There are more and more keyboards that can be hot-swapped. The feature is that the shaft body can be replaced directly according to the user’s needs. You don’t need to desolder and rework yourself as before. So I have been looking for this type of design keyboard before. I also saw iRocks recently. This type of keyboard is launched, and it retains the design language of other iRocks, so I decided to start with one and give it a try.
Product Name: iRocks K74M Backlit Mechanical Keyboard
Number of keys: 107 keys
Intelligent pressing roller: 1 set
Switch form: Gateron mechanical switch
Key travel: 4.0±5mm
Anti-ghosting key design for all zones (NKRO)
Multimedia keys: 12 keys
Backlit keys: 8 keys
Backlight function: white single light
USB interface: USB-C cable length 180cm
Product weight: about 910 grams
Product size: 442 (L) X 139 (W) X 41 (H) mm
The color box is printed with a physical photo of the keyboard, and the mechanical switch on the front is marked as a Gateron mechanical switch. There are three types of switches, black tea and green switches, and the specifications and features are marked on the back. The contents include K71M keyboard, detachable USB Type-C transmission cable (USB A on the computer side), manual, key puller and four Gateron mechanical switches.
Frameless floating appearance, adding shaft hot-swappable design, also has the function of intelligent knob
The appearance of the K74M is simple and neat, with a frameless design and a non-right-angle design, so there will be no scratching problems. In addition, the keyboard area is small, which reduces the space occupied by the desktop and is easier to use with the armrest. The buttons are suspended. It is more convenient to clean, but it has a hot-swappable design, so users can replace different shafts by themselves, so it is easy to achieve a mix-and-match design. In addition, the backlight is white, and the backlight LED is embedded on the PCB, so players only need to buy transparent shafts , basically can transmit light, although there is only a single-color backlight, but there are quite a variety of lighting modes for users to choose.
The keyboard adopts a standard 104-key design. In addition to the common FN+ multimedia design key control, there are three more buttons in the upper right corner with a knob, so you can quickly control the volume and switch control pages. There is also a smart scroll wheel that can be used in Win10 The control page of /win11 changes the settings. As for the knob part, it can be used quickly with the button function. I like to replace it with the scroll wheel function, so that I can quickly browse the webpage and scroll through the file files, which is more intuitive than the central scroll wheel of the mouse. Such a design will not destroy the standard 104-key design, and the indicator light part is not removed because of the button on the upper right. This design is more friendly to users who rely on the indicator light.
The shaft part uses Gateron mechanical switches. Currently, there are red switches, green switches, and brown switches to choose from when leaving the factory. I personally think that the red switch is softer than cherry, and it is more intuitive than straight up and down. Of course, because of the hot-swappable design, it is easy to increase The playability of changing the switch, players can change the switch they want according to their needs. In addition, they can also use the mix-and-match style design. In the past, there is still a difference when using a switch tester compared to installing it on the keyboard. Therefore, if you actually buy a few, come back It will be more comfortable to use on the keyboard.
Simple and neat appearance, low-key black design, more dirt-resistant than other colors.
ESC and F1-F12 have a variety of shortcut functions and need to be used with the lower right FN key, so the win Key on the lower right of the keyboard is changed to the FN key.
FN + ESC: Turn on/off the keyboard lock
After it is turned on, the keyboard keys cannot be used to avoid accidental pressing or children playing with the keyboard. Press it again to cancel the lock
FN + Win: Turn on/off the Windows key
avoid misclicking in game
Fn+ F1: Show desktop
Fn+ F2: Lock the computer
Fn+ F3: Search for files or folders
Fn+ F4: computer
Fn+ F5: My Computer
Fn+ F6: Open E-Mail
Fn+ F7: open browser (the default browser can be changed in the system)
Fn+ F8: multimedia call
Fn+ F9: Play/Pause
Fn+ F10: previous song
Fn+ F11: stop
Fn+ F12: Next song
In addition to the usual indicator lights on the upper right, there are three more buttons and scroll wheels.
The indicator lights from left to right are number lock indicator, uppercase and lowercase indicator, scroll lock indicator and Win key lock indicator, and the backlight is white
The buttons are volume control, work page switching and smart scroll wheel mode. When you press the three buttons, you can control them through the knob, making the operation more intuitive. The smart scroll wheel mode can adjust the function and usage through the Windows system.
When you press the function of the smart scroll wheel, press and hold the knob at this time, a turntable will pop up on the screen to allow the user to select a function, and the user can intuitively control it through the knob. In addition, the player can also change the setting of the scroll wheel in the Windows settings. Like me, I will remove these preset functions, leaving only the scrolling function, so that I can use the scrolling function by pressing the smart scroll wheel, and I don’t have to choose the function there myself. After all, some functions are already related to the keyboard. Repeat, it is more intuitive to operate this way.
Directly bind the smart scroll wheel function as a scrolling function, which is more convenient for reading files and browsing the web
The shortcut function on the right half of the keyboard is to adjust the lighting effect of the keyboard by hardware. Through the shortcut keys, you can adjust the backlight effect, backlight speed, backlight brightness (four levels in total), and turn on or off the backlight. There are also various backlight modes for users to switch , in addition to customizing the backlight.
Fn +↑or↓: switch light brightness (4 levels in total, respectively 25%/50%/75%/100%)
Fn +← or →: switch backlight speed
Fn + Ins: toggle backlight switch
Fn + Home: switch ray tracing mode (five effects in total)
Fn + PgUp: switch between constant light and breathing backlight
Fn + Del: Backlight customization (five groups can be customized)
Fn + End: Backlight effect A (five effects)
Fn + PgDn: Backlight effect B (five effects)
The PBT two-color formed keycap has a slightly grainy surface, and is relatively wear-resistant and oil-resistant. It is designed for light transmission. The English on the keycap is light-transmitting, but it is not like the previous center design, but it does not affect the transmission. Light uniformity, the bottom is Cangjie and attention.
The keycap heights are R4/R4/R3/R2/R1/R1 (from left to right).And can adjust the height in three stages
Close up photo of Gateron mechanical switch
Hot-swappable design, easy and labor-saving to pull out the shaft with the included shaft puller, just pull it up and down
Compatible with three-legged and five-legged axes on the market, there are white LEDs on the PCB, and the sponge structure can be seen, because the upper and lower PCBs are designed with sound-absorbing cotton
The long axis part adopts the satellite axis design, which makes the hand feel more even and does not have a sense of skew
Detachable cable design, the interface on the keyboard side is Type-C, and the interface on the computer side is USB-A
Large non-slip pad design around the keyboard
Suspended keycap design, compared with previous keyboards, there will be dust problems in the grooves, this design is more conducive to cleaning
iRocks K74M lighting photo and lighting video display
Although there is only a white backlight, there are also many options for lighting special effects. In addition to controlling the lighting effects through the keyboard, players can also install software control.
The photo below is in constant brightness mode, for more effects, please see the following video section
At the beginning of the video, the light switch is switched, and the brightness of the light is also switched. If the upper or lower limit of the light is reached, you can see that the upper right indicator light will flicker, and then the ray tracing special effect is displayed. During the period, the light speed is switched, and the latter is constant Switch between bright and breathing modes, and finally display the effects of backlight special effect A and backlight special effect B
iRocks K74M exclusive control software
Although the functions of this keyboard can already be controlled and switched through the keyboard hardware, the exclusive control software can be downloaded from the iRocks official website for free. Players can set the love button function, macro function and lighting effects through the software.
The home page will show the connected and controllable devices
The buttons can be customized through the software, and three configuration files can be stored by default. The configuration file name can be changed according to the needs, and additional configuration files can be added, fast user switching, and import and export functions. In addition, the operation is very intuitive. Just select the button you want to change on the top, and then you can choose what button function you want to change on the bottom.
The macro function can be recorded through the software
The lighting function can be switched through the software. In addition to custom functions, it can also be fine-tuned according to different lighting effects, such as adjusting the brightness of the light and the speed of the light.
In the settings, the software language can be switched. In addition, you can choose whether to automatically execute the software after booting up. In addition, you can also restore the keyboard settings or factory settings through the software.
Of course, it can also be controlled through hardware
FN+Ctrl+G switch to the non-conflict function of N-Key Rollover in the whole area (default value)
FN+Ctrl+N switch to 6-Key Rollover USB standard specification output (default value)
FN+Ctrl+P Press and hold for 5 seconds, so the keyboard has functions to restore the factory settings
The hot-swappable design is one of the key features of this K74M, and it has high playability. Afterwards, the author also plans to use this keyboard to replace the switch body, and there may be different sparks. The default is that the Gateron mechanical switch is matched with three layers of silent cotton. The feel is not bad, the feel is quite solid, and there is no instability due to the hot-swappable design.
In addition, the multimedia function keys and smart knob functions, and the keyboard functions and smart knob functions can be changed through the software and system, which greatly improves the controllability of the keyboard, which can be said to be a big plus for this keyboard.
iRocks K74M is a keyboard that takes the cheap route. You can start with 2690 yuan. It has a simple and neat appearance, and the suspension design is easy to clean. It is equipped with PBT keycaps to resist dirt and oil. Of course, the backlight function is not lacking, and the light under the monochrome backlight The special effects are also very diverse. Of course, I sincerely hope that there will be an RGB version in the future to allow users to have more options.