The world of gaming keyboards is as intense as I can ever remember it. There are so many options to choose from that it can be daunting. One of the key choices is whether or not you want a mechanical keyboard. They've surged in popularity in recent years and I've been fortunate enough to try out quite a few of them. Over the last month, I've been checking out the latest mechanical keyboard from Logitech, the Logitech G413 Mechanical Backlit Gaming Keyboard which uses their Romer-G mechanical switch. How does it stack up?
- Advanced Mechanical: The Romer-G mechanical switch is purpose-built for pro-grade performance, responsiveness and durability. The short-throw actuation at 1.5mm is up to 25% faster. A perfect blend of speed, precision and quiet performance, Romer-G is the stealth assassin of mechanical gaming keyboard switches.
- Full Function Keys: Media Control Is Built-in: Use FN keys to control volume, play and pause, skip track, mute, toggle lighting, enter game mode, etc.* Use the FN toggle feature in Logitech Gaming Software (LGS) to configure F keys to perform media commands by default. Even with a clean and simple design, G413 is packed with the features gamers want.
- Gaming Keycaps: Additional Gaming Keycaps & Puller Included: 12 additional keycaps come with G413 keyboard, so you can upgrade critical gaming keys to be as heroic as your gameplay. Swap them fast and easy with the included puller to remove your Romer-G keycaps.
- Built to Game: 26-Key Rollover, Anti-Ghosting & Game Mode: Press multiple keys plus modifier keys (Control, Alt, Shift) in any order and get just what you intended with 26-key rollover. Performance-tuned anti-ghosting gives you reliable control when multiple gaming commands are given simultaneously. Toggle game mode with FN+F8 to disable the Windows key. Deactivate additional keys using LGS.
- Programmable Macros: Simplify Complex Tasks: Use Logitech Gaming Software to program custom functions and macro commands on F1-F12 buttons. Make your gamer life easier. Execute complex commands, or unleash a timed series of actions or spells with the press of a button.
The Logitech G413 comes in two styles; Carbon and Silver. The review unit was in Silver and it's stunning. Right when I put the silver mechanical keyboard on my desk, it was an instant “wow” factor. Logitech has gotten much better in recent years of refining their devices, and the G413 is a great example of that progression. This does not look like a gaming keyboard - this is a streamlined keyboard with a minimal design. There’s only a small Logitech "G" logo in the top right-hand side of the keyboard and that’s really it. The silver version is even more streamlined with the white backlight that looks quite nice. The lights are built right under the keys so they shine up nice and even. Within the Logitech software, you have the ability to dim or up the brightness of the backlighting, but you cannot change the color.
As someone who’s grown up with buying the most obnoxious looking gaming products, I’ve hit a point in my life that the simplified design of the G413 is refreshing. Plus, it passes the wife test. The Logitech G413 is a full keyboard with a number pad but it’s not too massive. It comes in at just over 17 inches in width which is almost a full inch smaller than the similarly priced Razer Ornata Chroma. And yet even with its compact frame, G413 doesn’t feel cramped. I say it again, but this is just a very streamlined keyboard.
I’ve tested out mechanical keyboards before and there are two things that I’m really looking for. First is how are they for gaming? And second, how are they at daily tasks? I’ll start with the normal use cases for a keyboard and then cover the gaming side.
There’s always an adjustment period with a mechanical keyboard. Getting used to the press of the keys did take a day or two for me. There’s a light resistance to each key press that ends with a soft, almost dampened pop. There’s a good amount of give to the keys, but at the same time, you have to get used to really pressing the keys over a normal everyday keyboard. When you’re typing out an e-mail, there's a bit more effort required for each key press. Later on, though, it just means you have to be more intentional with your presses than you might with your normal every day keyboard.
On the gaming side, there are a dozen included gaming keycaps that can be easily switched out using an included Logitech tool. These keys have slightly more curvature, allowing for more comfortable fit for your fingers. They're basically outlined to let your fingers just lay gracefully on the WASD and number keys. One of the first things I did with this keyboard was switch out the keys for the gaming keycaps, and they’re fantastic. They also don’t cause much of an issue either with normal day-to-day typing, which is nice. The included Logitech software (which works with a lot of Logitech products) allows a ton of customization. The software was able to locate the games I had on my computer and bring up existing profiles that I could easily use if I wanted to. There's also the ability to bring up a keyboard heat map which shows which keys your hitting the most. I’m genuinely not sure why this would be useful, but it’s there and I found it to be pretty neat.
The Logitech G413 retails for around $90 (US) and for that price it’s an easy recommend for anyone looking for a slick mechanical keyboard. From a design standpoint it's stunning, and it actually looks a lot more expensive than it is. And from a use case standpoint with the gaming keycaps, versatile Logitech software and a robust design, it’s an investment that should pay dividends for years to come.
I'm the Owner & Editor in Chief of Darkstation.com. After spending seven years as the reviews editor I took over the site in 2010. The rest is history. Now I work with our amazing staff to bring you the best possible video game coverage. Oh and I really like sports games.