Royal Kludge RK89 Review Blue Backlit Tri Mode Hotswap Keyboard

The Royal Kludge RK89 keyboard can make you more productive, thanks to its tri mode functionality, which allows you to use the RK89 keyboard cross-platform (Windows, iOS and Android). 
The RK89 keyboard has an 85% layout with 89 keys and two layout modes for switching between Windows and Mac computer systems. The RK89 keyboard supports 21 virtual keys in Windows mode and 18 virtual keys in Mac mode. Virtual keys include PgUp, PgDn, PrintSc and Home.
The RK89 keyboard can be used via 2.4Ghz wireless, wired and bluetooth 5.1 multipoint connection for up to 3 devices so, you can keep three simultaneous bluetooth connections with three different devices at the same time. 
The RK89 keyboard uses RK (Royal Kludge) red switches, which have RK lettering printed on them. There are also four extra outemu red switches included in the box. RK and outemu red switches have similar performance. In fact, it appears RK switches maybe manufactured by Outemu or Kailh. The RK89 RK red switches are hot swappable with most 3-pin and 5-pin switches on the market (98% compatibility).

The Royal Kludge RK89 keyboard uses dummy switch stabs to stabilize the long keycap. The dummy switches have been lubed with white grease to help reduce rattling noise. The switches and keycaps do not rattle or wobble when typing. Even when shaking the keyboard, there is no rattling noise which is a testament to the solid build quality of the RK89 keyboard. 
The RK89 keyboard has dual step feet risers, which let you adjust the height of the front of the keyboard at two different heights. The shorter feet riser elevate the top row of keys to 4.5cm high, while the longer feet riser elevate the top row of keys to 5cm high. Without feet risers, the keyboard has a natural elevation: approx 4cm high (top row) and 3cm high (bottom row). 
Speaking of bottom row, the RK89 keyboard has a standard bottom row - the space bar measures 11cm long, while the Alt, Ctrl, etc keys measure 2cm a piece. The dimensions of the RK89 keyboard are 36cm long and 13.5cm wide. The Rk89 keyboard is made entirely of plastic (including the top plate) and weighs 963 grams. The keycaps are made of doubleshot ABS so, the legend font won't fade.

There are also four status leds on the keyboard for the Num Lock, Caps Lock, Scroll Lock and Battery. Above the status leds, the Royal Kludge logo illuminates when the lighting is turned on. The feet risers are rubberized with grippy rubber which keeps the keyboard steady on the desk without sliding around. There are also rubber strips on the bottom the keyboard so, you can securely use it without the feet risers. 
The RK89 keyboard has the same single color blue illumination as the RK61 keyboard; hence no RGB lighting. The blue color illumination features 20 dynamic effect patterns, including a solid blue color and one custom light setting for making your every own light effect pattern. The lighting effects, as well as the effect speed and brigthness are controlled from the keyboard so, there is no need to download any software. To turn off the backlighting, you simply cycle down five brightness levels. The RK89 keyboard does come with Royal Kludge software, which is worth downloading if you want to remap the keys, access macro recording and setup customizable profiles.

On the bottom of the RK89 keyboard, yo find the 2.4Ghz USB dongle and two tiny switches for toggling between wired and wireless modes and power on and off. It's nice that a power switch has been fitted as this allows you to manually switch off the bluetooth signal and extend the standby time. The 2.4Ghz USB dongle is unbranded and slots magnetically onto the keyboard inside a small cutout, which keeps the bottom of the keyboard flush against the desk. The 2.4Ghz dongle magnetic attachment is a really useful feature that prevents loosing or misplacing the dongle. 

The connectivity ports are all located left-facing on the front of the keyboard and include one USB-C charging port and two USB-A 2.0 passthrough power ports for charging external devices. The internal 1850mAh rechargeable battery has a charging time of 3.5 hours and battery life of 2.5 days (lights off) and approximately 7 hours with lights turned on. As well as a battery, there is a sound dampener foam pad built inside the keyboard enclosure to help subdue the clicking sound of the mechanical switches.

Inside the box, you get a 2 meter long rubber cable with velcro strap for cable management and a branded metal puller, which is dual sided for switch and keycap removal. Royal Kludge uses different brand switches for their keyboards such as Cherry MX switches (e.g. RK920 keyboard), Kailh and LongHua and TTC switches (e.g. RK84 keyboard). LongHua is a sub-brand of Kailh. If you like outemu switches, you can also find these switches on the Redragon Deimos K599 and Redragon K630 hotswappable keyboard. 

The RK89 has the same detachable feature as the RK84 keyboard, which means you can remove the outer frame from the keyboard and change up the look of the keyboard. As well as changing the aesthetics of the keyboard, removing the frame helps reduce 62 grams in  weight. The frame is easy to detach and attach. 
The RK89 keyboard is very similar to the RK84, which also features passthrough USB power ports, a detachable frame, hot swap switches and tri mode). The main differences between the RK84 and RK89 are the led lighting and size. The RK84 is a 75% keyboard (84 keys) with RGB leds, while the RK89 is an 85% keyboard (89 keys) with blue leds.You can buy the Royal Kludge RK89 from Royal Kludge website and amazon.

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