We tested the Tt eSports MEKA PRO Cherry MX Blue
Today we are taking a good look at the Tt eSports MEKA PRO Mechanical Gaming Keyboard. A no frills LED enhanced full layout keyboard with the Cherry MX Blue switches inside.
The Tt eSports MEKA PRO follows the design principles of the MEKA series keyboards. That said, the MEKA PRO at its core revolves around durability, function and performance. A no BS product devoid of bloat. It also retains the iconic MK button found at the rest of the latest MEKA line-up.
The MEKA PRO weighs in at 1.2 kilograms, has 6 hybrid macro keys and 6 lighting profiles to choose from. Profiles can be stored via the 256KB onboard memory.
|DIMENSION||449.8 X 142.6 X 37.7 MM|
|NO. OF MACRO KEYS||6|
|NO. OF GAME PROFILES||ONE|
|ANTI-GHOSTING KEYS||YES / N KEY ROLLOVER (USB)|
|ON-BOARD MEMORY SIZE||256 BIT|
|POLLING RATE||1000 HZ|
|BACK-LIGHT||YES, FULL RED LED|
|ON-BOARD AUDIO JACKS||NO|
|SMART CABLE MANAGEMENT||NO|
|USB CABLE DETACHABLE||NO|
|ON-BOARD USB PORT||NO|
|CABLE LENGTH||1.8 M|
Switches are again, proper Cherry MX Blue switches. The MEKA PRO is also available in Cherry MX Red and Brown.
|SWITCH NAME||CHERRY MX MECHANICAL BLUE|
|ACTUATION POINT||BLUE : 2.2±0.6 MM|
|KEY STROKE||BLUE : 4 – 0.5 MM|
|ACTUATION FORCE||50G(BLUE) WITH OPTIMIZED TACTILE FEEL|
|KEY LIFESPAN||50 MILLION CLICKS LIFETIME|
PACKAGING AND ACCESORIES:
The Tt eSports MEKA PRO is stored inside a well labelled packaging. You’d get to see the keyboard’s full layout and its main feature right on the box.
The keyboard comes with a quick installation guide, a warranty policy and a keycap puller. It also comes with extra WASD keys, arrow keys and an ESC key in pinkish red. Pretty good bundle I must say.
DESIGN, LAYOUT AND BUILD QUALITY:
The MEKA PRO is a standard 100% layout keyboard. Overall design is simple, with the accented MK button and a curved space bar design. Edges are grooved to aid styling and the metal plating is coated in Red to enhance the overall look of the keyboard.
The back of the keyboard is simple and while there are no DIP switches or cable routing grooves, we appreciated the number of footings to keep the keyboard in place. As if the 1kg weight is not enough.
The keyboard’s key profile is contoured with the bottom keys featuring a non-standard keycap shape to aid comfort. At its lowest, the keyboard features a height of around ~3 cm. The maximum height at the far end is at around ~3.5 cm. It can be adjusted further by a centimeter via the rubberized footing.
Connectivity is provided by a thick 6 foot long cable. It terminates with a gold plated USB 2.0 connector, together with a Ferrite Bead to prevent interference. A velcro strap is attached to keep the cable tidy.
There are no dedicated media and gaming keys at the keyboard, but you’d get these functionalities via the FN key. For an instance, the media functions can be triggered via the FN + function keys. Macro keys are located at the numpad, requiring you to press the MK button to enable them. They are not dedicated macro keys but the MK button is a sweet feature to turn the macro features on or off.
LED profiles are stored on the navigation keys, while back light intensity could be adjusted via the numeric keys found at the number pad.
TEST SETUP AND METHODOLOGY:
Testing a keyboard is not that difficult, but it is mostly subjective; similar to testing head gears in a sense. That said, no keyboard is perfect and the verdict usually depends on personal preferences. With that in mind we are overhauling our testing methodology by following key pointers that should matter the most; that includes the switch performance, the keycap materials and comfort. To keep our test methodology simple and free of extra variables, please note the following softwares and configurations used below.
|GAMES||Overwatch, Battlefield 4, DOTA 2|
|POLLING RATE||1000 Hz (If possible)|
|SOFTWARES||EK Switch Hitter|
The mechanical switches makes up the reason why mechanical keyboards are called “mechanical keyboards” in the first place. There are tons of switches out there but Cherry MX switches are the most popular of them all; setting a standard for the rest. They have clicky, linear and bumpy switches; all with their own mixture of actuation forces and actuation points.
The MEKA PRO features the Cherry MX Blue switches. It has an actuation force of 50 cN, with a tactile click and a minimum travel distance to actuation of 2.2 mm. This particular rendition features a Red LED diode.
Key stabilizers on the other hand are clip-ons. Nothing extra ordinary around that area.
KEYCAP PRINTING AND MATERIAL:
Keycap materials are important too in selecting a mechanical keyboard. The most common ones are ABS and PVC, since they are cheaper and are compatible with most printing methods. They do however shine faster than others and quality is generally not the best. PBT doesn’t shine as fast compared to these keycaps and are highly regarded for their quality and sand-like texture. POM on the other hand is also a good replacement over ABS but they are rarely found on most keyboards.
The Tt eSports MEKA PRO features UV coated ABS keycaps. It has an uppercase serif style font paired with a center-top alignment. The keycap shape is cylindrical and printing method used is laser engraving.
While the extra keycaps are still UV coated ABS, they are actually thicker and feels better than the normal ones.
No two or three keyboard sounds the same, even if they feature the same keys. This is due to factors including the switch housing itself, the key-cap materials, and the overall construct of the keyboard. Listen to the profile below to get an idea of the keyboard’s sound signature.
NKRO AND GHOSTING:
EliteKeyboard’s Switch Hitter is an excellent freeware that anyone could utilize to test any keyboard’s key registration, key rollover and ghosting. It supports a wide variety of layouts, and could log your usage for extra statistics; such as the actuation time it took for your keys to register and depress. You can download the Switch Hitter here to check it out yourself.
No worries here lads. The MEKA PRO is a fully functioning mechanical keyboard.
SIZE AND COMFORT:
Keyboards are generally categorized in 3 standard sizes and or layouts: Full size, TenKeyLess and Compact. They are also called the 100%, 80% and 60% layouts respectively. These standard layouts have drastic effect on the ergonomics of the keyboard especially while gaming. Generally, the 60% layout allows for better stress free arm movements; while full layouts requires you to spread your arms wider.
The MEKA PRO is a full sized mechanical keyboard. Standard comfort level is what you’d expect from the said size when gaming.
WRAPPING IT UP:
Back in 2010, Tt eSports made the MEKA G1. One of the first mechanical keyboards from Thermaltake’s dedicated gaming brand; etching the MEKA series into the hearts of many gamers.
The Tt eSports MEKA PRO follows the legendary line of the MEKA series with a zero BS design that kept it as simple as possible; while providing the gamers a top notch performance and build quality. This is very much so older MEKA keyboards with an updated design to welcome the new generation of gamers while keeping tradition.
One of my favorite aspects of the MEKA PRO is the macro feature. While the buttons are not entirely dedicated, the MK button allows keys 1 – 6 to function as macro buttons. Recording takes into account how fast you input though, so keep that in mind.
At $90 (Amazon), the Tt eSports MEKA PRO is a little bit on the top side but quality comes in at a great price. For that price point, you’d get a LED enhanced keyboard, genuine Cherry MX switches and on the fly macro feature that just works as advertised. Features are not entirely over the top but the MEKA does it job flawlessly. A simple yet functional keyboard built to withstand the test of time.