The heavyweight of gaming keyboards.
MEET THE 7G
What is a gaming keyboard? Up until the release of the SteelSeries 7G it was clear that in order to be considered a “gaming” keyboard it had to in some way glowed in the dark. Don’t take that the wrong way, we do like things that have lights and can be a bit flashy, but we don’t believe that’s what should define or set apart a keyboard for gaming. As we began to design the 7G, we wanted to offer a keyboard that would do more than emulate the bridge console on the USS Enterprise NCC-1701 and instead, we focused on raw performance and durability.
We took a long look at the most extreme use scenarios for keyboards and designed a keyboard that would meet and (in most cases) exceed every one of them. That’s why we refer to the 7G as the “heavyweight of gaming keyboards”. It’s not the prettiest chick in the beauty pageant. It doesn’t glow or pulse. But it packs a punch. A serious one.
SteelSeries 7G is built with mechanical no-click switches. The users experience with mechanical switches is very different compared to using the “soft feel” keys found on conventional keyboards or even laptops. So how is it different? Read on!
50 MILLION KEY PRESSES
Traditional keyboards are built with small rubber domes under the keys. It is these rubber domes that provides the “soft feel” level of resistance when you type. When you operate a rubber dome keyboard, the keys needs to be pressed down until a membrane switch is activated. These membrane switches will slowly wear out, typically after one to five million key presses. You may already have tried this. After a while you will find yourself pressing harder and harder to get the keyboard to register key presses. Typing gradually becomes annoying and irritating – but when you’re gaming and you start missing critical in-game commands, frustration sets in. The 7G offers a lifecycle of 50 million key presses per key, which is more than 10 times of the amount than conventional keyboards.
But the 7G offers more than just a long lifecycle. The rubber domes on a conventional keyboard will, over time,lose their tactile feeling due to rubber flexing. The keys you use the most will start to feel different. The physical construction of the mechanical switches used in the 7G, and the strict tolerance levels in which the switches are manufactured, is what allows the key presses on this keyboard to always feel consistent.
It gets even better. With the 7G you don’t have to press the keys all the way down for them to register. Our mechanical switches will register key presses fast; the travel distance will be roughly 50% shorter than a conventional keyboard. You will type faster, with a consistent tactile feeling. Your Actions Per Minute (APM) can reach new heights with the 7G thanks to this feature.
Our mechanical switches are plated with gold to ensure durability and performance. Why gold you ask? It makes the switches more durable. Gold doesn’t corrode over time like other cheaper metals.
It will take a while to get used to a mechanical keyboard, most gamers or typists acclimate in approximately 1 to 2 weeks. Once you are properly acclimated you will appreciate better tactile feedback, superior response times and ultimately greater control. Simply put: You will become a better typist.
AND IT’S HEAVY
We don’t just call it “heavyweight” because it packs the best performance in the industry. The 7G is also physically heavy. All keys are mounted on a metal plate within the keyboard to ensure durability. The plastic material used to create the keyboard has metal elements, also to help to improve durability. We’re just like you. That’s why we know you can get “frustrated” when you lose a game. You may even hit something in front of you when it happens. Like a keyboard. We tried to take that into consideration when we designed the 7G. Disclaimer: Don’t hit your stuff. It’s not nice.
Ever tried pressing a few keys on your keyboard and getting a beep sound? It either happens when you press too many keys at the same time, or when you press too many keys within the same cluster at the same time (like the keys around WASD which often used for movements in games). If your keyboard exhibits this behavior it will hinder your ability to perform certain actions, movement in a FPS games being one example. The industry has labeled this anti-ghosting. When using the PS/2 connection on the 7G, you can press as many keys as you want at the same time, all of the key presses will go through and be registered by your computer.
If you would rather connect with 7G via the included PS/2 to USB adapter,no problem. You can still use up to 6 keys plus modifiers at the same time, which is the highest spec limit a USB connection can accommodate.
USB OR PS/2?
We absolutely recommend using the PS/2 connector when possible. First,it will give you total freedom with no limit to the amount of simultaneous key presses. And, equally as important, using the PS/2 may just improve your overall gaming experience.
When you use a USB keyboard your computer is actually using CPU time polling your keyboard. The higher the polling rate the more CPU time is used to perform the polling. And because of the built-in debounce rate found on any quality keyboard, any polling rate above 200Hz is simply a waste of CPU time and really just a result of pointless marketing hype.
Unlike USB keyboards a PS/2 keyboard isn’t polled at all. The keyboard simply sends a signal to the computer as key presses are made, which causes a hardware interrupt, forcing the CPU to register the signal. The 7G is built with a PS/2 connector as standard, but we also included a PS/2 to USB adapter in the box. The choice is yours.
For convenience we have added two audio ports to the 7G, making it easier than ever to connect speakers or a headset to your setup. Headphone/speaker-out and microphone-in is built directly into the keyboard. This gives you easy access to your audio outlet, instead of having to move to the back of your computer, when changing or plugging in audio devices.
And for even more convenience we also added a 2-port USB hub to the 7G. Plugging in your mouse, recharging your MP3-player or cell phone is closer and easier.
We have a lot of signals to transmit with the 7G, two audio signals, two USB ports, and the keyboard itself. That’s why our wiring is massive. Even more so because we use double braided nylon on everything, adding the final touch to a product that was built to be durable. Very durable.
The 7G is built with gold-plated connectors for durability purposes. As mentioned elsewhere on this page, gold doesn’t corrode over time.
NO WINDOWS KEY
We like the Windows key for certain things and in certain situations. But not when we are in the middle of a gaming session. We have replaced it with a SteelSeries Key that won’t wreak havoc during a gaming by minimizing your game or by opening a menu. The SteelSeries Key serves a different purpose: it’s a function key for the Media Controls found on the 7G.
To keep the 7G compact and easy to transport, we decided against adding additional rows of space consuming keys for this. Instead you can press the SteelSeries key and access the Media Controls via the first six F-keys on the keyboard.