noted that the Corsair logo keycap looked dull in the RGB glow and hope to see it redesigned to shine through better. All in all though, the RGBs look brighter than previous Corsair products, and the brilliance of the colors and patterns can’t be understated.
Highly recommended for the right crowd
The Corsair K65 RGB Mini should be one of your top considerations if you’re looking for a 60% mechanical keyboard. At the MSRP of $110 USD, it’s competitive with similar products but also comes with better response rates and iCUE support. The product feels premium down to the braided cables and rubberized USB interface and offers a sleek low profile design.
This is a great, portable solution that should appeal to esports FPS players and those with limited desk space, though it won’t work for everyone. However, Corsair made an excellent product for its respective class. The company also seems to be taking feedback seriously, as this product’s upgrade to USB 3.0 addressed one of our few gripes in the K100 review. The Corsair K65 RGB Mini raises the bar for 60% mechanical keyboards and is on sale now.