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Corsair STRAFE vs. K70 – mechanical keyboard showdown

Corsair STRAFE vs. K70 – mechanical keyboard showdown

KeyboardSwitchesBacklightingMedia KeysExtra Features
STRAFERed, BrownRed, RGBNoUSB Ports
K70Red, Brown, BlueRed, Blue, or RGBYesWrist rest, USB Ports

Corsair has just released their new STRAFE mechanical keyboard, a budget-priced gaming mechanical keyboard with some nice features that you usually don’t see in a keyboard under $110. Many people have been wondering if it’s a better buy than the Corsair Vengeance K70. In this showdown, we’ll compare and review Corsair’s K70 vs. the Corsair STRAFE to see which one is right for you. You may also want to check out our Corsair STRAFE RGB review, which features Cherry MX Silent switches.

 

Corsair STRAFE Features

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 STRAFE Switches

The Corsair STRAFE comes in three different switch options. Cherry MX Red, Cherry MX Brown, and Cherry MX Blue are all available with the Corsair STRAFE. Red switches are the community favorite for gaming, as they allow for quick key presses with no tactile bumps. Browns offer light tactile feedback, useful for when you need to feel exactly when your keystroke is being registered. Blues are light, tactile, and clicky. Given how many options you get, this Corsair keyboard allows for a more silent keyboard if that’s what you’re into.

Corsair suggests MOBA gaming players might prefer Browns while FPS gamers might prefer Reds. Blues are a great option for anyone but know that they are loud and you might get some heat when gaming with friends.

Strafe_02

 

STRAFE Keys and Software

The first thing you’ll notice about Corsair’s STRAFE mechanical keyboard is the individually backlit LED keys. the standard model only displays one color – red – but they are fully programmable and customizable as to the brightness and which keys are lit. Users can use one of Corsair’s 6 different lighting profiles or create their own. There is also a STRAFE RGB model, which offers fully customizable backlit color options. More about that later.

Seeing as the STRAFE is aimed towards gamers, the keyboard has specially contoured and textured keys for both FPS and MOBA games which gaming enthusiasts will love. Though no dedicated macro keys exist, you can fully program any key to run any macro when pressed. There’s also no dedicated media keys, but you can use a Function key to access quick media controls.

If you’re familiar with Corsair, you’ll already know that they specialize in a lot of gaming PC peripherals and have been making mechanical keyboards for quite some time. Both their STRAFE and K70 are well known in the keyboard community. Even if you’re not into gaming, both the Corsair K70 and STRAFE are perfect for any PC rig.

 

Corsair STRAFE RGB
Buy on Amazon   Read user reviews

 

The STRAFE RGB is a newer version of the Corsair STRAFE that really aims to please the gamer who wants an exciting and flashy keyboard. The Corsair RGB has a white back plate, designed to reflect the most light possible and they even made the RGB LEDs brighter than the standard red LEDs in the base model. Corsair has really amped up the RGB model and it’s definitely worth comparing the two. Check out the video below to see these awesome lighting effects in action!

The RGB model also comes with a detachable, soft wrist-rest that isn’t included in the non-RGB model.

 

STRAFE USB and Rollover

The STRAFE mechanical keyboard will have a one built-in USB hub on the keyboard which may be useful to plug in a gaming mouse or headset easily. The Corsair keyboard also has the full anti-ghosting technology, so you’ll never have to worry about missed keystrokes.

Strafe_03

 

STRAFE vs K70 – Which Should You Buy?

The Corsair STRAFE is a great budget mechanical keyboard for gaming and a recommended buy on its own right. It has a ton of great features you don’t typically see at this price range, most notably individually backlit keys. With that being said, let’s take a look at the Corsair K70.

If you’re willing to spend more, you might want to take a look at the Corsair Vengeance K70, which has many of the same benefits but also has an aluminum chassis that feels a bit more solid and dedicated media buttons. The K70 also has the option of blue backlit LED’s and RGB backlighting (though it costs more). It doesn’t come with contoured MOBA keys or USB pass-through port (on the RGB model), however. The Corsair K70 has been around long enough for solid online reviews. If you want a more in-depth look at the K70, check out our hands on review of the K70 RGB Rapidfire here.

Really you can’t go wrong with either of these mechanical keyboards. It’s up to you to decide if the aluminum chassis of the K70 is worth the ~20 extra bucks. So, for those of you on a budget or looking for a low-cost keyboard for gaming, the STRAFE might be the one for you. On the other hand, if you want something sturdy with a nicer build, the K70 is what you’re looking for. In the end, don’t kill yourself over $20, pick the one that fits your needs. I know a lot of people with both the K70 and STRAFE who aren’t hardcore gamers but just like the feel of a nice keyboard. That sums up our reviews and comparisons of the Corsair K70 and STRAFE (RGB) mechanical boards. If you’re still undecided, check out the Amazon customer reviews and specs.

If neither appeal to you, feel free to check out our list of other Corsair keyboards or our article covering the best gaming keyboards.

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Brendan W
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