Author: Nik Parenti
I can honestly say that Roccat came from out of nowhere. Seldom do we see a company instantly make a mark in this industry. Unlike the majority of the companies I deal with Roccat’s main market is gaming peripherals. In the world of the Razer’s, the Madcatz, and the Alienware’s it’s very difficult to stand out and if you do you get bought up as quick as your first product is released. I don’t know, maybe that’s the intention of Roccat but if it is I can see some kind of acquisition coming soon.
I originally questioned the build quality of the ISKU due to the similarities of build type to a not so great Rosewill keyboard I reviewed a few weeks back. I’ve never been a fan of the gloss black plastic due to the ease of scratching and smudging but after using this keyboard for a week or 2 I forgot all about my distain for that design styling. Regardless of the material used the ISKU is a solid keyboard. I condemned Rosewill for making amazing software for keyboard that didn’t deserve it. The big difference between Rosewill and Roccat is that the ISKU has the software it deserves and the hardware to back it up.
Roccat stopped the presses when the developed this software. If you just skipped to the conclusion of this review, like a lot of people I know do who read reviews, click back a page and watch the video of the software overview for the ISKU. If that doesn’t sell you on this keyboard nothing will. I’m almost 3 weeks into using the ISKU and I can honestly tell you that I’ve only scratched the surface to the capabilities of this thing. Aesthetically it’s pleasing at and functionally it’s second to none. So many little things make this software special. I never thought something as gimmicky as a voice that tells me that I’ve changed profiles or successfully recorded a macro would be so enjoyable. I smile every time I hear it. Hell, I even smiled when I loaded up the driver installation disc the first time and heard the proper pronunciation of Roccat (ROCKET) the first time.
Perfect key layout, illumination, regardless of a quirky LED design, and some of the best configuration software I’ve ever used make this one of the most complete packages when it comes to gaming peripherals that I’ve seen in a long time. You can get the ROCCAT Isku Illuminated Gaming Keyboard from my favorite retailer for $89.99 and I must say it’s worth the purchase.
So what have we learned from this review experience? First off, Roccat is the real deal. I have the Kone+ gaming mouse to review after this and I couldn’t be more excited. Second, the ISKU may lack build quality in respect to other keyboards in this price range but it makes up 10 fold in regards to everything else. Lastly and most importantly, all internet ads aren’t the devil (sorry, Ms. Bouché). Overall ThinkComputers gives the ROCCAT Isku Gaming Keyboard a 9 out of 10 score and our Editor’s Choice Award!
- Extremely comfortable
- Unique looking
- Best software EVAR
- Solid construction
- Dedicated macro keys on left are too close
- Funky LED lighting
- Get rid of the glossy black plastic!