Asus ROG Claymore Review

Written by Dave Alcock

February 14, 2017 // 5:29 p.m.

Tags: #asus-rog-claymore-review

With such a high price tag, this keyboard will be focussed on those who want the very best for their gaming experience, and this needs to include a feature-packed arsenal both on the desk and the screen.

Asus ROG Claymore Review Asus ROG Claymore Review
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Opening up the ROG Armoury software, we see that there is a rather nice image of the keyboard attached to the numpad. You can reprogram all of the keys that are shown, and there are also five profiles, so you can really personalise what you want from the Claymore. It is really easy to reprogram a key; simply click on one and then choose what you want it to do. You can choose from simply changing the letter to a different one or do far more complicated functions such as launching programs or performing a pre-recorded macro.

Asus ROG Claymore Review Asus ROG Claymore Review
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Recording a macro is easy to do also; it is very intuitive, as you would expect. To add a macro, you hit the '+' button, then the Record button to record one. Once it is recording, the Armoury software will record all inputs, including mouse clicks as well as the delay between keys. You can delete or edit the delays, and you are also able to delete any keys pressed by mistake.

On the lighting tab, we can change the effects as well as the colour of the RGB lights. You can also turn the backlights off completely. There are many effects, but my favourite was 'RANBOW'. Yes, ranbow. The colours are very bright and vivid, but you are able to turn down the brightness if you are not wanting a disco desk.

Asus ROG Claymore Review Asus ROG Claymore Review
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This is where using an Asus board can really make your system look pretty amazing, as you are able to sync your keyboard to your Asus headset and mouse. Okay, so we have seen this with many other companies like Razer and Corsair, for instance. The difference? You can also match the keyboard with Asus compatible motherboards, GPUs, and even ROG certified cases and RAM. RGB lighting isn't for everyone, but being able to change the colour of almost every component with a single click is pretty impressive. This does mean you are starting to get brand-locked, however, which is rarely a good thing - we'd much rather there was some universal RGB control standard, but this seems unlikely at the moment.

Overall, the software is simple yet powerful. It is intuitive, and although there are improvements to be made (RANBOW?), it has a lot of strong points. It doesn't try to be over complicated and isn't in your face. Software and firmware updates are being released to improve the functionality of the board and to add new features, so this is still not the final form for the Claymore.

Asus ROG Claymore Review
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Conclusion

The Asus ROG Claymore is very interesting indeed. As an avid 60 percent user, I personally dislike full-size keyboards. This, however, has been great for me. I can use the Claymore as a TKL board for most of the time, and if I need a numpad or even 17 macro keys, I can just add the extra keyset. It isn't a new idea, but Asus has implemented it in the best way we have seen. It is so simple to change whilst also being sturdy - it just works.

The big issue for most of us will be the price. At the moment, it is a pretty hefty £200. This could change in the future, but it won't drop a crazy amount. Having said that, it isn't uncommon to see full-sized Cherry MX RGB switch keyboards at £150 - £170, so with the additional features and syncing options with other Asus products, it does start to seem a little more "reasonable".

If we disregard the price, the Asus ROG Claymore has all the makings to be a game changer. It has all the attraction of a TKL board but all the functionality of a full-size keyboard with an additional set of macro keys. Asus is not stupid at all; it knows the market this keyboard is aimed at, and it is hoping that gaming enthusiasts and ROG fans will make this product a success. There are not many keyboards that do something different or implement ideas in a way that impresses us. Asus has managed to do that with the ROG Claymore, and it is a very good example of a premium product at a premium price. Is it over the top? Yes. Is it for everyone? No. But if you have the money and want a TKL with an additional numpad, then this is a great option. Is it extreme? Yes. In fact, we have an award for that.
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