- Packaging and Specification
- Closer Look
- User Experience and Conclusion
- Online Purchase Links
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The actual casing of the CM Storm Novatouch TKL is pretty much the same as another Tenkeyless keyboard from Coolermaster: Rapid-i. There is no LED light, however. The keycaps are lettered/numbered using print pad method with simple, bold fonts.
What I also liked is the keycap remover.
The keys are very easy to remove with this wire keycap remover. You’ll need this to remove the keycaps properly since the keys are tightly secured over the stem. Its easier to remove these keys on a mechanical switch compared to this.
All keys are cross-type purple-coloured topre switch (Hybrid Capacitive Switch, as CM says it). Just like few CM mechanical keyboards, they do not use metal balancers. Note that if you do plan to change the keycaps and switch them with an aftermarket type, make sure you get compatible ones for certain keys like SHIFT, Enter and Space. Note that the space bar switch has an external spring as well.
The obvious con over here is that it doesn’t have any LED backlit and that’s strange to see that for a CM gaming motherboard which is made to attract the typing enthusiasts.
Speaking of keys,
The main feature of this keyboard is the actual keys. The MX-type stem on the keyboard allows you to swap the keycaps for a aftermarket cherry MX compatible keycap. Not sure how a lot of people would like this, but there are many keycap makers, and considering that a lot of brands are making cherry MX based mechanical keys, its appreciated at the very least. O-rings are provided with this keyboard. For those who don’t know, there is an aftermarket product called O-rings that are made to attach itself on the keycap’s inner ring. This helps to reduce the noise for keyboards known to make noise. It also provides a ‘cushioning’ effect during actuation before bottoming out.
For typists, usually they prefer bottoming out. O-rings in my case didn’t really do anything. The keyboard is silent when you’re using the keys. This implementation is something that you’d like to see with Cherry MX Blue.
The keycap remover is a very handy tool, and much better than the ring type key puller. All the keys can be easily removed, and the best part is that there are no metal balancers. In the case of switches with a lesser feedback, I always felt that metal balancers ruins the experience. CM ditched it in place of plastic support alternatives for at least couple of their CM Storm motherboards, and the rest was good. Same case with the Novatouch TKL.
The underbelly of the keyboard is the same old story as with previous tenkeyless CM keyboards. There 4 rubber feet with 2 rubberised angle feet.
Just like in Rapid-i, first F keys increases the speed of the key’s repeat rate (beneficial for gamers who need super-human in-game action when they simply need to hold the key). The second F-keys keys are media keys, while F9’s function turns off the windows key.