ASUS has dabbled a bit in the gaming peripheral market. Their gaming mice have been given much love over the past few months with releases such as the Spatha and the Gladius II, with both mice receiving the RGB treatment.Their gaming keyboards, on the other hand, have been stagnant for the past few years. The most memorable mechanical keyboard that they have released was the Strix Tactic Pro, which is several years old now. It's high time they revamped their mechanical keyboard lineup.
Meet the ASUS ROG Claymore. Revealed to the world at Computex 2016, it looked like a worthy successor to the Strix Tactic Pro. Equipped with Cherry MX switches, RGB lighting, and a modular numpad, let's take a look if the Claymore is worthy of the ROG name.
The ASUS ROG Claymore comes in two flavors: the Claymore Core (tenkeyless only) and the Claymore (tenkeyless keyboard and modular numpad). For the purposes of this review, we'll be taking a look at the complete Claymore.The ASUS ROG Claymore comes with the permanent assortment of accessories that you would expect from an ROG product. Aside from the keyboard itself, it comes with two ROG stickers, carrying cases for the keyboard and the numpad, documentation, and a braided micro USB cable.
The ASUS ROG Claymore is primarily built out of plastic and aluminum. It's solidly built and the keyboard does not flex too much with force.
Located at the bottom are four rubber feet, two rubberized kickstands, and the micro USB port. The cable can be routed through the three channels provided.
The numpad is also made from the same materials as the tenkeyless keyboard. It's a relatively standard looking numpad with a volume rocker located at the top. Much like the main keyboard, the numpad is equipped with two rubber feet and a large kickstand.
The keyboard and the numpad can be joined by sliding the proprietary connections together. Keep in mind that these ports are available on both sides of the devices, so it would be up to personal preference if you want to position the numpad at the left or at its usual position at the right.
Designed as an RGB keyboard, the housings of the switches are transparent in order for the light to permeate more effectively through the switches.
The floating keycap design also makes sure that the lighting can be seen under the keys instead of just through the characters. Despite the design however, the light can only fully go through the top characters, leaving the bottom characters on the keycaps half-lit.
The ASUS ROG Claymore's keycaps are made from ABS. They are rather thin and the texture on the top of the keys may lead to shining in the long run. In spite of being relatively standard, they are doubleshot so you won't have worry about the characters fading with heavy use.
Costar stabilizers were used in the larger keys. The stabilizers perform fine under use, but you may find it annoying whenever you replace the keycaps on the larger keys.The ASUS ROG Claymore has tons of built-in controls on the keyboard, all of which are as easy to use as pressing the specific combination.
Repeat rate for
the keys can be controlled with FN +F1 - 4.
are bound to FN + F5 - F12.
The ASUS ROG Claymore can hold five profiles that can be accessed through FN + 1 - 5. Pressing FN + 6 reverts the keyboard to its default settings.Ã
There are also ASUS-specific controls included in the controls of the Claymore. These include BIOS, Fan controls, Boot, CPU OC, RAM OC, and ROG Sync.
The brightness and the mode of the RGB lighting of the ASUS ROG Claymore can be controlled with the FN + arrow keys.Ã
The hues are intuitively controlled with FN + Del, End, and Page Down for its Red, Green, and Blue hues respectively.If you want to finely-tune your controls over the ASUS ROG Claymore, you can use their ROG Armoury software. Here's a quick rundown of the available options:
The ASUS ROG Claymore that we have is equipped with Cherry MX Blue switches. For those that are unfamiliar with mechanical keyboard switches, Cherry MX Blue switches require 55cN (centinewtons) of force to actuate. The switches have a tactile click that can be felt and heard once the keystrokes are registered. The Claymore is also available in other Cherry MX switches such as Browns, Blacks, and Reds.
Using the ASUS ROG Claymore is a dream. The RGB lighting is even all throughout the keys, except for the bottom characters of each keycap. The Cherry MX Blues switches were even in actuation force. I did not feel any switches that felt lighter or heavier compared to the rest.It felt satisfying whenever I made movements using the Claymore since I can feel and hear every key press, although I must say that the plastic used in the housing of the keyboard was harder than most keyboards I've ever used, resulting in a louder clack than other keyboards.
The ASUS ROG Claymore is one hell of a keyboard. With the combination of the floating keycap design, RGB lighting, modular numpad, and genuine Cherry MX switches, the Claymore offers the complete package to anyone looking for a good mechanical keyboard.
There are only two problems with the Claymore. First, it would have been nice if the connection between the numpad and the keyboard was standard USB instead of a more proprietary connection. I would have liked to purchase a separate numpad instead of having to settle on the full package to get the numpad.The second problem with the Claymore is its price. With an SRP of PhP 9,500 for the full keyboard and PhP 7,400 for the Claymore Core, both versions carry a hefty price. Despite those faults, I can still say that the ASUS ROG Claymore is the most packed keyboard in the market today.Ã