Logitech G413 SE – Affordable mechanical QWERTY goodness

8/10

Summary

Logitech G413 SE REVIEW

PAT PILCHER gets his sticky hands on the brilliantly tactile polybutylene terephthalate keyboard of Logitech’s nicely priced G413 SE.

$168.99

The $169 Logitech G413 SE is a mechanical QWERTY basher aimed at gamers that combines attractive design and tactile key switches. With gaming gear often commanding prices that are not too dissimilar to the GDP of developing nations, the G413 SE is likely to be a breath of fresh air for gamers on a budget. So, does it deliver the goods? Does its reasonable sticker price equate to cutting corners? Let’s find out!

Setting up the G413 SE reveals white LED key backlighting. With so many gaming keyboards looking like an RGB LED vomit slick, the use of clean white LEDs gives the G413 a refined look that belies its super decent sticker price.

Weighing in at 635g, the Logitech G413 SE isn’t super heavy but feels super sturdy. Much of this comes down to its aluminium/magnesium deck. It’s also compact but with a full-sized design, minimising the amount of super-scarce computer desk space consumed. To this end, it measures just 45.6 x 444.2 x 82 mm (HWD). Visually the G413 SE is eye-catching, with its striking black, brushed-alloy finish and white LED backlighting making it look like it’s part of Darth Vader’s gaming rig (he so has to be a Fortnite nut – am I right or what?)

 

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The keycaps are hewn out of PBT (polybutylene terephthalate), which is interesting given that PBT is often more expensive to source and manufacture. Most keycaps at the G413 SE’s price point get made from ABS plastic. ABS is softer and less durable, producing a more delicate sound with keypresses. PBT is harder wearing and it makes a more satisfying tactile sound with each keypress.

When using the G413, its keys weren’t super-loud (unlike some older mechanical keyboards – looking at you, IBM!) But the amount of tactile feedback was also softer. While you get feedback with each keypress, that definitive “thunk” I’d long associated with mechanical keyboards was a little on the mushy side. That said, mushy isn’t a bad thing if you prefer it for gaming like me.

The G413 SE also has a useful feature for gamers that takes the form of a six-key rollover. In non-geek-speak, it equates to the maximum number of keys that can be pressed and still register the input of all depressed keys. So you can push down six keys, and all those keys will work, which is great for combo moves (even if it means I need to grow some extra fingers, or better still, an extra arm).

While there’s a lot that’s good, gotchas still apply. There is no USB pass-through port. That’s not a huge surprise given the G413’s sticker price, but it would’ve been a nice way of decluttering cable spaghetti from my USB hub.

However, a surprising omission is that the G413 doesn’t support Logitech’s G Hub software. This is Logitech’s standard software for tweaking gaming peripherals. With it, you can create programmable macros and tweak backlighting. Sadly, it isn’t possible with the G413. It is an odd omission, and one that I suspect comes down to price more than anything else.

Neither of these is a deal-breaker. Considering the very reasonable sticker price of the G413, they’re compromises that are unlikely to phase most budget buyers.

If you’re looking for a compact and affordable mechanical keyboard built for gamers, Logitech’s G413 SE ticks many boxes. While customisation options are limited and it could do with a USB pass-through, the G413 SE is a handsome piece of affordable hardware.

www.pbtech.co.nz/

 

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