MSI launches a pair of RGB mechanical keyboards with extra keycaps

The peripheral market is now flush with mechanical keyboards, but if you thought companies would stop producing new models, think again. Proving as such, MSI is rolling out two new models, the Vigor GK80 (full-size) and Vigor GK70 (tenkeyless, meaning no dedicated number pad) with customizable RGB lighting.

Both of these are gaming keyboards with a choice between Cherry MX Red or Cherry MX Silver key switches. What's the difference? As noted in our guide to mechanical keyboard switches, Cherry MX Reds have a linear actuation, meaning smooth and fast key presses with no bump, and are quiet. The same traits apply to Cherry MX Silver switches, which are a newer breed, but with a shorter actuation point. For Cherry MX Reds, the actuation point is 2mm, with a total travel distance of 4mm, while Cherry MX Silvers have a 1.2mm actuation point and 3.4mm travel distance.

MSI's new keyboards ditch the plastic frame found on most models in favor of an anodized aluminum base, without a traditional housing. Keyboards that go this route have a sort of floating key design. It can also make the lighting brighter with more LED spillage, so that's something to keep in mind.

There are no dedicated macro/gaming keys. However, there are individual media keys along the top. MSI also built a series of hotkeys to switch between three motherboard and graphics card performance modes on the fly, provided you own compatible MSI hardware.

The keyboards come with a key puller and some extra keycaps, including four metal zinc alloy caps for the WASD keys and a dozen double injected rubber keycaps. These can be stored in the backside of the wrist rest.

Both keyboards will be available later this month. MSI has not yet provided information on pricing.