Rapoo has been making some of the best-value gaming keyboards in the past few years without much noise. Their two best offerings are the more premium VPRO V720S and the more budget-friendly V500SE. Regardless of which one you have your eyes on, this article will help you get to know both of these mechanical gaming keyboards a bit better.
The good thing about both of these keyboards is that they both have an aluminum chassis. This is especially impressive for the V500SE as you can barely find any non-mechanical keyboards with metal chassis at that price point!
The V720S adds a shiny chamfer on the aluminum chassis across the whole keyboard which definitely makes it more premium looking. You also get a wrist-rest with the V720S to help with the fatigue caused by long hours of use.
One last general point to make about the design is about the cables; the V500SE comes with a standard rubberized cable, while the V720S comes with a braided cable for extra durability.
Now it’s time to get into the RGB lighting. Even the best mechanical keyboards cannot be called gaming keyboards unless they have some sort of RGB lighting. It’s 2022––it’s almost a must at this point!
Both of these keyboards offer RGB lighting; the V500SE allows you to customize the lighting of each row of keys, while the V720S offers more granular control over the lighting. On both keyboards, you can cycle through 12 different lighting effects using a combination of keys. You can even adjust the backlight intensity and the speed of the effects.
Where the V720S shines more in comparison to the V500SE is that… well, it shines more! The keys are brighter, more evenly lit, and the effects are cooler! There are also LED strips on three of its sides to make this keyboard look gorgeous at night.
Perhaps the most important of a gaming keyboard features are its keys. The V720S and the V500SE both come with Rapoo’s Blue switches that are just as loud as they are tactile! They require a 60g actuation force with a substantial total travel of 4mm.
Let’s talk more about these switches, as they are probably the most well-known of a mechanical keyboard’s features. The switches in the V720S and V500SE are non-linear switches. If you are coming from a regular membrane desktop or laptop keyboard, you can notice that past the initial resistance, it’s a linear downward motion until the keys bottom out.
But with the tactile clicky switches on these keyboards, there’s very little initial resistance, until you reach about 1/3 of the way down where you will notice a bump; that’s where the resistance is, and past that point, there’s a smooth downward motion until the keys bottom out. Once you get past the bump and hear the click, you will know that the key has been registered and you won’t need to bottom out the keys.
This is especially useful for typing aficionados as touch typing is a much better experience on tactile keys than on linear keys. Of course, in the world of keyboard enthusiasts, there is rarely an objective better or worse when it comes to switches, and some typing enthusiasts may indeed prefer linear switches (personally, I type above 80WPM and prefer tactile, clicky switches).
When it comes to gaming, things become even more difficult to evaluate; if you are coming from a regular membrane keyboard, it is almost impossible to not like these mechanical switches. I can confidently say that even the least popular mechanical switches (among enthusiasts) are still infinitely more enjoyable to game on than any membrane keyboard.
But if you have been in the mechanical keyboard game long enough and have already developed a taste, then you may already prefer linear or tactile switches for gaming. Some of you may prefer the feedback of tactile switches for gaming as it makes them more confident with each keypress, while others prefer linear switches and may feel that the bump or the sound of tactile/clicky switches can be distracting.
Another thing to talk about is the keycaps. The keycaps on the V720S feel a lot more premium because they have a matte coating that makes them more durable and less prone to finger grease (which will inevitably build up as you use your keyboard). The V500SE keycaps are made out of a material that will build up grease a lot more than the ones on the V720S.
Lastly, both the V720S and the V500SE are anti-ghosting keyboards. This means that you can shove your face onto the keyboard and press as many keys as you want, and they will all be registered (perhaps there was a better way to demonstrate the usefulness of anti-ghosting keyboards!).
You can see one of the rarest mechanical gaming keyboard features in the V500SE: IP42 certified spill resistance! It’s an impressive feature for a desktop keyboard, regardless of the price point. There’s also an LED indicator for the Caps Lock and Num Lock buttons on the V500SE and an always-on VPRO logo, both of which the V720S lacks.
However, the V720S makes up for the lack of the two tiny indicators with its super-gorgeous lighting and the three LED strips alongside the whole keyboard. There is also significant light bleed from the keys, which makes the lighting even more over-the-top. It also looks a lot more premium, and that is what makes it one of the best mechanical keyboards Rapoo has to offer.
The V720S also has another trick up its sleeve in the form of macro adjustable keys. Every key on the keyboard is macro adjustable, either using the dedicated macro key or through the software. There is also a Windows key lock button (gaming mode) and a mute switch. We would have loved to see more media keys on the keyboard, but we will have to make do with the shortcuts on the F-row keys.
With all of that said, perhaps the biggest strength of both keyboards is their value for the money. The V500SE, with its lower price point, can be the perfect entry for a lot of people into the surprisingly huge and complex world of mechanical keyboards, while the V720S is just as much an ornament as it is a premium keyboard.
Regardless of which option you go with, it is very difficult to match the value that both of these keyboards provide at their respective prices.
Interested in reading more?
Newcom is the proud authorized distributor of Rapoo products in the UAE, including some of the best Rapoo mechanical keyboards. If you are interested in learning more about Rapoo products offered by Newcom, please visit our blog page regularly. We also encourage you to reach out to us if you have any inquiries about Rapoo products.