As far as I’m aware there is no dedicated software driver, with the functionality all existing on the hardware itself. The MA87M supports N-Key rollover USB and there is no chatter whatsoever, both of which we come to expect from most mechanical keyboards. If you are on the market for a board that comes with a huge list of features then maybe this type of keyboard isn’t for you, the Beijing Opera is all about design, high-end performance, and quality craftsmanship.
Aesthetics aside, the switches are the biggest feature of the MA87M keyboard. I have used a wide variety of switches since I began testing keyboards and I personally settled on Cherry MX Red, often favoring linear style over tactile, for both gaming and typing.
When buying this board in particular you get three switch options. The three switches in question are Varmilo’s new EC V2 switches, available in Rose, Sakura, and Daisy. All three are linear style switches, with different operating forces ranging from the Rose at 55gf which is similar to Cherry MX Black, to the Daisy at 35gf. The model we are reviewing today features the Sakura switch with an actuation force of 45gf, making it feel almost identical to Cherry MX Red.
While these feel comparable to the Cherry MX Red, they are much smoother and generally much more satisfying to the touch and acoustically. These are my new favorite switches but, as they are different, let’s take a look at what is going on. These switches rely on a contact-less electrostatic capacitance generated by an electric field induction. Basically, this means these are going to last a lot longer than your standard physical contact switches, in theory at least.
With the included switch testing kit, we see a fourth switch in the making that will be comparable to Cherry MX Blue. Varmilo calls their tactile switch “Ivy” but this is under development at the moment.
When I first took this out and plugged it in, I thought there was no backlighting at all. I’m used to this automatically coming on when they power up. After a quick look at the switches beneath the keycaps I could see there was some form of lighting so proceeded to mess around with the Fn key and arrow keys.
The backlight is just in white, yea sorry no RGB. I’m not sorry really, this board wouldn’t look right with RGB, I feel the rainbow effects that dazzle us with other boards would clash with the design, whereas the white backlight compliments it well and even highlights it as the natural light slowly goes away in the evening.
To turn on the backlight I pressed Fn + the up arrow. You can toggle between a static light and breathing effect by pressing the Fn key + the right arrow. You can change the brightness or the speed of the breathing effect (there are four levels) by pressing Fn + up and down arrows after switched on. To switch the lighting on or off altogether, you simply press Fn + X.
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