- Such a portable 60% footprint
- HyperX Red Switches are very nice to type/game on
- Build Quality is top-notch, exactly as per HyperX Standards
- Doubleshot PBT Keycaps for the better
- A niche but one keyboard enthusiasts will appreciate
- NGENUITY does help with the experience
- 60% is very niche and isn't for everyone
- Comes with a significantly high learning curve as compared to a 65%
Mechanical Keyboard, what was once known to be a niche is now gaining quite the traction. With major brands sticking to a rather traditional layout and which somewhat would come off as generic, HyperX made a keyboard so unusual that custom keyboard enthusiasts were intrigued as the size is niche and very enthusiast-like. A year after its debut, we finally have it – and this is the HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard review.
HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard
Design and Build
HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard is an extremely small keyboard to begin with and for someone that comes from a TKL (Ten-keyless), this form factor is a completely new horizon. That said, it follows the traditional HyperX style design with an open type casing, unlike an IKBC or Leopold or even Durgod, that has a more traditional closed type casing. In fact, we have seen casing like this before – the HyperX Alloy FPS Keyboard, years ago.
They keyboard has one of the, if not the most solid build I have ever encountered for a pre-build of this calibre. It reminds me a bit of Vortex’s Poker V2, to be specific. The bottom of the laptop feels completely full and has a nice weight to it, all thanks to the full aircraft-grade aluminium body. I genuinely love it through and through.
It not easy to come by a pre-built keyboard with thoughtful processes going into its build and experience. Unfortunately, like the HyperX Alloy FPS, this does not come with a portable case for you to carry around, which kind of sucks because the HyperX Alloy FPS Keyboard is a good portable keyboard to bring around wherever you go. Speaking of portability, the cable is detachable, making it a whole lot easier to plug and play – and it uses USB-C port, which is great. One big issue in the design is that, not all USB-C cables are going to work because it’s recessed deep inside the keyboard.
Finally, the important element of the design and build are the Keycaps. HyperX has also made a very good keycaps to go along with this keyboard. It has all that RGB element to brighten up one’s gaming experience, so you’d need a keycap that illuminates better. So, the keycaps here aren’t ABS but they are proper, Double shot PBT keycaps. Well done, HyperX.
On the bottom of the keyboard, we have this beautiful, sandblasted finish with the rubberized pads for better grip on the table and a 2-step-feet which helps you have the keyboard tilted at angles you prefer. Okay, at the time of writing this review, we all know that HyperX is now a HP owned company. But their products that we have received recently for review, still touts the Kingston logo on it. We aren’t too sure if its due to some copyright license or trademark to the design but, for what it’s worth, you will notice the thoughtful Kingston DNA in the product even if HyperX is now a HP owned Company.
In terms of specification, HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard has features that’s truly unique to the keyboard itself. Now, this isn’t the first time we see a HyperX branded switch. That goes all the way back to the TKL Origins. But we see it returning here once again.
- HyperX Red Switch (Also comes in Aqua)
- Double shot PBT Keycaps with 2 extra keys included in the box
- Per Key RGB lighting with five levels of brightness
- HyperX NGENUITY Software support
- USB-C Connection
From the initial setup, it is a bit of a culture shock. Coming from traditional form factors to a 60% is a completely new game. For one, given that how big is my desk is as is, the HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard saves a lot more space and gives more room for my mouse to glide. I love how long the USB-C cable is and having the room to move it and adjust the keyboard to however I want it, checks off the versatility of this keyboard.
What I am going to say next is going to be an absolute blasphemy. As much I enjoy RGB, I like it turned off or just set to one colour. My daily driver keyboard does not have an RGB to begin with, so it’s something nice to have and it’s not a feature I am particular about. But I have to say, paired with these good set of Double shot PBT keycaps, the illumination through the keycaps are pretty nice. Again, since it’s an open type case, the glow around the sides gives it an illusion as if the keycaps are hovering.
The HyperX Red we find under this keyboard is their own switch. Coming from the Cherry MX Red from the IKBC TypeMaster (which is my current daily driver), there are some significant differences with these HyperX Reds. Now, on paper, it does have a 0.2mm difference in its actuation point and total travel difference. I have been an avid Cherry user all this while, but these HyperX Red switches are my new favourites.
The typing experience on this keyboard is fine. It has a smooth actuation, milky smooth to be specific. The sound of the keyboard isn’t too distracting, it has a bit of a “clack” sound to it, and it works just like how a linear switch should work. What surprises me is the lifespan of these switches, which has been rated 30 million clicks more than the traditional Cherry MX Red, which is rated more than 50 million clicks lifespan.
HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard is a good typing keyboard that I would throw in my bag and bring it along to have that mechanical keyboard experience I enjoy. But when it comes to gaming, that’s where my gripe with the keyboard kicks in. To me arrow keys are extremely crucial, and to have it as a secondary key is a big no-no. A lot of the functions I do want at the tip of my hands, exist as a secondary key. For racing games, I prefer my arrow keys over the WASD layout, and it was not easy to get used to.
Arrow keys aren’t the only ones that exist as a secondary key. Due to the form factor it exist in, many of the keys exists in a traditional keyboard must be assigned as second or in some cases third key. Not something I enjoy but thanks to the NGENUITY application, the customization helps, which is what I am going to talk about next.
NGENUITY has been the pillar for HyperX peripherals for customizability and the HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard gets the support for the app. We received some firmware updates, which is nice to see. It has other set of features to take advantage of the keyboards. It’s mainly divided into two aspects: Lighting and Keys.
Lighting, well handles everything what lighting should do – Effects, Target, Opacity and Speed. Under the Keys, you get the ability to assign or re-assign keys to your liking. In my case, I re-assigned the whole arrow keys to be my primary choice and made other keys as secondary.
It also comes with the ability to set presets for every kind of customization you’re planning to do with the keyboard. You can set up to 3 presets, which is more than enough. With the on-board memory, you do not have to set it up all from scratch if you use it with another device that doesn’t have NGENUITY installed in it. I wouldn’t say the app is easy to use nor it’s hard. But it does take a bit of time to get used to the layout. But it’s definitely easier to work with than the keyboard itself which has a huge learning curve.
After using it for a good duration, I can say that the HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard is the kind of portable mechanical keyboard I’d have on the go more than on my desk for 3 good reasons: extremely small footprint, buttery smooth typing experience and it’s just a great external mechanical keyboard. For gaming, I wouldn’t quite recommend this as it is a hassle to use but if you don’t use your arrow keys in game then it’s a good fit. I would still use this for gaming though, just not ones that requires arrow keys.
My money would go for the HyperX Alloy Origins 65 which has some function keys (Home, Del, Pg Up and Down) and dedicated arrow keys. Otherwise, at RM 499, the HyperX Alloy Origins 60 Keyboard is a nice and niche keyboard with a significantly higher learning curve to get used to.
Click here to purchase the HyperX Alloy Origins 60.
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