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Backlight questions for K68, K70, or STRAFE RGB keyboard users


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Hi, I am considering a couple Corsair keyboard models because I'm furious that my new Razer BlackWidow Essential keyboard requires the Razer Synapse software to be installed/always running in order for the keyboard's backlighting to remain in "Static" (always-on) mode. (Adding a TL;DR below to cover these complaints, since I'm really here to ask about Corsair products.)


I am looking at the K68, K70 or STRAFE RGB keyboards specifically, but I need to know if they meet a couple basic requirements, and I haven't been able to answer these questions from web searches/reviews.



  • Can you configure these Apex models so that the backlight is all the same color without any dimming/morphing effects? (I want it always green, always lit so long as the computer is awake.)
  • Do you need any special software installed in order for the keyboard to remember its backlight settings once configured the way you want it? (see my TLDR for background) In other words, if software IS required in order to set the keyboard up the way you want it the first time, can you then disable/uninstall it and the keyboard remembers how it's supposed to be configured?




On paper, the BlackWidow Essential is my perfect keyboard: All the keys I need, no features or keys I DON'T need, satisfying mechanical keybed, and great-looking/functional backlit keys.


There are big problems, though:

  • The keyboard defaults to "Breathing" mode, where the green backlight very slowly builds and then fades, so half the time you can't see the keys in the dark (where I work).
  • The keyboard has no on-board storage for settings, so any user settings (like the "Static" mode that keeps the keys lit all the time) only work if you are actively logged in to a Windows user profile where Synapse is running and configured. (If you lock the computer or boot to a login screen the keyboard returns to "Breathing" mode.)
  • Synapse is crummy software that wastes space and resources, and even spontaneously quits a lot, so I have to keep re-starting it in order to fix the key backlights.
  • I boot between Win 8.1 and Win 10 a lot, and this seems to freak out the Synapse configs between the two operating systems. (I usually have to open Synapse and re-configure it after booting to a different OS.)

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Yes you are able to set hardware lighting effects for those keyboards but it will require the iCUE software for initial setup. Once setup though you can feel free to not run the software or feel free to remove it completely.


Great to hear, thank you!

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