Author Topic: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review  (Read 12297 times)

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Offline 108

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Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« on: Sun, 27 March 2016, 11:53:34 »
I picked up the RK61 during MassDrop's last bazaar. It is the rev2. version, so it offers a arrow key layer, along with an on and off switch. I was given a choice between white case with white LEDS and a black case with unchangeable "RGB" LEDS. I purchased the white one, as the latter was rather silly looking. It uses kailh blue switches, with stem stabilizers for the space, enter and shifts. The most two biggest selling factors for me were it's form factor(60%) and Bluetooth connectivity.

Bluetooth: The keyboard has two modes, bluetooth and wired. It uses a micro usb to usb cable for wired mode, and bluetooth can connect to any device with Bluetooth capability, e.g. iOS devices, android, and any computer whose motherboard has Bluetooth capability. FN + TAB will switch in between modes, and FN + P will start the pairing process for Bluetooth. The keyboard is able to connect up to three bluetooth devices at a time, FN + Q, W , E will switch between the three. There is practically no visible delay between the key press and register.

60% factor and Layers: As previously stated this is the second version of the keyboard, which offers an arrow key layer, which was a big complaint from the first version. The arrow key are clearly labeled on the ALT, Menu key, / and right CTRL. The layer is accessible by using FN.  There is a windows lock key, however from what I have seen it locks ALL keys instead of the windows key. I do not know if this is intended or just a firmware issue.  The LEDS can be brightened by FN + =, and darkened with FN + -.

Overall, It's a great 60% keyboard for the price (65 USD) and I absolutely enjoy typing on it. Thanks for reading! :thumb:






Offline 108

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #1 on: Sat, 02 April 2016, 02:44:54 »
Con #1: The female micro connector is very flimsy. It has broke after 50~ disconnects and connects. I'm not to sure how to remove the case, but I'll try this weekend to solder a new connector on. If anyone has recommendations for removing the case/ soldering the connector.
« Last Edit: Sun, 10 April 2016, 11:13:37 by 108 »






Offline studentben

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #2 on: Sun, 17 April 2016, 21:27:13 »
Just wondering if you've tried to replace the switches on it yet.

Offline 108

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #3 on: Mon, 18 April 2016, 04:52:32 »
Just wondering if you've tried to replace the switches on it yet.
If you're referring it being broken, the problem is the usb part of the pcb. In order to fix I would need two jumper wires connecting it to to the resistor on the board. Fixing it is something I haven't had the time or money to do.






Online iLLucionist

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #4 on: Mon, 18 April 2016, 04:56:52 »
How do you charge? Just put batteries in it?

And how do you like those switches?
MJT2 Browns o-rings - HHKB White - ES-87 Smoke White Clears - 87UB 55g

Offline MrFex

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #5 on: Wed, 20 April 2016, 13:54:07 »
Good review. I got mine today, ordered last week from Aliexpress. also rev 2. I'm always been a fan of the Poker keyboards but I never got one since I use the function-row a lot. I saw this board on Ali and I just couldn't resist. I got Kailh blue switches and a blue case with white leds.

The board feels pretty solid and the build quality is awesome for the price. I have a KBT Race aswell and that is a lot lighter and plastic. I don't mind it as my carry-on though. The RK61 has a good weight to it. The keycaps that came with it were absolutely horrible but I expected that to be the case. The feel is not that good, they look to shiney and have no texture. Also the font is garbage. Luckily I put on some original Ducky's and I love the feel of the Kailh switches. Nothing wrong with these, this is my first blue switch keyboard so I am still getting used to it.

As for features. It instantly paired with iOS and Windows. It re-pairs after switching on and off and brings my Surface from sleep with I enable the keyboard. USB mode works good too, great value there. The backlights are good and evenly lit. The backplate is white, I like the contrast it gives. All in all this was a bargain and if this thing keeps performing reasonably then I might as well get another one. I got it for 50 euro's.

My sole enthusiasm for this keyboard drove me to this topic. I hope you like my additional review.

IF YOU HESITATE TO BUY THIS KEYBOARD, GET IT!

ps; the only thing I found this far is the following. The arrow keys work good with the function key press. It'll take some time to use too I am sure. The only thing that doesn't work is pressing WINKEY plus and Arrow. This is overruled by the FN+WINKEY combination that activates a WINKEY lock. I happen to use WINKEY+arrows a lot for window management but this minor detail can be easily forgiven.

As for batteries, it charges via USB I'm told.
« Last Edit: Wed, 20 April 2016, 13:56:17 by MrFex »

Offline MrFex

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #6 on: Thu, 21 April 2016, 07:30:28 »
Allright .. so I've been using it some more today. Still no real complaints whatsoever. I have it connected to my Surface and my laptop and the bluetooth profile keys work rather good. I can switch from system with a singe press and it just works. After the press the backlight starts blinking until the re-pairing is done. It usually takes 1 to 2 seconds.

As for the arrow keys, I have some more results. Unfortunately not only the WinKey combination doesn't work with the arrow keys, also the other modifier keys. A couple of things I do a lot:
  • Ctrl + arrow to move the caret to beginning or end of words
  • Ctrl + Shift + arrow to select words
  • Shift + Up/Down to select sentences
  • WinKey + arrows (as mentioned before)

The fact that the arrow keys require the function key to be pressed feels counter productive to me since I use the arrows more often than the right modifiers (CTRL + ALT + APPSKEY) and the forward slash. As a software developer I do use the forward slash quite often but I recon that I won't use it that much on the RK61.

So, I decided to create a AHK script that solves these things. I realize there is probably a 60%/Poker thread somewhere with all kinds of layouts and AHK scripts, but I still wanted to share this.

It does the following:
  • Permanently map right alt, right ctrl, appskey and "/" to the arrow keys
  • Override RShift "/" so that this is still "?" instead of Up
  • Map Fn  + "/" (keyboard sends Up) to  "/"
  • Map Capslock + arrows to Home and End (left and right) and PageUp and PageDown (up and down)
  • Map Capslock + backspace to Delete

Also I use ALT+F4 and CTRL+F4 a lot for closing windows and tabs. That also requires a function key press (and thus my right hand) and ALT+4 and CTRL+4 don't have any functionality.

  • Map ALT+4 to ALT+F4
  • Map CTRL+4 to CTRL+F4

Code: [Select]
RAlt::Left
RCtrl::Right
/::Up
AppsKey::Down

RShift & /::Send {?}
$Up::Send {/}

^4::^F4
!4::!F4

CapsLock & RAlt::Send {Home}
CapsLock & RCtrl::Send {End}
CapsLock & /::Send {PgUp}
CapsLock & AppsKey::Send {PgDn}
CapsLock & Backspace::Send {Delete}
^F5::reload
« Last Edit: Thu, 21 April 2016, 08:18:02 by MrFex »

Offline MrFex

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #7 on: Thu, 21 April 2016, 14:43:11 »
Updates:

Code: [Select]

; Permanently map modifiers and '/' to navigator keys
RAlt::Left
RCtrl::Right
/::Up
AppsKey::Down

; Permanently map navigator keys (fn) to the modifiers and '/'
$Left::RAlt
$Right::RCtrl
$Up::/
$Down::AppsKey

; Override special case for question mark
RShift & /::Send {?}

; Map AltF4 and CtrlF4 to digits
^4::^F4
!4::!F4

; Home, End, PageUp, PageDown and Delete
CapsLock & RAlt::Send {Home}
CapsLock & RCtrl::Send {End}
CapsLock & /::Send {PgUp}
CapsLock & AppsKey::Send {PgDn}
CapsLock & Backspace::Send {Del}

; Media keys
CapsLock & -::Send {Volume_Down}
CapsLock & =::Send {Volume_Up}

I've added some media keys for volume control and I have now also implemented RCtrl, RAlt and AppsKey while using the fn-key. Basically the fn key is now reversed. Not pressing gives you navigator keys, pressing gives '/' and the modifier keys. Imo the AppsKey can be particularly helpful on a tablet without the use of a mouse.


Offline gramic

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #8 on: Wed, 17 May 2017, 02:02:48 »
I have found on my rk61 that pressing Fn+Left Ctrl turns functional keys always on. That means that now Left Ctrl + Arrow works without problems.
However, MrFlex observation for the Windows key + Arrow seams to not work.

Offline dantan

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #9 on: Sat, 20 May 2017, 10:41:46 »
Just looked at this review:

wondering:

1) how are the kailh switches holding up after 1 year?

2) OP said the connector broke after 50 times, but he said that within 6 days of the first post. Did OP deliberately try this to see how keyboard is holding up? I find it hard to think of situations where you connect and disconnect a bluetooth keyboard so many times in such a short period.


Offline MrFex

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #10 on: Thu, 10 August 2017, 04:51:26 »
I have found on my rk61 that pressing Fn+Left Ctrl turns functional keys always on. That means that now Left Ctrl + Arrow works without problems.
However, MrFlex observation for the Windows key + Arrow seams to not work.

Thanks for that, I think you have a newer/better firmware version because my keyboard is definitely not doing that.
Can you tell us more about the keyboard you have? What "rev" is it?

1) how are the kailh switches holding up after 1 year?

Fine :)


Offline gramic

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Re: Royal Kludge 61 Bluetooth Keyboard Review
« Reply #11 on: Thu, 10 August 2017, 07:18:41 »
Thanks for that, I think you have a newer/better firmware version because my keyboard is definitely not doing that.
Can you tell us more about the keyboard you have? What "rev" is it?

I bougth it 2 months ago and there is no "rev" or something like that anyware - phisically or digitally. At least I am unable to find it.
Just a week ago I found another "feature", that was uknown to me. If the numlock is turned on (via another keyboard that I have), then the keys
6,7,8
y,u,i
and so on, act almost like a numpad.
That discovery was after I noticed that on one of my Ubuntu user accounts the keyboard stopped working, while on the other all was fine.
The other interesting thing is that Fn + [ is a media shortcut for "volume down" and Fn + ] for "volume up". That was a fantastic discovery that I use often.
However, I am not sure, where that is from my keyboard or the Ubuntu OS does it on his own. I was expecting it to be F11 and F12 (as is written on the keys bottom), but I am glad it is not that way :)