HyperX Alloy Elite 2 review: Majestic Metamorphosis
- Great use of RGB lighting
- HyperX Switches
- No Wrist Rest
Like the best HyperX products, the Alloy Elite 2 is an excellent gaming peripheral that pushes the conventions in all the right places
Price$ 289.00 (AUD)
How HyperX categorises their products says a lot about how they see their target market. In years past, the brand’s roster of gaming keyboards, mice and headsets was primarily divided by genre. Everything tended to be either skewed towards or away from certain kinds of game. Some products were designed with shooters in mind. Others weren't.
Nowadays, HyperX’s strategy is slightly different. Sure, if you’re looking at their cheaper products, it’s not hard to find them falling back on established marketing habits. However, fare like the new HyperX Alloy Elite 2 is really cool specifically because it sees HyperX extend themselves beyond what they know how to do well.
Rather than follow, they’re looking to lead by crafting a different take on what a best-in-class gaming peripheral can look and feel like. What’s more, the results of that ambition are easy to like.
Dimensions: 444.0 mm x 174.0 mm x 37.4 mm
Switches: HyperX Mechanical Switches
N-Key rollover: Yes
100% Anti-Ghosting: Yes
USB passthrough: Yes
Price when reviewed
In Australia, the HyperX Alloy Elite 2 is priced at AU$289.
Design & Performance
On first blush, I was a little dubious of how low the profile of the Alloy Elite 2 was. The kickstands on the underside of the keyboard don’t really add that much height to the thing and unlike the original, the second-gen Alloy Elite keyboard lacks a proper wrist rest - which feels like something a keyboard this expensive ought to have included as standard.
Thankfully, my worries were unfounded and while it does sit pretty low, the keyboard itself is more than merely adequate when it comes to comfort. I found it a satisfying tool to deploy in my everyday workday and a springy delight when used to play games like Torchlight 3, Valorant and Watch Dogs 2.
The solid steel frame and HyperX-made keyswitches carry over from past efforts but the Alloy Elite 2 has more than enough of its own going on to stand out. The keycaps themselves are a good place to start. Regardless of which switches you opt to equip this thing with, you’re going to end up with ABS plastic keycaps that slant ever-so-slightly towards the center and are tinged by per-key RGB lighting.
On paper, this allows for a more impressive illumination effect where the LED bulbs inside don’t so much light the letters on the Alloy Elite 2 as they do leave the hardware a beacon of radiance.
The RGB here also bleeds upwards into a slim and singular lighting bar that stretches out across the top-most end of the keyboard. Passively, it acts as a divider between the additional keys and the main layout. However, when you’re using the Alloy Elite 2 with responsive lighting enabled, you get to see colors spring to life and race upwards from your fingertips as you type. Even as someone who has used a lot of different RGB keyboards, it’s hard to be too cynical when typing on the Alloy Elite 2 is as fun as it is.
The other thing I would callout here is the simple and clean button layout on the Alloy Elite 2. Obviously, HyperX probably wants you to install and use this thing with their NGenuity software. However, the trio of toggles on the left hand side allow you to easily adjust or change the lighting mode in a handful of seconds with much less fuss.
If you need to do something more nuanced, you’ll want to open up Ngenuity but if you just want to set and forget, this is a great way to get there. These keyboard-specific buttons are matched by a set of familiar but functional media keys perched on the top-right corner of the keyboard.
Across the board, the HyperX Alloy Elite 2 very much lives up to the hype. It’s a gaming keyboard that’s satisfying to use and a treat to look at.
The Bottom Line
More than just towing the line, the HyperX Alloy Elite 2 holds its own. It’s an exciting evolution on what’s come before that helps the brand find a voice and identity that goes beyond the barebones essentialism it initially relied on to break open the gaming peripheral market.
Like the best HyperX products, the Alloy Elite 2 is an excellent gaming peripheral that pushes the conventions in all the right places. It’s a little bit familiar but largely fantastic.
If the Alloy Elite 2 is a little too pricey for your budget, check out our guide to the best gaming keyboard here for a few other choices.
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