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Since 1996, Alienware has been credited as one of the top high-end computer hardware companies in the world. Before 2010, it was only known for its desktops and laptops. But, since that same year, Alienware has dipped their toes into keyboard and mouse manufacturing, starting with the TactX set. It has since been able to swim in the success of it.
Now, Alienware has released one of its newest keyboards, the Alienware AW510k, along with the AW610M wireless RGB mouse and AW510H virtual surround professional gaming headset.
If you are a fan of Alienware (I don’t know anyone who isn’t), and of high quality, low-profile gaming keyboards, I’m sure you’ll love this one. It’s packed to the brim with wonderful features like an RGB, bouncy responsiveness, unique design and many, many more, which we are all going to look at in this review.
Let’s take a quick look at the AW510K’s specs before we begin, shall we? If you are a fan of wired keyboards, this one has a thick, double USB cable for passthrough with other devices. It also features a standard numeric keypad and multiple media buttons, and weighs 0.91kg.
- Dimensions: 18.4 in x 6.1 in x 1.2 in
- Interface: USB
- Switches: CherryMX Low Profile Red
- Backlighting: RGB / 16.8 million colours
- Color Variants: Dark Side of the Moon, Lunar Light
- Weight: 910g
- Hot Keys Functions: Volume, mute, play/pause, stop, backward, skip backward, skip forward
- Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
With that out of the way, let’s get into the AW510K’s performance.
When it comes to responsiveness, it appears that Alienware has spared absolutely no expense to ensure a top-notch experience for buyers. The AW510K is fit with Cherry MX Low Profile Red switches, offering shorter travel times and a very low actuation force. You can move your fingers across this keyboard very fluently, like a galloping horse treading down a smooth road.
This is very good for high action, quick movement games like Division 2, where you’d have to sprint into cover while under fire, or Black Desert Online’s fast-paced combat scenarios. There’s no need to worry about not being cut down because you couldn’t get to the D button from the Y one quick enough.
The keycaps are ultra-thin, ABS made, and are coated with a nice, skin-like material. This goes very well with the RGB, as well as with the switches.
The AW510k is also a great keyboard for typing on, given how quiet it is. It eliminates the stress of having to worry about the loud, ear-killing click-clacking sounds that other keyboards have. You’ll find writing pages worth of content very peaceful and almost total silence, when gaming with it. You get full focus, never interrupted by noise; you’ll love it.
You may also love its looks just as much as its performance. The AW510k has a pretty subtle, uncomplicated design, yet still offers a very nice aesthetic to your PC gaming arsenal. It comes in two color schemes (“lunar light” and “dark side of the moon”) and has an aluminum alloy frame, with an ABS plastic case. And, just like the keycaps, the case is coated with a skin-like material, adding a very nice shiney effect.
The keyboard also features an Alien FX RGB, with over 16 million colors. The RGB is also compatible with 200 plus games, for you to feel more immersed as you play. For reference, when being pursued by police in Grand Theft Auto V, on a Playstation 4, the LED in the front of the Dualshock 4 blinks blue and red instead of just glowing a solid blue color. This is similar to how your RGB lights on the AW510k will work in-game.
Following close by its “‘low profile’” design, as advertised by Dell, the keyboard has 467mm x 156mm x 29.4mm dimensions, making it significantly smaller than the AW768, Alienware’s previous keyboard.
The AW510k also features a very popular floating button design, that not only makes the RGB a beautiful accent to both color schemes, but also offers more convenience while cleaning. This would definitely come in handy, if you’re new to owning and maintaining your own keyboard.
Now, for the price of this keyboard, some would argue that the style is “too plain”. Even the AW768, which also has RGB, has an optional palm rest, whereas this one does not, being though it’s “low-profile”. If you are looking for a more subtle, less flashy style, you’ll do just fine. However, none of that is to say it doesn’t add up to it’s worth in other ways.
The AW510 is as durable as it is stunning. Not only do the Cherry MX Red switches provide you with a smoother experience while typing and gaming, they also have a lifespan of 50 million plus keystrokes. They also have absolutely no loss of quality, as long as you’re not slamming it around or sleeping on it; Yes, these things have happened. And, even though it’s pretty lightweight, it’s still a very high quality keyboard.
And, in case you needed more evidence of the AW510k’s quality than its performance and durability, here is a look at its great features.
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The keyboard comes with a dedicated audio control with its sound roller, located at the top right, for you to control your audio on the go, along with other media keys. The AW510k has a very durable double USB and a passthrough USB outlet, allowing you to charge your phone or power another device without having to use up a slot on your PC.
It also features a redesigned 3 section layout, with complete anti-ghosting, correctly detecting each key you press no matter how many others you’re pressing at the very same time.
The software of the AW510k gives you a nice range of customization for the keyboard. You can modify the RGB for each key, as well as programming each key any way you want, outside of just its RGB.
The software even downloads itself, once your keyboard is plugged in, for the easiest possible access. For power saving management, you can choose to modify the alien FX, turn off RGB completely, and even choose how many minutes of inactivity it will stay on for before it enters sleep mode.
There’s also a ‘High Performance’ tab for you to moderate. You can even keep a library of your games within the software manually, or it’ll do it for you.
The last great thing about the AW510k, regarding its software, is its on-board memory system. This means that any customization you’ve done on this keyboard will not be forgotten and will be crossed over to any PC you want to use it with. No starting over or having to recalibrate it to your needs, for a second time, is necessary.
Despite its simplistic design, the AW510k does its job to make up for its high price; or “over price”, as some would say. Not to mention, in 2020, it won the IF Product Design Award, along with its accompanying gear released by Alienware. With that, it should be clear that its price is its only true flaw. It’s clearly in style!
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In the competitive world of gaming gear, and in the competitive gaming world itself, the AW510K makes its mark, being compared to even the logitech G915, which has a waaay higher price, costing $250 (USD). No need to worry about having to settle, either.
The AW510K matches right up, and even has an edge over the G915 with (in our opinion) nicer “low-profile” design. By costing more than only half of the price as the G915, one of the best keyboards at this time, it’s definitely a solid competitor.
And it will surely make you a solid competitor in the gaming world. As Alienware always has been doing, they are providing you with an essential tool for gaming, and if you’re just doing work on your PC. For those who aren’t yet used to the quick responsiveness of the Cherry MX Red switches, it will surely take a bit to adjust, but those that have already made the transition are very satisfied.
Youtube tech reviewers and tech websites have noted this, and have also stated how much they enjoyed the speed at which they could type, and the fluency of the switches while gaming. Shannon Morse, a Youtuber who reviews consumer tech products, is someone who was not used to the switches, but was still able to find joy in using the AW510K.
“I kinda like it because it does make me a lot faster when I am typing or when i am playing video games,” Morse said.
With all that it has to offer and the quality that comes within it, like its durable Cherry MX Red switches and its exceptional software, I can confidently say that it’s worth the investment. If you’re that gamer, looking for a high-end, long-lasting, skill-enhancing keyboard, with an aesthetically pleasing ergonomic floating key feature and RGB lighting to sit in front of your PC, this is it.
If the price is still leaving a bad taste in your mouth, I’d definitely suggest finding it on sale. But, with close to perfect reviews, and a high recommendation rate from numerous tech sites and Youtube tech videos, the Alienware AW510k by Dell, is most certainly one of those products you do not want to miss out on.
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