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Steelseries MERC key board

#1 User is offline   othman11 

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 10:22 AM

I bought this little (ya right) key board. After getting it home... the usual stops between the computer shop and home in included. I opened the box and what do I find, a key board with LOTS of new buttons to play with. Now back to business. The box included an inner carton that held the key board wrapped in plastic. There are 4 items included, 1 user manual, a sheet of paper with the download link, and a tri-fold catalog/tease of there other products.

After getting the key board out of it's carton, I took a look at the beasty. It looks good, black plastic and medium gray soft touch keys on the main section of the key board. the gaming key are black and placed to the left of the main keys.
There is a short row of keys above and to the left of the function keys. We will get to these in a bit. After spending a frantic 5 minutes hunting for a UPnP adapter in the box (the key board is USB only). I was resigned to using one of my USB ports.

After getting the key board plugged in.......it only had very basic functions. I went to the provided website, I down loaded the (Z engine) software and installed...... :tada: I now had all the toys hooked up. This software comes with over 150 different game profiles for the gaming "pad" to the left. and the buttons on the upper left.

The keys on the upper left of the "gaming pad" are used for the "z" profile engine, to control the media (game volume, media such as music and movies you have saved).

Now to the business end of this thing....The "gamin pad".

http://a.imageshack.us/img576/7427/gamingpad1.th.jpg

The pic shows the lay out of the "gaming pad". By selecting your game, the software will load your game profile (witch you CAN modify). You can also modify the gaming keys for a game not listed and save it for yourself and/or submit it for deployment among the other owners of this key board linkage. The next pic is....self explanatory.

http://a.imageshack.us/img828/2218/profilelist1.th.jpg

Now for the results! Everything is on a scale of 1-5 (5 being worst)

packaging: 2
I gave this for that fact that it would be better if it was in a sealed poly bag over the outer box.

look and feel: 3
This is for the fact that the key board tested is a bit wobbly (may have been warped a bit from the trip to the States). This doesn't effect anything but my need for things to be correct.

Things included: 2
They dropped the ball when they didn't throw a UPnP adapter in the box. I'm gonna miss that USB port on the back :cry:

Software: 1
The software is great...over 150 games available from the word "GO". The ability to make your own gaming pad mods and up them to add to the game list.

Result: 2 (not up to Pyro's math) I like the key board so Pyro, doesn't count......for the moment. :drinks:

I recommend this key board to any one that doesn't want or have one of those "dent the wallet" set ups. I don't game all that much as it is. And it has all but two of my games available (I will be making my own mods).

I conclusion... The money spent was worth the $25. I like the key board from Steelseries, It's a good start for the new gamer or the older person just getting there gaming toes wet. Here's the newegg linkage

I got a deal on this thing!!! :clap:
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#2 User is offline   Agent51 

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 11:24 AM

:clap: :clap:

Great Review ! Absolutly Great !

I actualy wanted to go get one and still might!
One thing i was wondering, is it not USB connection?
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#3 User is offline   othman11 

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 12:04 PM

View PostAgent51, on 22 August 2010 - 11:24 AM, said:

:clap: :clap:

Great Review ! Absolutly Great !

I actualy wanted to go get one and still might!
One thing i was wondering, is it not USB connection?


No, it's USB only....unless you have the UPnP adapter. Witch doesn't come included (bad idea not sending one).
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#4 User is offline   Qwik 

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 02:50 PM

It's a USB world get over it! but a good review....lol :P
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#5 User is offline   Agent49 

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Posted 22 August 2010 - 04:35 PM

:coffee: :clap:

#6 User is offline   Pyr0 

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Posted 25 August 2010 - 12:19 PM

Nicely done m8 :drinks:
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#7 User is offline   othman11 

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Posted 26 September 2010 - 08:28 AM

UPDATE:

I'm back for an update on this board. It's been about a month since I hooked it up. I thought that we would start with the "good" things this morning, then move on to the "bad" things a bit later on.

The game pad is even better than I thought it would be (for us "older" gamers), it works as advertised and a good bit better. I still haven't got it all figured out yet...I haven't done any mods yet. The games that I play are included in the basic software and the only keys you have to "mod" have been the number keys.
The "Z" engine is good, though the modding side of it looks a bit daunting for someone that doesn't write code or do scripting. The included game profiles work great with the games I have played.

Now for the "bad" things. First and for most is that the delete key is also the #1 key on the number pad. This is NOT a good thing if you use the num. pad like I do. The rest of the keys are a little clunky too. But lets remember this isn't a $50-$100 key board either. I have found some of the expensive key boards with worse keys (most any MS key board IMO). My biggest gripe is the that you can't do any overclocking with this key board. The keys just won't work. So, remember to keep that old key board around for your forays into the dark arts. The also takes up a bit of desk space, witch isn't good on smaller desks.

In conclusion,this board is great for the "older", novice, or for the "not so much" player. I wouldn't recommend it for the hard core player with "deep" pockets (they buy the mice with all the funny buttons). This board will continue to be recommended by me, for it's profiles and cost. For those who like to play in the dark, I recommend the Stealth version (back lit).
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#8 User is offline   Prandr 

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 06:11 PM

you got areal bargain. we have 60+ Euro on ebay
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#9 User is offline   Kelemvor 

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Posted 22 October 2010 - 07:52 PM

Sale must be over as the newegg site says it's $85 and out of stock. The link is for the "stealth" edition you mention, which is more expensive.

I agree, sharing with the number pad would be a problem for non gaming use. If it's programmable could you just program another key to serve as delete?
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#10 User is offline   othman11 

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Posted 24 October 2010 - 06:45 AM

The only keys that are programible are the gaming pad keys. I think they would've been better served to use a slightly wider board, then you wouldn't have to turn the hum. lock off to use the delete key. The stealth is back lit I think.
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#11 User is offline   Agent51 

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Posted 24 October 2010 - 09:29 AM

Great follow up review Oth, Thanks.
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