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Saturday | December 10, 2016
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Tesoro Excalibur Review (Keyboard)

Tesoro Excalibur Review (Keyboard)

A few weeks ago we published a review of the Tesoro Lobera, a high end mechanical gaming keyboard. Something many of us need. Of course there is another set of users who just want a nice, solid board without all the extra buttons, ports and the like. Today we take a look at one such keyboard in our Tesoro Excalibur Review.

Tesoro Excalibur Review – Packaging and Bundle

tesoro-excalibur-review-box

The Excalibur arrives in a compact box which shows a decent image of the board while also listing some key features. Inside the keyboard is wrapped in bubble wrap and our only bundled item is a small product info leaflet.

Tesoro Excalibur Review – The Keyboard

tesoro-excalibur-review-keyboard tesoro-excalibur-review-end

The Excalibur is a compact, full sized keyboard which focuses on giving us some extra features through the use of function key. Various different versions are available, using different mechanical switches which are brown, black, red and like our model, blue. This of course refers to the switch type (variance in sound and tactile feedback) with all of the models using blue LEDs on the Excalibur. (An alternate model with RGB lighting is also available).

The Excalibur supports switching between full N-Key rollover or 6-key depending on the anti-ghosting we want and we have 512kB of onboard memory to store our profiles/macros. We can also set 3 brightness levels on the LEDs, along with off and partial lighting on the likes of WASD.

tesoro-excalibur-review-left tesoro-excalibur-review-right

Looking at the left side of the board we find all of the expected keys and worthy of note is the media functionality on the F1-F6 keys. Over on the right side F8-F12 allow us to switch profiles while Pause Break lets us revert to the default configuration. The function button which controls this is beside right alt and N-Key is via Ins/Del. The only other feature of note is the brightness command on the numpad keys.

tesoro-excalibur-review-back tesoro-excalibur-review-usb

Flipping the board over we find that there are four rubber feet to keep the board steady on our desk while two legs allow us to raise the angle of the board if we wish. Finally, extending from the top right of the board is a rubber coated cable which ends in single USB connector (1000Hz polling).

Tesoro Excalibur Review – Software

tesoro-excalibur-review-soft1 tesoro-excalibur-review-soft2

Tesoro keep things simple with their Excalibur software too. It’s essentially one main screen which allows us to configure profiles/map keys and then a pop up offers enhanced macro functionality. The latest version is available from Tesoro.

Tesoro Excalibur Review – User Experience and Conclusion

Starting with the build quality of the Excalibur we have a keyboard which feels very solid. The casing is chunky thick plastic with a matt finish and it is solidly constructed. As is common with many LED lit mechanical boards, the brightness varies on the keys, depending on where the symbols are but this is one of the better that we have seen on that front. Some will bemoan the lack of Cherry MX keys and we can tell the difference, but the Excalibur keys still do feel good when compared to membrane. As well as having decent tactile feedback and a quick action they are also responsive so no complaints from our time with the board. We also noted no issues with the cable quality, its nice and thick with a decent finish. So we should have a good, durable board here.

In terms of design the board looks great, simple yes but also stylish with the black and blue colour scheme. The lack of extra keys isn’t an issue, its a design goal and really we get all the extra features most people will need through the function key. The software control panel offers the extra macro functionality if we need it and really, other than needing a visual overhaul it does exactly what we need in a very simple way.

Summary: A nice simple mechanical keyboard. Built well, performs at a good level and manages to maintain key features.

Value Award

 

About Author

Stuart Davidson

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