The Armageddon Stealth Raptor MKA-7 is a mechanical keyboard from the little-known German manufacturer Armageddon, and it’s not going to give you any major surprises.
Htxt.africa was sent a version with genuine Cherry MX Black keys, and we’ve been hammering away for a few weeks to get a feel for it.
Armageddon Stealth Raptor MKA-7 review: The physical tour
The Raptor is a full-size keyboard with an even plastic surface and a small built-in wrist-rest. The plastic didn’t stain in our testing and feels fine to the touch, but there’s a massive problem that you’ll encounter once you get typing: the key caps are some of the thinnest we’ve ever seen.
Popping off a cap with the included, equally poor-quality ring key puller and you’ll see that the walls of the caps are extremely thin. While we normally wouldn’t mind thinner plastic as long as they stand up to repeated use (which these did), they continually feel cheap and brittle under your fingers.
Under the key caps the mechanical switches feel great, as mechanical keys do, and if you’ve used Cherry MX Blacks before there’s nothing new here. What is new, however, is the type of LEDs used to illuminate the keys. In place of the standard ones from Cherry, Armageddon uses what they call “Maldives Blue”. The colour produced is actually quite pleasing, and comes through the paper-thin caps easily. The only exception is the WASD, directional keys and spacebar, which are orange instead.
You can also find media and macro keys here, but they’re alternate function keys that need to be pressed together with the function button, so they’re not nearly as useful as dedicated keys.
The final point of interest on the face of the board is the volume wheel. Not only does it rotate smoothly and have ridges to help you turn it, but it has a secondary function as well. Next to the wheel you’ll find two buttons: one for music and one for LED brightness. Pressing one will set the wheel to that mode until the other is pressed. The music button makes the wheel work as a normal volume wheel, while the LED option will allow you to change the brightness of the key LEDs on the fly. This option will also allow you to switch between having all the keys illuminated, or just the orange keys. This wheel is the closest the board has to a killer feature.
The rest of the unit is made up of an extremely stiff body that can be raised on rubber feet. The underside also has replaceable rubber feet and cable routing options, which we always love to see. Finally, the side which faces the PC has a powered USB port and speaker, and a microphone passthrough that seemingly doesn’t create any distortion.
Armageddon Stealth Raptor MKA-7 review: The software suite
The proprietary software for the Raptor is actually something you could easily pass on here. With the LEDs being controllable with the volume wheel, we found it easier to download the software once to set up the macros, store them on the mouse’s internal 1MB memory, and then delete it.
Regardless, the software is relatively simple and will allow you to create five different profiles, assign six macros to the six macro keys, and play around with the less important polling rate and key response time. If you choose to, you can turn the Windows key on and off and manually change the LED settings. The one option here that the volume wheel can’t provide is the “breathing” effect.
The biggest drawback to using the software is that changes take absolutely ages to apply (around 15 seconds), which means that playing around with macros can take up quite some time.
Armageddon Stealth Raptor MKA-7 review: Conclusion
The Raptor does try to win itself some points with the cool volume wheel and the addition of a full set of replacement rubber feet, WASD and directional keys (which are gunmetal grey instead of black), but they cannot beat out the negatives here. The cheap keycaps, the lacklustre design, ergonomics and the ridiculous price tag of R2 399 push this board too far into the red to get a recommendation from us.