For some reason or another, I'm not sure if I missed the release of it, or if it was a bit before my time, but as I look now, the APEX keyboard was quite the full featured offering, even in today's market. With the APEX, there were things like 88 Macro keys over four levels of the software and five LED color zones with full RGB options with 16.8 million colors. While it is based on rubber dome switches, it offers anti-ghosting of up to 20 keys, and it even offered a dual port USB hub built into the keyboard to allow users to keep the mouse and headset all tied right into the keyboard. While this version of the APEX is super full in its feature list, it may have been too much for most users to even need or really even use.
That leads us to why we are here with SteelSeries today. They have taken a look at what the APEX offered and stripped it down to the essentials without giving up what honestly matters to most gamers out there. While fully customizable LEDs in various sections are cool, one color is just fine for most users. Most users will have a hard time programming, using, or even remembering the sheer amount of Macro potential, so that was slimmed down along with the amount of layers you can add more Macros to. One last major change to the new version is that SteelSeries has done away with the USB ports on the keyboard and has users plugging additional peripherals directly into the rear I/O of the PC now.
I know I pretty much spilled the beans as to what the new APEX [RAW] gaming keyboard we are about to look at brings to the table, but there is still more to come in the review. There are quite a few things I have yet to cover about this new submission, but as I say, with the [RAW] naming, the idea is to deliver the basics of the original without overwhelming the user with a bunch of fluff that everyone may not be able to take advantage of in normal usage.
Along with this idea comes a good reduction in price as well, so if your interest is piqued at this point, continue reading as I show you what the new APEX [RAW] offers and if it is worth the price.