It’s launch day, and I’m still typing on the pre-release SK621 Bluetooth mechanical gaming keyboard that Cooler Master sent me several weeks ago. That simple fact speaks volumes about how exceptional this keyboard is.

Despite using several wireless keyboards off-and-on since the tech hit the market, I’ve never liked one enough to use day-to-day. Sure, they allow me to work more efficiently on my tablet while traveling, but I’ve always found that the shortcomings of portable keyboards outweigh their benefits.

But Cooler Master seems to have compiled a list of negative portable keyboard traits, and then meticulously crossed all of them off one-by-one as their designers and engineers developed the SK621.

That profile.
Photo: Corey Foster

First and most obviously, Cooler Master lopped off the number pad, nav keys, and F key row to create a 60% form factor that allows for full-sized keys in a compact package. With a brushed aluminum housing, Cherry MX’s new low-profile mechanical switches, comfortable chicklet keycaps, and a hybrid USB-C / Bluetooth 4.0 interface, the SK621 is a legitimate gaming keyboard that just happens to be portable. Memory for three Bluetooth devices allows me to use it with my phone, tablet, and laptop without re-pairing each time I switch devices, and battery life is impressive as well, offering me nearly 14 hours of use with RGB backlighting on. You’ll get up to four months if you can do without LEDs.

On the fly paired device switching. (and yes, those keycaps feel as good as they look)
Photo: Corey Foster

Speaking on those delightful RGB LEDs, the SK621 benefits from the same on-the-fly keyboard lighting and macro control of its bigger brothers and sisters. Of course, Cooler Master’s Portal configuration software is available if you prefer tweaking via GUI.

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The SK621 is utterly serious hardware with an equally serious $120 price tag, and being a bargaineer at heart, I would never recommend buying anything that doesn’t justify its cost with true value. In the case of the SK621 though, $120 is getting you an impressive array of useful features, cutting-edge tech, and even a bit of frivolity stuffed into a compact package.

I rarely add any new, permanent gear to my backpack, but I like the Cooler Master SK621 60% Mechanical Bluetooth Keyboard so much that it’s made the cut.