Corsair K70 Pro Mini Wireless (2022) Review
Corsair’s new K70 Pro Mini Wireless gaming keyboard is almost perfect
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After releasing the highly regarded full-sized K70 RGB Pro mechanical gaming keyboard in February of this year, Corsair followed it with the 60% K70 Pro Mini Wireless. Small enough to fit in a jacket pocket, the K70 Pro Mini Wireless is Corsair’s first keyboard with fully user-replaceable mechanical key switches. With Bluetooth and 2.4GHz wireless connectivity, and the same Axon Hyper-Processing Technology for what the company claims are faster keystroke recognition, the miniature version of the K70 addresses the major complaints lodged at its larger cousin. Unfortunately, the keyboard is missing important keys that would have made it great for daily use.
About the Corsair K70 Pro Mini Wireless
- Connectivity: USB Type-C to Type-A cable (included), Bluetooth 5.0, 2.4GHz Slipstream wireless (USB adapter included)
- Dimensions: 11.53 x 4.29 x 1.6 inches (at tallest point)
- Weight: 1.35 pounds
- Material: Aluminum top plate, black-anodized finish, gray plastic undercarriage
- Battery life: 32 hours with RBG lighting, 200 hours with RGB lighting disabled
- Special features: Full RGB, individually lit and per-key programmable, wraparound LightEdge RGB bar, hot-swappable mechanical switches
Unlike its predecessor, which offered four varieties of Cherry MX key switches, the Corsair K70 Pro Mini Wireless only offers two: Cherry MX Red and Cherry MX Speed Silver. The version tested was configured with Speed Silver switches. Both are linear and require the same amount of force to depress, but Speed Silvers travel a shorter distance to register a keystroke than Red switches.
The K70 Pro Mini Wireless only comes in one finish—a black aluminum plate atop a plastic gray shell—but Corsair has included a removable plastic accent bar at the back that can be switched out for different colors.
Size and features
At 60% of the size of a full 104-key keyboard, the Corsair K70 Pro Mini Wireless is perfectly positioned for gamers on the go, players who need to maximize desk space, or want to game from their couch. Corsair has streamlined its latest gaming keyboard to the bare essentials and only 61 keys without compromising on speed.
The keyboard also marks Corsair’s first overture into the enthusiast market, as every key switch can be replaced by the user on an individual basis, allowing for fine-tuning after purchasing. A keycap and switch puller are included in the box alongside an alternate space bar that allows for more RGB lighting to pass through.
Although we rated Corsair’s original K70 RGB Pro exceptionally well, its biggest weakness was a lack of wireless connectivity. That problem has been amply addressed by the K70 Pro Mini Wireless, which can connect over USB at a maximum polling rate of 8000Hz for 0.175 milliseconds of latency, via a 2.4GHz “Slipstream” wireless adapter (Corsair’s proprietary wireless technology) with a polling rate up to 2000Hz, or up to three simultaneous devices at 1000Hz through low-latency Bluetooth 5.0.
A higher polling rate means that your computer is checking for input more frequently, theoretically leading to faster response times. In practice, the difference was negligible between connection modes. It’s likely only professional gamers would notice a drastic difference.
Pairing the keyboard was a simple experience, and we were able to seamlessly cycle through a PC connected via the wireless adapter and an iPhone, MacBook Pro, and Windows laptop over Bluetooth at the press of a button. The connection was strong and stutter-free across all devices throughout our testing.
Although you can swap each keycap, it’s likely you won’t. Because of the K70 Pro Mini Wireless’s size, Corsair has layered alternate functions on 53 of the keyboard’s 61 buttons and labeled each accordingly. Swapping them would remove the extra indicators. That includes media controls, arrow keys, F keys, RGB controls, and even simulated mouse movement and right and left clicks.
The keycaps are high-quality and the onboard RGB lighting is easily visible through them. The tall profile of the keycaps and adjustable incline of the board makes the K70 Pro Mini Wireless easy to type and game on despite lacking a wrist rest. Because the Cherry MX Speed only need to travel 1.2 mm to register a keystroke, they’re perfectly suited for games where quick reflexes are required.
We tested the keyboard with Fortnite, Horizon Zero Dawn, and Shadow Of The Tomb Raider, and found it extremely responsive in every situation. It’s no slouch in the strategy game department either, as users can either record their macros directly on the keyboard or in Corsair’s iCue software alongside adjusting the lighting and rebinding keys.
Despite its gaming performance, the K70 Pro Mini Wireless’s Achilles’ heel is the inconveniences a 60% keyboard brings to day-to-day activities. Typing on the keyboard feels great, but for heavier typers who often bottom out (fully depress the key), the Cherry MX Red switches may be a better option as they have a longer travel distance.
Although I was able to match my typical average words-per-minute with the K70 Pro Mini Wireless, keystrokes often felt “crusty” or “jagged” as Corsair does not lubricate the switch stems before shipping as other mechanical keyboard manufacturers often do. Some of the larger keys make a hollow-sounding ping when you press them thanks to the plastic body.
Finally, holding the function key to use the arrow keys, delete, take screenshots, or adjust the volume feels clunky and unintuitive. Because the I key is mapped to the up arrow key and J, K, and L are mapped to the left, down, and right keys, respectively, you need to cross your right hand over on itself to activate them.
Should you buy the Corsair K70 Pro Mini Wireless?
Yes, if you can live without dedicated arrow keys
The K70 Pro Mini Wireless’s biggest flaws are inherent to the 60% form factor. Although we were impressed by its gaming performance and connectivity features, the lack of physical arrows and other keys could impede buyers looking for a gaming keyboard that can pull double duty as an all-day solution—but that doesn’t mean you can’t be satisfied by this gaming keyboard.
Corsair’s K70 Pro Mini Wireless is competing against other high-end gaming keyboards like the similarly sized SteelSeries Apex Pro Mini Wireless at $239.99. The build quality of the K70 Pro Mini Wireless is solid and there is little flex despite the plastic bottom half, although enthusiast competitors like the Keychron Q1 and the Glorious GMMK Pro are fully aluminum keyboards at comparable prices—though neither comes close to matching an 8000Hz polling rate. Although the two are good alternatives for typists, their 1000Hz polling rates are no match for Corsair’s offerings when it comes to gaming.
At $179.99, Corsair’s latest offering may not be for every gamer, especially those expecting more dedicated functions for the price. But the K70 Pro Mini Wireless features the same solid build quality and attention to detail as its larger cousin, and the ability to easily change out a failed key switch (or replace it altogether) makes this an infinitely customizable investment for those who can fit it in their budget.
Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.