Even though it’s a few years old now, the Redragon Kumara K552 is still one of the best mechanical keyboards for those on a strict budget.
What makes a good gaming keyboard?
For those just getting into PC gaming, it can be very hard to prioritize your budget for peripherals and hardware. Usually, you want most of your hard-earned cash to go towards the more important and expensive components, like the CPU or the graphics card. However, it does not mean that you should skimp out on a good gaming keyboard, especially if you are going to be playing multiplayer games like MOBAs or FPS titles.
A good gaming keyboard should always have decent key travel and tactility, with no ghost key presses that can ruin your game. While there are personal preferences related to full-sized versus tenkeyless or 60% keyboards, it’s always good to realize what your needs are for specific games. Do you want a ton of macros that make use of the number pad? Or would you rather prefer something that takes as little space as possible to keep your mouse space bigger?
Of course, if you want something that’s the perfect balance of both, then the tenkeyless might just be your alley, and if you’re in the market for something that’s within a reasonable price range but still punches way above its weight class, then the Redragon Kumara K552 gaming keyboard may just be the perfect accessory for your gaming rig.
- Dimensions: 35.31 x 3.81 x 12.45 cm
- Keys and switches: 87 keys, custom Outemo Blue mechanical switches (Cherry Blue equivalent)
- Keycaps: Double-shot injection molded keycaps
- Body: Metal alloy and ABS, plate-mounted mechanical switches
- Connectivity: High-speed USB 3.0 cable with gold plating for anti-corrosion
- Lighting: LED RGB, 5 different lighting modes, 5 backlight brightness levels and breathing speed.
- Other: 12 multimedia keys, adjustable rear feet for angled typing, conflict-free keys (n-Key Rollover)
For the past two weeks, I have been using the Redragon Kumara K552 in both my gaming and writing duties. It was a replacement for my old Redragon Lakshmi, which, while mechanically good, did not really fit my preferences as I thought it would. The Lakshmi is a 60% keyboard, and it was a bit limiting to not have a full set of the navigation keys and the function row.
In contrast, the tenkeyless setup of the Kumara K552 feels perfect for both gaming in FPS titles and MOBAs. The distance of the keys feel just right, and the travel of the caps feel satisfying. While the Kumara K552 does not exactly use Cherry-branded switches, the custom Outemo Blues used for it are very decent for the overall price point. There will always be the debate between Cherry Blue, Red or Brown switches, but if you want something that’s incredibly tactile and clicky, with decent travel to boot, the custom Blue switches of the Kumara K552 have that covered for you.
The build quality is incredible as well, with the body made of a mixture of durable metal alloy and the Blue switches plate-mounted for longevity. There’s a noticeable heft and weight when you hold it in your hands despite the small frame, which speaks to its overall stability. The caps are also matted to keep your fingers from slipping while typing, and the double-shot injection mold gives it great durability.
The amazing typing and gaming experience also extends to the internal software side as well. The keyboard uses smart n-Key Rollover to avoid ghosting and double presses, which are the last thing you need when you’re in do-or-die situations in your favorite games. While not wireless, the Kumara K552 comes with a meter-long USB 3.0 wire that has gold-plated caps to avoid corrosion. This means that you’ll get to enjoy lag-free input with comfort in mind during work or play alike.
The PC gaming experience is not complete without the RGB lighting to go along with it, and the Kumara K552 comes with that as well. It’s a bit limited as you can only use the factory settings to change the lighting modes (five modes with five different brightness levels) but it does allow you to pick a single color if you’re going with a theme for your gaming rig.
- Decently-priced at $40, sometimes even for less
- Solid construction, very durable
- Clicky and tactile Blue switches
- Tenkeyless design perfect for smaller desks or bigger mousepads
- Decent RGB options
- No Brown switches (silent) for options
- Body design means that it can collect tons of dust if not cleaned regularly
- Tenkeyless design not for everybody, and the spacing can be cramped