Roccat’s Vulcan II Max is so beautiful that I put it on my list. best gaming keyboard — It’s really beautiful.But not everyone wants to spend his $200+ on his gaming keyboard, so it’s nice to see Roccat’s latest release more budget-friendly. and brand new sports mechanical Switch (as opposed to the optical switch on the Vulcan II Max).
The Vulcan II is a stripped-down version of the Vulcan II Max (sort of), but not really stripped down. The wrist rest isn’t very appealing (the Vulcan II Max’s wrist rest, while beautiful, isn’t particularly classy). ), nice but not powerful lighting effects (I’m guessing based on the fact that it only has 1 USB plug instead of 2), and… a set of flip-out feet. It has mechanical switches instead of optical ones, which seems like a lateral move (if not an upgrade).
Otherwise, the Vulcan II is almost identical to the Vulcan II Max, with the same overall layout and structure, and similarly bright and clean per-key RGB lighting (but without edge lighting). The Vulcan II comes in a black and white colorway with Roccat’s Titan II mechanical red (linear) switches and is priced at $149.99, significantly cheaper than the Vulcan II Max’s retail price of $229.99. Vulcan II Max Now on sale for $169.99 — I mean, it’s not really a big deal.
Vulcan II design and manufacturing
The Vulcan II is a full-size wired keyboard with Roccat’s Titan II Red linear mechanical switches. They look very similar, but Vulcan II MaxReleased in October 2022 by Roccat, it features a lightweight plastic chassis and durable aluminum top plate with sleek diamond-cut chamfered edges. However, the Vulcan II’s top plate has a brushed metal finish, which (in my opinion) looks more premium than this. Vulcan II Max matte finish.
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The Vulcan II is the same size as the Vulcan II Max, measuring approximately 18.2 inches (463mm) long, 6.2 inches (152mm) wide and 1.3 inches (33mm) high. However, it weighs less, at just 2.09 pounds (949g) without accessories, just over 3 ounces lighter than the Vulcan II Max’s 2.29 pounds (1040g). The Vulcan II comes in black and white color variants, and our review model was white. The white coloring features a silver top plate, white keycaps, and white wrist rest, while the black is all black.
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There are three dedicated media keys (rewind, play/pause, fast forward) in the upper right corner, as well as a tactile, clickable volume knob. There’s also an indicator light in the bottom right corner, absent from the Vulcan II Max, that lights up to indicate Numlock, ‘Easy-Shift’, and Game Mode.
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The back of the keyboard has a small strip of non-slip material and a set of flip-up feet. The keyboard is wired, with a fixed 6-foot (1.8 m) USB-A cable in the center-back. It’s thinner than the Vulcan II Max’s cable as he only has one cable (the Vulcan II Max has two he’s to provide extra power). This is a nice braided cable that comes with cable management and has an icon on the plug to help identify the keyboard, but I like that the premium he gaming keyboard has a detachable cable.
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The Vulcan II comes with a removable wrist rest and is made from slightly flexible hard plastic. It attaches via two plastic tabs that snap into slots on the front of the keyboard. The white wrist rest is framed in light gray plastic and features the Roccat logo in the lower right corner. It’s not particularly impressive, and it’s not “cushioned” as the Vulcan II product page suggests, but it’s attached to the keyboard and does a decent job of keeping your wrists in line with your hands while typing. provide support.
|Titan II Mechanical (Red or Brown)
|RGB per key
|yes, 4 profiles
|3 + volume knob
|Plastic, anodized aluminum top plate
|Dimensions (length x width x height)
|18.2 × 6.1 × 1.3 inches / 463 × 152 × 33 mm
|2.09 lbs / 949g
|Manufacturer’s suggested retail price / price at the time of review
|$149.99 / $149.99
|July 19, 2023
Typing and gaming experience with Vulcan II
Perhaps the biggest difference with the Vulcan II is the Vulcan II Max is a switch: Vulcan II is Roccat’s first Titan II-powered keyboard mechanical The switches are red (linear), and possibly brown (tactile) in the future – our review unit came with red switches – while the Vulcan II Max comes with Roccat’s Titan II is equipped with optical Switch (also available in red/brown). The new Titan II mechanical switches feature an ‘optimized transparent housing’ for an enhanced lighting experience and withstand up to 80 million keystrokes.
The Titan II mechanical red switch has an actuation force of 45g, actuation distance of 1.4mm, and total travel of 3.6mm, the same as its optical counterpart. Because these are linear switches, you get smooth, consistent key presses without tactile bumps or clicks. Despite weighing the same as the Titan II Optical Red Switch, the Titan II Mechanical Red Switch certainly feels a little… heavier. They aren’t heavy per se, but you can tell by both the feel and the sound that these are mechanical switches rather than optical. The Titan II Mechanical Red also has a heavier, more subdued sound than optical switches.
As for the typing experience, the Vulcan II offers a fairly similar typing experience to the Vulcan II Max, though the Vulcan II’s mechanical switches feel and sound slightly better. In particular, the Vulcan II’s switches feel great. wonderful smoother and more satisfying thunk (It’s noticeable when using both keyboards side by side, but the Vulcan II Max’s optical switches aren’t an issue.) The Vulcan II features thin, shallow ABS keycaps that are gently dished (except for the bottom row, which are convex instead of concave. I can understand the reasoning behind this, but the design I don’t like it as a choice). The keycaps are lightweight and slippery, so you don’t have to sweat too much while typing or gaming. These are not the best keycaps for typing, but they are well designed to complement the keyboard’s bright and beautiful, his RGB lighting per key.
Gaming on the Vulcan II is better than typing, thanks to the keyboard’s smooth, speedy linear switches and somewhat slippery keycaps. The mechanical switches are still light enough that you can press them quickly and hold without getting tired. Also, the slipperiness of the keycaps allows your fingers to fly around the keyboard (although it may be slightly less precise than the more premium keycaps). . I didn’t notice any noticeable difference in latency between the Vulcan II and Vulcan II Max in games such as: overwatch 2 and ValorantThe latter optical switch should be faster than the mechanical switch, but I also didn’t play at a particularly competitive level.
Vulcan II features and software
The Vulcan II works in tandem with Roccat’s universal peripheral software, Swarm, which allows you to program both primary and secondary keybindings, as well as customize the keyboard’s per-key RGB lighting. Roccat says the keyboard has onboard storage for up to 4 profiles, but according to Swarm and my testing, it actually has onboard storage for up to 5 profiles. However, the fifth profile (first profile) must be programmed with hotkeys. 4 are linked to the F1-F4 secondary keybindings by default).
Like basically all peripheral software, Swarm is unnecessarily overbuilt and clunky, with bells and whistles like software-based typing sounds (which are as bad as you can imagine). For programming keybindings, Swarm offers a drag-and-drop format with a fairly comprehensive list of functions. It also has a built-in macro manager that lets you create and record your own macros, and comes with preset he macros for many popular games.
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The Vulcan II comes with several preset secondary keybindings (shown below the primary legend on the keycaps), most of which are reprogrammable (except the numeric keypad). It also features Roccat’s “Easy-Shift” button duplicator technology, providing his second function when the keyboard is in game mode. You can press Fn + Windows key to toggle game mode and press Capslock + to enable a second “Easy-Shift” keybinding. [key]. In most cases, the primary keybindings, game mode keybindings, and “Easy-Shift” keybindings can all be reprogrammed. This provides a large number of customizable keys, albeit in a very complex format.
The Vulcan II doesn’t have the same dual LED switches as the Vulcan II Max, nor does it spill light from the bottom, but it still provides a very bright and beautiful RGB light show. The keyboard is set by default with Roccat’s signature Aimo lighting effect. This is a multi-color ‘organic’ lighting experience that changes and adapts over time based on usage. Not sure how true that last part is, but I love Aimo’s lighting. This is a charming twist on the typical spectral cycling defaults found in all other gaming keyboards.
I will do The Vulcan II is a more budget-friendly option for those who like the look of the Vulcan II Max but don’t like the $230 price tag. The Vulcan II offers a very similar aesthetic and feel to the Vulcan II Max, with a few more benefits (a more premium brushed aluminum finish on the top plate, and very smooth and satisfying mechanical switches). and the price is much higher. A reasonable $150. However, the Vulcan II Max currently retails for $170, so we’re not sure what Roccat is really going for here.
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The Vulcan II’s mechanical switches feel better than the Vulcan II Max’s optical switches, but not by much. And you can’t even light a candle to the Vulcan II Max’s utterly beautiful light show, which spills onto your (more comfortable) wrist rest. If you’re looking for a white keyboard with cute lighting effects and his TKL-style plush wrist rest, I also recommend Logitech’s G715 keyboard if you can find it on sale.
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