Dark Project KD68B is a novelty from a young but well-established brand that impresses with its list of advantages: greased switches and stabilizers, hot-swappable switches, noise isolation that absorbs parasitic sounds, double molded keycaps, bright backlighting… and all this at a price of 5990 to 6990 rubles.
Form factor: 60%
Switches: g3ms Sapphire, mechanical
Number of keys: 68
Layout: ANSI, en/ru
Backlight: RGB (Customizable)
Multimedia: multifunction Fn
hot-swap support: eat
Cable: 1.8 m (detachable)
Wrist rest: No
Dimensions: 314x104x40 mm
The weight: 720
Equipment and design
The keyboard comes in an oversized black box, which shows the KD68B model itself, lists its key features, and also indicates the main technical characteristics.
Inside there is a controller clamped by foam rubber dampers, a removable cable in a fabric braid, an instruction manual in English and Russian, keys for removing keycaps and removing switches, a set of switches in red, pink, orange and green with different parameters – for testing, so that the user can try different options and decide which one suits him.
Dark Project KD68B is assembled in a classic format – the caps are flush with the body, and not raised above it, as is the case with TKL keyboards. The case borders only a couple of millimeters protrude from the key block, so the keyboard can really be called compact, especially considering its 60% form factor, which implies the absence of a number pad, function keys and the navigation keys are shifted to the left.
So, here the F1 … F12 row is combined with the digital row, Alt, Fn and Ctrl are reduced on the right, the “arrows” are hidden under Enter and the shortened right Shift, and Ins, Del, PgUp and PgDn lined up vertically and pressed close to the main keys. This made it possible to significantly shorten the keyboard, so it takes up a minimum of space on the gaming table.
Apart from the key block, the KD68B case does not contain any additional elements, such as a volume wheel or a pass-through USB port. You will find only a USB-C connector for connecting a wire on the back, rubber stops and folding legs (6 and 9 degrees) on the bottom – that’s all, sheer minimalism. There was no place even for the CapsLock indicator, which is built right into this key here and lights up white when it is pressed.
However, it is impossible not to note how amazing the model looks. I got a version in a transparent case with puddings keycaps (there is also a version in a gray case with opaque caps), and it simply amazes with its appearance.
Microchips, switches and screws can be seen through the transparent plastic, and thanks to pudding keycaps and a transparent case, when the backlight is activated, this keyboard is guaranteed to attract attention, shimmering with all the colors of the rainbow. All characters on keycaps are highlighted, including Cyrillic ones, so you can type in complete darkness.
Despite its compactness, Dark Project KD68B is quite weighty, if not heavy, and thanks to rubberized legs it does not crawl on the table. This is very good, because in the midst of a heated online battle, the last thing you want from the keyboard is fidgeting on the surface of the table, which can lead to an unintentional mistake.
The model pleases not only with its solidity, style and build quality, but also with a carefully thought-out design. The manufacturer lubricates the switches and stabilizers at the factory, lays soundproofing material between the moving parts, so the device provides a uniform and comfortable keystroke, noise absorption and no rattling of the caps. Except for the slightly wobbly Space, the Dark Project KD68B is close to ideal in terms of design.
Connectivity and software
KD68B connects to a PC in the only way – wired, and can work without installing software: basic commands called by keyboard shortcuts are enough not to resort to installing a proprietary application.
Since there is no row of function keys, the list of commands is somewhat different from those used in other keyboards. So, the combinations Fn + 1 … Fn + = are assigned to the commands F1 … F12, and the combinations Fn + R_Ctrl + 1 … Fn + R_Ctrl + = are used to control multimedia, launch the calculator and other options. In addition, using key combinations with Fn, you can control the backlight of the keyboard: change the brightness, intensity, and effects.
When you hold down the Fn key, all the keys that are combined with it are highlighted in white – convenient and informative. At the same time, the designations of the commands are not printed on the keycaps, so you should have the instruction manual handy for a while until you memorize the commands you need.
If you need access to advanced keyboard settings, you can use the Dark Project proprietary software, which can be downloaded from the official website. The application does not have localization into Russian, but there is not so much text here, and it is not too complicated to cause discomfort: everything is clear on an intuitive level.
Two main categories are available to users: Device and Macro.
The first one has two tabs. Key Custom allows you to customize the functions of the keys – reassign basic commands, set the activation of macros and input of text arrays, select multimedia commands, assign application launches, and so on. Here you can also block certain keyboard shortcuts (for example, Alt + F4) and switch between saved keyboard profiles.
The Light Setting tab is reserved for lighting effects settings: 16 glow options are available here, including custom, you can choose the color, brightness and speed of the backlight, synchronize it with music or turn it off completely.
The Macro category contains everything related to macros. The user can record, edit and group macros, set the input delay interval and so on.
Let’s start with the fact that Dark Project KD68B definitely attracts attention. With a translucent body and white caps, the model becomes the centerpiece of the gaming setup, especially when the backlight is on.
The keyboard uses g3ms Sapphire linear switches with 50g actuation force, 4mm full travel and 2mm travel. The keys are easy to press and return instantly, so in games that require frequent repeated pressing, the switches show themselves at their best.
As noted above, the manufacturer lubricates the switches and stabilizers at the factory, so the key travel is uniform and smooth. This has a positive effect on the feeling of using the device, and in the two weeks that he spent on my desk, I never wanted to make at least some complaints.
The model is very good in games, which can not be said about working with documents. That is, there are no questions about the convenience of printing, but the lack of keys is acutely felt when editing texts. There is no end button, the non-standard arrow layout takes getting used to, and complex key combinations slow down the execution of commands that are instantaneous on full-size keyboards. If you not only play, but also often type (and this is not about chatting with teammates), then it is better to look at models with a large number of keys.
The Dark Project KD68B is a great option for those looking for a compact, stylish and durable gaming keyboard. It doesn’t take up much space, looks amazing, is customizable in detail, and is comfortable to use thanks to its switches and noise isolation. For its price (5990 rubles for the version in a gray case with opaque keycaps and 6990 rubles for the version in a transparent case with puddings keycaps) – this is just a godsend!
Reader Rating0 Votes
Extensive software customization options
Not the best option for printing and editing texts