Robust Mechanical Gaming Keyboard
One of the main selling points of the 6Gv2 was its high build quality. SteelSeries wants to continue this success story and promotes the Apex M500 as very durable. They say its created with “the toughest plastics and reinforced with a battle-hardened steel back plate”. And while only time will tell, if the keyboard achieves the same longevity as its predecessor, there is no actual reason to doubt it.
The Apex M500 features Cherry MX Red Switches and therefore classifies itself mostly as a mechanical gaming keyboard. Furthermore it offers N-Key Rollover and full Anti-Ghosting, which also clearly targets ambitious gamers.
SteelSeries Apex M500 vs 6GV2
So, whats new compared to the 6Gv2, apart from the Cherry MX Red Switches? The Apex M500 comes with a backlight illumination. It offers only blue LEDs, but you can change the brightness and the patterns of the illumination. There are four different brightness levels and three different breathe settings. The configuration of the illumination is done over a software called “SteelSeries Engine”. This software is also responsible for programming macros, which can be defined for every arbitrary key. Some multimedia functions are already defined for the keys F5 to F12.
Well, and maybe you remember, that the 6Gv2 did not have a windows key. Instead it had a “SteelSeries key” which provided some other functionality. While this prevented unintended game minimizing, it felt kind of weird for all those who were used to have a windows key. The Apex M500 now comes with a windows key again. They moved the SteelSeries key to the right side of the space bar and you can disable the windows key for gaming. Also new is a little cable management system, which gives you multiple options for running your cable from the keyboard to the computer.
Tech Specs for SteelSeries Apex M500
Mechanical Keyboard Score
The mechanical keyboard score is our overall score for a keyboard. The score is based on the available ratings and critics and makes an easy comparison between different mechanical keyboards possible. It is also used for our mechanical keyboard ranking.
October 7, 2016
"The SteelSeries APEX M500 looks simple, but there is much more to it than meets the eye. All of the built-in features, the brilliant LED lighting, and options which the SSE3 software delivers makes the investment totally worth it."
July 26, 2016
"The SteelSeries M500 is a sleek, minimalist mechanical gaming keyboard that is comfortable, customizable, and reasonably priced."
July 18, 2016
"The SteelSeries Apex M500 is a damn good Gaming keyboard, but it is no more than that! But to decry what it’s not got would be to miss the point of this keyboard entirely. This keyboard is for Pro Gamers and not so much for enthusiasts like perhaps you and me…"
May 29, 2016
"At the end of the day you are getting a great value with the Apex M500 (...) It is a keyboard that is definitely going to last a long time. Overall ThinkComputers give the SteelSeries Apex M500 keyboard an 8 out of 10 score."