|Saitek PK17U Cyborg Gaming Keyboard with Tri-Color Backlighting
|List Price: $79.95
Our Price: $65.17
You Save: $14.78 (18%)
This high-end, adjustable, gaming keyboard has customizable backlighting, programmable functions and media keys. Hard wearing, metal-plated key caps in key gaming areas Enhanced multiple key presses in gaming areas for complex in-game commands
- Adjustable gaming keyboard
- Tri-Color Backlighting
- True-Vue Key Illumination
- Fully programmable with included SST software
- Media keys and hard wearing surfaces
- Gimmick gone wild
I bought one of these three weeks ago. Keep note I did not install Saitek's drivers; satisfied that Windows' and Linux's built-in drivers would suffice, as the backlit nature of the keyboard makes typing in the dark easier...
Eventually the "n" and "m" keys lost sensitivity, and I had to hit the bloody things hard to get the OS (Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit or Ubuntu Linux 8.10 64-bit) to recognize tje keystrokes. "n" was far worse.
So, fair enough. I exchanged it for a second one. Unfortunately, after two HOURS of use, I've already had TWO occasions where the "h", quote, and right shift key stopped responding -- but started to work again after several minutes of... doing nothing. How did I test this? When seeing the "h" key wasn't doing squat, I held the key down. There was a stammering delay between the "hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh"'s. Sometimes by a factor of seconds. Adjacent keys "j" and "l" worked perfectly despite the hang-up with the "h". The most pathetic part is, this new problem didn't happen with the original keyboard.
Having read other reviews, it sounds like the sticking problem AND the non-responsive problems are quite common. And these people have system specs ranging from older Pentium 4's to the newest i7s. (Mine is an Intel Q9650 system with 8GB of RAM, running 64-bit Vista and Linux.)
Do not waste your money.
It isn't worth 80 cents....more info
- Very Nice
I am not sur where the complaints come from
in these reviews. Perfect, works well
and is fun to use too. I think its what is needed by any gamer.
Good Job Guys....more info
- Killer keyboard
Superb Solid Sleek And bigger than my mx 3100offcourse. but the best part is i am useing it with my wireless system and nothing conflicts between SAITEK and mx 3100 when i play crysis in the dark i use saitek otherwise mx 3100 i love this A+++++++++++++++++...more info
- Cyborg: Resistance is Futile
I just received my keyboard this afternoon, and I am very pleased. The keyboard illumination has several levels, colors, and zones. When you have separate colors for the keyboard zones, you can also change the illumination colors and brightness. The materials and construction was also a pleasant surprise. The plastic does not feel cheap, has a sturdy feel, and also is a bit hefty for a keyboard. The extra USB port and the Mic/Headphone jack is also a nice touch. Key push and weight are right on par, and you can't feel a noticeable difference in texture between the plastic and metal keys - so typing is still smooth.
The touch controls for volume, brightness, etc can be a little irritating. It works well almost all of the time, but sometimes you have to "mash tap" to get them to work. Also fingernails and such do not work on those buttons. Other drawback would be the interface to create macros (the 12 "C" buttons)
If I had a choice between the new G15 and the Saitek Cyborg (having used both) I would take the Cyborg. While it is nice to have the little screen on teh G-15, the function and style of the Cyborg are superior....more info
- Do not Buy
Terrible keys lag and currently after three months two keys are not working.. Stick with logitech.. Keyboard looks cool but the performance for gaming is not there...more info
- Not too shabby...
As a gamer, I'm pretty hand on 'boards. So when I first heard about this one through a friend of mine, I was rather impressed with the over all look of the thing. For one, I liked the idea of illuminated keys (as I like to play my games in low lighting to let the better half sleep), for two, re-enforced keys made sence, and metal meant it'd be hard for me to do much damage to it (On my wolfclaw board the AWSD had worn off).
As you can imagine, I was pretty excited when it showed up.
It does live up to the hype-however...
The keys are slightly smaller, the interface for programming macros leaves a lot to be desired, and the driver software installed drivers for stuff I don't even own!
Another downside: The lack of a blue color-while not a breaker, most of my system (Fan, general illumination) are blue. Again, not a big deal, but most other illuminated boards (including Saitek's own) have that option. This is merely a personal opinion-it's still a great keyboard.
I've not noticed any stiffness in the space bar as was previously mentioned in a previous review, and the ability to ride several keys at once is a definate plus. While I've only had it a few days, it seems robust and very quiet when typing. Another great thing about this board is that it's a standard size-you won't need to jerry rig anything unlike a few other gamer boards I've had, and the controls for hue, brightness and scheme are very intuitive. In other words, easy enough to figure out w/o the instruction booklet.
All in all, an excellent buy in my opinion. You'd do well to buy this one.
- great keyboard
I have not had the opportunity to do much gaming with the keyboard, but the backlighting and touch panel controls work flawlessly. The only thing that I would change is I would add a blue light to the backlighting. ...more info
- Great keyboard. Reviewer complaints unfounded.
Great keyboard. Paid $59. Gamers and even nongamers will love it. Very stury and nice looking. It is a longer keyboard so if you have a slide out keyboard station you will have to keep your mouse on the tabletop. Not an issue for me since that is where mine is all the time. Just a great keyboard so far.
Four reviewers who gave 2 or less complained about stuff that is puzzling to me and seems either too nitpicky or just plain ignorance on the part of the users. The best one is this:
The sticker that is on the touchpad faceplate is NOT a sticker or faceplate cover guys, its put on there so the interface bezzle does not get scratched during shipping. This is the same type of material they put on watch faces, microwave clock faces, etc. etc. during shipping. It was to be taken off. TWO reviewers had this as a major complaint sayig the plastic covering is coming lose on the touchpad. LOL,LOL
Here are some more puzzling complaints I have seen here by those reviewers.
-"software issues" you may need to update some stuff on your computers to get it to work properly. Again patience and knowledge is required to set it up properly. I had to update one thing and the software let me know what it was. Took 2 minutes.
-"Hard to press spacebar."LOL The spacebar is not hard too press whatsoever. Its perfect. The reviewer who said this either has a brokern keyboard or is not very strong. Its feels no diffrent is regards to pressure used than any other spacebar I have used in the last 25 years.
-"Key lag." There is none that I can see. I am a fast typer and see no lag at all.
-"Unplugging keyboard wipes away memory setup on keyboard." Not for me. I unplugged mine and it worked perfect after. All my color setting were still there.
All in all dont listen to those complaints. Unless you are new to computers (or buying stuff with protective plastic shipping material.LOLOLOLOL)you should have no imediate problems with this keyboard....more info
- Looks nice, but works terrible
Great looking keyboard. Flexible 3 color backlighting is neat. But..
-Keystroke is a bit mushy for me. The clear sheeting on the touch pad is coming loose. The Saitek sticker is crooked and coming loose. The wrist support seems flimsy.
-Software is a joke: the interface is poor and you can't program the C keys with anything but keystrokes (can't execute programs such as mail, internet explorer), and they only work in Cyborg mode (as does the enhanced lighting function).
-I am also one of apparently many others who had big problems with the software/drivers messing up my system (mostly after I went back to my old microsoft keyboard). Saitek was no help. The user forums at least pointed me in the right direction. It took me days to purge Saitek from my system and get my old keyboard operational again.
BOTTOM LINE: I boxed it up and returned it to the store. I'll stick with Microsoft or Logitech after this experience....more info
- Awesome keyboard, unless you want blue lights
This keyboard does everything it says on the box, and works great. All keys and touch interfaces work, and have remained sensitive. Backlighting is as bright or as dim as you want, only downside is that there is no blue color. Macro software is easy to use, though it takes a bit of time to get it down.
I would recommend this keyboard to anyone looking for something with programmable keys, multi-zone backlighting and the extra money to spend for a really nice keyboard....more info
- What You Need To Know
When I decided to replace my old standard Dell keyboard, I opted for an illuminated one. I settled on a choice of three, reading virtually every rating on the Cyborg P17UK and Logitech's G11 & G15 on several sites before finally selecting the Cyborg.
I use the Windows XP- 32 bit operating system. I am not a gamer anymore; but am an extensive user of productivity software and developer of sophisticated macros including using VBA and SQL, especially for MircoSoft Office products. I also use PhotoShop & Corel Draw as well as some audio editing software, and do some web programming with Java and HTML. I am not a touch typist, but no slouch either, and I do a lot of writing. So understand, my recommendations are from this perspective.
In my opinion (IMAO), this is a sturdy, high quality board. Like many, I was torn between the G11, G15 and the Cyborg. All are roughly equivalent and, depending upon your needs, will work well. I chose the Cyborg because I didn't need or think the G15's LCD panel useful, and perhaps a bit fragile; and because I'm not impressed with Logitech- ok equipment, but not certainly top-of-the-line. However, you should be satisfied with any of these. I also found the non-gaming boards seem not to be as durable as these three.
The four star rating is based on poor documentation, navigation on the website is somewhat confusing, other reviewers report support problems with Saitek (although I have found this not to be the case), and because I think many will find installation and programming a bit sophisticated- not hard for anyone with any savvy at all, but certainly more difficult than it needs to be. Note Saitek has updated their on-line manuals and software which makes installation much easier and less time consuming.
Quality of Construction: (Excellent)- The Cyborg is made of the same extruded plastic material as most, if not all keyboards. The WASD and arrow keys are aluminum clad for extra wear, and all keys are laser etched.
System Requirements: Windows XP, XP 64-bit or Vista
Dimensions: 21.5" W x 9.5" D x 1.5"H
Connection: one USB 2.0 port
Ports: Microphone, audio, and one USB- all are pass-through; that is, the ports are really extension connectors that plug into your computer
Keyboard Design: Gaming Series
Illuminated: Yes- white, green, amber, red, & dark red; no blue
Illumination levels: 4- Off, Dim, Medium, Bright, Intense; the specs say only three but perhaps I have a newer model with a brighter intensity
Keys (Number of): 118 (including a standard 104 layout with keypad)
Multimedia Keys: Yes
Internet Keys: No
Programmable Keys: (Cyborg or "C" keys)
Physical: 12, each with three possible shiftstates: Unshifted, Shift +, and a third shiftstate using one of the "C" keys (instead of Alt+ or Ctrl+) as a state shifter
Virtual: 33 (12 keys x 3 states = 36 less 3 lost for the "C" key used as the third shiftstate shifter)
Program Code: SST (Saitek Smart Technology)
Mouse Included: No
Warranty Terms: Parts and Labor- 2 years
Installation isn't simple; there will most likely be issues and it will take some time. Note this can be made substantially easier by following the advice provided below.
This keyboard uses a USB port; the on-board port will use a second (but since its pass-through, there's only a net use of 1 port)
The USB version is whatever it is plugged into on the computer (most probably 2.0); Logitech's G11/15 uses 1.1 (much slower)
Keyboard is wider (21.5") than the 18" `standard'; you may want to check your physical space.
Keys are a bit smaller than standard- most notably the Escape & "F" keys-but I don't find this to be a problem at all.
The keys are quiet but not silent- see advice below if you want or need key-click.
This may be a newer model as I have noticed some different features than those listed or mentioned by other reviewers. Certainly the programming software has been updated, much easier to use, and includes a new SST programming help manual.
There are two types of software used by the keyboard: Drivers (there are 4), and the programming software (Optional- used to program the "C" keys).
Programming the "C" keys requires a little knowledge of macros.
The "C" keys are keystroke not, strictly speaking, command programmable keys. However, you can program hotkeys and emulate commands in many cases.
If you follow the advice below, you should have few problems in installing and using the Cyborg keyboard, at least on the Windows XP Pro 32 bit operating platform.
After ordering the Cyborg, register for the Saitek online forum [..]. The process will take a day or so as Saitek checks for a legitimate e-mail address and sends you an activation code (they report having porn spamming problems). Registration is free.
Once registered on the forum, download the following:
Updated drivers and software [Beta 2]([..]). Do not install, just save for future installation once you receive your keyboard. Install this updated software instead of that which comes with the keyboard.
The user manual that will come with your new keyboard[..]
A better user manual albeit for a different keyboard (but the setup is essentially the same) that includes a troubleshooting section. [..]
SST (Saitek Smart Technology) Guide if you plan to program the "C" keys [..]
When installing the keyboard & software:
Disable USB Power Management- refer to [..], Post #1, Solution 1.
Make sure you logged on with administrator's rights or the drivers/software will not install (the manual omits this).
Follow the installation guide precisely- ALL drivers are required (including the "magic mouse"), but you don't need the software unless you are going to program the "C" keys (installation will give you a choice).
Use the newer (Beta 2) version of the software/drivers downloaded previously instead of the CD that comes with the keyboard.
I would advise against a USB/PS2 (keyboard port) adapter since the keyboard needs power from the USB port to operate.
If you want to program commands, download a hotkey manager utility such as EvoKey. I find HotKey Manager from [..] simpler to use (both are freeware).
If the keys are too quiet for you, install a utility that will give them a sound such as Noisy Keyboard (freeware from:[..])
You could use this from your lap, but I'd remove the wrist pad.
RESPONSE TO CRITICISMS:
Be sure to remove the protective clear plastic covering over the touchpad and "C" keys. This isn't mentioned in the manual but should be.
Slippery keys: I haven't noticed my fingers slipping off the keys.
Shoddy workmanship: Sounds to me like a quality control (QC) issue; especially when a customer receives 2 "B" keys and no "V". I have had no hardware issues.
No blue or white light: Mine has white light; is it a deal breaker that there's no blue hue?
Illumination not bright enough: I find it plenty bright, especially on white and light amber. Dark red isn't as intense (but looks meaner), but then it's a dark color. Also, I have four intensities.
Key Wear: This has been reported in several different places; but the keys are extruded plastic and shouldn't wear through any more than wearing the letters off a regular key. One reviewer reports the keys were reengineered in response to this difficulty (I haven't experienced this).
Only 12 Programmable Keys and 36 possible functions: Well, actually only 33 but I can't imagine anyone needing more than that. If you really need 18 physical keys & 54 functions, get the other keyboard.
Gapped Wrist Pad: I don't know why Saitek designed a gap in their wrist pad, but its no problem for me; probably because I learned typing the old way (wrists-up).
Cord to short: its a standard size cord- you could get a USB extension if that's a problem.
Too Pricy: maybe, but its within market prices of competitors and you know this up front.
Ive owned a few saitek keyboards in the past 6 years or so now, This keyboard is very nice lay out. I dont have any problems with the SST programing, possibly because ive used it on they other keyboards from them. the palm rest is alittle different but doesnt seem to bother my right hand. I like being able to customize the different zones lighting. The quick keys come in handy alot for me. the metal plated wasd, spacebar, and arrow keys are nice looking but dont think it would have made a difference. The keyboards layout is very sleek, I do agree with a few other people the top led lights should change with your choice of colors. Overall I give this 5 stars. It feels much more sturdy than the G15 that I played with in the store, I normally grab each end and give it a slight twist to see if any keys pop, but this one had none, the G15 popped off 4 keys and could tell that wasnt all the damage done. Lucky for me saitek comes thru once again for me, I hope this one lasted as long as my Saitek Gamers Keyboard with Game pad. (5+years)On a side note I do think they should have Lit up the - and + on the top volume indicator. But that doesnt take anything away from the rating, The LED's are so bright that you can see them in the dark anyway, Not that im normaly in a dark room alone with just my keyboard on, The light from the monitor lets you see more than you think....more info
- It's so pretty....
...and it types well too! One of my hobbies is to purchase keyboards. I'm not sure why, it's just always been that way. I think this one might be my favorite to date. It looks great, has a nice feel to the metallic keys and types like an absolute dream. It lacks the color blue, but that isn't enough of a reason to knock it down by a star. It's a fabulous keyboard, and it won't disappoint you. The two things that bug me are the volume graphic display always shows full, regardless of what the system volume is. The 2nd is that the control buttons for music only recognize windows media player. If its changeable, i just haven't found the control for it yet. Overall, buy this keyboard. Seriously....more info
It's very nice looking.
The ergonomic design (lifting up a bit in the front) is a nice touch.
After just 3 weeks, the keyboard's touch-sensitive section at the top started to crinkle. There's some kind of layering over the area that started to get bubbles, and it completely kills the feel and design of the touch-sensitive bar.
The first problem I had was that the space bar is quite difficult to press down. I've gotten used to it now, but it's not easy-flowing like it should be.
The metal-plated W, A, S, D, Arrow keys, and space bar are pretty annoying if you're used to a rougher key feel, which I am. Your fingers tend to slide around them way too easily, and not stay still.
I play many games that I need to press multiple buttons at the same time. For example, I have my push-to-talk key for most FPS games set to 'Q' for easy-access. To run forward (W), Strafe (A or D), and talk (Q), Strafing doesn't work. While holding W & Q, if I need to strafe, I can't. I never realized how much I used these three keys at the same time, until I couldn't. This is, surprisingly, one of the biggest issues.
Lastly, on the same note, You can't push more than 3 - 4 keys down at one time, which heavily weighs down on gamers.
I've had this keyboard for about 6 weeks, and I'm thinking of switching back to my old Logitech G15 Gaming Keyboard. After even 6 weeks, I still haven't found any uses for the C-Keys on the sides, even being a serious gamer.
I would only suggest this keyboard if you've had one nearly identical to this before, and you're used to it. If you're switching from a different gaming keyboard, find something else. This keyboard isn't very comfortable for typing, nor gaming....more info
- Too Cool For School...
This keyboard is unbelievably cool.
This is a standard US keyboard, with the key layout being familiar to most. The keys are a standard height with a solid feel, as opposed to low profile scissor keys which some say have a faster response. In the end it is a matter of taste. This keyboard responds well, and has a low noise level, which makes for a wonderful typing experience.
This keyboard is bright, even in a well lighted room. Cyborg is unique in the the ability to switch colors, zones and brightness level. Of course, if you like blue, you might want a different keyboard, since blue is not an option.
Having metal keys seems to be a good idea, and while the keys wont break, more of the typing force should transfer itself more easily to the plastic keyboard underneath the keys, which could conceivably cause some damage. Of course, when or if that damage does occur, I will either would have died of old age, or would have bought a new keyboard, so I am not too worried about that.
There are a few nice auxilliary features worth mentioning. The keyboard has a mic/headphone input, and a usb port, which might come in handy for a few folks. The standoffs, or "feet" as I like to call them are the best I have seen on a keyboard, with feet in the front and the back, and the back ones have two levels of height adjustment.
The optional (as in non attached) handrest is an interesting feature. The keyboard without the handrest is almost unusable, since the front of the keyboard has a slope similar to Mount Everest. The handrest itself is very functional, being able to slide it out to two different levels to lay flatter or stick tighter to the keyboard. The problem I have with the handrest (and the reason for the four star rating) is the little gap in the middle. While this makes it look quite cool, your poor right has to suspend itself over this gap, while your left hand types in comfort. You would think this wouldn't make a difference but it does. You can tell by sliding your right hand over to the number pad. It's a big difference.
Now, sure this is a "gaming" keyboard, so the bulk of the handrest is situated around the "gaming" areas of the 'arrow keys' and the 'wasd keys' but certainly even gamers need to type like a regular person every now and then. I think I would have sacrificed the slightly cooler appearance of a "notched" handrest for one that functioned as a handrest should.
Now, there are a few things that could have been improved and might even be considered goofy... like the stupid looking 'cyborg' icon, and the inability to select an entirely 'monochromatic' lighting scheme. While the keyboard itself lights up in the colors you choose, they touch panel at the top stays green and red regardless. While this scheme looks fine in some settings, it increases the gaudiness of a keyboard that already has a striking design, and it would have looked kinda classy to have all red or all green lights as an option.
The cyborg icon makes me feel as if I have bought a control panel to a toy laser gun. To go along with the icon they need a button which spoke something in a mechanical voice if pressed like "Cyborg patrol officer reporting for duty, sir..."
This keyboard might not be the best keyboard for the heavy duty typist. But, if you are looking for something cool looking to go with your cool computer, this keyboard is even cooler than the pictures suggest. Try it out. You're left hand is gunna love it....more info
- Works well too....
I needed a lighted keyboard for gaming in the dark, but I also have to type a lot of stuff on it and was concerned that it might not be the best keyboard for a typist. With the exception of one minor issue, I think any person who works on a keyboard would love this one.
I doubt I'll ever go back to a keyboard that isn't lighted after using the Cyborg. The lighting system is very flexible and highly customizable. Except that there's no blue light, which would be nice. The colors are red, amber & green. Still, with the adjustable brightness, I've always been able to find the right lighting, and it really is great for gaming.
My only issue with the keyboard is the space bar. It works fine, but it's hard to push with your thumb when typing. I'm getting used to it, but it's the only thing I dislike about the keyboard. Overall, I really like the feel of the keys when typing.
The touch-panel controls, the on-board USB port, microphone & headphone jacks are all nice touches. I'm a fan of this keyboard, even with the thumb-breaking space bar, and would buy one again in a heartbeat. ...more info
- Worst. Tech. Support. Ever.
This keyboard was amazing. At first install it worked like a charm. Installed the drivers, unplugged the keyboard, re-plugged it and surprise... Doesn't work.
Googled, searched saitek's own forums, and nope! NADA. this keyboard is now an 80$ desk weight. Works in Ubuntu, which tells me its a vista issue.
I uninstalled their terrible software, hunted down ALL registry entries and anything related to saitek. Got it working for 3 days. Moved my tower which required unplugging the keyboard. Plugged it in. same problems.
I tried contacting techsupport, but got frustrated quickly with both the ignorance and idiocy of their CSRs
either way, one suggestion;
Get ANYTHING from Logitech. Flawless vista integration.
again. If you are running Vista32 or 64 don't waste your time....more info
- Not bad, would like better macros
I gave this four stars, instead of three, because it's a gaming keyboard and I am not using it for gaming. I wanted a durable, comfortable keyboard with backlighting, and that's what I got, no complaints. It's also a beauty.
However if you're thinking about this for standard use, be aware the macros are only programmable for key combinations and mouse click (but not position). I had hoped to be able to program file locations in a simple manner (as I had with the MS Media Pro Keyboard that preceded this).
I did eventually figure out how to program the keys to open folders, but it was pretty tricky and -- more to the point -- the Macro Software is extremely unintuitive, not especially flexible and the documentation is terrible.
I also experienced a couple glitches (key repeating, not stuck on the keyboard, stopped after unplugging and replugging). It doesn't appear to be a major repeating problem, but if it recurs, I would reevaluate.
So thumbs up for the keyboard, thumbs down for the software. ...more info
- Awesome + more
I can't say enough...it's AWESOME. The lighting, the option of lighting different areas of the keyboard, and with different colors I may add. And you can't forget about the special macro making side buttons for gaming 10x. Get this keyboard, you won't regret it !!...more info
- Outstanding functionality, so so on durability
I had been waiting for this keyboard for over 6 months, mostly for the feature set. Having previously used the Saitek Eclipse for over a year, my biggest complaint was the durability of the keys.
Being a hard-core gamer, the "A" "S" " W" "D" as well as the left CTRL, SHIFT and the SPACEBARD keys had all been rubbed away from my frantic keyboarding. Now, to Saitek's credit, getting multiple replacement keys hasn't been hard at all, but that was the one thing I had been looking forward to on this keyboard, the fact that these specific keys were "metal".
Well, they're not metal. Well, to be precise, they're layered with some type of chrome or other light metal, to technically, you can't say Saitek lied. Techically. Unfortunately, the "A" key is already rubbing off, as in the etching that allows the "A" to be seen from the backlight is rubbing off.
Otherwise, the keyboard functions very well. The touch pad is very responsive, and the ability to shift into "Cyborg" mode at the touch of a single "button" is nice. The programmable keys are good, but at a somewhat ... unique angle to natural keyboard finger placements. I had absolutely no issue installing the keyboard and drivers, unlike some previous installations of the Saitek Eclipse driver.
I'd rate it a B+.