Home Tech Epomaker EK68 review: hot-swappable wireless mechanical keyboard

Epomaker EK68 review: hot-swappable wireless mechanical keyboard

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Epomaker EK68 review: hot-swappable wireless mechanical keyboard

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Epomaker EK68 is an interesting mechanical wireless keyboard that may interest both connoisseurs of such compact models and gamers. It is well made, has a very good Gasket-mount construction with padding and sound absorbing foam, is equipped with very pleasant to use Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow mechanical switches, and is also hot-swappable. Which adds to its durability and opens up the possibility of self-customization. The keyboard is universal, supports three types of connection: via cable, 2.4 GHz and Bluetooth. Works great with PC, Mac and Android. And a nice bonus is the RGB backlight with a large number of modes and additional settings. Of the claims, one can note the limited functionality of the rotary encoder with the lack of the possibility of its configuration, as well as not the most convenient software. On the official website, the keyboard is $90.



Epomaker EK68

Compact wireless keyboard with Gasket-mount design, hot-swappable Gateron mechanical switches. Supports cable, 2.4GHz and Bluetooth connectivity and has RGB backlighting

Epomaker

5 reasons to buy Epomaker EK68:

  • high build quality and materials, as well as Gasket-mount construction;
  • nice hot-swappable Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow mechanical switches;
  • support for cable connection, 2.4 GHz and Bluetooth;
  • replaceable Type-C cable;
  • RGB lighting.

2 reasons not to buy Epomaker EK68:

  • you need a full-sized keyboard with a standard layout and an optional number pad;
  • limited functionality of the rotary encoder and not the most convenient software.

Fast passage

  1. What is the Epomaker EK68 keyboard and who might be interested in it?
  2. What is included?
  3. What does the Epomaker EK68 look like?
  4. How convenient is it to use?
  5. What can a keyboard do?
  6. In the dry matter

What is the Epomaker EK68 keyboard and who might be interested in it?


Mechanical keyboards aren’t just for gamers. There is a class of users who use mechanical models for work and typing large texts. Basically, such users turn their attention not to popular gaming brands, but to manufacturers like Varmilo, Keychron, Leopold, Ducky, Vortex, Filco, which produce very high-quality mechanical models. And the most demanding connoisseurs also appreciate models that can be fully customized, including switches and keycaps. Epomaker EK68 is one such mechanical keyboard. It features a padded base with sound-absorbing foam, hot-swappable switches, and three connection options. Separately, it is worth noting that mechanical keyboards are also divided by size as a percentage of the standard full-size keyboard. Epomaker EK68 is a 65% keyboard, so it doesn’t have an additional numeric keypad and has a few more layout features, which we’ll talk about a little later.

What’s in the kit:


The Epomaker EK68 comes in a blue cardboard box with a schematic drawing and basic technical information. The set turned out to be quite interesting. In addition to the keyboard itself, the box contains a Type-C cable for charging and wired connection, a miniature USB transmitter, additional Esc, Space, Enter and Backspace keycaps, a keycap and switch extraction tool, three spare switches and instructions in English. It should not be neglected: the vast majority of keyboard settings are performed using key combinations.


What does the Epomaker EK68 look like?


Epomaker EK68 – has a classic design with a common cover so that the mechanical switches are not visible. The keyboard is very compact and does not take up much space, but the layout is very unusual, so it will take some getting used to. The model is available in several color options: calm black and gray, black purple and black and gray with yellow, as in our review. It looks quite original and unusual. Whether you like it or not is an individual matter. All design elements are matte, so the keyboard will not collect fingerprints.


At first glance it may seem that the keyboard cover is metal. It’s actually a matte gray textured plastic that looks really good. Such a keyboard with a metal case would cost significantly more. But there are still metal elements in the keyboard. This is the rotary encoder in the upper right corner, as well as the plate inside.

Keycaps are made of PBT plastic using Double-shot technology. This means that the plastic is injected under pressure into two different shapes during manufacture. At the same time, the characters are poured into the lower form, due to which they are clearer and do not fade over time. Unlike the ABS plastic commonly used in most mainstream keyboards, PBT is more durable and tougher. Keycaps have a nice rough structure and do not begin to shine over time. The disadvantage of PBT is that it is thick and does not show through. Therefore, the symbols will not glow in the dark, and in general, the backlight has an exclusively decorative function.


All additional functional elements are placed on the left side of the keyboard at the back. Type-C connector for charging and wired connection, layout switch (PC and Mac), connection type switch (wired, 2.4 GHz and Bluetooth), and USB receiver.

On the bottom of the Epomaker EK68 there is a small plate with the model name and technical information. There are four rubber strips around the perimeter to prevent slipping on the table. There are also double fold-out legs towards the back to accommodate the keyboard at an angle. The legs also have rubber inserts.

Three possible angles of inclination relative to the table surface:

The Type-C cable is 2 meters long, so it will be enough for the vast majority of fixed setups. The cable is quite thick, with a high-quality braid and gold-plated connectors.


Despite the plastic body, the Epomaker EK68 proved to be quite durable in terms of twisting and deflection. It is well assembled and does not hold anything together or crack anywhere. The weight is about 800 g, and the dimensions are 325x117x41 mm, so it is smaller in width than 15+ inch laptops.

How convenient is it to use?


Epomaker EK68 is a 65% keyboard that has 66 keys and a rotary encoder in the upper right corner that is responsible for adjusting the volume when scrolling and muting when pressed. It has crisp and pleasing cutoffs when scrolling. In addition to the absence of an additional numeric keypad, the keyboard has several other important features. It does not have the F row, as well as the PrtScr, Scroll Lock, Pause, Home, End, ~, Insert buttons. All of them are available through combinations with Fn. For example, the buttons F – Fn + row from 1 to +. The navigation block is not separated from other buttons, which is why the right Shift is slightly shorter. And the Del, PgUp and PgDn buttons are located vertically above the right arrow. And between the left arrow and Fn are two LEDs. There is no separate CapsLock indicator, but the indication is implemented due to the backlight of the button: it changes color. So it will take some time to get used to this layout. Although lovers of such compact models generally know what they are getting into. With games, there should be no problems: all the necessary buttons are present.


It is because of these features that it is worth looking at the instructions. It contains all the necessary key combinations, PC, Mac, as well as for setting the backlight and switching the connection:


One of the key features of the keyboard is the Gasket-Mounted design. That is, it has a damper layer between the switches and the PCB, as well as additional sound-absorbing foam inserts to reduce stray echoes, vibrations, extra echo and other unwanted effects. Previously, this design was found mainly in expensive mechanical models. Epomaker EK68 also supports hot-swap switches. It is compatible with most 3 and 5 pin mechanical switches such as Cherry, Gateron, Otemu, Kailh. This allows you to extend the life of the keyboard, and also gives you room to experiment with different switches.


Long buttons have stabilizers, so they are pressed evenly and do not stagger. The backlight LEDs are located closer to the user, in front of the switches.


The Epomaker EK68 is available with several switch options. With branded Epomaker Flamingo, Budgerigar, Bluebird, as well as Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow. It was the last option we had on the review. Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow are considered to be one of the most successful budget mechanical switches. These are linear switches with a life of 50 million clicks, a full travel of 4 mm, a stroke of 2 mm and a force of 50 g. They have a transparent housing and an LED lens on the front. The manufacturer does not specify in the specifications, but it looks like the switches are additionally lubricated at the factory. The ride is very smooth, uniform and without sand. The click is very nice and informative. Typing and playing on the keyboard is very comfortable.


The sound of the keyboard is also very pleasant. Unfortunately, a high-quality microphone was not at hand. The smartphone somewhat distorted the sound of the keyboard and in real conditions it sounds softer.

What can a keyboard do?

Epomaker EK68 supports N-key roll over (NKRO), so any number of simultaneously pressed buttons will work. The keyboard is universal, able to work with PC, Mac, as well as smartphones and tablets. For this, a wired connection is provided, 2.4 GHz with a complete USB receiver and Bluetooth. Moreover, the keyboard is able to remember up to three Bluetooth-devices and quickly switch between them. The top LED is a connection indicator. Red, green and blue are Bluetooth devices. White – radio channel.


A 3000 mAh battery is responsible for battery life. The manufacturer promises up to 2 weeks of work. But this will significantly depend on the type of connection, the activity of use and the backlight. The Epomaker EK68 has RGB backlighting with 20 different effects (including FPS and MMO game modes with backlit corresponding keys) and 15 brightness levels.


For more detailed settings and updating the keyboard, there is proprietary software, but it only works with a wired connection. It allows you to reconfigure the actions of the buttons of both the main and Fn layers, record macros, and also has very wide backlight settings. Including music visualization mode. The only thing missing is a setting for different actions on the rotary encoder, which would be handy for zooming or changing the size of the brush in various applications. Therefore, it can only adjust the volume and turn off the sound. The software can hardly be called very convenient, although it performs all the necessary functions. Perhaps with updates it will become more interesting. For fans of customization, it is worth noting that the keyboard does not support QMK / VIA settings.

Bottom line: three things to know about the Epomaker EK68.

  • Epomaker EK68 is a compact wireless mechanical keyboard with Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow switches.
  • Supports cable connection, 2.4 GHz and Bluetooth.
  • Has RGB lighting.
Epomaker EK68 Keyboard Specifications
Number of buttons 66 + rotary encoder
Switches Mechanical: Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow (Epomaker Flamingo, Budgerigar, Bluebird also available)
Switch type Linear
Life time 50 million clicks (Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow)
Travel to actuation point 2 mm (Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow)
Full stroke 4 mm (Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow)
pressing force 50 years (Gateron Pro 2.0 Yellow)
Backlight RGB
Connection wired, 2.4 GHz, Bluetooth
Battery 3000 mAh, up to 2 weeks of work
Cable interchangeable 2 m, Type-C
Dimensions 325ḫ117ḫ41 mm
Weight 800

For those who want to know more:



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