Logitech Gaming Software

Logitech’s Gaming software is well designed, offering very good options and flexibility while being easy to use. The main screen has no practical purpose, as it merely illustrates the selected Logitech peripheral, the G910 Orion Spectrum in our case. Access to other devices and features is possible via the buttons docked in the bottom row of the user’s interface.

An entire screen is dedicated to the keyboard’s “Game mode” button. From this screen the user can select any keys of the keyboard that wants to have disabled once the game mode button has been pressed.

The lighting button allows the programming of the keyboard’s lighting mode and effects. The keys can be individually programmed to a specific color or keyboard-wide effects can be initiated.

The heat map button is purely informative, allowing the user to record the number of keystrokes that the software will then present into a “heat map” that will indicate which of the keys are getting more keystrokes than others. Note that the recording has to be manually initiated, by default this option has been disabled.

The G button leads to the most important section of the interface, the section that allows for the programming of profiles, modes and advanced commands (macros). Profiles can be linked to specific applications/games and automatically initiate once they have been launched. Sadly, only the nine extra “G” keys of the G910 Orion Spectrum can be programmed, severely reducing the versatility of the keyboard.

The command editor is simple, yet flexible enough. The first tab simply inserts a normal keystroke, with or without modifier keys. The sixth tab virtually offers some popular keystroke commands and we feel that it should just be merged with the first in a future version of the software. The fourth and fifth tabs are also similar, only they respectively insert single mouse key presses and media control commands instead.

The second essentially is the macro editor, which allows the programming of multiple keystrokes, with or without time delays. Once a macro has been programmed, the events or delays can be manually edited. It cannot record mouse clicks or movements, but at least mouse clicks can be manually inserted into the macro once it has been programmed.

The third tab inserts a string of characters, making it ideal for both short and long repetitive messages or code. It does not paste the characters into the application, it has the keyboard virtually typing it (with or without delay between the characters), so there should not be any compatibility problems.

The seventh tab allows the programmed G key to launch an external application. This could be any virtually any file, from external macros compiled with third-party software to games and applications, or even non-executable files such as a picture or a music file. The eighth tab offers some popular application shortcuts. The ninth and final tab includes the most basic functions of Ventrilo, a freeware VoIP software.

ARX Control Application

We also had a quick look at the ARX Control, the application that Logitech provides for Android and iOS devices. The software is relatively lightweight and responsive, offering informative screens and direct access to some of the keyboard’s advanced functions, but it feels that it still needs a lot of work to live up to the hype Logitech raised about it.

The first screen of the software is a real-time system report, indicating the overall performance of the CPU, GPU and RAM. The second screen offers direct access to manually initiate any programmed profiles (except the default profile). Assuming that there is an advanced Logitech mouse present, the third tab allows for the monitoring of its battery life and programming of its DPI settings. The fourth tab offers sound and media controls, but it did not work as intended with our device, as nearly all of the icons were extremely tiny and gathered to the left side of the screen. The corresponding buttons of the keyboard itself are just centimeters to the right of the ARX Dock anyway. Finally, the fifth tab allows for the basic programming of the G keys, but with simple or preprogrammed commands only.

The basic features of the ARX Control software do seem unimportant, but the application can actually tap into the game and act as a secondary information monitor. For example, it can display information about the car in a racing game, health/ammunition info in an FPS, or a panel for the VoIP software that is currently running. The catch is that there are very few games and applications that currently support the ARX Control software and even these available applets are, in their vast majority, unofficial packages that have been developed by individuals.

The Logitech G910 Orion Spectrum Mechanical Gaming Keyboard Per-Key Quality Testing
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  • cmdrdredd - Thursday, October 06, 2016 - link

    I would also add that the gaming specific market has driven prices up with products bearing a team name or the name of the guy who won the last tournament. Putting fancy colors on the product, standout packaging, and an endorsement from a "pro" gamer and you drive the price up. Like you said there are people buying these when the same functionality can be had elsewhere. Companies like Razer really take advantage of this consumer segment.

    It's really a combination of the two IMO. The companies marketing gear specific to gaming to "give you the winning edge", as well as the people buying it. All manner of parts and peripherals are like this. It's not just keyboards.
    Reply
  • Murloc - Thursday, October 06, 2016 - link

    but it's not like the das keyboard which aims at being essential is cheap either. Reply
  • shabby - Thursday, October 06, 2016 - link

    Lets just hope these companies don't figure out that putting "tactical" will also increase sales and desirability. Reply
  • BurntMyBacon - Friday, October 07, 2016 - link

    Shoot me now. Reply
  • Stuka87 - Thursday, October 06, 2016 - link

    Back in the day, those keyboards were cheap because they were mass produced, and they had no special features. These days, they are not mass produced in the quantities that they were back then. As production numbers go down, the price to produce goes up.

    But, I do think $180 is kind of steep. I paid $120 each for my Razer Black Widow Ultimates (both stealths), but I don't think I could justify $180.
    Reply
  • DanNeely - Thursday, October 06, 2016 - link

    ...except they weren't. At its cheapest the IBM Model M's list price only approached $100 from the high side after launching for more than double that. And remember than inflation means that prices from 30 years ago are something like twice as expensive as the raw number suggests.

    https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=9629.0
    Reply
  • hansmuff - Saturday, October 08, 2016 - link

    I think the cost got passed down to customers, but expensive PCs are just no longer a reality. Dell used to ship awesome keyboards until the early 2000's, they had ALPS switches (like the AT-101 series.) But it was all cost of the parcel, and once PCs were a commodity the price had to come down, so here are your $10 rubber domes.

    I very well remember buying a 'Cherry Gold' keyboard for good money back in the 90's. It was about $80 then.
    Reply
  • theduckofdeath - Sunday, October 09, 2016 - link

    Back in the days, a spare keyboard felt cheap because you'd just paid 5,000 bucks for a mid range PC. I can remember paying around $150 for a keyboard back in the days. Add inflation to that and you'll realise these keyboards today really aren't that expensive.
    Yes, there are a lot of $10 budget keyboards today but, you get what you pay for when buying those.
    Reply
  • Beaver M. - Tuesday, October 18, 2016 - link

    I remember very well paying 50 German Marks for different HP and Cherry mechanical keyboards (that I still have here). That would be about 25 Euro. So dont talk crap about them being expensive. Generally a set of mouse and keyboard with good quality would have been around 100 German Marks. Now its 100 Euro. Of course back then there was overpriced stuff too, but you were able to get high quality mechanical keyboards for MUCH MUCH less than today.
    I paid 80 Euro for my keyboard, and its still worse than the old mechanical ones from the ergonomics standpoint. It only has lighting and useless macros, which the old ones didnt have.
    Reply
  • Footman36 - Thursday, October 06, 2016 - link

    I have many mechanical keyboards and these Romer G switches are by far the best mechanical switches I have used. They are quiet, fast and reliable. I am not so sure about the actual design of the Logitech keyboards themselves, the wrist support is lousy and the keyboards are asymmetrical (looking at you G410). If you can overlook the actual design then the key stroke and switches are close to perfect for me. I have a bunch of Corsair and Coolermaster keyboards sitting in my storeroom that I did not care for. Reply

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