Qpad has announced a new mechanical keyboard, designed as a more affordable alternative to its MK-85 and an upgrade from its MK-50: the unsurprisingly-named Qpad MK-70.
Qpad willingly admits that the MK-70 is 'essentially a stripped down MK-85 without the programmable keys or extra audio and USB ports,
' but claims the board still offers the essentials required by gamers from a mechanical design. Fitted with Cherry MX Red switches - 45g of force to a 2mm actuation point with no tactile or audible feedback - the full-size board includes individual LED backlighting behind each laser-engraved key adjustable to four levels of brightness. While the programmable keys of the MK-85 have been dropped, the board includes media shortcuts mapped to the function keys.
Although fitted with a 1.8m braided USB cable, the keyboard's full potential is unlocked when the bundled USB to PS/2 adapter is used, which unlocks full N-key rollover - meaning unlimited numbers of keys can be pressed simultaneously without any keystroke going missing. There are few other bells and whistles, however: the board has no macro keys, additional upstream ports or bundled accessories like wrist-rests. The keyboard measures 448mm x 15mm x 35mm, and weighs 1.4KG including the permanently-attached USB cable.
The MK-70's main selling point is its price. While Qpad has yet to confirm UK pricing, it has set a pan-European recommended retail price of €99.90 (around £79,) with which it hopes to tempt buyers to spend a little more than the non-backlit Qpad MK-50 but who otherwise wouldn't consider the range-topping MK-85 with its bells and whistles.
Qpad has indicated the MK-70 will be in the retail channel by the end of the month, with more information available on the company's official product page