Not too long ago, Kingston decided to diversify their HyperX product lineup by entering the mechanical keyboard market. Kingston’s approach differed from that of most other companies; instead of designing and marketing a top-tier, complex device, their first mechanical keyboard was the Cherry MX-equipped Alloy FPS, a minimalistic design that was intended to be durable, practical, and as portable as possible.

Following the success of their first release, Kingston is now releasing an advanced version of their initial design, the HyperX Alloy Elite. The Alloy Elite is marketed towards a different kind of potential users, with the company dropping the concept of portability in favor of some additional functionality. The additional features do not raise the retail price of the keyboard significantly, with its launch date MSRP being $109, a mere $10 increase over the $99 Alloy FPS.

Packaging and Bundle

Kingston supplies the Hyper-X Alloy Elite inside a well-designed and very sturdy cardboard box. The artwork on the box is minimal, and is mostly focused on the keyboard itself and with the rest of the abstract artwork based on its black-red colors.

Inside the packaging, we found eight extra “gaming” keycaps and a keycap puller with the company logo printed on it. The keycaps are titanium colored. Four of them, the WASD keycaps, are textured with a tread plate pattern. The other four keycaps are meant to replace those on the 1234 keys and are not textured, meaning that the only difference between them and the stock keycaps is their color.

Kingston also supplies a full-size plastic wrist rest with the Alloy Elite. The surface of the wrist rest has been treated to feel smooth to the touch. A tread plate pattern similar to that of the extra keycaps covers about two-thirds of the wrist rest.

The Keyboard
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  • Mumrik - Monday, July 17, 2017 - link

    There are tons of mechanical keyboards in ISO layout too, but why would you expect to see them on a US site? Just include "ISO" in your search.

    My issue is that there aren't any with the same kind of wedge design as the MS Natural series. Give me that, a reasonable price and feel free to skip the LEDs.
  • twtech - Monday, July 17, 2017 - link

    I agree - it would be really nice if MS would release a natural mechanical keyboard. In the meantime, there are a few completely split mechanical keyboards available, that you can manually arrange in a MS Natural-like configuration.

    I'm currently using the Matias Ergo Pro. I've actually bought four of them now to this point, since I managed to ruin two over the last couple years by spilling coffee into them. (After the last mishap, I bought an anti-spill mug.)

    The Ergo Pro has occasional key-stuck issues which you can read about on Amazon, etc., but despite that, it's otherwise a nice keyboard, and in my opinion better than being stuck with a membrane board. One difference from the MS Natural layout is that it positions the '6' key on the right rather than the left half. I generally like the layout otherwise, and the USB ports on the keyboard are nice and convenient.

    There's also the soon-to-be-released Kinesis Gaming keyboard, which will also be a split mechanical keyboard. Since it isn't out yet, I can't comment on any issues it might have. It has the '6' key on the left side like the MS Natural boards.
  • DanNeely - Wednesday, July 19, 2017 - link

    As expensive and niche as split mechanical keyboards are, would just offering a 6 on both halves really be that big a deal. Make both typing factions happy for a <1% increase in the BOM.
  • Jad77 - Monday, July 17, 2017 - link

    WASD Keyboards sells keyboards with international layouts and they have the added benefit of being remarkably staid designs.
  • Hul8 - Tuesday, July 18, 2017 - link

    Obviously if you order a keyboard from an international internet store, you'll have trouble finding your specific language version. What you need to do is look for keyboards in stores of the appropriate region.

    Case in point: As a rule, all keyboards - mechanical or other - available in stores or webstores here in Finland have either the 105(+Fn?) key Finnish/Swedish layout, or the combination Nordic layout with Finnish/Swedish, Norwegian and Danish markings. US variants (for specialist use) are a very small minority.
  • Inteli - Monday, July 17, 2017 - link

    While this doesn't touch the historic price/performance board (the Quickfire Rapid), It's nice to see a new keyboard around the $100 price point with actual Cherry switches instead of a cheaper clone. The ANSI-compliant layout is also really nice for keycap replacement compatibility (and I'd assume that the international version is ISO-compliant as well).
  • Mr Perfect - Tuesday, July 18, 2017 - link

    It's especially nice that this ANSI layout doesn't have replaced keys. There are so many other boards out there where the manufacturer throws in some custom keys, but at the expense of some standard ones. Huzza for right Windows key!
  • jabber - Monday, July 17, 2017 - link

    Oh dear back-lit keycaps. They always wear out too fast if you don't bite your nails. Won't go down that route again.
  • BrokenCrayons - Monday, July 17, 2017 - link

    Bite? Ew! Nail clippers and a file please. Don't put those in your mouth after they've been touching everything.
  • Hurr Durr - Monday, July 17, 2017 - link

    Just how long are your nails, if KEYCAP WEAROUT is a factor?

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