Having lugged my gaming gear around to LAN gatherings in my younger days, I know how awkward it is to carry a full-size keyboard. It sticks out of my bag, and it's not exactly lightweight. How my younger self would have appreciated the Asus ROG Strix Scope NX TKL Moonlight White, a compact, tenkeyless keyboard that ditches the numpad.
- Tenkeyless (TKL) form factor
- Detachable 1.8m braided USB-A to USB-C cable
- ROG NX Switch
- 880g (with cable)
As its name would suggest, the Strix is decked in a pristine white and grey colour scheme. When powered off, it can look rather plain. But this clean design is a perfect canvas for fans of keyboard LEDs. The Strix's exposed LEDs, especially, are designed to show off the lighting scheme. But first, you'll need the Asus Armoury Crate app, which lets you adjust everything from the LED colour of each key to the speed, direction and brightness of the LEDs. You can also have the keyboard LEDs work in tandem with other LED-equipped hardware from Asus via the Aura Sync feature in the app. In addition, you can use the app to disable the Windows logo key or record macros.
The Strix has a few tweaks for gamers. For starters, the left Ctrl key is wider than usual. Asus says this Ctrl key, which is the same length as the Shift key above it, is easier to hit. Personally, I don't really see much benefit as I rarely mishit the Ctrl key, which is typically used to ‘crouch' in a first-person shooter. What is more useful, especially if you're gaming surreptitiously, is the Stealth key (F12). Hitting this key hides all your app windows and mutes the audio. It's like an expanded version of Windows' Show desktop function. Pressing the Stealth key again restores your apps and resumes the audio. There's also a Quick-Toggle shortcut (Fn + Ins) to switch between Function keys and media key input when you're watching videos or listening to music.
The typing experience is excellent on the Strix. It uses Asus' own ROG NX switches, which come in Red, Brown and Blue varieties. I tested the linear Red version, which is designed for fast input (1.8mm actuation point and 45g actuation force), and is hence better for gaming. Its aluminium faceplate gives the keyboard a solid feel while the rubber feet ensure that it doesn't move around easily. While I would have liked a wrist rest, it would have increased the keyboard's footprint. It also lacks extras such as audio or USB passthrough. But the Strix's compact form factor means that there's more space for my mouse.
At S$259 on Lazada, the Asus ROG Strix Scope NX TKL Moonlight White is relatively expensive for a wired tenkeyless mechanical keyboard. However, its unique gaming features and excellent build may be worth the premium to some users. The Strix certainly looks splendid with its LEDs turned to maximum brightness. And most importantly, it feels comfortable and tactile while typing.
Review unit provided by Asus.
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Buy it at Lazada