Excerpt: Upon receiving the SteelSeries Shift, I wasn't too excited to tell you the truth. I don't know why, but I think it just might be the amount of marketing power Logitech have. But it all disappeared once I looked at the box and started playing with it. The build quality of the Shift is second-to-none; it feels in a word; perfect. The included wrist-rest is a nice addition for those long gaming sessions when you're pwning up those newbs in your game of choice.
Conclusion: The Steelseries SHIFT is one serious gaming keyboard that can only be described as "mental" ... in a good way. If you're after a gaming keyboard that can be custom programmed specifically to suit your needs for a particular game or any game for that matter ... then the Steelseries SHIFT is your answer. It's one of the most feature-rich keyboards we've tested, and the interchangeable keysets are fun to use.
Conclusion: Add ergonomic features like a comfortable wrist rest, adjustable height, and more accessible USB and audio ports and you have yourself a killer keyboard for a pretty decent price tag of $90. The only minor issue I have with the Shift is the fact that individual keysets cost an extra $25 which can quickly ramp up if you begin collecting.
Summary: The game-specific keysets are rarely helpful, and if you want game-specific key bindings you’re better off just getting a high-quality gaming keyboard that lets you customize the keys. The interchangeable nature of the keyboard creates a couple of other problems, like a split-in-two spacebar and less-satisfying dome-style keys, which—while not terrible—aren’t the best. We love the Shift’s features, but there are better-constructed boards for the same price.
Pros: Amazing feature set, including huge customization and great software support.
Cons: Switchable faceplates require more sacrifices than they’re worth.
Conclusion: The first impression consumers will get when unboxing the Shift is that this is a solid keyboard. It has a decent weight to it, which combined with the rubber feet, keeps it planted firmly on the desk. At 4cm thick, with an almost industrial look it also has a significant presence in front of any system and this large body means the casing has very little flex. It really does feel like it will take a significant amount of punishment over time without issue.
Conclusion: An intelligent layout helps to ensure we maximise our gaming performance and the ability to use the Shifts great software and huge flexibility for profiles and macro's ensures that every StarCraft 2 player will find a configuration which benefits them.