SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL Review

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Updated December 20, 2022
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Expert Score (From 3 Experts)
79/100

Customer Score (From 2549 Reviews)
4.7/5

Overview

The SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL is a TenKeyLess mechanical keyboard that was first launched in mid-2019. The premium keyboard is designed for gaming and features customizable RGB lighting. It measures 14 by 5.5 inches (8.3 inches with the wrist rest included.)

Like most top-tier keyboards, the Apex 7 TKL has exceptional build quality, mainly due to its aluminum top plate. It also has a low latency of 6.8ms, and even though this might not be as low as what the best gaming keyboards offer, it is still low enough for a lag-free experience.

The keyboard also has good ergonomics courtesy of its detachable wrist rest and one incline setting. The OLED screen on its top left also makes changing settings much quicker, and just like the SteelSeries Apex 5 Hybrid, all its keys are macro-programmable. You can also check out our SteelSeries Apex 5 Hybrid Mechanical Gaming Keyboard review to see what else it’s got in store.

Reasons to Buy

  • Great build quality
  • Ships with a wrist rest
  • Customizable RGB lighting
  • User-friendly software
  • All keys are macro-programmable

Reasons to Not

  • No wireless connectivity
  • Non-detachable cable
  • Wobbly ABS keycaps

Market Context

Compared to the same brand’s similar models: When comparing the SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL to the SteelSeries Apex Pro, most buyers are typically choosing between size and preferred key switches. The Apex 7 is a TenKeyLess keyboard, while the Apex Pro is a full-size gaming keyboard. Also, the Apex 7 has SteelSeries Brown switches with tactile feedback, while the Apex Pro uses OmniPoint switches that deliver linear feedback.

The SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL is a mechanical keyboard while the SteelSeries Apex 3 TKL is not, and the Apex 7 comes with a wrist rest while the Apex 3 does not. The Apex 7 also has individually backlit keys while the Apex 3 does not, and it has a USB passthrough while the Apex 3 does not. Lastly, the Apex 7 has a much lower latency of 6.8ms than the Apex 3’s 10.6ms. Learn more about the Apex 3 through our SteelSeries Apex 3 TKL review.

Compared to other brands’ similar models: The SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL is a TenKeyLess keyboard, while the Corsair K70 RGB MK.2 is a full-size variant. The Apex 7 also has a lower latency of 6.8ms compared to the K70, with a latency of 5.4ms.

Critic Consensus

The SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL impressed testers with its customizable RGB backlighting and the unique OLED screen on its top right. Product reviewers from Tom’s Hardware liked that they could use its OLED display to navigate keyboard-related settings and also praised its solid aluminum build quality. During their gaming experiments, they found its linear Red key switches easier to press and liked the comfort its wrist rest provided when typing. Expert reviewers from Rtings were delighted that its SteelSeries Engine software was easy to use and its keys were programmable – a credit it shares with the System76 Launch, which we’ve covered in our System76 Launch review. Reviewers also liked its low typing noise and low latency of 6.8ms.

However, they were not as excited about its lack of wireless connectivity and non-detachable cable. If you’d like the convenience of detaching the USB cable when packing, you might also like our Varmilo VA87M review. Testers also didn’t appreciate the Apex 7’s ABS keycaps since they felt wobbly.

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