Steelseries is well known for bringing innovative new gaming arsenal to professional gaming. It has been a first choice for many professional gamers who compete at an outstanding pace .Steelseries also has a wide popularity and critical acclaim up its sleeve. It has also helped strengthen the competitive gaming industry through professional team sponsorships and community support all over the world. It has a vast array of peripherals custom tailored for specific gaming needs and operations. Steelseries has a vast array of Headsets, mats and keyboards and in recent times it has a new addition to its colossal arsenal of Gaming grade hardware The Merc Stealth. The Merc Stealth is a fully customizable keyboard designed to offer greater comfort during rigorous and extended playtimes. It has an array of features that range from ambient lighting to full customizability of the keys using the Zengine. But Is the keyboard a worthy companion for a hard-core gamer, read on for an in-depth review.
The Merc Stealth comes with the standard prerequisites along with gold plated microphone and headset jacks. The packaging also follows the same minimalistic design with the shades of grey that mostly all steelseries products have along with sporting the logos and tags of the various professional teams that steelseries sponsors. The Stealth is readily available in India at nearly all specialised shops.
The keyboard performs reasonably well when it comes to most games; also it has the dedicated WASD panel that is angled at 11 degrees to maximize comfort and ease of accessibility when going to those rigorous hours of gaming. The feedback of the keyboard is good and the responsiveness is great.
The Zengine allows you to customize any key to your preference and assign it either for tasks in games or shortcuts for applications in windows. There are more than 150 predefined profiles in the software which consist of the recent games like Call of Duty and Left for Dead, you can even save your custom profiles for newer games.
The Merc Stealth was tested with the following games:
1) Crysis 2
2) Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
3) Unreal Tournament III
The Keyboard performs well when dealing with shooter games and will work well with other game genres as you can adapt the keyboard any specific game using the Zengine. Each game was played roughly 20 minutes and the ease of access of the dedicated gaming keys is great and it feels just right. The downside of the keyboard is it might not be great for regular tasks as it takes time getting used to the keys. Due to the inclusion of a dedicated gaming panel on the keyboard steelseries has revised the design of the layout, the standard arrow keys have been placed in the number pad and we have to press numlock every time to switch between the number pad and the function keys. This might take some time getting used to. The keyboard also has two dedicated USB ports along with a headphone and a microphone jack so this stealthy oppressor is also peripheral friendly.
Overall the keyboard is fairly good and once you get used to it it’s a blast to use.
The Merc Stealth feels rough and sturdy and like the name it has a coat of black matte to reflect a stealthy appearance. The keyboard is well built and the materials used in the keyboard are good, the keys are responsive. The keyboard has a very striking resemblance to the Ideazon Merc Gaming Keyboard. Steelseries usually adopts a very minimalistic design when it comes to its peripherals but this time it ventures out into something different with the addition of LED backlighting. This is a fine addition to the Merc Stealth and you can switch between three colours red, blue and purple. The two circular buttons above the ‘F2’ key enable us to adjust the brightness of the backlight and change its colour. There are three brightness settings for the three colours. The keyboard also has dedicated media keys which supports nearly all the media applications. There is also an addition of extra customizable buttons (Named I,II,III) which you can customize using the zengine.
The merc stealth is a blast to use. The keys are responsive and require milliseconds to activate. The keys overall have a rubbery grip that gives a more refined feel making it comfortable for extended periods of gaming. The dedicated gaming keys are well positioned and are much better than the standard keys. Unfortunately the focus of designing a great gaming keyboard has made the general typing experience average. In nutshell you can say that the keyboard is not suited for casual day to day typing. Overall the stealth is a great product and It will surely enhance your gaming experience along with the Zengine. I would recommend the stealth to Hardcore games who use their computers mainly for gaming. It’s quite reasonably priced as well.