Last week saw the launch of Genesis’ Thor 420 keyboard. And we’ve been fortunate to be sent one out to be put to the test for our latest tech review. So lets jump straight into the action and see if it’s as good as they were bragging about in their press release.
BUILD QUALITY & DESIGN – 4.5/5
I’m just going to come right out and say it. The Genesis Thor 420 RGB is a thing of beauty. Built on an aluminium plate, with low profile mechanical switches on top, fitted with RGB lighting underneath and rubber feet on the base. It looks glorious. Although I would prefer a braided cable as opposed to rubber, even if this was thicker and seemed more durable than normal.
The aluminium backplate feels so sturdy you could use it to bash someone over the head in a backyard brawl, and still go plug it in to play some games afterwards. And the Content Slim Blue mechanical switches beneath the keys, reportedly have a 50 million click lifetime in them, so you know this will last a long time before needing a replacement.
All that said, I did still find a few gripes with it. Firstly, the key layout is for a US keyboard. Not an issue if you’re used to using one, but a nightmare when my set up has it as a UK keyboard. Fortunately, I can touch type so I know where everything is. Secondly, being of a slim design, I do keep hitting the wrong keys occasionally, as it’s so cramped.
FUNCTIONALITY – 5/5
What can I say, except that it has the features to back up its looks. Far from a ‘gaming keyboard’ purely because it has RGB lighting underneath. The Thor 420 offers so much more that will help offer you an almost unfair advantage over the competition.
With its low profile mechanical blue switches having a minuscule 1.2-2.5mm keystroke distance, 45G pressing force and an 8ms response time. It’s built to perform. And there are a selection of function keys you can customise to do as you wish using Genesis’ own advanced software available to download HERE.
Just open up the software and away you go. Set up profiles, create macros, even change the lightining effects of the keyboard all from one place. Perfect for giving you the competitive edge. It even has some pre-loaded profiles on the keyboard to suit FPS and Racing games, plus specific titles such as Call of Duty and League of Legends.
The keyboard also offers full anti-ghosting, harnessing the technology from N-Key rollover. So it doesn’t matter how many keys are pressed at the same time, the device will read every button pressed correctly and in order, instantly sending a signal from the keyboard to the computer. Full reading. Full control. The Thor 420 does not compromise.
HANDLING – 4.7/5
From what I’d seen so far, I was expecting the Thor 420 to perform well in this category too. And it did. It took a beating whilst I played Apex, amongst other games, smashing down on the keys repeatedly. It was so responsive and quick to react. And the anti-ghosting worked a treat as I began trying to push it to its limit by asking it to do as much as possible at once.
One thing that I knew I would come up against though was it’s slim design. As mentioned above I have hit the incorrect button now and again as it is so cramped together. And low and behold, it happened. The main button I have trouble with is the Enter button as I use it so much for writing rerviews etc, and it’s so small compared to my Sandberg Firestorm.
But the more I used it the more I got the hang of it and the fewer errors I was making. No more hitting CAPS LOCK BY MISTAKE AND TYPING IN ALL CAPS WITHOUT REALISNg (oops). The question was is it now going to replace my Firestorm full time, or will it be passed on to a friend or family member. After all, it’s too nice to just have stored away. Only time will tell.
VALUE FOR MONEY – 5/5
The Thor 420 was due to be released shortly after we announced it last week. But we’re still yet to find anywhere that is stocking it, although we’re sure it won’t be too long. Fortunately, the press release did advise gamers to expect a €78 price point for it, which converts to around £68. But how does that compare to similar products?
We found a couple similar in design. One such was the CHERRY KC 6000 SLIM, which was cheaper, however, it wasn’t a ‘gaming’ keyboard and didn’t look anywhere near as good, plus it only came equipped with their signature SX scissor-type switch. Whereas compared to the Hexgears X-1 which was a closer match, the Thor 420 came in about £20 cheaper.
The closest match was Cooler Master’s SK650 Low Profile Keyboard. It looked extremely similar, although came with Cherry MX low profile switches instead of the Content Slim Blue that Genesis’ is installed with. One benefit it had over the Thor 420 was no need for software, but it was also about £50 more expensive, and on the face of it, doesn’t seem worth it.
So, in terms of value for money, only time will tell as we don’t know the exact cost of it yet as it is not readily available for distribution. But going off the suggested information from Genesis and comparing it to similar products, it seems to have them all beat in this department for sure.
THOR 420 RGB OVERALL – 4.8/5
The Thor 420 truly is a thing of beauty. It looks the part, is packed with features, and handles extremely well. Yes, it is going to take time to get used to such a slimline design, when I’m used to a bulkier keyboard. And it is a shame it doesn’t have the classier braided cable. But I can see this being my main keyboard if I just stick with it a little while longer.
Genesis’ Thor 420 RGB slim mechanical keyboard is pretty hard to come by in the UK. But you can find it on their website by clicking HERE and we’re sure you’ll be able to sign up to their newsletter to be notified when it’ll be more easily available. In the meantime, whilst you wait to find a place to pick one up from, click HERE to check out more of our hardware reviews.