Usage & Final Thoughts
I’ve been using the Vissles LP85 Optical-Mechanical keyboard for a few weeks now, and I have been really enjoying its low-profileness. I tried to go back to my regular mechanical keyboard and found that the keys were too high. I think more manufacturers should come out with low-profile designs. It also, of course, saves on space.
The keys being a bit closer together in a Mac-style way can take a little getting used to, but I find my fingers flow over the keys effortlessly. The audible clicking is also a good amount. Of course, this is a personal opinion, and everyone has their love (or hate) for mechanical keys. Would they come out with different styles of optical switches? I am sure the keyboard would be acceptable within an open-concept office layout for now. The build quality is good, and the aluminum frame gives the impression that they care about their product, including its longevity. Even though the keycaps are ABS, at least the RGB LEDs can come through the lettering and not just glow around the keys like some keyboards. Should they go with a PBT or a double-shot PBT style keycap? Most manufacturers should, shouldn’t they? The PCT keycaps can last longer and are less likely to wear out from use over time.
The Bluetooth connectivity is good. Switching between different devices helps make working across devices less of a hassle. Would a separate 2.4Ghz receiver be needed down the road? Probably not with this particular type of keyboard, and it would be one less thing you would have to worry about losing, especially if you plan on moving the keyboard between different devices.
Battery life while on Bluetooth was good as well. I’m a creature of habit to ensure I plug wireless things back in after I am done with them at the end of the day, but the Vissles LP85 could easily do a full day of typing/coding without going dead.
RGB and Lighting. Okay, so I am a fan of RGB for computer peripherals. Again, this is a matter of personal opinion, but I would have LOVED it if Vissles had taken the time and created a software package to allow users to change the per-key RGB assignment. Their 19 RGB effects are neat, but I find that RGB lighting is mood-dependent. I like to set up a colour theme and have everything reflect it, and the Vissles LP85 doesn’t quite match the colour themes I tend to use. I am happy that they did go with a per-key RGB switch, and if you do not like it, you can turn it off, or if you prefer just a backlit keyboard, you can set the effect to a monochrome (white LED) and use it that way too.
The Vissles LP85 Optical Mechanical keyboard is currently on Kickstarter, and they have managed to raise $166,270 (as of this review), which is over their initial pledged goal of $12,000 in roughly 30 days. They have had 1,388 backers, and it is nice to see another crowd-funded project complete their funding and provide products in the hands of their backers.
Overall, I have enjoyed my time with the Vissles LP85 Optical Mechanical keyboard, and I will continue to use it until something else similar in nature comes down the line. After all, there aren’t many low-profile mechanical keyboards in the market, let alone those that use optical switches. Which brings me to the, who is this keyboard good for? Well, I think it would be an excellent replacement for one of those Apple Magic Keyboards. It also fits the whole Apple environment. Those on the Windows and Linux side would also find that it would be great for a minimalist environment. I would have to give it a 9 out of 10 score and the Recommended Award.
– Ultra-thin and small footprint (75%)
– Optical Mechanical switches
– Per key backlit RGB LEDs
– Can be switched to macOS or Windows layout
– RGB is limited to 19 colour modes
– No Software
– Does not come with macOS keycaps