By: Jonathan Kwan
January 26, 2024
What do you call someone who owns a house and a car in a major city in Canada? Up until a few years ago, it would have just been an average person with an average job, but ever since COVID-19, a lot of things have changed. I live in Calgary, which is supposedly one of the most affordable major cities in Canada, especially when compared to Vancouver and Toronto. However, Calgary's level of "affordability" has severely eroded in the last few years, where a standard 2,000 sqft family home with a front attached garage in a decent neighborhood suddenly went from being about $500,000 to over $700,000 in a span of three months between December 2021 and February 2022. Nowadays, the same house is worth well over $800,000, not to mention interest rates nearing 7% compared to sub-2% mortgages only two years ago. Anecdotally, recently, a tradesperson working on the house next to mine ran up to me to ask me what I did in my day job to be able to afford such a nice house and nice car. I thought it was both funny and unfortunate, because my house is at best an average family home, and I drive a 2013 Honda Accord. Apparently, someone who owns a regular house and a 10-year-old car in a major city in Canada is considered "rich", even though I am very far from that. In the same line of thought, what do you call someone who owns a Corsair keyboard that has RGB LEDs? If you are thinking something someone flush with cash that has a higher end retail mechanical keyboard like the K70 RGB Pro, I do not blame you. But what if I tell you one can do it on a $40 budget? The Corsair K55 Core is the company's latest ultra-budget keyboard that has the looks of something much more expensive, but it is not mechanical, and the price reflects such. Still, is it any good? Read on to find out!
Our review unit of the Corsair K55 Core came in an elongated brown corrugated cardboard box from the company's American headquarters in Fremont, California, USA. Using UPS Standard, the box was clearly crushed on one end, and the sealing tape at the top was almost completely destroyed when it came to us here in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Thankfully, the content inside survived without a scratch.
The retail packaging of the Corsair K55 Core is immediately recognizable to anyone who has seen peripherals from the company at the local computer shop in the last little while. It is similar to the K70 RGB Pro, but with inverted colors. The predominantly yellow color scheme is complemented by black strips on the side, contrasted by the white text on the darker shades and black text on the lighter shades. A photo shot from the top of the keyboard occupies the majority of the real estate in front. At the top, you will find Corsair's logo. The description and feature highlights of the keyboard is printed underneath it. At the bottom is a sticker to indicate its English language keyboard layout. On the right is the K55 Core branding in bold vertical text, while a Corsair iCUE logo and line indicating PC/Mac/Xbox/PlayStation compatibility sits along the bottom. Further feature highlights and miscellaneous product information such as specifications and system requirements can be found on the remaining sides of the box.
Before we move on, let us take a look at the specifications of the Corsair K55 Core, as obtained from the manufacturer's website and press material:
Keyboard CUE Software: Supported in iCUE
Media and Volume Controls: Yes
Keyboard Size: Extended
Keyboard Report Rate: 1000Hz
Keyboard Color: RGB
Keyboard Compatibility: PC with a USB 2.0 Type-A port|Windows® 10 or macOS® 10.15|Internet connection for iCUE software download
Keyboard Layout: NA (North America)
Key Switches: Rubber Dome
Macro Keys: 6
Keyboard Matrix: 110 Keys
Key Rollover: 12-Key Selective (12KRO)
On Board Memory: Yes
Media Keys: Dedicated Hotkeys
WIN Lock: Dedicated Hotkey
Keyboard Cable Material: Tangle-free rubber
Keyboard Connectivity: Wired
Wired Connectivity: USB 2.0 Type-A
Adjustable Height: Yes
Keyboard Type Size: K55
Keyboard Product Family: K55
Out of the box, you will receive everything you need. Securely placed inside the box is the Corsair K55 Core keyboard itself wrapped in paper. The 1.8m cable is not detachable. On the product literature side, you will find a warranty guide and a safety information guide.
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. A Closer Look - Hardware and Software