Tesoro Lobera Supreme G5NFL Gaming Keyboard Review

Manufacturer: Tesoro
UK Price: £95.71 (inc VAT)
US Price: $139.99 (ex Tax)

Tesoro's dedication to the premium end of gaming peripherals is clear in its keyboard line-up. There are no membrane's in sight - only mechanical switch-based offerings based on both Cherry MX and Kailh types. The Lobera Supreme G5NFL, as its name might suggest, also sits at the premium end of its range and with good reason. Aside from the plastic as opposed to metal finishing, this keyboard has pretty much every other base covered.

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Our sample came with Kailh Blue switches, which sport their familiar clicking actuation and the key caps themselves have a fairly bold type font, which has been laser-etched. This is pretty evident when then keyboard is illuminated as the text is particularly sharp.

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There's nothing untoward on the outside, except for a slightly tacky-looking fake perforated aluminium finish to the palm wrest - it's quite small so won't offer much support, but plenty worth mentioning. There's a two-port USB 2.0 hub round the back of the purple-backed Tesoro logo - it would have been nice to have USB 3.0 here but at least there's something, and these ports are powered too, at least via a separate USB cable. There's also headphone and microphone pass-throughs.

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There are no dedicated media keys or volume controls but additional functions for the F1-F6 keys allow for most tasks such as volume and track control. The edges of the keyboard, as you've probably noticed, are devoid of additional keys for features such as macros, however three 'H' key thumb buttons beneath the spacebar allow for instant macro launching, with additional programming available via software.

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There are three levels of height adjustment and the lifting struts are extremely sturdy so should survive plenty of use and/or rage quits. Again, the only thing missing in terms of ergonimics is a large enough wrist rest. If this is something you need, you'll have to invest in a third party one, although plenty of the competition, including Corsair's recent Gaming K70 RGB don't come with a true full-szie wrist rest either so we can't really hold that against the Lobera Supreme G5NFL.

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There are a couple of other similar models in Tesoro's line-up that are significantly cheaper than the Lobera Supreme G5NFL, but it appears the illumination is what you're paying the extra for. There's no individual key lighting but there's what it calls Full Colour Illumination, which boils down to being able to choose from a variety of colours rather than full RGB like Corsair's lust-worthy effort. Even so, there's likely to be enough here to please the vast majority and you're able to have full keyboard illumination or just the thumb buttons and main gaiming areas, with or without the 1-0 keys as well.

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The software is fairly easy to use and gives you access to a fully programmable set of keys, minus the ESC, F1-F12 and Windows keys. The colours are tied to profiles and editing each willl allow you to tweak the colour of the keys and side light bars accordingly using a little pull-out menu at the edge of the program.

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You can also cycle through colours or have a pulsing mode, while pressing the function key plus numpad 8 or 2 keys can alter the brightness and change the illumination from all keys to just gaming areas. the software isn't quite a slick or responsive as we're used to with the likes of Corsair and Cooler Master, but it does the job and provides plenty of tweaking.

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The illumination is impressive but not overbearing, although the lowest light setting is still fairly punchy in an illuminated room. Funnily enough, it's the numlock and caps lock lights that are the issue - their stark white LEDs seems to point straight at your eyeball when you're sitting at your desk.

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Conclusion

Price wise, the Lobera Supreme G5NFL retails for a slightly lively £95 but when you consider the feature set, this isn't a bad price. You get mechanical switches, albeit Kailh and not Cherry (you'd likely need to have both side by side to tell the difference so it's more getting used to them as opposed to them being drastically inferior) a two port USB hub with minijack passthroughs for your headphone and microphone, a modicum of macro-focused features (in particular the thumb launch buttons) and all in a chassis that's less than 450mm across. The backlighting offers more than just your basic single or multicolour illumination too and the keys are particularly sharp, staying so at full brightness in a darkened room.

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Placing the Lobera Supreme G5NFL is actually quite tricky. It's not quite as laiden with macro keys as the likes of Corsair's Raptor K50, yet it's arguably more adept here than the more recent K70 RGB, where you have to re-program existing keys. The K70 RGB also lacks a USB hub, but gains dedicated media keys, including a highly useful volume wheel and the extra cash nets you a brushed aluminium chassis too. Whether all that is worth an extra £40 is a personal choice and likewise the Lobera Supreme G5NFL's dedicated macro keys may sway you the other way. If that happens, we doubt you'll be disappointed.

Tesoro Gaming Peripherals Review Tesoro Lobera Supreme G5NFL Gaming Keyboard Review

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