Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard Keyboard Review

Tested using Methodology v1.0
Updated Mar 08, 2021 at 03:35 pm
Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard Picture
7.2
Gaming
3.2
Mobile/Tablet
7.2
Office
6.4
Programming
4.1
Entertainment / HTPC
Connectivity Wired
Size
Full-size (100%)
Mechanical
No

The Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard is a decent full-sized gaming keyboard that uses rubber dome switches, which don't offer the same tactile feedback as mechanical switches found on most gaming keyboards. It has six extra macro keys, and since each key is macro programmable, you can customize it to your liking. The keys are stable, but they feel heavy to type on, and you may experience fatigue when typing for long periods. It has zone-lit RGB backlighting if you want to use it in the dark, but you can't change the lighting on a per-key basis. It should be fine enough for casual gamers, but it might disappoint some more serious or competitive gamers.

Our Verdict

7.2 Gaming

The Corsair K55 is only decent for gaming as its rubber dome switches require a fair amount of force to operate, resulting in less responsive-feeling keys. On the other hand, it has very low latency, zone-lit RGB lighting, six dedicated macro keys, and all of its keys are programmable.

Pros
  • Very low latency.
  • Every key is macro-programmable.
  • Good ergonomics.
Cons
  • Zone-lit RGB lighting.
  • Keys feel heavy to type on.
  • Only adequate build quality.
3.2 Mobile/Tablet

The Corsair K55 keyboard can't be used wirelessly.

7.2 Office

The Corsair K55 is only a decent keyboard for office use. The keys feel heavy to type on and could get tiring, but they feel stable, and there's decent space between each one which helps reduce typos. The Corsair K55 has good ergonomics and comes with a comfortable wrist rest. It's also quiet to type on, which is great for an office environment.

Pros
  • Good ergonomics.
  • Very quiet.
  • Fully compatible with Windows; partially compatible with macOS.
Cons
  • Zone-lit RGB lighting.
  • Keys feel heavy to type on.
  • Only adequate build quality.
6.4 Programming

The Corsair K55 is passable for programming use. Each key is macro-programmable, and it has zone-lit backlighting, but the typing quality is mediocre, and you may experience fatigue when typing for long periods as the keys require a fair amount of force to operate. That said, it has good ergonomics and comes with a comfortable wrist rest.

Pros
  • Every key is macro-programmable.
  • Good ergonomics.
  • Fully compatible with Windows; partially compatible with macOS and Linux.
Cons
  • Zone-lit RGB lighting.
  • Keys feel heavy to type on.
  • Only adequate build quality.
4.1 Entertainment / HTPC

The Corsair K55 is bad for entertainment or home theatre PC use. It's a full-sized keyboard that takes up a considerable amount of space, especially with the wrist rest attached, and it can't be used wirelessly. Thankfully, it does have media keys, but while it does have backlighting, it's zone-lit only. It also lacks a trackpad, so you'll need a dedicated mouse to move your cursor.

Pros
  • Every key is macro-programmable.
  • Good ergonomics.
Cons
  • Zone-lit RGB lighting.
  • Keys feel heavy to type on.
  • Wired-only.
  • No trackpad or wheel.
  • 7.2 Gaming
  • 3.2 Mobile/Tablet
  • 7.2 Office
  • 6.4 Programming
  • 4.1 Entertainment / HTPC
  1. Updated Feb 04, 2021: Converted to Test Bench 1.0.
  2. Updated Mar 26, 2020: Review published.
  3. Updated Mar 23, 2020: Early access published.

Check Price

Black K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Dimensions
Height
1.6" (4.0 cm)
Width 18.9" (48.0 cm)
Depth
6.5" (16.5 cm)
Depth With Wrist Rest
9.1" (23.0 cm)
Weight
1.67 lbs (0.757 kg)

As a full-sized keyboard, it takes up a fair amount of desk space, but you can remove the wrist rest if you'd prefer it to take up less space.

6.5
Design
Build Quality
Keycap Material ABS

The build quality is only adequate and feels very similar to the Corsair K68 RGB. It's made entirely of plastic and has a decent amount of flex, but it still feels sturdy, and there are no obvious gaps. The keycaps are ABS with laser-etched legends, and though they feel mushy when typing, they're very stable.

7.5
Design
Ergonomics
Board Design
Straight
Minimum Incline
3.5°
Medium Incline
N/A
Maximum Incline
Wrist Rest Detachable

This keyboard has good ergonomics. There's one incline setting, and it comes with a detachable wrist rest.

5.7
Design
Backlighting
Backlighting Yes
Color
RGB
Individually Backlit Keys
No
Color Mixing
Great
Effects
Yes
Programmable
Yes

This keyboard has disappointing backlighting. Unlike the Corsair K68 RGB, it has a zone-lit backlight, and you can't customize the RGB lighting on each key. You can change the brightness settings between 'Off', 'Low', 'Medium', and 'High' directly on the keyboard itself. If you want a keyboard with individually-lit keys and more customization options, check out the Razer Cynosa Chroma.

Design
Cable & Connector
Detachable
No
Length 5.9 ft (1.8 m)
Connector (Keyboard side)
Not Detachable

It comes with a long cable, so you shouldn't have any issues reaching your computer.

0
Design
Wireless Versatility
Bluetooth
No
Bluetooth Multi-Device Pairing
No
Proprietary Receiver
No
Battery Type
No Batteries

This keyboard can't be used wirelessly. If you're looking for a similar keyboard that can be used wirelessly, check out the Corsair K57 RGB Wireless Gaming Keyboard.

Design
Extra Features
Media Keys
Dedicated
Macro Programmable Keys
All
Trackpad / Trackball No
Wheel No
USB Passthrough
No
Numpad Yes
Windows Key Lock
Yes
Lock Indicator Caps & Num Lock

This keyboard has quite a few extra features. All keys are macro-programmable, excluding the Windows key lock, which can only be programmed to do one of four functions. There are also six dedicated macro keys on the left side.

Design
In The Box

  • Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard
  • Detachable wrist rest
  • Manual
  • Warranty

Typing Experience
Typing Experience
Keystrokes
Key Switches
Rubber Dome
Feel
Tactile
Operating Force
74 gf
Actuation Force
35 gf
Pre-Travel
2.3 mm
Total Travel
4.0 mm

Unlike the mechanical switches on the Corsair K68 RGB, this keyboard has rubber dome switches that feel a bit mushy. They require a very substantial amount of force to operate, and they have a very noticeable tactile bump to overcome before the actuation point.

6.0
Typing Experience
Typing Quality

The Corsair K55 has mediocre typing quality, and the keys feel soft and mushy. They also require a significant amount of force to operate, so you may experience fatigue when typing for long periods. Fortunately, the keys are fairly stable, and there's a good amount of space between them that may help you reduce typos. If you're looking for a gaming keyboard with much better typing quality, then check out the SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL.

Typing Experience
Typing Noise
Noise
Very Quiet

As is the case with most rubber dome switches, this is a very quiet keyboard that shouldn't bother people around you.

9.4
Typing Experience
Latency
Latency Wired
4.8 ms
Latency Receiver
N/A
Latency Bluetooth
N/A

This keyboard has remarkable latency. Even most competitive gamers are unlikely to notice any delays.

Software and Operating System
7.6
Software and Operating System
Software & Programming
Software Name iCUE
Account Required
No
Profiles
6+
Onboard Memory
No
Cloud Sync
No
Macro Programming
Software and Onboard
Ease Of Use
Easy
Software Windows Compatible
Yes
Software macOS Compatible
Yes

The Corsair iCue software offers a good amount of customization options for this keyboard. Each key is macro-programmable, and you can change the RGB zone lighting through the software. Corsair claims this keyboard has on-board memory, but it didn't work for us.

7.2
Software and Operating System
Keyboard Compatibility
Windows Full
macOS Partial
Linux Partial
Android No
iOS No
iPadOS No

The Corsair K55 has decent compatibility. It's only fully compatible with Windows, and with macOS, the Scroll Lock and Pause Break buttons don't work. On Linux, everything works except for the media keys. If you need a similar keyboard that's fully compatible with Linux, check out the HyperX Alloy Core RGB.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The Corsair K55 RGB is only available in black with rubber dome switches. The Corsair K57 RGB Wireless Gaming Keyboard is a wireless version of the Corsair K55 with individually-lit keys. If you come across a different variant of the K55, or if yours doesn't correspond to our review, let us know, and we'll update the review.

Compared To Other Keyboards

The Corsair K55 is an entry-level gaming keyboard that doesn't compare very well with higher-end mechanical gaming keyboards. That said, it may be a good choice if you're a casual gamer, and it performs similarly to some of its competitors, including the Razer Cynosa Chroma and the SteelSeries Apex 3. For more options, check out our recommendations for the best keyboards, the best gaming keyboards, and the best RGB keyboards.

Razer Cynosa V2

The Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard and the Razer Cynosa V2 are both full-sized keyboards with rubber dome switches. The Razer has individually-lit RGB backlighting, and its keys require much lower operation force, making its keystrokes feel lighter. The Corsair only has zone backlighting, but it has significantly lower latency, a detachable wrist rest, and companion software compatible with macOS.

Corsair K55 RGB PRO

The Corsair K55 RGB PRO is an update of the Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard. The PRO has five RGB zones compared to three on the original, and it has significantly improved latency. Its rubber dome switches also require less operating force, and it has onboard memory for saving customized settings, which the original lacks.

Razer Cynosa Chroma

The Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard and the Razer Cynosa Chroma are both full-sized gaming keyboards that have rubber dome switches and keystrokes with very similar pre-travel distances. The Corsair has a detachable wrist rest for better ergonomics, while the Razer has individually-lit keys.

SteelSeries Apex 3

The SteelSeries Apex 3 and the Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard are both full-sized gaming keyboards with rubber dome switches. The SteelSeries has a sturdier-feeling build quality and keystrokes that require less operating force. The Corsair has substantially lower latency, and though its keystrokes require a higher operating force, they also have better tactile feedback, although that can tire your fingers more quickly.

HyperX Alloy Core RGB

The Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard and the HyperX Alloy Core RGB are both non-mechanical gaming keyboards with rubber dome switches and similar typing qualities. That said, the Corsair has is a better overall keyboard with several additional features, including a wrist rest for better ergonomics, macro programmable keys, and companion software for customization.

Corsair K57 RGB Wireless Gaming Keyboard

The Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard and the Corsair K57 RGB Wireless Gaming Keyboard are two very similar keyboards with rubber dome switches. The only differences between them are that the K57 is wireless and has individually-lit keys, while the K55 is wired and has zone lighting. 

Corsair K68 RGB

The Corsair K68 RGB is much better than the Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard. It uses mechanical switches, providing better tactile feedback for an improved gaming experience and better typing quality. Each key on the K68 is individually lit, while the K55 is zone lit. That said, since the K55 uses rubber dome switches, it's quieter to use in office environments.

Logitech G910 Orion Spark

The Logitech G910 Orion Spark is better than the Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard for most uses, and the Logitech's Romer-G switches provide a much better typing experience than the rubber dome switches on the Corsair. The keys on the Logitech are also individually-lit rather than zone-lit, but the Corsair comes with a detachable wrist rest for added ergonomics, and its companion software offers a cloud sync option the Logitech lacks.

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