Conclusion

The Rush G1 is Fnatic's first attempt to design and market a competitive mechanical keyboard. According to the company, the Rush G1 "provides the comfort, control and reliability that gamers need". The catch is that what someone "needs" does not always coincide with what someone "wants". What you need is the absolute minimum to get a job done; what you want can be much more than that.

In terms of comfort, the Rush G1 is indeed a very comfortable keyboard for prolonged use, professional and gaming alike. The large, restful palm rest is perhaps as important as the high quality mechanical switches for long gaming sessions, especially with games where the arm does not have to move. What the Rush G1 lacks in terms of comfort is the inclusion of extra keys/buttons, at least for basic sound volume control. The use of keystroke combinations is not very comfortable, especially when the combinations require the use of both hands. This is particularly true for gamers, who would need to get their hands off the keyboard and the mouse just to increase or decrease the volume.

Cherry MX switches are proven to be extremely reliable and Fnatic did very well choosing them for their first mechanical keyboard. The Rush G1 is generally well made, with the steel plate providing all of the rigidity that the keyboard requires and a high quality plastic surround that is remarkably resistant to fingermarks. While the plastic surround is definitely not as durable and aesthetically elegant as metal, it is sufficiently strong for a keyboard. The only practical problem that the plastic surround has is that it will not allow for the easy cleaning of the keyboard.

The "control" aspect can be a little complicated, as each user has his/her own opinion regarding what "control" entails. As the Rush G1 is a gaming keyboard, we believe that we must assess those improvements that Fnatic performed in order to enhance a user's control during gaming. The primary characteristics that we identified are the non-standard bottom row and the programmability.

Gaming keyboard manufacturers argue that a non-standard bottom row is better for gamers, getting the non-essential WIN/Fn keys smaller while enlarging the frequently useful ALT and CTRL keys. It does help, but it also makes finding and purchasing new/custom keycaps a bit of a problem. On the other hand, Fnatic certainly does not seem like they ever wanted to design a keyboard that can have its keycaps easily removed and replaced anyway, as company does not supply their customers with a keycap puller and the use of wire stabilizers is not ideal for the easy removal of keycaps.

The programmability of the Rush G1 leaves a lot to be desired. Even though the keyboard has the potential, the supplied software is in need of a major update. The software allows only for ten commands to be programmed and these ten commands can only be very basic macros, common keystroke shortcuts or external application launches. It would be no exaggeration if we said that the software supplied for the Rush G1 is the worst that we have seen provided for any programmable mechanical keyboard to this date. A high quality keyboard such as this deserves a much better software package.

In summary, the Rush G1 does deliver what the company promises. It is not a product designed to bring innovation or extraordinary features, but to compete as a high-quality alternative in a saturated market. Rush G1 is competitively priced for a keyboard with Cherry MX switches, currently selling for $80 including shipping. If what you need is a reliable, comfortable mechanical keyboard for games and professional use but do not require extensive programmability options, the Fnatic Gear Rush G1 is a worthy candidate for your shortlist.

Software & Per-Key Force Actuation Testing
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13 Comments

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  • JoeyJoJo123 - Friday, December 2, 2016 - link

    Looks interesting enough as an authentic CherryMX mechanical keyboard. Reply
  • Allan_Hundeboll - Friday, December 2, 2016 - link

    Another keyboard review.... Boring Reply
  • ClutchCargo - Friday, December 2, 2016 - link

    This looks exactly like the Rosewill keyboard I've been using for the past few years. It's been great, I'd never go back. Reply
  • owcraftsman - Friday, December 2, 2016 - link

    Bring Back The MS-3 @FNATIC Reply
  • Leonick - Saturday, December 3, 2016 - link

    "Fnatic claims that the keyboard is specifically designed with eSports in mind"

    Oh, really? If that was the case you'd think Func would have said the same about their KB-460. They called it a gaming keyboard but no mention about esports anywhere on their product page.

    Fnatic bought Func and rebranded their mice and keyboard while sadly discontinuing an excellent headset. Not sure if the Fnatic headset is just another rebrand or something they actually designed.
    Reply
  • user2 - Sunday, December 4, 2016 - link

    i use the func ms-3 mouse. the mouse wheel broke after 2 days. Reply
  • BrokenCrayons - Monday, December 5, 2016 - link

    Why does it matter whether the company says a product is designed for "eSports" or "gaming" at all? That's just sales-speak and doesn't have an impact on the actual feature set and it certainly won't make the switches under the keys somehow better to slap one label or another on the package. CherryMX switches with x color will work the exact same way regardless. Reply
  • buxe2quec - Monday, December 5, 2016 - link

    Anandtech, we have an issue about UI... The 5 LOWEST readings are pale red, and then the bright red are the ones over 10% HIGHER than the expected value? Also, why is green something that deviates more than 10% from the specs?
    The colours should be bright blue, blue, pale red, bright red ranging from <90% specs to >110% specs. Or anything else that is coherent with the message they convey.
    Reply
  • buxe2quec - Monday, December 5, 2016 - link

    Nice review in general, I only wish there were more 60% (tenkeyless without home/end/page up down) mechanical keyboards on the market :(
    A full keyboard forces my (mouse) arm too far from the body or forces me to have the keyboard on my left side when typing.
    Reply
  • Ranger1065 - Tuesday, December 6, 2016 - link

    Nice review, if not the most interesting subject material, but that seems to be typical of Anandtech. We should be grateful they are reviewing anything at all these days. The tweets are very active though, yippee! Back to sleep now Anandtech :) Reply

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