MSI Vigor GK50 Elite
Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
Going the mechanical keyboard route is something of a rite of passage when it comes to upgrading your peripheral game. That tactile feel, the precision, the fact that there’s per-key switch action happening versus the mushy membrane approach of most budget-oriented keyboards. Not that you can’t find a decent membrane keyboard for a reasonable price, it’s just that there’s a premium air surrounding mechanical keyboards.
Translation, they’re usually a lot more expensive and depending on features, switches, and materials used they can begin to creep up the price-point ladder fairly steadily.
The MSI Vigor GK50 Elite
is a mechanical keyboard, one featuring Kailh switches and a sleek minimal design that would suit just about any setup. The kicker though is that at $119 AUS it just so happens to be one of the most affordable on the market. And as we’ve seen with other MSI peripherals recently (the MSI Clutch GM50 Gaming Mouse
and the MSI Immerse Gaming Headset
), this affordability arrives alongside impressive performance and got-to-have features like software support and per-key RGB action.
Look and Feel
Even though the MSI Vigor GK50 Elite falls into the affordable range of mechanical keyboards, it does so without any immediate compromises. The brushed metal top-plate, the vibrant lighting, and the somewhat uniquely octagonal keycaps all sport a distinct style that is very much in-line with MSI’s overall aesthetic. It’s a looker, and the traditional MSI dragon logo is presented in a way that fits in perfectly too. Above all though it’s sturdy and the build quality is great.
Going the mechanical keyboard route is something of a rite of passage when it comes to upgrading your peripheral game.
There are a few very welcome touches too, like the matte coating on each key that helps minimise grease stains and fingerprints. Although the lack of dedicated media keys makes sense for both the form-factor and price-range they are included under the F-keys for reasonably easy access. Throw in access to on-the-fly RGB switching without the need to fire up MSI’s Dragon Center software, and there’s an immediate plug-and-play quality to the MSI Vigor GK50 Elite.
Even the USB-cable is braided, though not detachable.
Switch Type: Kailh Blue Switch
LED Color: Per-key RGB (Mystic Light)
Cable: Wired (USB)
Dimensions: 435 x 135 x 38 mm
Product Weight: 800g
With the model sent for review featuring Kailh Blue Switches, we knew that the audibility of the MSI Vigor GK50 Elite would fall into the “clickety clickety clack” category before we opened the box. That said the Kailh “click” sound is fairly loud and the feel itself is similar in nature to the CherryMX clicky switch. For typing the actuation, force, and feedback is great though -- but some might find it a bit much for certain games. In recent times we’ve seen a shift towards linear switches that require less force to actuate in the gaming keyboard space, which makes the ‘Blue’ version of the MSI Vigor GK50 Elite feel a tad out of step.
From the spacing of the keys to the spacebar itself, across a wide range of titles (Apex Legends, Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, and even Diablo II: Resurrected) the responsiveness was great across the board, and although the clicky style may not be for some it was something that didn’t take all that much getting used to. Partially because I still have a soft spot for the style of switch deployed here.
With its price point being what it is, it’s hard to look past the MSI Vigor GK50 Elite as anything but a great entry point into the wide world of mechanical keyboards.
In the end with its price point being what it is, it’s hard to look past the MSI Vigor GK50 Elite as anything but a great entry point into the wide world of mechanical keyboards. Although it lacks things like a wrist-rest or a detachable cable or full-metallic shell, it still has that premium mechanical feel. Sturdy, responsive, sleek, and well worth the money.