Acer predator aethon 500

Когда вы думаете о лучших игровых клавиатурах, что приходит на ум? Вы думаете о гигантских бегемотах RGB с молниеносными механическими переключателями, со всеми прибамбасами? Или вы думаете о равномерном балансе между ценой и производительностью без лишних функций? Мы здесь, в TechRadar, прямо во втором лагере, и клавиатуры, такие как Acer Predator Aethon 500, вызывают у нас недоумение.

Это связано с тем, что, хотя это, как правило, компетентная клавиатура с экстравагантным RGB-освещением и всеми макроклавишами и регуляторами громкости, которые вы можете попросить, ее высокая цена и малобюджетные клавишные переключатели значительно ухудшают условия сделки — особенно при высокой цене. ,

Acer Predator Aethon 500 — это не ужасная клавиатура, она функциональная и достаточно стильная, чтобы впечатлить большинство людей. Просто это трудно рекомендовать по этой цене, когда есть так много других клавиатур на выбор.

Цена и доступность

Acer Predator Aethon 500 теперь доступен по цене 179 долларов (199 фунтов, 299 австралийских долларов). Это большая проблема для игровой клавиатуры, особенно с переключателями Kailh Blue. Эти переключатели обычно встречаются в недорогих клавишных клавиатурах и имитируют Cherry MX Blues. Эти переключатели неплохие, просто разочаровывающие в этой ценовой категории.

За ту же или меньшую сумму вы можете приобрести лучшие игровые клавиатуры, такие как Razer Huntsman Elite за 199 долларов (199 долларов, 339 австралийских долларов) или Roccat Vulcan 120 Aimo за 159 долларов (149 австралийских долларов). Это первоклассные клавиатуры со всеми прибамбасами, которые не ставят под угрозу качество механических переключателей.

Мы потратили много времени, пытаясь выяснить, почему эта клавиатура так чертовски дорогая, и мы продолжаем идти в гору. Может быть, это брендинг Acer Predator, но мы не уверены, что у него есть аудитория или эстетика, чтобы требовать такую ​​высокую цену.

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дизайн

Таким образом, это может быть слишком дорого, но вы не можете отрицать, что Acer Predator Aethon 500 является одной привлекательной игровой клавиатурой. Его алюминиевое шасси выглядит и ощущается как премиум, а металлические клавиши только добавляют привлекательности. В левом верхнем углу клавиатуры есть кнопка, которая переключается между заданными световыми эффектами RGB и колесом регулировки громкости, которое выходит за пределы шасси в правом верхнем углу.

Вы можете настроить освещение RGB помимо этих упакованных эффектов, если хотите, но это займет некоторое время. Вам нужно будет загрузить программное обеспечение, и по какой-то причине его не очень удобно найти — нам пришлось покопаться в Интернете, чтобы найти его, и мы включили ссылку на скачивание здесь.

Это программное обеспечение также позволяет вам возиться с макросами, если вы чувствуете себя резвым, но поскольку макроклавиши располагаются непосредственно слева от обычных клавиш, мы не используем их слишком часто — мы продолжаем нажимать на них случайно особенно в середине безумных матчей Battlefield.

Мы не знаем, почему Acer не может просто ссылаться на программное обеспечение на странице продукта, как любой другой производитель на планете, особенно когда это так важно для повседневного использования клавиатуры. Acer уже просит руку и ногу для клавиатуры, которая, возможно, не стоит, по крайней мере, это может сделать поиск программного обеспечения простым.

Затем есть запястье. Acer не нужно было включать его в пакет, но чувак, это неудобно. Вместо того, чтобы быть дополненным каким-либо образом, подставка для запястья сделана из этого жесткого пластика, который, возможно, был менее удобен, чем вообще не использовал подставку для запястья. Мы не получаем его: это по цене как устройство премиум-класса, все, что прикреплено к нему, должно быть по крайней мере компетентным, верно?

Сам по себе дизайн будет удобен для клавиатуры, которая стоит вдвое дешевле, чем Acer Predator Aethon 500, но когда вы тратите столько денег на клавиатуру, вам нужно только самое высокое качество. Вместо этого вы можете буквально купить 16 ГБ оперативной памяти DDR4 — тоже RGB.

Спектакль

Как и общая тема с Acer Predator Aethon 500, он работает хорошо, но не совсем на том уровне, который мы ожидаем в своем ценовом диапазоне. С переключателями Kailh Blue все в порядке, и у нас не возникало никаких проблем во время игр.

Но, поскольку эти коммутаторы в основном являются подделками Cherry MX Blue, они ужасны в работе. Они и громкие, и неудобные, что является комбинацией, которая не выиграет в любом задумчивом виде в офисе.

С 50 грамм необходимого усилия срабатывания и 1,9 мм хода, Acer Predator Aethon 500 так же «хорош» на бумаге, как и на практике. Эта клавиатура выполнит свою работу, но на самом деле не так много, чтобы об этом рассказать. По крайней мере, он имеет функцию одновременного нажатия клавиш, а переключатели рассчитаны на 70 миллионов нажатий клавиш.

При тестировании этой клавиатуры мы играем в Battlefield 1 — игру, которая почти требует приличной клавиатуры, что дает все различные команды, которые вы должны дать. И мы не замечаем ничего, что сдерживало бы нас вообще. Вы сможете положиться на эту игровую клавиатуру, чтобы выполнить свою работу, что мы могли бы предположить, учитывая ее цену.

Окончательный вердикт

Если вы сможете найти эту клавиатуру в широкой продаже, скажем, за 99 долларов, то вы получите чертову клавиатуру, которая обладает всеми функциями, которые вам действительно нужны. Тем не менее, по его прейскуранту, Acer Predator Aethon 500 просто не в силах.

С его клавишными переключателями, непонятным программным обеспечением и неудобной подставкой для запястья чрезвычайно трудно рекомендовать эту клавиатуру кому-либо. Даже для пользователей, которые неразумно привязаны к бренду и эстетике Acer Predator: просто выйдите и купите набор наклеек или что-то в этом роде.

Это клавиатура, которая выполняет тот минимум, к которому должна стремиться приличная игровая клавиатура, а при почти 200 долларах этого просто недостаточно. Если вы готовы потратить столько денег, вам, возможно, захочется найти в другом месте свои потребности в игровой клавиатуре.

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Bare minimum

Our Verdict

The Acer Predator Aethon 500 is an expensive keyboard. And, while it has an enjoyable metallic feel and decent performance, this keyboard does little to make up for its high price tag.

  • Aluminum chassis
  • Dedicated macro and media keys

Against

  • Too pricey
  • Included software is hard to find

When you think of the best gaming keyboards, what comes to mind? Do you think of giant RGB behemoths with lightning-fast mechanical switches, with all the bells and whistles? Or do you think of an even balance between price and performance without going overboard on unnecessary features? We here at TechRadar are squarely in the second camp, and keyboards like the Acer Predator Aethon 500 are kind of perplexing to us.

This is because, while it is generally a competent keyboard with extravagant RGB lighting and all the macro keys and volume knobs you could ask for, its high-price tag and low-budget key switches sour the deal significantly — especially at its high price point.

The Acer Predator Aethon 500 isn’t an awful keyboard by any means — it’s functional and stylish enough to impress most people. It’s just that it’s hard to recommend at this price point, when there are so many other keyboards to choose from.

Price and availability

The Acer Predator Aethon 500 is available now for $179 (£199, AU$299). That’s a lot to ask for a gaming keyboard, especially one with Kailh Blue switches. These switches are generally found in inexpensive knock-off keyboards, and generally imitate Cherry MX Blues. These switches aren’t bad on their own, just disappointing at this price point.

For the same amount or less cash, you can get some of the best gaming keyboards around, like the $199 (£199, AU$339) Razer Huntsman Elite or the $159 (£149, about AU$200) Roccat Vulcan 120 Aimo – both of which are premium keyboards with all the bells and whistles, that don’t compromise on the quality of the mechanical switches.

We spent a lot of time trying to figure out why this keyboard is so damn expensive, and we keep coming up short. Maybe it’s the Acer Predator branding, but we’re not sure that it has the audience or the aesthetic to demand such a high price tag.

Design

So, it may be way too expensive, but you can’t deny that the Acer Predator Aethon 500 is one attractive gaming keyboard. Its aluminum chassis looks and feels premium, and the metallic keys only add to the appeal. There is a button in the top left corner of the keyboard that switches between predetermined RGB lighting effects and a volume wheel that extends beyond the chassis on the top right.

You can customize the RGB lighting beyond these packaged effects, if you so please, but it’s going to take some doing. You’ll have to download the software, and for some reason it’s not very convenient to find – we had to do some digging online to find it, and we’ve included the link to the download here.

This software also allows you to mess around with macros if you’re feeling frisky, but because the macro keys are placed directly to the left of the regular keys, we don’t really use them all that much — we keep hitting them on accident, especially in the middle of frantic Battlefield matches.

We don’t know why Acer couldn’t just link to the software on the product page like every other manufacturer on the planet — especially when it’s so crucial to using the keyboard on a day to day basis. Acer is already asking for an arm and a leg for a keyboard that arguably isn’t worth it, the least it could do is make the software easy to find.

Then, there’s the wrist rest. Acer didn’t really need to include it in the package, but man, it’s uncomfortable. Rather than being padded in any way, the wrist rest is made of this rigid plastic that was arguably less comfortable than not using a wrist rest at all. We don’t get it: this is priced like a premium device, everything attached to it should at least be competent, right?

The design on its own would be fine in a keyboard that costs half as much as the Acer Predator Aethon 500, but when you’re spending this much money on the keyboard you should demand only the utmost quality. You could literally buy 16GB of DDR4 RAM instead – the RGB stuff, too.

Performance

As is the common theme with the Acer Predator Aethon 500, it performs well, but not quite at the level we’d expect at its price range. The Kailh Blue switches are fine, and we didn’t run into any problems while playing games.

But, because these switches are basically Cherry MX Blue knockoffs, they’re awful at productivity work. They’re both loud and uncomfortable, which is a combination that isn’t going to win it any wistful looks in an office environment.

With 50 grams of actuation force needed and 1.9mm of travel, the Acer Predator Aethon 500 is just as ‘fine’ on paper as it is in practice. This keyboard is going to get the job done, but it’s really not much to write home about. At least it features all-key rollover, and the switches are rated at 70 million keystrokes.

While testing this keyboard, we are playing some Battlefield 1 – a game that almost requires a decent keyboard, what with all the different commands you have to give. And, we don’t notice anything holding us back at all. You’ll be able to rely on this gaming keyboard to get the job done, which is something we would assume given its price.

Final verdict

If you can find this keyboard on a deep sale for, say, $99, then you’re going to get one hell of a keyboard that has all the features you really need. However, at its list price, the Acer Predator Aethon 500 is just not up to snuff.

With its knock-off key switches, obscure software and uncomfortable wrist rest, it’s extraordinarily hard to recommend this keyboard to anyone. Even for users that are irrationally attached to the Acer Predator brand and aesthetic: just go out and buy a set of stickers or something.

This is a keyboard that does the bare minimum that a decent gaming keyboard should strive for, and at almost 200 bucks, it just isn’t enough. If you’re willing to spend this much money, you might want to look elsewhere for your gaming keyboard needs.

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  • Pros

Tactile, clicky key switches good for typing and gaming. Customizable RGB lighting. N-key rollover. Useful software.

Cons

Expensive for non-Cherry switches.

Bottom Line

The price is high, but Acer’s Predator Aethon 500 mechanical gaming keyboard may find an audience with typists and gamers alike who prefer the tactile and clicky feel of Kailh Blue switches over those made by Cherry.

As mechanical keyboards have bedazzled ever more gamers, almost every hardware maker has piled on—now, even the biggest dogs in the pound, like Acer. The Predator Aethon 500 ($179.99) is a mechanical gaming keyboard that uses Kaihua Electronics’ Kailh Blue switches, not to be confused with the classic MX Blue switches of Cherry descent. This killer keyboard boasts per-key-customizable RGB lighting and able tweaking software. Because of the switches’ heritage, some gamers will be turned away by the high price, perhaps to models like our Editors’ Choice Corsair K95 RGB Platinum, equipped with Cherry switches. But the Aethon 500 does offer a decent tactile typing experience and lots of bling and gaming functionality. It just needs a price cut.

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Blue Through and Through

Average in size for a full-layout mechanical keyboard, the Predator Aethon 500 measures 1.6 by 19 by 9.2 inches (HWD) and weighs 3.2 pounds, comparable in size to the Razer Huntsman Elite , the HyperX Alloy Elite RGB , and the Corsair K95 RGB Platinum . It’s a blue-and-black beauty that’s uncharacteristically subtle in appearance for a Predator-branded product. On this keyboard, the branding is limited to the word «Predator» inscribed below the spacebar, Alt, and Windows keys. The underside is made of plastic, but the rest of the Aethon 500 feels premium thanks to its all-metal backing plate.

The accompanying wrist rest is a different story. It’s the same width as the keyboard itself, and it measures around 2.75 inches deep. Its outer shell is wholly plastic, save rubberized non-slip pads on the base. On its right side is the Predator emblem, bordered with static blue lines. Some shoppers will prefer a soft, mushy-cushiony material, but the wrist rest did allow for a slight lift of my hands from the table, which does make it more comfortable than using the keyboard without the wrist rest. Still, I’d prefer that my wrist rest feel more like a pillow than a plastic brick, especially on a keyboard that costs this much.

Back to the design of the keyboard itself. The Predator Aethon 500 has a standard QWERTY key layout with a number pad on the right side. Five customizable macro keys on the left can redirect to most any function (more on this later). In the upper left-hand corner is a Predator «P» button that you can use to cycle through lighting profiles.

The WASD keys are highlighted in blue to increase their visibility. Moreover, the Aethon 500 has four dedicated media buttons above the number pad—Back, Play/Pause, Skip, and Mute—as well as a cool Corsair-style roller for adjusting the audio volume.

Eat More Kailh? Or Cherries?

One major differentiator between the Predator Aethon 500 and the Editors’ Choice Corsair K95 RGB Platinum is the Aethon 500’s use of Kailh Blue switches, as opposed to the K95 RGB Platinum’s Cherry MX Speed or MX Brown switches. Once the only big-time manufacturer of mechanical-keyboard switches, Cherry still reigns supreme over competitors and imitators alike.

Among the biggest of these switch-making rivals is a Chinese switch maker, Kaihua Electronics, whose Kailh switches are widely deployed in price-aggressive mechanical keyboards. They are considered «Cherry knock-offs» by many keyboarding enthusiasts, not without justification; they emulate the various clicky or stiff textures of classic Cherry switches. The Acer Predator Aethon 500 uses the Kailh Blue switches found in many budget mechanical keyboards, and the Kailh Blue switches are rated for 50 million keystrokes per key, the same expected lifespan as Cherry MX Blue switches.

Whether they’ll hold out that long is a prospect for the ages. What Kailh switches do is enable mechanical designs in keyboards across the price spectrum. For example, the Havit HV-KB390L Low Profile Mechanical Keyboard, with the same Kailh Blue switches, goes for $59.99. The Aethon 500 costs a whopping $179.99, and though you could argue that you’re paying for its RGB lighting and sophisticated software, the Rosewill Neon K85 RGB has Kailh Blue switches and per-key programmable RGB lighting for $79.99, $100 less than the Aethon 500.

The «Cherry MX Blue»-style Kailh key switches under the keycaps of the Predator Aethon 500 are both clicky and tactile, with a palpable bump that you can feel 2mm deep into the 4mm keypress. The general consensus is that these switches are best used for typing. Because of their deep actuation point and clicky, confirming feedback, Blue switches afford accuracy while writing, letting you know when you’ve pressed a key and, so swear many aficionados, reducing typos. (That said, the clicky feedback may annoy your co-workers.)

You can certainly use Blue-style switches for gaming, too, but they do take some getting used to for twitch-style gaming. Why? It’s more difficult to pull off multiple strokes of the same key in sequence than it is with, say, lighter-pressure Cherry MX Reds, the go-to key switch for gamers.

Integrating With the Software

I had to do some digging to find the Aethon 500’s accompanying Predator software for this keyboard, which lets you customize the lighting and profiles. At this writing, the software is compatible exclusively with the Acer Predator Cestus 500 mouse and the Predator Aethon 500 keyboard. I t took flipping through the manual to find this Acer link to a direct download.

Once you install the program, you open it to reveal six different menus, each with its own option sets. From top to bottom, they are Game Profile Management, Profile 1, Button, Sensitivity, Lighting Effect, and Synchronize.

Click on Game Profile Management, and you will find five profiles that you can edit and link to an executable (EXE) file on your computer. Click Profile 1, on the other hand, and you will be greeted with a menu that lets you switch among the various profiles you’ve created in Game Profile Management. Each of these profiles encompasses macros, sensitivity settings, and lighting effects of your choosing.

The Button menu is where you can change the functions of the keyboard’s dedicated macro keys. Click on one of the five, then click the «+» symbol to create a new macro. From there, you can record a macro of your own creation and give it a custom name. Also in the Button menu, you can customize the function of Game Mode to disable the Alt-Tab or Alt-F4 functions, disable the Windows key, or swap the WASD-key and arrow-key functions.

You can also change the function of the N-key rollover feature to suit your needs, between six-key and all-key modes. By enabling all-key rollover, you can ensure that each keypress is registered independently of one another. Likewise, with six-key rollover enabled, you can press up to six keys at the same time and they will still register. Because some older BIOSes will not recognize keypresses when N-key rollover is enabled, in some (increasingly rare) instances, engaging six-key rollover will be preferable. To test for N-key rollover on my supported system, I pressed down 10 keys at the same time in Aqua’S KeyTest, and all registered, as shown in the screenshot below.

The Sensitivity menu in the Predator software is where you can adjust the polling rate of the keyboard. The top setting, a 1,000Hz polling rate, means that keyboard input is updated once every millisecond. A lower polling rate puts less pressure on your computer’s performance. That said, most modern PCs can handle a 1,000Hz polling rate just fine. More practically, in the Predator software, you can set the repeat rate, which determines the speed at which a key repeats itself when it is held down, or the repeat delay, which adjusts the interval at which a second keypress is registered after a single key is held down.

The Lighting Effect section of the Predator software is the fun part. You can change the lighting mode, separate from the general profiles I mentioned earlier. Y ou can toggle among modes using the «P» button to the left of the Esc key. Furthermore, in the Lighting Effect menu, you can change your lighting profile manually by clicking one of five lighting modes (dubbed Game A to Game E), enabling you to use each mode for a game of your choice. Below these lighting modes are five drop-down menus comprising the names of pre-cooked lighting settings, among them Breathing, Reactive, Scroll, Ripple, Radar, Fireworks, Blink, Wave, and Customize.

Most of these settings are animations (comprising the greatest hits of pretty much every RGB gaming keyboard ever), while the Customize setting is where you can change the color of every key separately. It is disappointing that, with a keyboard at this price, you cannot create your own animations. Instead, customizing your own lighting setting leaves you with a static arrangement of keyboard lights, albeit a pretty one unique to your own tastes.

Last, the Synchronize menu lets you adjust lighting effects so that they sync up with other Acer Predator peripherals. For instance, if you have both the Acer Predator Aethon 500 gaming keyboard and the Acer Predator Cestus 500 gaming mouse, you can configure them so that both pieces of hardware «breathe» or «blink» in a coordinated fashion. You can also adjust the speed of pulsation and the brightness of the lighting effects in the Synchronize menu, where applicable.

Aethon, Go on Sale

That’s a lot of lighting sophistication, to be sure, and there’s a case to be made for the Acer Predator Aethon 500 given the RGB sophistication; t he per-key-customizable RGB lighting and workable software add a bunch of value. Plus, the Kailh Blue switches feel close to Cherry MX Blues, making them suitable for typing and gaming because of their tactile feel and clicky sound, even if Kailhs are typically found on keyboards that cost much less.

But, assuming the $179.99 price holds, you’re better off buying an older, discounted gaming keyboard with true Cherry MX switches if you’re a mechanical-keyboard connoisseur. The Corsair K95 RGB Platinum and HyperX Alloy Elite RGB , for example, are both readily available for under $160. But if the Aethon 500 is heavily discounted (and we’d expect it), it will be a fine buy among clicky mechanical gaming boards if it manages to undercut them.

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