Redragon Kumara K552 Rainbow Review 80% TKL keyboard

Thursday, July 08, 2021

A computer keyboard and mouse are essential and, with good reason, because without them you can't use a computer! While the keyboard and mouse are inseparable, the computer keyboard actually came first, about half a century before the computer mouse did, which is an interesting fun fact. Most keyboards retain the same QWERTY layout from the old typewriter but vary in size, which is the most significant evolution of the modern keyboard. The smaller the keyboard though, the fewer the keys; hence less functionality. 

Unless you plan to exclusively game on a keyboard, it's best to stick to an 80% keyboard like the Kumara K552 Rainbow, which is the sweet spot because it's basically a full size keyboard but without the numpad. The Kumara K552 Rainbow is a traditional tenkeyless mechanical keyboard with red switches, which is the perfect balance for typing and gaming. 

The Kumara K552 keyboard uses Outemu red switches, which are similar to other red switches like Cherry MX, Gateron and Kailh. Red switches are popular for typing quietly and quickly and also for gaming because of the low actuation force (45G) and short keystroke travel (2mm) compared to brown and blue switches. 

Like all red switches, the K552 Rainbow red switch is quieter than brown and blue switch keyboards, although not as quiet as a rubber dome membrane keyboard. Red switches are fast to type on but, they aren't as tactile as brown or blue switches. If you prefer brown or blue switches, check out the Draconic K530 and Royal Kludge RK61 keyboards, which are also compact keyboards with similar footprint to the Kumara K552 keyboard. 

Speaking of switches, the Kumara K552 Rainbow uses ABS double injection keycaps; hence the key legend is not printed or dyed so, the key legend won't fade. Being ABS plastic though, the keycaps are bound to develop the "infamous" greasy shine, which isn't so much of an issue because replacing keycaps is relatively cheap and fun as you get to customize the keyboard. The Kumara K552 Rainbow keyboard has a solid metal top plate made of aluminum alloy; hence it weighs more (871 grams) than the typical tenkeyless keyboard.

The Kumara K552 Rainbow keyboard is also equipped with with a thick, 1.7 meters long rubber cable (non-detachable) attached to a long USB-A connector plug. The back frame is made of plastic and has a flat base with two rubberized folding feet for height adjustment. The Kumara K552 switches are not hot-swappable like the switches on the Redragon K630W

Being able to replace switches increases the longevity of the keyboard and also means you can use different type of keyboard switches. The K552 Rainbow keyboard measures 35cm long, 12cm wide and 3.5cm high at the highest point, which is the top row of keys. The height of the bottom row of keys is 3cm; hence the Kumara K552 has a natural elevation. With the folding feet, the height of the keyboard is 4.5cm.

Like most keyboards these days, the Kumara K552 keyboard also has backlighting; in this case, in-switch backlighting so, every switch has a built-in led, which lights up the large key legends. What's neat about the Kumara K552 is that the lighting is controlled via the keyboard's FN+arrow keys; hence no need of software. From the keyboard, you can also control the brightness level, lighting speed and main lighting modes, which you have nine to choose from. There is a total of 87 keys, including 12 virtual multimedia functions.

The Kumara K552 keyboard also has the same "game lighting modes" you get on the Valheim K608 keyboard, which are activated via the FN function key. There are a total of nine game lighting modes, which includes a call of duty zone that illuminates certain keys on the keyboard. The lighting can also be customized so,.you cam create key switch light pattern; however, you cannot fully customize the lighting because of the fixed rainbow lighting, which doesn't support solid colors.

Luckily, there is a K552-RGB version, which has 18 different RGB lighting modes, as well as 9 solid colors to choose from. You can buy the K552-KR Rainbow version (pictured) and the K552-RGB version from amazon. Check out the review of the Anivia K614 low profile keyboard, Caraxes Pro K644 SE Wireless

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