The HyperX Alloy Origins 65 is the company’s latest attempt to expand its selection of gaming keyboards beyond the typical full and tenkeyless form factors. The company previously released a 60% keyboard in the aptly named Alloy Origins 60 and now this latest model offers a similarly compact form factor but with a few more keys that provide more overall functionality.
What’s in the box?
The HyperX Alloy Origins 65 comes with a detachable braided USB-C to USB-A cable, and a keycap puller. The company has also included extra red Escape and spacebar keycaps with special shine through designs, which is a nice bonus for those that want to give the keyboard a little extra flair.
Design & Build Quality
As its name reveals, the Alloy Origins 65 is a 65% form factor keyboard. That means that there are no separate function keys, a limited navigation cluster, and no separate number pad. While it does come with arrow keys, the other navigation cluster keys are limited to Home, Delete, Page Up, and Page Down and are laid out vertically on the right end of the keyboard.
HyperX has also opted to omit the right Ctrl key to maintain the 1.25u size of the right Alt and Fn keys. The downside to this is that left-handed users who utilize the right Ctrl key won’t have access to it unless they remap the Fn key, which then leaves them with no FN key to perform some of the keyboard’s other functions.
The Alloy Origins 65 comes with shine through double shot PBT keycaps that use HyperX’s usual legend font. There are also secondary legends printed on the side of the keycaps for the keyboard’s secondary functions, such as the function row (F1-F12), tilde/backtick, Print Screen, End, Ins, volume and media shortcuts, as well as shortcuts for the keyboard’s RGB lighting.
It’s surprising that HyperX simply printed the secondary legends on the side of the keycaps instead of making them shine through, which would have made it easier to spot and use those secondary functions in a low-light environment such as a dark room. Given how important those secondary functions are on a keyboard with much fewer keys, it would have been good to add.
The body of the Alloy Origins 65 is made from aluminum, giving the keyboard a lot more heft than if it used a plastic case. While a heavier keyboard may give it a more premium feel, it does make it less portable. So in spite of its compact form factor, the Alloy Origins 65 may not be as comfortable to lug around in a backpack.
The aluminum case is expectedly rigid and offers practically no flex, both as a whole and at the top where the switches sit. The case is also impressively thin so there’s not a lot of empty space inside, which helps make the keyboard sound less hollow during use.
The body uses an integrated plate design, which combines the plate and top case into a single piece. This allows the RGB lighting of the keys to “leak” and radiate from the edges of the keyboard. There is a slight lip/ledge at the edge of the case that makes the keys look slightly recessed. The beveled edge on the lip is a nice touch and gives the case a premium look.
The soft matte finish of the case also add to the board’s premium look and feel and can be most appreciated by looking at the sides and bottom of the case. The bottom also features a large engraved HyperX logo and four rubber feet. The two pairs of fold out feet, which offer two tilt angles, also have their own rubber feet when used.
The USB-C port is located nearer the left edge of the keyboard and is recessed pretty deeply into the case, which is likely designed to keep the plug secure. Because of this, those thinking of using third-party USB-C cable with the Alloy Origins 65 will have to check if the plug fits into the opening as it’s pretty narrow.
Features & Performance
The Alloy Origins 65 is equipped with either HyperX Red linear or Aqua tactile switches. The one we reviewed came with the former. The switches on the Alloy Origins 65 aren’t hot swappable so you’re stuck with what it’s equipped with short of desoldering the included switches and soldering in new ones.
The HyperX Red linear switches have an actuation force of 45 grams, an actuation point at 1.8mm, and a total travel of 3.8mm. It’s a relatively light switch, which may be helpful for both gaming and typing. While there are “faster” switches in the market that have a higher actuation point, the HyperX Red switch sits as a good in-between for gaming and typing.
Regardless, the HyperX Red linear switches on the Alloy Origins 65 feel great for both use cases, especially the 1u keys. They have a relatively smooth travel and a decent bottom out sound. The lower actuation point is ultimately fine for gaming and helps prevent mispresses. While there is some stem wobble, it didn’t feel bothersome during regular use.
As expected though, the stabilizers of the longer keys noticeably rattle since most, if not all, mainstream gaming keyboards don’t come with pre-lubed stabilizers. While this won’t be a dealbreaker for many, those that do want to try remedying the rattly stabilizers of the Alloy Origins 65 can lube them via the syringe method.
Some of the features of the Alloy Origins 65 can be customized via the company’s HyperX Ngenuity software. You can customize the RGB lighting, change key assignments for both the base and Fn layer, choose which keys or key combinations are blocked when Game Mode is turned on, and save presets/profiles.
The current version of HyperX’s Ngenuity software is fairly straightforward and easy to use. It wasn’t difficult to find and understand how to customize each feature. And being able to assign more functions to the keys via the Fn layer is a big plus.
Lastly, the RGB lighting of the Alloy Origins 65 looks great. The light shines through the keycap legends well and the small lip/ledge at the edge of the case helps contain the light radiating from below the keys, making it look impressively clean.
Overall, the Alloy Origins 65 combines great design and build quality with features that give it a pretty good level of functionality in spite of its compact form factor. Priced at about PHP 5,000, the Alloy Origins 65 is still relatively pricey but many of its qualities, such as its aluminum body, form factor, and feature, help justify the price of admission. While it does have some traits that may turn off some keyboard enthusiasts, they aren’t really the target market for a keyboard like this. If you’re looking for a good and compact mechanical keyboard for both gaming and typing and aren’t really interested in getting into the whole custom keyboard or modding scene, the HyperX Alloy Origins 65 is a great option.