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Corsair K55 RGB Pro XT Review: Full-featured affordable gaming keyboard [Video]

As the world of gaming keyboards expands with smaller, enthusiast-oriented offerings like 60% layout boards, there are still affordable full-size, full-featured options from all of your favorite brands. One of the latest from Corsair is the K55 RGB Pro XT. With macro keys that can integrate seamlessly into Elgato Stream Deck, media controls, and per-key RGB, it is packed with features for the $70 price point. Be sure to hit the video below to see all the details. 

Design overview

As a full-size keyboard with some extra macro buttons and media keys, the K55 RGB Pro XT is a large board. Measuring 18.87 x 9 inches with the included palm rest, it takes up quite a bit of space in a workspace or battle station – especially when compared to Corsair’s recent K65 RGB Mini 60% keyboard

Overall though, the keyboard keeps the design pretty simple and sleek. With the palm rest, the sides slope up all the way from the bottom of the rest to the top of the board. On the left side, we have the six full-size macro keys labeled G1-G6.

In addition to those macro buttons, the board adds some features in the upper right with dedicated media keys for volume up, down, and mute as well as controls to play/pause, skip tracks, and stop. 

Keys

Where the affordable price point comes in though, in my opinion, is with the rubber dome keyswitches. Of course people will have their own opinions with these vs. mechanical switches, but personally I would rather have a keyboard with mechanical switches.

That’s not to say that these are terrible, though. I’m able to type and game on them just fine, but they don’t have the same feel and feedback that I’m used to with mechanical switches. There is a nice tactile bump when pressing them down with some decent travel, but it still feels mushy. 

But it’s not bad when it comes to typing performance. While typing I was able to get very similar speeds as I did with mechanical switches when doing online typing tests. 

Corsair K55 RGB Pro XT: video

A similar story to typing, there wasn’t much of a drop in performance when gaming on the K55 RGB Pro XT. Now, I’m not a top-tier gamer so maybe the membrane switches and 1,000Hz polling rate would affect elite gamers more, but for me, I didn’t notice any performance loss while playing Call of Duty Warzone. If you feel the need for speed, definitely check out our reviews of Corsair’s crazy 8,000Hz K65 RGB Mini or 4,000Hz K100.

And where this board shines is with the macro keys that could benefit some game types that can make use of complex controls and commands. Likewise, setting those macros up within Stream Deck software can add a lot of streaming functionality without having to purchase another dedicated piece of hardware like a separate Elgato Stream Deck. 

Lighting

What separates the $70 K55 RGB Pro XT from the more affordable $50 non-XT variant is per-key RGB lighting. The more affordable option features five separate zones, while the XT can be fully configured to your hearts’ content within their iCUE software. 

While still not as robust as other lighting programs like Razer’s Synapse, iCUE still has plenty of functionality for dialing in color combinations. 

Brightness can be controlled physically with a dedicated button on top of the board while using iCUE unlocks color patterns like watercolor, spiral rainbow, rainbow wave, and type lighting. 

9to5Toys’ Take

All in all, the K55 RGB Pro XT is a formidable gaming keyboard. Drop that per-key RGB, and this extensive functionality can be picked up for just $50, which feels like a great deal. If you’re coming from a board that’s over $100 with some nice mechanical switches, it might feel unsatisfactory, but for someone new to gaming keyboards or on a tight budget, the Corsair K55 RGB Pro XT is packed with features and performs well. 

Buy Corsair K55 RGB Pro XT

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