Ever since I first got involved in the world of custom (think anything outside of OEM) keyboards, there have been three companies on my bucket list: Topre from Japan, Varmilo from China, and Leopold from Korea. I came close to the former with a Cooler Master keyboard review, and Leopold almost came through two years ago. Varmilo was a unicorn though, even after having visited them in person at Computex 2018 and Computex 2019. So you can imagine my surprise when I was contacted by them last year about bringing eyes on their latest switches, the electrostatic capacitive version 2 range (EC V2). The company's slogan is "keyboard artist," so there was no way I was covering their keyboards until I was reunited with my full camera setup. Here we are then to take a look at the first Varmilo entry in the TPU review database, and thanks again to the company for sending a review sample.
Varmilo is a Chinese company owned by Shenzhen Zhihaihe Technology Co., Ltd. and founded in 2012. They have within the last few years introduced special-themed designs for keyboards, going all the way from case to keycap and switch design. The company thus sought to showcase their new EC V2 switches on several of their themed keyboards to get the word out. One of these, and a very recent theme too, is Beijing Opera. Varmilo sought to celebrate the history of the Beijing Opera and Hanfu culture here, and this line comes in 65%, 80%, and 110% versions. We have here the TKL 80% (which some companies also call 85% or simply just tenkeyless) and will go through the keyboard and switches in detail in this review beginning with a look at the specifications below.
|Varmilo MA87M Beijing Opera Keyboard|
|Layout:||87-key TKL form factor in a US ANSI layout|
|Material:||ABS plastic case, PBT plastic keycaps, and steel plate|
|Weight:||1.8 kg/4 lbs.|
|Anti-ghosting:||Full N-Key rollover USB|
|Media Keys:||Available as a layered function|
|Dimensions:||134 (L) x 356 (W) x 33 (H) mm|
|Cable Length:||6 ft/1.8 m|
|Switch Type:||Choice of Varmilo EC V2 Sakura, Rose, or Daisy electrostatic capacitive switch|
|Backlighting:||Yes, white, single color|