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Hands On: HyperX Alloy FPS Pro

HyperX’s Alloy FPS Pro is the company's follow-up to the well-liked Alloy FPS keyboard. Designed mostly for competitive gamers, the original FPS impressed with a hefty steel frame and high-end Cherry MX switches. The new Pro model is even smaller than its predecessor, and has adopted a tenkeyless design.

You can pick up the HyperX Alloy FPS Pro for $80 on Newegg.

Design and Comfort

Like its older brother, the Alloy FPS Pro is constructed from a solid steel frame. As you might expect, it’s tough as nails. This isn’t a keyboard that’s going to snap if you look at it the wrong way. While that’s less important if your keyboard is going to be sitting on your desk all day, it matters if you’re going to be throwing it in your bag on your way to a tournament. In addition to being nigh-unbreakable, the FPS Pro is also surprisingly lightweight. While I couldn’t find exact stats on HyperX’s website, the original FPS weighed around 2.3 pounds.

The keys aren’t encased either, making the FPS Pro easy to clean. Nice.

The Alloy FPS Pro has a detachable braided cable. Detachable cables are a seriously nice quality of life feature, and I wish I saw them more often.

Aesthetically speaking, HyperX has gone with a lean and mean design, with a black frame and keycaps, accented with all red backlighting. There’s not too much of that “elite gamer” look, outside of a simple and classy HyperX logo on the spacebar. From ten feet away, the FPS Pro looks like a regular office keyboard. While surely there are some that want to show off their gamer pride with big angles and bright colors, I personally like a more understated, professional look.

It’s not the most feature rich keyboard, but in this price range, that’s not hugely surprising.

Hopefully you like it too, because unlike other keyboards in this price range, you’re stuck with just the red backlight. No full RGB here, just Terminator red. There is some backlight customization – you can turn on a breathing effect, adjust the brightness of the lights to four different levels, or turn off the backlight entirely.

While the single color backlight is a negative, if you can look past that limitation HyperX has done a great job with lighting overall. Even on the brightest setting the FPS Pro’s backlights are easy on the eyes, and the keys are all highly visible and perfectly legible.

Performance and Features

The Allow FPS Pro is a tenkeyless keyboard, meaning it forgoes the numpad for a more compact size. If you’re a spreadsheet jockey or looking for a keyboard that can game and do serious business, you might want to look elsewhere. Gamers might appreciate the extra desk space the FPS Pro provides, because it means more room for mice, microphones, and other peripherals.

The FPS Pro offers full anti-ghosting and n-keyrollover, preventing missed keystrokes and allowing unlimited simultaneous presses in case you have a million extra fingers. You activate these features by putting the FPS Pro in “Gamer Mode,” which is done by hitting Function + F12. I’m not entirely sure why these features aren’t always on, but I suppose it doesn’t hurt to have options.

Like many mechanical gaming keyboards, the Alloy FPS Pro comes with Cherry MX switches. My review model came with Red switches, and I’m a fan. The Reds are light and easy to press for those moments when you need to quickly strafe or reload. While the Reds are clearly meant more for gamers than anyone else, but I didn’t mind writing with them at all. I typed up this entire article on the FPS Pro, and never suffered a missed keystroke. The Reds are relatively quiet, so those of you who work in an office or just hate the loud click clack of other switches should be satisfied.

While I love the FPS Pro, there’s a couple of things I hope HyperX changes for the next version. While the FPS Pro retains most of the features of the original FPS keyboard, it lacks the USB passthrough. I can understand HyperX’s decision to cut it to reduce the size of the board, but I miss the flexibility that port provides.

There’s also no software with the FPS Pro, so you can forget about custom macros, multiple profiles, or any other tweaks. It’s not the most feature rich keyboard, but in this price range, that’s not hugely surprising.

Hyper Power

The Alloy FPS Pro is an outstanding keyboard, one that most hardcore gamers will absolutely adore. Those looking for tons of customization or a tenkey pad will be left in the lurch, but those who value build quality, compactness, and overall feel will have found an excellent board in the FPS Pro.