Logitech G915 Lightspeed TKL long-term overview: The Magic Keyboard for gaming
“The Logitech G915 TKL is an costly gaming keyboard, but it surely simply earns its value.”
Excellent typing expertise
Shiny RGB lighting
Quick wi-fi expertise
Lengthy battery life
Bug-free, helpful software program
Incompatible with most mechanical keyboard equipment
Logitech’s G915 is for the gamer who needs the aesthetics of Apple’s Magic Keyboard with the texture of a mechanical swap (plus a great dose of RGB). I’ve searched far and broad for a keyboard that nails the feel and appear, and after scouring dozens of low-profile choices, I settled on the Logitech’s latest G915 TKL.
It’s not as strong as a full-size board, and the pric, like quite a lot of Logitech peripherals, e is simply too excessive. Nonetheless, the mixture of the Lightspeed wi-fi expertise, pretty distinctive low-profile switches, and rock-solid construct make the G915 really feel prefer it earns its asking value.
It’s a keyboard that manages gaming and typing nicely, and it’s a showstopper within the visible division. Though it took some time to regulate to the low-profile keycaps and Logitech’s switches, I’ve grown to like the stability that the G915 provides — and after months of steady use, I’m not returning to a full-size keyboard any time quickly.
Jacob Roach / Digital Developments
The Logitech G915 is accessible in two variations: Both full-size or a tenkeyless (TKL) design. I obtained my fingers on the TKL model, which ditches the quantity pad that often occupies the suitable aspect of the board. TKL boards have gotten extra well-liked over the previous couple of years — take the Corsair Ok70 RGB TKL, for instance — and that’s a development I can get behind.
Slightly further house in your desk goes a great distance in gaming, and the general slim design of the G915 TKL makes it really feel a lot smaller than it truly is. Logitech sells a model with a quantity pad, however except you want one for decent keys in applications like Adobe Premiere or Professional Instruments, it’s best to keep on with the TKL mannequin.
The G915 TKL’s design is primary however lovely. It’s a slab of brushed aluminum with some keys caught to it, but it surely nonetheless manages to look higher than boards just like the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini.
There are a few the explanation why. First, the RGB lighting. Even at full brightness, the lighting simply barely spills out of the perimeters of the keys, with many of the gentle targeted towards the highest of the keycap. Second is the restricted variety of further buttons, which helps it stay useful with out going off the deep finish.
The G915 TKL’s design is primary however lovely.
Outdoors of the keys, you may have entry to 4 media buttons, 4 operate buttons, and a quantity wheel. The 4 operate buttons do a couple of various things. There’s a brightness button that allows you to cycle by means of 5 brightness ranges (together with off), in addition to a Recreation Mode swap that disables the Home windows key. By means of the included G-Hub software program, you need to use Recreation Mode to disable any keys you need.
The opposite two buttons are for inputs, both Logitech’s personal Lightspeed wi-fi expertise or Bluetooth. You possibly can seamlessly swap between Lightspeed and Bluetooth on the contact of a button, which is an enormous win for the G915. It’s sufficiently small to make use of on the sofa with one thing just like the Nvidia Protect, and I appreciated with the ability to soar backwards and forwards with out reconnecting dongles or fussing round with pairing.
Jacob Roach / Digital Developments
Logitech sells a model of the G915 with a wire (known as the G815), but it surely’s solely barely cheaper than the wi-fi model. Wi-fi peripherals have gotten loads higher over the past a number of years, and Lightspeed is a showcase of that. It’s not possible to inform the distinction between wired and wi-fi, even in twitchy shooters like Counter-Strike: World Offensive.
The amount wheel feels nice. It’s steel and gives clean adjustment over the sting of the board, making fast quantity adjustments a breeze. I simply want that high quality carried over into the media and performance buttons. They’re fabricated from a smooth rubber materials and really feel mushy to the contact. I by no means missed an enter whereas utilizing them, however they nonetheless don’t really feel nice.
Along with the keyboard, you additionally get a Logitech-branded micro USB cable, the Lightspeed USB receiver, and a USB vary extender within the field. Critically, the G915 TKL is lacking a wrist relaxation, which is hard to swallow at $230. I didn’t miss a wrist relaxation whereas utilizing the G915, although.
I exploit a desk mat for my keyboard and mouse. Given the G915’s slim kind — it’s solely zero.9 inches tall — my wrists comfortably relaxation on my desk mat while not having to bend upward. That’s nice in my state of affairs, but it surely’s not ideally suited in case you don’t have a desk mat. Slim wrist rests are solely about $15, so it it might’ve been good to see one within the field.
Switches and efficiency
Jacob Roach / Digital Developments
I desire a conventional Brown swap for typing, because it provides the tactile suggestions of a Blue swap with out the annoying click on. The G915 TKL doesn’t use a Cherry MX mechanical swap or one among its derivatives, however slightly one among Logitech’s GL switches that approximate the texture of a full-size Cherry swap.
There are three choices obtainable: Clicky, Tactile, or Linear, which approximate a Cherry MX Blue, Brown, or Purple swap, respectively. I settled on the Tactile swap for a stability between my day-to-day writing duties and gaming. Though Cherry makes some low-profile switches, it doesn’t make a Brown variant, making the Tactile swap an ideal match for my functions.
I’ve all the time struggled between balancing writing and gaming, and the Tactile swap makes compromises I can dwell with. It’s not as nice to sort on as a full-size Brown swap, and the gaming expertise doesn’t get close to approximating a Purple swap. However the stability between the 2 is superb. Gaming feels higher because of the decreased journey distance, and writing nonetheless feels tactile.
The thinner profile took some time to get used to, although. The G915 itself is angled, however the keys dwell on a flat aircraft. That will increase the probability of accidently slipping up or down a row whereas typing or gaming, which I discovered myself doing usually once I first picked up the G915 TKL. Fortunately, after a few weeks utilizing the keyboard, I obtained used to the marginally totally different typing expertise.
Jacob Roach / Digital Developments
Though the Tactile swap will get near a Cherry MX Brown, it’s not an actual copy. Logitech’s swap has an actuation distance of 1.5mm whereas a full-size swap has a distance of 2mm. In the event you bottom-out the important thing, Logitech’s swap can journey as much as 2.7mm whereas a full-size swap can journey 4mm.
The bigger distinction is available in drive. The Logitech Tactile swap requires 60 grams of drive to achieve the tactile level, whereas a Cherry MX Brown is a bit lighter at 55 grams. It’s a small change, however the further little bit of stress makes a distinction in a low-profile design. The additional drive makes the Tactile swap really feel nearer to a full-size swap, regardless of a a lot smaller journey distance.
Logitech’s switches maintain up nicely towards the Cherry competitors.
Though the swap carries Logitech’s GL branding, it truly comes from Kailh’s Choc sequence. There are just a few keyboards that include these switches, and no choices that I might discover from main manufacturers. There are extra boutique boards just like the Morgrie RKB 68 that use them, nonetheless, and that board is cheaper than the G915 TKL.
Nonetheless, the G915’s switches carry a compromise. They’re not excellent for gaming, and so they’re not excellent for typing, however they do each nicely sufficient to earn their hold. So long as you’re prepared to regulate to a barely altered typing expertise, Logitech’s switches maintain up nicely towards the Cherry competitors.
Sadly, these are nonetheless Logitech switches, and like earlier designs, they aren’t suitable with different keycaps. There aren’t a ton of low-profile keycaps proper now, however it might have been good to see further common assist when extra units inevitably pop up down the road.
That makes mechanical keyboards just like the Roccat Vulcan TKL and Cooler Grasp SK630 a bit extra engaging — particularly with how low-cost they’re in comparison with the G915. Each of those keyboards use the usual cross for Cherry switches, making keycap swaps a breeze.
G-Hub software program
I don’t mess with bundled keyboard software program a lot. Normally, I set the lighting I need and let the software program quietly eat up system sources within the background. Logitech’s G-Hub is totally different. It’s useful, simple to make use of, and — critically — freed from bugs. That is the way you do peripheral software program.
Lighting breaks down into three classes: Presets, freestyle, and animations. Presets offer you entry to plain RGB results like respiratory and a coloration wave, Freestyle allows you to paint colours on any key you need, and animations allow you to create a series of distinctive adjustments between colours.
Though there are different items of software program with extra choices — Corsair iCUE, specifically — G-Hub nonetheless presents a great degree of customization. It’s simple to make use of for somebody who needs to set and overlook RGB, whereas nonetheless providing some totally different results and animations. You possibly can even arrange the lighting to match no matter’s in your display or to operate like an audio visualizer.
It’s also possible to routinely sync the G915 with different Lightsync merchandise from Logitech, in addition to use particular lighting results in supported video games. You possibly can see your ammo bar in Borderlands three, for instance, in addition to instantly view your vital keys in Last Fantasy XIV. Solely a small variety of video games are supported, but it surely was a pleasant deal with every time I booted up a supported title.
Lighting is what will get you into G-Hub, however that’s not what is going to hold you there. You possibly can remap any key, arrange macros, and map system capabilities like copy and paste. That’s nothing out of the unusual for a gaming keyboard, however G-Hub makes mapping macros really feel easy. You possibly can shortly drag capabilities like Alt + Tab to a operate button from a pool, in addition to modulate between instructions and macros with an elective G-Shift button.
After you have every part arrange the way in which you want, you possibly can retailer three macro and two lighting profiles on board and cycle by means of them with a key you choose (the primary 4 operate keys by default).
Lastly, you possibly can view your battery degree in G-Hub, in addition to your remaining battery life. Logitech charges the G915 TKL for 40 hours of use at 100% brightness (30 hours for the full-size model), however you’ll get way more than that. The keyboard routinely enters a relaxation mode after some time, saving your battery life while you’re away out of your desk.
I’ve used the G915 TKL at 50% brightness for months, and with semicontinuous use for 10 to 12 hours a day, I often have to prime up the battery each couple of weeks. That point shrinks considerably at full brightness, however the keys nonetheless put out loads of gentle on the decrease brightness ranges whereas saving you quite a lot of battery life.
The G915 makes use of a Micro USB cable for charging, and you may proceed utilizing the keyboard whereas it’s topping up. Though Logitech features a Micro USB cable within the field, I might’ve preferred to see USB-C for charging. In my case, no less than, USB-C has grow to be the usual throughout all of my gadgets, so I can shortly swap in a brand new cable every time I inevitably lose the one which got here within the field. With the G915 TKL, I’ve to dig by means of a pile of three-foot micro USB cables to search out one that can truly stretch to the port.
That’s a little bit of a testomony to the G915, although — I cost it so occasionally that I don’t hold a devoted cable on my desk. Nonetheless, USB-C isn’t too large of an ask for a $230 keyboard, particularly one which’s nonetheless pretty new.
The Logitech G915 TKL is simply too costly in comparison with different keyboards that present the identical or an identical low-profile expertise. Nevertheless, the mixture of wi-fi connectivity, helpful media and performance buttons, a strong construct, and bug-free software program make the G915 TKL earn its asking value.
It strikes a stability between typing and gaming that I take pleasure in, and it seems to be implausible sitting on my desk. Adjusting to the low-profile switches takes a while, however I’ve by no means felt the necessity to return to a full-size switches in my many months of utilizing the G915 TKL.
The draw back is that, like different Logitech peripherals, you don’t have choices for third-party equipment. As somebody who likes swapping out keycaps and experimenting with totally different switches, I do know the G915 TKL will, sooner or later, relaxation in my keyboard graveyard. It hasn’t made its means there but, nonetheless, and that’s a great signal.
Are there any alternate options?
Sure, however not loads. The Roccat Vulcan TKL and Cooler Grasp Cooler Grasp SK630 are each cheaper low-profile alternate options, although they lack wi-fi and use totally different switches. The G915 is pretty distinctive with its mixture of switches and wi-fi expertise, however there are boutique choices that use the identical switches with a wire.
How lengthy will it final?
Logitech’s GL switches are rated for 5o million actuations. In fact, the variety of actuations will depend on how usually you employ your keyboard. Assuming basic use, the G915 will final a number of a long time, and even then, it’d nonetheless have a bit life.
Must you purchase it?
Sure, however search for it on sale. The G915 has some apparent oversights, and it’s incompatible with most mechanical keyboard equipment. It’s a implausible low-profile possibility, however Logitech is ready to cost a excessive value given how few true rivals it has on this class.