PC gamers swear by keyboards that use mechanical switches, but proper mechanical keyboards aimed at workaday productivity-style use are pretty rare.
Luckily, here’s Logitech – one of the old stagers of the peripherals world – on a mission to redress that balance with the MX Mechanical Keyboard.
And in our Logitech MX Mechanical Keyboard review we'll let you know whether it's one of the best keyboards for your money and why...
Logitech MX Mechanical Keyboard: review: price and release date
You can pick up the Logitech MX Mechanical Keyboard right now, priced at $169.99/£169.99/€179.99/AUD269.95 across the various territories.
Check out the pricing widget below for real-time pricing, you might be lucky enough to pick up a deal that betters the RRP. It's also worth checking our Logitech discount codes for ways to save on your order.
Logitech MX Mechanical Keyboard review: Design
Design-wise, the MX Mechanical comes in two form-factors: full-size and 60 per cent; we decided to opt for the full-size version for this review, which includes the full Numpad to the right side (the Mini does not).
The MX is a handsome if understated beast that comes in various shades of grey, which feels classy in terms of materials and as well-made as you would expect from Logitech. All the plastics it uses are high-quality, and an aluminium faceplate below the keys further enhances the impression of solidity which it projects.
By general keyboard standards, its surface area is quite compact, with keys more or less extending to each edge, and it’s also quite low-profile – especially for a mechanical keyboard. But it’s also quite heavy, given its size. Personally, I don’t think that’s a bad thing – even though I often type with a keyboard on my lap, I’d rather have a keyboard that feels solid than one that feels flimsy.
In terms of layout, it’s spot-on. Since it’s a full-size keyboard, it has a full complement of F keys, although its compact surface area means those aren’t separated from the number keys below them; I didn’t find that a problem, although some pickier users might. There’s that full numeric keypad at its right-hand extremity, and a set of arrow keys, with plenty of space around them. To the left of that resides a collection of useful keys like Home, Ins and Del. It’s a slightly unconventional layout, but feels thoroughly logical and intuitive.
Logitech MX Mechanical Keyboard review: Features
At this point, it’s worth mentioning that the MX Mechanical Keyboard has been conceived, to an extent, as a companion peripheral to Logitech’s glorious MX Master 3S, since, like that mouse, the keyboard can be hooked up to devices in two ways: via the supplied Logi Bolt 2.4GHz wireless dongle, or via Bluetooth. You can use it to flip through the control of three devices at once, which will come in pretty handy for those who use, say, a PC, a tablet, and an Android phone for different working-day tasks.
As well as the mechanical keys, the MX Mechanical Keyboard has another feature which will stir feelings of familiarity among those who habitually use gaming keyboards: its keys are backlit. Because it’s designed for productivity, that backlighting is white, rather than offering you all the colours of the spectrum, and is pretty discreet. It will turn itself off after a while, then switches back on as you approach it with your hands, which is pretty sweet. Hardly a vital feature, but the sort of thing that puts a smile on your face in the middle of an otherwise dull working day.
You can, of course, turn the backlighting off or change its settings in the Logi Options+ software. As with the other peripherals that Logitech makes, the Logi software offers something of a masterclass for other manufacturers in how to build software designed to control a keyboard. It’s logical, understandable, pleasantly presented and enjoyable to use, rather than a chore, which is usually the case for such software.
Logitech MX Mechanical Keyboard review: Performance
With any wireless keyboard, battery life is always a concern. But in that regard, the MX Mechanical scores highly – Logitech has put a lot of effort into power-saving, and claims that a fully charged MX Mechanical will give you at least 15 working days’ use before it requires a recharge. We desperately tried to disprove that with a number of typing marathons in Google Docs, Microsoft Word and the like, but failed to do so. And you can extend its battery life considerably by using Bluetooth rather than wireless connectivity and turning off the backlighting.
But such austerity also feels pretty unnecessary, since the MX Mechanical takes less than an hour to charge fully (via USB,-C during which time you can still continue to use it), and a few minutes of fast-charge will yield about a working day’s use. Charge-wise, it’s as good as any wireless keyboard out there, which is genuinely useful in the sort of office environment it was designed for.
And it feels great, too, thanks to those mechanical switches. You can choose between three switch types: Tactile Quiet, Linear and Clicky. We opted for the Tactile Quiet switches, which lived up to the name in one respect – they were certainly tactile – and were probably as quiet as mechanical switches can go, but still made a fair bit of hollow, rather than clicky, sound. By mechanical switch standards, the MX Mechanical’s keys are quite low-travel, but they certainly provide that authentic mechanical feel.
Logitech MX Mechanical Keyboard review: Verdict
Logitech’s first mechanical keyboard for productivity-style use is hugely impressive. It’s something of a luxury given its price, but it’s definitely a luxury that will pay off in the long-run, in terms of rendering the most humdrum of computing tasks slightly less soul-destroying when you use it to perform them.
It’s sensibly laid out, the backlighting could come in handy in low-light settings (which it auto-senses) and its battery life is exemplary.
It doesn’t bulldoze the opposition to such an extent as its sister peripheral, the MX Master 3S mouse, but nevertheless, if you could persuade your boss to buy you one, it would definitely render your average working day, daresay, more enjoyable.
Without doubt the closest competitor to the MX Mechanical is the Razer Pro Type Ultra – it’s also a mechanical, wireless keyboard, with an RRP very similar to the Logi.
Cherry’s Stream is super-cheap in comparison and comes with a (rather dodgy) mouse, yet is still mechanical and wireless, although we doubt it will prove as robust as the MX Mechanical.
Or if you want to go ergonomic, check out Logitech’s own Ergo K860.