As important as the components of your PC and its specs are, the peripherals you use and deploy for your rig are equally as important. Not only for comfort and ergonomics but for efficiency and performance as well, with the flair of style.
PRODUCT INFO Apex M750 RGB Manufacture SteelSeries Available at View at Amazon
Although a bit pricey, mechanical switches offer a much more tactile response and just feel good to use. When investing the money, you always want to make sure that your purchased peripheral offers as many benefits for you to reap as possible. SteelSeries’ Apex M750 is a good contender for this category.
SteelSeries is a renowned name in the PC peripherals market and they have earned their good reputation after putting out great headphones, gaming mice, and keyboards. SteelSeries excels in making not just premium peripherals but budgeted ones as well and their wide range of products cater to different styles and needs of the consumers. We have reviewed SteelSeries’s peripherals before and have mostly been pleased with what they have to offer. Keeping up with today’s market and trend, we have on our hands the SteelSeries Apex M750 mechanical keyboard for an in-depth review, let’s get to it then shall we?
Design and Build
There is a trend of putting out overly ambitious and flamboyant peripherals that sometimes take your focus away from the things that are really important. A keyboard with an awkward design and just overzealous with RGB lightings may not always be what people are looking for. SteelSeries is quite aware of that and their peripherals are mostly designed with simplicity in mind.
The Apex M750 with its all-black design and SteelSeries logo follows in that same philosophy and bears a very simple design. Looking at the Apex M750, it seems as if SteelSeries took keeping things simple a little too far. USB pass-through, wrist rest and media keys are quite often the norm these days and the Apex M750 has none of that. Instead, you have just the keyboard with the keys. No funny business whatsoever. With a curved shape of the aluminum base, there isn’t much that lets the Apex M750 stand out. You’ll find that the RGB lights are the only aesthetics that this keyboard boasts.
Being a mechanical keyboard, the Apex M750 has floating keycaps which not only make it easier to clean but also easy to replace. Plus, the seeping lighting effects look really good as well. The build quality and design of the Apex M750 is just really straight forward. An aluminum plate for the base with the keys on top and that’s pretty much it. There are some media keys but they’re embedded in the Function keys row so you’re not totally devoid of them. The floating keycaps are made from ABS plastic, which means that they can quite easily be replaced as well. You can use keycaps from any other mechanical keyboard and have them placed on Apex M750 as well. Doing so wouldn’t really affect the travel time that much as they’re usually of the same dimensions.
For gaming intents, the mechanical switches are fine but it wasn’t until I started using the SteelSeries Apex M750 for typing that I began to see the few flaws that were just really annoying. For starters, the overly emphasized curvature of the keys was really bothering me and kept interfering with my typing. If it wasn’t that, the fact that some of the keys have different heights really put the final nail in the coffin. In typing, it felt as if I somehow was a beginner typer who just kept making typos.
Turning the Apex M750 over and you’ll see that it has no hinges through which you can lift this keyboard in a tilted position. Right out the box, the bottom rubber feet that the M750 will have will give it an almost flat position however, you can change that to a tilted one using the rubber feet provided in the box. The positions are permanent but they do have the advantage of giving your keyboard a firm place to stay on as well as not be susceptible to damage. Since it features a hovering key design and some loud switches, the Apex M750 may not be the ideal choice for taking with you to an office or a working environment.
The build quality and the design of the Apex M750 is fine for the most part, however, you have to come to terms with the fact that there really is nothing to highlight with this keyboard. Vanilla and bland design is made slightly better only when the lighting effects are turned on as they distract you enough to not let you think of the fact that the design is just really boring. The build quality, although solid, is plagued by the design that makes it hard to distinguish the Apex M750 from any other budgeted gaming keyboard you can find on the counter.
Many mechanical keyboards make use of the Cherry MX keys which have proven themselves to be incredibly reliable. There are different variations that come in the Cherry MX mechanical keys and each of them offers something a little bit extra. With the Apex M750, SteelSeries opted to not go for the Cherry MX keys and instead, deployed their own switches with this keyboard.
SteelSeries uses their own QX2 mechanical switches for the Apex M750. The name might be different but their actuation and response feel very similar to Cherry MX Red keys. In fact, when you remove the keycaps you can see that the switches have a red face as well. In terms of the actuation and response, there is not much difference between QX2 and Cherry MX Red keys. A novice might not be able to tell the difference.
However, there is just a little bit of a wobble about the QX2 switches. This is, quite frankly, very minor as it really didn’t raise any major concerns when using the Apex M750. The QX2 switches are noticeably more loud than the Cherry MX Red switches as well. However, the keys are quite good and perfectly fine for just about any use. They still give really good feedback when the keys are pressed and the resistance is quite ideal. The keys are not too hard to press nor are they too light.
SteelSeries Apex M750 is really pleasant to use and the keys are a delight. The noise and the wobble of the switches can get a little bit annoying but if you can put up with that, there shouldn’t be anything else that you should be worrying about when it comes to how well this keyboard performs. There aren’t really any complaints on that front, however, there is nothing too noteworthy either. When playing Valorant, League of Legends, Overwatch, and other games, the Apex M750 held true to its promise and the tactile keys were pleasant to use.
SteelSeries does not really offer a lot of features that are too straightforward with the Apex M750. In fact, if it wasn’t for the SteelSeries logo on the top, the Apex M750 would have a hard time making its mark in the mechanical keyboard market. However, there are a few features that the Apex M750 does come equipped with that proved to be quite useful. And the lighting effects are quite good and customizable with the SteelSeries Engine software, although the illuminance and effects can get a little too overwhelming.
SteelSeries Apex M750 makes use of the proprietary software SteelSeries Engine 3 which allows you to customize the different settings. When you open up the SteelSeries Engine 3, you’ll notice that it lets you customize the settings for your supported SteelSeries gear, create custom profiles for specific apps and games. There are a lot of lighting effects for you to choose from including ones for Discord notifications and audio visualizers.
Using the SteelSeries Engine 3 app, you can customize a tonne of different stuff including the lightings. You can create profiles for different lighting effects and even have specific lights dedicated to specific keys. These things are really not something very unique here but it is always fun to play around with them and see where your imagination will lead you.
Apart from lighting effects, you can also set up different macros and rebind the keys to do specific things as per your desire. These macro commands can also be used for mouse key clicks and you can get really creative with them as well by using repeat keys, press/release, delayed inputs, etc. In addition to that, you can also adjust the polling rate of the Apex M750 keyboard using the Settings tab. The polling rate is how often your computer will check from the USB input for any data. So for instance, if the polling rate is set to 125Hz, that means that the computer will check every 8 milliseconds for any change in the data. By default, the Apex M750 keyboard also supports N-key rollover. That means that you can press a bunch of different keys at once and your computer will recognize all of the inputs. This is particularly helpful in games like Fortnite where you’re pressing multiple buttons at once because of how fast you have to be building stuff.
The app and game integration of the SteelSeries Apex M750 is really quite great to see in action. I mentioned earlier that there are Discord notification lighting effects too however, there’s more to it. Some supported games let you display in-game stats in the form of keyboard lighting effects. Games like Dota 2 let you have your health and other information be shown to you in the form of lighting effects on your keyboard which is actually quite fun to see.
The SteelSeries Apex M750 is a gaming mechanical keyboard that is available in both full and TKL form factors. Featuring SteelSeries’s QX2 mechanical switches, it performs reasonably well when it is used for gaming intents. However, the taste proves to be just quite bland as the SteelSeries Apex M750 offers nothing special. Not even in terms of design. The design of the Apex M750 could have not been so sour had SteelSeries offered USB-pass through, dedicated media keys, etc.
Although the switches are not Cherry MX, the QX2 does a good job of mimicking the feeling of the Cherry MX Red keys which are tactile and have good feedback. The switches suffer from no debouncing and have decent actuating force. The lighting effects offered with the Apex M750 are really pleasant as they offer a bunch of different modes, games, and apps that you can sync with which make the user experience even more pleasant.
SteelSeries Apex M750
The Basic Utliarian
- QX2 mechanical switches are pleasant to use
- Great lighting effects
- Discord notification and in-game notifications and alerts can be displayed through lighting effects
- Decently priced
- Easy to carry and move around
- Bland design with nothing special to offer
- Typing experience is not ideal as some keys have different heights
- No dedicated media keys or USB pass-through
Switch Type: Mechanical | Switch Name: SteelSeries QX2 | Size: Available in full and TKL | Backlight: RGB | Software Support: Yes | Media Control Buttons: Fn keys
VERDICT:The Apex M750 mechanical keyboard by SteelSeries is a decently priced keyboard that lets go of most of the flair and just gets right to the point. With a rather bland design, the QX2 mechanical keys by SteelSeries do a good job of providing low response and tactile input, making your gaming experience more pleasant. Along with that, the lighting and illumination effects are really creative and they hovered keys let the RGB lights seep out from underneath. There are a few design flaws however, gamers who do not like the extra flair in their peripherals will find it easy to adore the SteelSeries Apex M750