- About the XANOVA Magnetar XK700...
- Keyboard and Utility Impressions
- End-User Experience and Conclusion
- Online Purchase Links
“warning” ]The unit that I’ve been provided with is a pre-retail unit and the reps have notified that the problems shouldn’t exist in the retail variants. XANOVA assured that they will loan me the retail version of the keyboard to make the necessary alterations in this review. Therefore consider the cons as ‘face value’ until we make the changes. [/powerkit_alert]
Cherry MX Blue’s clickity clacks…
Since this XANOVA Magnetar RGB keyboard uses Cherry MX Blue, it is going to be high up there. Naturally, other Cherry MX switches would have a lower footprint.
Of course, the base and keycap material resonates with the sound of the switches. The base plate of this keyboard is aluminium. As you would expect, the LED/Volume toggle switches are not mechanical.
XANOVA Magnetar’s challenges
The main issue is market dominance depending on the region. XANOVA is GALAX’s peripherals sub-brand but prefers to have an independent branding, similar to what Gigabyte tries to do with AORUS. Sometimes it works. Sometimes it doesn’t. GALAX did have a HOF series keyboard. If they made plans to have a new sub-branding, we should see something very promising as an option to consider.
As of now, these keyboards are available in domestic eRetail sites- in a few Asian countries. Eventually, XANOVA would be available in a larger stage once it can set itself up in a majority of the countries. It makes sense to push XANOVA in countries where GALAX has a presence. And since it’s a good product, I don’t any real reason why you shouldn’t shortlist this option.
The XANOVA Magnetar’s listing is on sites from Singapore, HongKong and Malaysia. In a HongKong based eStore, this is sold for HKD$ 1099, which translates to USD 140.12. So roughly it comes a bit under INR 10,000/-. This is, of course, not considering factors like taxes and import charges products carry when imported by the distributor.
Additions and switching to Gateron
It needs the On-the-fly keys to switch between profiles. CM CK550 embedded this function with numbers 1-4. First four Fn keys could have been hotkeys for default applications- browser, calculator, Windows Explorer and default set media player. As an addition, XANOVA could work on a way to implement a mic mute option that works for both 3.5mm and USB mics, simply because nobody did it (or did it for 3.5mm outputs). Of course, added options like the mic mute might add into the cost. Remember, all of this is taken care of by a single 32-bit ARM controller.
XANOVA MAGNETAR RGB should have dedicated media controls (Play/Pause/Stop/Next/Previous Track) and use Gateron switches for an attractive fully-loaded keyboard. I’ve tested two Gateron switch-based keyboards the GMMK and the CK550. Gateron switches are considered to be cheap. Yet the build quality, actuation and reliability are equal to Cherry MX, based on my experience with the GMMK that I still have and various discussions in the Reddit forum.
The keyboard is good and I have no reservations to shortlist this for purchase. This is hardly surprising since screwing up a Cherry MX/Gateron keyboards would be a difficult task. The warranty is either one-year or two-year, depending on the country you’re buying it from. Ideally, it should be a two-year warranty irrespective of where its sold.
- Ability to remap/deactivate any keys
- LOCK LED Placements
- Cherry MX
- Memory foam wrist rest
- Could have assigned the first four functions for Windows-specific applications
- No ability to swap between profiles on-the-fly