Alienware Pro AW768

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Introduction

Everybody knows about Alienware at this point. The Dell-owned company has created a name for itself during the years for making pricey, but stunning, gaming PCs such as the Alienware Aurora R7. Obviously, gaming PCs are not all – therefore Alienware has stepped to the peripheral game with products such as the Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768.

Just as you’d expect from a keyboard made by Alienware, it’s an angular, innovative design and is packed to the brim with RGB lighting. However, what is more, impressive is under the hood: Cherry MX Brown switches, a one millisecond (ms) polling rate and dedicated macro keys.

What may sound surprising to some old, jaded PC gamer on the market is the Alienware Gaming Pro AW768 is a very inexpensive gaming keyboard. It’s possible to get this keyboard for only $99. To get a fully mechanical gaming keyboard from a brand like Alienware – that will probably blend in seamlessly with most gaming PCs — that is a fantastic deal

Design

When we opened the Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard’s full package, we might have sworn it had been wrapped in a smooth, aluminium body – it was undoubtedly hefty. On the other hand, the whole thing is assembled out of plastic. Do not go thinking this implies it is flimsy, however – there’s no give for the keyboard, and it is incredibly sturdy. It only does not feel as pleasant to the touch as it seems.

The RGB lighting is similarly deceiving. Instead of having the ability to customize the light however you wish, on a per-key basis, you are instead given six zones, each representing a set of ambient or keys lighting. This can prevent you from making your gaming keyboard look god-awfully tacky, but we’d have anticipated more customization in the company like Alienware. Sometimes, you only need to dive in and make something as absurd as you can, right?

There’s a collection of six macro keys on the left side of this gaming keyboard, and while they are certainly helpful, we ended up unbinding each the macros we set while gaming. This is because, in the heat of this moment, it is quite simple to reach over and press the wrong key – setting off a macro once you actually did not wish to. We are sure this is an issue that subsides over time, just be prepared to pencil in some time to equip your muscle memory.

On the other hand, the media keys did not make lots of sense to us. On the upper right-hand corner of the keyboard, there’s a volume wheel that is unnecessarily wide, using a mute key to the left of it. It might have been nice to have the media control buttons besides the volume wheel, rather than having to hit”Fn + F12″ each time we wanted to skip a track.

The Alienware AW768 is an undoubtedly fantastic gaming keyboard, and it is just that some of the design decisions do not make a lot of sense to us.

Performance

Fortunately, the Alienware AW768 is a really competent keyboard and is guaranteed to please anyone looking for a comfortable gaming experience.
As it is using Cherry MX Brown switches, the keyboard is right for pretty much whatever you are trying to perform. Productivity work and gaming feel great in equal measure, and also the noise is under control enough to use it through the night without keeping the whole neighbourhood awake.

The ideal keyboard switches finally boil down to personal preference, and Cherry MX Brown switches would be the best for beginners who do not really understand what they’re looking for yet – similar to Alienware’s gaming PCs.

It is impressive on paper, also – with 45g of actuation force, 2mm actuation distance along with a 4mm travel, the gaming keyboard is responsive and tactile, even though it could border on the shallow side for a number of users. But after we got into the groove of things, it took little time to return to our regular typing speed. Given that the considerable difference between these keyboards, this just speaks to the advantage of the Alienware AW768.

In games, however, these switches are a fantasy. We have been in a small nostalgic mood these past few days, and are replaying Deus Ex: Human Revolution. And, while it is not a competitive title like Overwatch, the game plays just like a dream: the switches feel precisely right and kept us alive during some frustratingly fierce boss battles.

On top of it all, this gaming keyboard ought to last you a long while: that the keys are rated to last for as much as 50 million keystrokes, which will take a very long time to reach.

Conclusion

The Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768 is an excellent keyboard for the money – for a hundred dollars, you are getting a reliable performance and appealing aesthetics with just a couple of quality of life compromises.

If you are an Alienware enthusiast, and you have already splurged on a few of its gaming PCs, then it’s easy to recommend this gaming keyboard. And, even if you’re not, you can do far worse for your money – there are lots of’mecha-mechanical’ keyboards out there which are worse value propositions. We are just amazed that Alienware put a gaming keyboard this great at this price point – it is a company known to set a premium on its own brand name.

If you’re looking for one of the most fabulous gaming keyboards that somehow manages to mix aesthetics, performance and value, you are likely to have difficulty finding a much better gaming keyboard compared to the Alienware AW768. That alone ought to be enough to convince plenty of users.

6.5 Total Score
Alienware Pro AW768

The Alienware Pro Gaming Keyboard AW768 handles to hit an incredible price to performance ratio, with a few odd design choices on the way.

PROS
  • Affordable
  • Cherry MX Brown switches
  • Excellent look
CONS
  • Odd macro key placement
  • No dedicated media buttons
  • Plastic build
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