"Tried this AND Eclipse II"4.0 starson by fastethanfelson
Pros: Solid feel / construction, good feel on key response, lighting very well done, extra keys are huge, multimedia keys/dials are actually useful, usb on keyboard
Cons: Rear feet do not angle up enough, larger keys can be a bit sticky, bottom not straight for 3rd party wrist rests
Summary: Solid feel / construction, good feel on key response, lighting very well done, extra keys are huge, multimedia keys/dials are actually useful, usb on keyboard
Rear feet do not angle up enough, larger keys can be a bit sticky, bottom not straight for 3rd party wrist rests
I bought both the Saitek Eclipse II and the G11 (did not buy the G15 because I did not see the LCD as useful). I wanted to see which one was better, and figured they’re both probably pretty good, I’d use one at work and one at home.
My preference is the G11, but both are great keyboards. Some of this decision comes down to taste, not quality / features.
Typing: The G11 has a deeper key press – this does require a little more effort for typing, and the keys do feel a little farther spaced apart (this may not be the case, but it definitely feels that way even asking other friends to try both). The feel of the keys is a little less “clicky”, and makes a much quieter noise with each button press than the Eclipse II. The concavity of the keys on the G11 is noticeably deeper or more pronounced than on the Eclipse II. Some of the large keys do feel a little more resistant on the G11, I believe because all the keys seem that way, and so the larger ones don’t get stuck, but can feel slightly more “gushy” – which is actually what I would prefer all the keys to feel like.
The Eclipse II keys are much flatter and feel closer together, and typing winds up feeling a little easier as the key press is also shallower and less resistant.
Lighting: G11 by a mile. Each key lights up through the letters only, no bleed through, very impressive in the dark. The Eclipse II has almost no light coming through the key letters because so much bleeds through elsewhere. While you can cycle the colors on the Eclipse II and not on the G11, it’s not worth it. Both keyboards could be brighter, but neither is that bad, but with the flatter keys and shiner material on the Eclipse II, if you do have the light, on, it is not easy to see the letters – G11 is easy to see in light and dark.
Features: G11 by a mile. 18X3 extra, programmable keys are key (ha ha, punny) for gaming. Multimedia buttons on the Eclipse II are out of the way and will therefore probably never get used, whereas the G11 puts them top and center, and has volume as a dial, not a button – crucial for proper use. USB on keyboard is awesome, Eclipse II doesn’t have it.
Construction: Tie. They both feel solid, and are heavy (in a good way). Both have great rubber feet that keep them in place on your desk.
Aesthetics: G11 is very large – but I am not sure what the deal is with all the size complaints – if you use a keyboard in a tray, it should fit fine. If you use it on a desk, it should definitely fit fine. If you really do have some weird setup with cramped space for a keyboard, get the Eclipse II – it’s much smaller. I think the G11 looks better, but a friend suggested it looks more Tron-ish, and he likes the Eclipse II look better. To me, the Eclipse II’s silver is too shiny and plasticky looking, and the G11’s muted steel look is better,
Both keyboards protrude from the bottom in odd ways preventing flush use of a 3rd party wrist rest, which I highly recommend trying if you have not already. The hard plastic wrist rests they both come with can be tossed out of the box. Go get a gel keyboard and mouse wrist rest at an office supply store, and use them for a couple of days – you’ll wonder how you lived without them, especially on the mouse. Way more stamina for those 18 hour gaming sessions. I was also considering the Tarantula, but the darn thing forces you to use its built in wrist rest. Boooo. Get with it keyboard designers, just keep the bottom flat.
Price: About the same, between $50 and $60.
Conclusion: If you like a slightly gushy but solid feeland game a lot, get the G11. If you like a little more “clicky” and loose, shallow key presses, or for everyday typing and nothing special, the Eclipse II will serve you well. They’re both good keyboards – you might consider trying both yourself if you can find a store with both on display.