Last year ROCCAT entered the US market with an impressive lineup of products. This year’s new product announcements promise to be even better.
The Isku FX Keyboard is a slightly modified version of the original Isku keyboard Bobby reviewed last year. The big change is the multicolor lighting system which replaces the original’s fixed blue backlighting. The lighting system allows the choice of 16.8 million colors and (resolving a minor complaint from the review) six adjustable brightness levels. The Isku FX should be available very soon at an MSRP of $99.99.
Apparently a lot of people asked ROCCAT to bring out a mechanical keyboard. Apparently they also asked for a backlit mechanical keyboard. Apparently someone wanted a crazy-ass level of control over that backlit mechanical keyboard. And apparently ROCCAT listened. The Ryos Mechanical Keyboard is ROCCAT’s biggest hardware release for this year, and boy did they deliver on features. There are three major versions of the keyboard:
- The Pro version is the big daddy version of the keyboard. It features per-key illumination, choice of Cherry MX key switches (blue, black, brown, red), dual 32-bit ARM processors (one for regular keyboard stuff, one for the programmable key feature), integrated audio/mic ports and two USB 2.0 ports.
- The MK Glow is a slightly less insane version of the Pro. It features illuminated keys and Cherry MX switches.
- The Ryos MK version is the entry-level model featuring Cherry MX switches.
Almost every key can be customized through the driver control panel and, thanks to the included software development kit (SDK), the only real limit to what this keyboard is capable of is your imagination (ok, and possibly programming ability). The Ryos line of keyboards will be available this quarter.
Check out their promotional video. (warning – creepy ROCCAT Talk voice ahead):
ROCCAT is known for their attention to detail in their drivers—they are still the absolute best I have seen from any hardware manufacturer. This attention to detail extends into their PowerGrid smartphone application which was announced last year and, barring any major issues, will see its public release very soon. What is PowerGrid? It’s software that lets you use your smartphone (iOS or Android) to control your PC (tablet support is coming soon). Using the launcher application for Windows, you design grid layouts and transfer those grids to your device via USB cable. Grids may contain a combination of monitoring widgets, macro shortcuts, RSS feeds, or anything you can come up with. Since there are so many smartphones of varying sizes, PowerGrid will not require a hardware dock, though a few popular form factors (read: iPhone) will likely see docks to match the company’s keyboard aesthetic. The best part about PowerGrid is that it will be free. See more about PowerGrid in our Computex 2012 coverage.