TUF GAMING K3 Mechanical Keyboard Review


ASUS is known for high end and expensive gaming peripherals with their ROG branding but not so long ago that they offered cheaper and more affordable gaming peripherals with the TUF lineup. Today, we have here the mechanical keyboard from TUF, the Gaming K3 mechanical keyboard equipped with Kailh Blue switches and of course, RGB.

UNBOXING

The ASUS TUF Gaming K3 contains a magnetic wrist rest, manual and a warranty card.

SPECIFICATIONS

Form Factor:Full 104 keys
Layout:ANSI Layout
Switches:Kailh Blue
LED/Lighting:SMD Led
Keycaps:ABS UV Coated
Bottom Row:Standard
Polling Rate:1000 Hz
Cable:Non-removable with passthrough cable
Connectivity:Wired
Dimensions:438.7 x 130.9 x 38.75 mm (keyboard)
438.7 x 76.95 x 10.75 mm (wrist rest)
Weight:Keyboard: 1.1kg
Wrist rest: 160 g
PACKAGING AND ACCESSORIES

  • ASUS TUF Gaming K3
  • Detachable Wrist Rest
  • Manual and warranty card
DESIGN, LAYOUT & BUILD QUALITY

The ASUS TUF Gaming K3 is a full-size mechanical keyboard with 104 keys and it is really TUF (tough) with 1.1kg weight and almost no flex on its structure.

The TUF Gaming K3 has a floating key design, with an aggressive branding on the upper right corner of the keyboard. It is very easy to clean this type of keyboard, you just need to brush off the dust on the top plate.

As for the layout, it has a standard layout with 104 keys so changing the keycaps will not be a problem.

For the connectivity of the keyboard, it has a thick non-braided, non-removable cable with USB passthrough that allows you to insert a low-powered USB device thru it. With this, it is somewhat hard to bring this keyboard around with its hard and not so flexible cable.


At the back of the keyboard, you will notice the design of the TUF series with a pixelated camo and rugged military design to showcase how tough the keyboard is and will withstand during long gaming sessions. In addition, you can see 2 Flipout feet with rubbers on it and 2 large rubber pads on the bottom to keep the keyboard in place.

USER EXPERIENCE

SWITCHES

When it comes to switches, ASUS decided not to use Cherry for this one due to the fact that Cherry switches are expensive and are usually used for the ROG mechanical keyboards. Obviously, they will need to source out a cheaper mechanical switch which is Kailh. During the past few years, Kailh was regarded as one of those clones that have a higher rate of chattering compared to other or similar clones like the Gateron. On the other hand, the Kailh used in this board has the newer mould already and thus making it a good substitute for Cherry MX to keep its price lower.

STABILIZERS

ASUS used a plate mounted OEM stabs and it’s unlubed, expect a lot of rattles here. On the contrary, you can safely use any dielectric grease to lessen the rattle without voiding the product’s warranty.

KEYCAPS

MATERIAL

The material used here is ABS. ABS (short for “ Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene ”) is a commonly used plastic and shines easily.

TYPE

The keycaps are coated and the legends are UV printed, it will be easily fade over time. Fonts are decent but with a little bit of gamer-y style.

PROFILE

The ASUS TUF Gaming K3 has an OEM profile keycaps. Mainstream brands/keyboards are usually using this kind of profile since it is widely available from the manufacturers.

SOFTWARE, LIGHTING AND OTHER FEATURES
SOFTWARE & LIGHTING

The ROG Armoury Crate is now the latest software for all ASUS products including the TUF series. On the upper left part, you can see the icon with keyboard and mouse, meaning you can sync other ASUS products like the Impact 2 Wireless with other products with the ASUS Aura Sync. In addition to this, the TUF Gaming K3 has only 2 tabs in which you can change the key assignment in the first tab. Secondly, you can adjust the lighting modes on the second tab with 10 different lighting effects + the Aura Sync function.

The TUF Gaming K3 doesn’t have any macro functions in this software, only via OTF macro recording which is not user friendly for some gamers who need macro functions. On the positive side, it has an onboard memory which saves all of your settings if you need to bring this with you when you travel.

CONCLUSION

The ASUS TUF Gaming K3 is retailed at around 4,000 pesos, making it affordable for most ASUS users/fans to have a mechanical keyboard that has an Aura Sync compatibility with their other ASUS components. The overall quality of the TUF gaming k3 is decent, solid with no flex on both sides. In addition, it has RGB lightings and equipped with the newer version of Kailh switches. You can either pick a red switch variant if you mostly play FPS games, browns for balanced typing and gaming and blues if you like that clicky sounds when typing. Moreover, it has an included magnetic wrist rest with adds comfort for those long periods of typing and gaming.

There are a few things to take note of when you have decided to get one. First, it has no macro functions that you can adjust on its software, only via on-the-fly. Second, it has a non-removable cable so you can use a custom cable. Lastly, installing the ROG Armoury crate forces you to update the firmware of the keyboard for you to be able to use the application.

PROS

Solid build with no flex
Standard layout
Has an onboard memory
Aura sync ready
CONS

Buggy software
Non-detachable cable

ASUS TUF Gaming K3 Review

Performance
Build Quality
Features
Value

Summary

Most affordable ASUS mechanical keyboard, the TUF Gaming K3. Solid build with decent switches makes this keyboard a good option for ASUS fans who want an Aura Sync compatible mechanical keyboard.

3.8

Kevin Tan

Lason, Discounts and Food.

One thought on “TUF GAMING K3 Mechanical Keyboard Review

  • November 20, 2020 at 10:44 pm
    Permalink

    Can you swap the keys without soldering and opening the keyboard?

    Reply

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