Logitech has always been a leader in the peripheral market for as long as I can remember both the casual and the enthusiast side. Despite serious competition, it can be said that Logitech has consistently brought innovative devices to market and that the PC gaming range is one of the best examples of high quality aftermarket input devices.
Last month, they announced updates to the popular G-Series PC gaming peripherals with the introduction of the G510 Gaming Keyboard, G700 Wireless Gaming Mouse and G930 Wireless Gaming Headsets.
After our 12-way mouse recap has been released, today we're going to take a look at Logitech's two new input devices and compare them to their respected predecessors.
The new G510 gaming keyboard
The G510 gaming keyboard from Logitech replaces the popular G15 and is available in green and black in the familiar sales package. Logitech G15 fans know that there are two different versions of this keyboard. The first version included a full set of macro keys, two built-in USB ports and an adjustable LCD panel, among other things. Unfortunately, with its second makeover, Logitech got rid of almost all of them, disappointing many die-hard G15 fans.
At first glance, the G510 resembles the 2nd generation G15 with the same silver and black accents and general layout. However, upon closer inspection, there are some differences. Starting with the left side of the keyboard, we see that the entire bank of 18 macro keys has returned from the original G15, with three different modes for a total of 54 macros. I'm only concerned with macros, but as with previous implementations, good luck remembering what each of these 54 macros do. I'd happily trade 18 keys for half a dozen OLED buttons, but I'm digressing.
At the top of the board are the three macro mode selection buttons, a quick macro record button, a game / desktop mode switch, and mute buttons for the built-in headphone / microphone jacks at the top of the keyboard. The game / desktop switch deactivates the Windows and context menu keys so you don't accidentally boot from a game. The switch looks a bit flimsy and raises concerns about how it might hold up after a few years.
The GamePanel LCD screen is integrated into the board and cannot be adjusted like the original G15. The screen is also much smaller, but the quality of the display appears to have improved significantly. Four buttons line the bottom of the screen, while another button flanks the screen on the left.
Moving further to the right, we find a button that turns the keyboard and LCD backlight on and off. The same button offered different levels of light on the original G15, while the G510 button can easily turn it on or off. To the right of the light button are three LEDs that indicate the status of Caps Lock, Scroll Lock, and Num lock. The media buttons are located on the top right of the board, along with a volume scroll wheel. The rest of the keyboard layout is pretty normal – full-size numeric keypad and standard input keys.
There is a noticeable lack of cable routing channels on the bottom of the keyboard that were on the G15. Logitech may have left this out as there is no built-in USB hub, but what about the audio jacks in the same place?
The G510 comes with a redesigned palm rest that attaches to the bottom of the keyboard with small plastic pins that slide into two slots. The pens are a bit fragile and I would recommend being careful when removing the palm rest or moving the keyboard.
As with any keyboard, the G510 is plug-and-play and most functions work without special software. However, you must install the included G-Series Keyboard Profiler software to get the most out of your device.
With the Keyboard Profiler you can create and edit macros and assign functions and keystrokes to the G-keys. You can also change the backlight color of the keyboard and LCD screen to virtually any color in the spectrum. Other customizable options include choosing which programs to display on the LCD screen and how and when programs are turned off.
One of the big selling points of the G510 is the GamePanel LCD, which provides information, programmability, and controls for a select number of titles in the game. There are currently around 50 games listed on Logitech's official support page.