GK61 – 1 Year Long Term review

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Keyboard Specifications:

Form Factor: 60%
Dimensions in cm (Width x Depth x Heigh): 28 x 10 x 2.5
Weight (kg): 0.62
Key Features:
  • Kailh hotswap sockets
  • Removeable USB Type-C cable (braided)
  • RGB backlighting
  • Windows lock function
Price: ~£40

The GK61 is an entry level 60% hot swap mechanical keyboard with RGB functionality. Although, the model I have on hand appears to be have been discontinued. It seems to have been replaced by a newer model known as the GK61x.

A quick recap from a year ago: GK61 with Gateron Black switches (forgive my old format).


Here’s the video review if you prefer watching content:

Build Quality

I gave this keyboard a 7 in build quality last year, and it still deserves that score today.

I don’t see or feel any significant damage to the keyboard or the cable. However, the “,” socket seem to intermittently chatter now and then even after replacing it with a different switch. Perhaps, this will get worse in the future…only time will tell. Otherwise, there are no other faults to speak of.

Features

Last year I gave this keyboard a 6 in features. I’d say it still deserves that score today.

The biggest feature – the hot swap sockets, still work. Apart from the chatter on one of the sockets, everything else works as intended. Also, yes…the software still doesn’t want to install on my PC. Hopefully this is addressed with the newer model.

Daily Performance

I gave this an 8 last year which is pretty high for my standards and it still deserves that score today.

Sure, the 60% form factor could be cumbersome to most, but after a while it’s not as bad as I originally thought. Though, I still sometimes find it quite annoying to access basic functions like arrows keys, nav functions and F keys. You definitely will be sacrificing a lot of function over form. So, if you’re not okay with that, look for 65% or 75% form factor keyboards.

Reliability

I gave this a 6 in reliability, but I think it deserves a 7 to be honest.

I’m surprised this is available as an “entry level” product. It’s a good thing that the sockets still work as I would’ve guessed a couple of them would either be dead or severely damaged by now. However, I yet to reach the 100 guaranteed life cycle of the sockets; I am closing in on it though.

Value

I gave this a 7 in value, but I’ll be comfortable to push this to an 8, as it has held up quite nicely over the past year.
Not to stray away from the review, but the new GK61 (GK61x) is also similarly priced as the previous model. It definitely is worth every penny, and even the manufacturers know it. The GMMK Compact doesn’t even stand a chance, unless you value software more than the keyboard itself.

Next time, I will resume back to my normal switch reviews 🙂

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1 thought on “GK61 – 1 Year Long Term review”

  1. I just got this board and I can agree with most of your points for sure. It’s only been a few days but seeing that my views align with yours for the most part I now know this board can at least last me for a while 🙂

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