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GK61

GK61 Keyboard Review- What Makes it A Hit

Coming from a brand like Hong Kong known as H.K., the GK61 mechanical gaming keyboard is every new gamer’s dream. Even while having an affordable price range, the GK61 has a lot to offer. Made by Hong Kong Keyboards, the GK61 is a solid option if you are in the market for a standard-sized 60% mechanical gaming keyboard.

It comes with a wide range of top features, including RGB backlighting and a super-fast USB Type-C connector. These features are bound to make your overall typing and gaming experience smooth and enjoyable

It has optical switches, a strong metal case, a backlight, and many more features any gamer would fall for. So we highly recommend getting this GK61 keyboard. However, if you still have a doubt, no worries, here we have already brought a GK61 review for you, which includes genuine information about its specifications, unboxing, features, pros, and cons, too.

Let’s take a detailed look into them in this detailed review.

GK61

GK61 Keyboard Specifications at a Glance

Keyboard Name and ModelGK61 mechanical keyboard
Dimensions11.42 x 3.94 x 1.18 inches
Weight546g
LayoutANSI 60% layout
Keycap MaterialDouble-shot ABS
BacklightRGB per-key LED backlight
SoftwareYes
Macro-ProgrammableYes
SwitchOptical Gateron red switches
Micro-phoneYes
ConnectionsWired only
Wireless SupportNo
CompatibilityWindows and Mac OS

GK61 Keyboard Unboxing

When you purchase the GK61 mechanical keyboard, you will receive many tools to assist you in using this tiny mechanical keyboard. The following are some of the accessories included with the GK61 purchasing package:

  • Switch puller: The switch puller is constructed of aluminum and is quite excellent. It allows you to easily pull out the switches that are already on the keyboard and replace them with new ones.
  • Keycap puller: A keycap puller is also included, but it is made of plastic. A keycap puller allows you to change the keycaps with minimal effort. To reduce the possibility of scratching your keycaps, we recommend using a wire keycap puller like this one.
  • Braided USB Type C: You also receive a very decent USB Type C cord; the GK61 cable is detachable, making this mechanical keyboard ideal for mobility.
  • Manual user guide: This is an important book that you must read in order to effectively use the GK61.

Features

Just like many other optical keyboards on the market, the GK61 has some distinctive features and functionalities which separate it from other models. As we continue, we will look at these features individually and emphasize how they work to provide you with an outstanding typing and gaming experience.

GK61

Unique Build and Design and Construction

From the very first glance, the GK61’s nice look and design differ totally from what we are used to with other 60% keyboards. It comes with a standard ANSI layout, making it very easy to swap out damaged or faulty keycaps.

Although the fonts here share a close resemblance with the ones available on cheaper models, GK61’s keycaps have some extra legends for the layers to make up for the cheap look.

The keyboard weighs 546 grams, which means you should be able to carry it along with you and enjoy your games on the go without any hassle at all. Its sturdy metallic plate, coupled with the plastic housing, also helps to minimize flexing and aid portability.

The keyboard comes with a slim bezel to further emphasize the small form factor common with most 60% keyboards. It has a quite interesting glossy finish, which is visible once you flip the keyboard on its side. Notably, the GK61 keyboard comes with a standard OEM profile. However, the keycaps’ glossy finish gels perfectly with the overall design to give the board a unique outlook.

What’s more, there are four rubber feet at the base to keep the keyboard firm and steady on any surface. Overall, you will come to appreciate the visual vibe and aesthetics of the GK61 if it is properly cleaned and maintained.

Compact Layout

As stated previously, the GK61 comes with the ANSI layout, straight out of the box. However, it misses out on the dedicated Numpad and arrow buttons, which is something that is quite common with most 60% keyboards.

This doesn’t mean you have completely missed out on these buttons, though. You can access all numerical keys together with the function keys on another layer.

Also, you can access the control keys for the device’s backlighting effects at the upper side of the keyboard. The layout makes provision for the “nav cluster,” otherwise referred to as the nine special keys. You can trigger these buttons with the function key at the lower right corner of the keyboard.

We can say that the GK61 really outperforms many keyboards with a 60% layout when it comes to implementing the layers and their various functions.

FN Functions:

• You can press the Fn+Back buttons to turn on/off the light effect

• You can press the Fn+P/[{ buttons to either lower or increase the brightness levels of the GK61

• You can press the Fn+Q buttons to switch to an online model and select many backlight and macros

• You can press the Fn+W/E/R buttons to switch to an offline mode with many preset layers

• You can press the Fn+W buttons to switch to mode 1, which performs the default function of a normal keyboard

• You can press the Fn+E buttons to switch to mode 2 and trigger the default functions of the F1, F2, F3… keys

• You can press the Fn+R buttons to switch to mode 3 and initiate the default functions of the PS, SL, PB, Ins, HM, PU, Del, End, PD buttons, respectively

• You can press the FN+Windows buttons to lock the Windows key and prevent the start menu from coming up while gaming

Multiple Backlighting Effects

Recently, the backlight feature has become an essential feature in modern-day keyboards, and the GK61 is not an exception. It uses the surface-mounted LEDs and comes equipped with a tiny glass-like material which helps to magnify the light to a very bright level.

Notably, it comes with genuine RGB lighting, and this implies you can get about 16.8 million color combinations from each LED.

Also, there are multiple backlight modes and effects, including Ripple, Aurora, Music, Waves, Rainbow, Spectrum, Gradient, Windmill, and a single light. The animations come through nicely, and the transition is smooth and seamless.

You can tinker with the backlight’s settings and adjust the brightness levels as you deem fit. Specifically, the GK61 keyboard has a 21-level adjustable brightness setting. You can press and hold the FN+P buttons to reduce the brightness to its lowest level.

Similarly, you can press and hold the FN+left bracket buttons to increase the brightness all the way to the maximum level. A combination of the FN+semi-colon buttons and the FN+apostrophe will let you change or adjust the animation speed.

In addition, if you have no need for the backlight, you can press the FN+backspace buttons to turn off the feature completely.

Delving deeper into the backlighting feature, the GK61 gaming keyboard provides you with two lighting modes. We have the logic lights mode, which comes with a wide range of lighting effects that can be triggered when you press the FN+right bracket buttons.

On the other hand, there is a code lights mode, which uses the device’s built-in mic to ensure perfect audio sync in-between the transitions. To activate this mode, all you need to do is press the FN+backslash buttons, and you are good to go.

High-Performing Gateron Switches (Optical)

GK61

Our GK61 keyboard review will never be complete without making mention of the switches, which stands tall as one of the best features of the GK61.

The keyboard comes equipped with the optical Gateron red switches, with almost the same features as the Gaterod red except for the design. With a 2.0 mm actuation distance, the switches only require about an actuation force of 45 g, and they bottom out at exactly 4.0 mm.

Usually, many mechanical keyboards with PCB-mounted switches come with a metal prong. However, this is not the case with the GK61, thanks to the optical nature of its switches. Instead, we have a shaft-like component that stands between light and the sensors on the PCB.

Notably, the optical switches featured in the GK61 keyboard will come in handy while typing or gaming. They will help ensure faster response times and enhance the overall durability of the keyboard. What’s more, the switches are not soldered to the PCB. You can easily replace them whenever you need to.

In addition, the keyboard comes with IP68 certification to prevent water damage from accidental liquid and coffee spills. The optical Gateron red switches are built in a way that will further enhance this capability, so you have nothing to worry about when you spill your drink on your board.

In addition, you can expect to enjoy the smooth feel that is typical of most Gateron switches here. With an actuation force of 45 g, you can enjoy fast and accurate touch typing as well as an overall enjoyable gaming experience.

Aside from that, the GK61 mechanical gaming keyboard can work well in a quiet environment, as its linear nature helps to keep the noise level at the barest minimum.

Hot-Swappable Optical Switches

GK61

It is important to note that the optical Gateron red switches available on the GK61 mechanical keyboard are completely hot-swappable. With this feature, you can easily replace damaged switches without having to undergo any soldering or desoldering process.

Also, the feature allows you to personalize your overall typing and gaming experience by integrating customized compatible switches.

DoubleShot ABS Keycaps

It is not uncommon for most modern keyboards to go with either ABS or PBT when it comes to the keycaps’ components. Notably, the GK61 sticks to the former, making use of sturdy ABS plastic in every keycap.

Also, you will appreciate the way the keycaps’ texture blends in with the overall shiny and glossy look of the device. Thanks to its double-shot design, the translucent plastic beneath the keycaps enhances the keyboard’s backlighting feature and create enough space for the legends.

Stabilizers

GK61

You need your stabilizers to be equal to the task when it comes to engaging in marathon gaming and typing sessions. That is why many avid gamers are always interested in knowing exactly how stable a keyboard is before making the purchase.

As for the GK61, it has some good stabilizers on board, and the space bar doesn’t exhibit much rattle as we have seen on other models. Although it might not really be among the best out there when it comes to stabilizers, it still does a pretty decent job.

Built-In Microphone

This is one of the areas where the GK61 keyboard really stands out. It comes equipped with a built-in microphone feature, which helps synchronize your music with your preferred lighting mode or via the GK61 keyboard software.

Typing and Gaming Performance

Whether you are a typist or a hard-core gamer, it is important to have a keyboard that can meet your specific typing and gaming demands. The GK61 mechanical keyboard delivers outstanding performance in both aspects.

Typing Experience

When it comes to typing, the keyboard’s optical Gateron red switches are very receptive to touch. This implies that you can actuate the keys to trigger different commands without any hassle at all. You will find this very appealing if you type very quickly and have a decent knowledge of touch typing.

You have to be very careful here, however. The low actuation force of the Gateron switches onboard means you may often find yourself mistakenly hitting the keys randomly. You should also note that the audible and tactile feedbacks here are not as evident as those available on optical Gateron brown and optical Gateron black switches, respectively.

Specifically, optical Gateron brown switches require about 55 g actuation force, while optical Gateron black requires an actuation force of 60 g.

Overall, the GK61 keyboard delivers a solid typing experience for all users. Although the keys may feel a little wobbly at times, it doesn’t have any substantial effect on the keyboard’s performance when it comes to typing.

Gaming Performance

As an ideal gaming keyboard, we would have been disappointed if the GK61 didn’t live up to our expectations when it comes to gaming. However, it delivers a great performance overall, and it is a solid option for all avid gamers and enthusiasts.

While the low actuation force of the optical Gateron red key switches doesn’t really help all the time if you are typing, it is a gamer’s delight. The low actuation force implies you don’t have to bottom out before you actuate the keys to trigger some rapid actions while gaming.

This is particularly useful in a situation that requires quick thinking and action. At the slightest touch of a button and preset keys, you can quickly change your weapons, reload your guns, and make some quick decisions.

Furthermore, since the GK61 is only available as a wired-only keyboard, the N-key rollover works perfectly well every time, which means you are able to initiate special actions by pressing multiple keys simultaneously.

Software

Yes, the GK61 mechanical comes with a very helpful software. However, you should expect to spend some time getting to understand and use this software before you can make anything out of it.

Also, the software can put off a newbie who is just after a budget-friendly 60% keyboard. However, we think the price of getting to understand how the software works is worth paying, as you can enjoy a wide range of customization options afterward.

Aside from these few downsides, the keyboard delivers a decent performance in all other aspects, and it will continue to meet your specific typing and gaming demands for a very long time.

The Pros of GK61

  • Fast-responding optical switches
  • RGB backlight
  • Easy access to arrow keys on second layer
  • Detachable USB-C cable
  • NKRO
  • Pre-lubed stabilizer

The Cons of GK61

Users would not encounter any problems while using GK61 but certain things need to be considered. None of these are deal-breakers but some users may have different preferences. Let’s take a look at them.

Risers

GK61 does have risers to adjust its position which may be a problem for users who like to tilt their keyboards. The inclined design makes up for it but having those risers certainly offers additional adjustability.

ABS Keycaps

Let’s face it ABS is not an ideal material for keycaps and even most mid-range keyboards have replaced it with PBT. But again, most users would not use the default keycaps anyway. You can choose from a ton of keycaps to replace them. The keycap puller comes bundled in the package to make it super convenient.

Complicated Application

The dedicated Application of GK61 is complicated even for tech-savvy individuals. It will take some time before users get a hold of it. Fortunately, most of the commands can be carried out via push of buttons which reduces reliance on the application.

GK61

Conclusion

The GK61 is an excellent keyboard for gamers looking to improve their gaming experience. It has all the capabilities that experienced gamers want, and the low price makes it ideal for newcomers. On top of cutting-edge optical switches, you get RGB lighting, a USB-C connector, and hot-swappable keys. Overall, it is a good choice for anyone looking for a premium experience at a reasonable price.

Although it has some problems, none of them is a deal-breaker. All in all, it is an excellent option for users who are hunting for a premium experience at an affordable price. We hope this GK61 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Review has been helpful. Thank you!

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