Geek Culture

Geek Review: Tecware Phantom RGB Mechanical Keyboard

A PC gaming setup is never complete without a good mechanical keyboard, especially for more competitive gamers, and is part of the recipe to greater in-game winnings.

However, a good mechanical keyboard with bling gamer lights can be expensive, and remain a long-standing wish for many. And that’s why the Tecware Phantom RGB Mechanical Keyboard, priced at just S$79, makes for for such a refreshing sight.

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Tecware is not a household name – most gamers would prefer to go for the more costly alternative from well-established brands like Razer, Armageddon, or Logitech. But the Tecware Phantom is just as capable as some of their more expensive counterparts at a much lower price point, which is quite the impressive feat.

With more than 18 colour choices, users are given the freedom to customise different lighting profiles to suit their preferences. A fan of everything that’s simple and straightforward? There’s the “Fixed Colour” mode available. Fancy some cyclic patterns? The “Breathing – Cycle Colour” function is a good choice. There’s even a gold-coloured USB connector, but it might just be cosmetic.

The Tecware Phantom sports a ‘Floating Key’ design, and has a standard 104-key layout, which is a nice touch, considering how S$79 usually gets you a tenkeyless version at most. It also comes equipped with the Doubleshot ABS keycaps that is more compact, solid, and durable than their conventional laser-etched counterparts.

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And the durability shows – repeatedly pressing down the same key only results in a stubborn rebound, with nary a hint of flimsiness or instability. Pulling the keycaps out requires a bit of strength, even with the help of a keycap remover – which, by the way, is conveniently included in the packaging. Thanks, Tecware.

Still, the icing on the cake comes in the form of its Cherry-type spacebar. A slight depress down the sides yields a strong, stable bounceback, and the spacebar does not incline towards any one side. For a keyboard with such an affordable price, it sure is a plus point, especially since a lot of the pricier models lack this handy feature.

And there’s no compromise on the Tecware Phantom’s overall comfort level; the keys sit nicely under one’s fingertips, and the surface is nice to the touch. If you’re not in the habit of using a mechanical keyboard it will take some time for you to get accustomed, though, because the switch from a membrane keyboard can be quite different.

This also translates to mean that the only slight gripe about the keyboard is the loud clacking of keys when typing (like all clicky mechanical keyboards), but for regular users, it’s nothing but a droll background sound.

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Verdict

While there’s truth in the saying “you get what you pay for”, in the case of the Tecware Phantom, one gets more than what’s being paid for: A slew of features available at an affordable cost that is on par with that of higher-priced keyboards.

It may be no Razer Cynosa Chroma Keyboard, but it certainly is a well-rounded entry-level keyboard, one that finely straddles between price, performance, and aesthetics – an ideal choice for those looking for quality at a low cost. And if this is your first mechanical keyboard, you can’t really go wrong at that price.

GEEK REVIEW SCORE

Summary

Armed with full functionality and thoughtful design, the Tecware Phantom is a worthy alternative to the other more expensive keyboards in the market.

Overall
8.6/10
8.6/10
  • Aesthetics - 8/10
    8/10
  • Build Quality - 8.5/10
    8.5/10
  • Performance - 9/10
    9/10
  • Value - 9/10
    9/10
  • Geek Satisfaction - 8.5/10
    8.5/10
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