Cooler Master MasterKeys L PBT 13

Cooler Master MasterKeys L PBT

Closer Examination »

Packaging and Accessories

Cooler Master operates a web shop in the USA and so we begin with shipping packaging. This is not my first item from CM USA, and they continue to make sure their products arrive in top shape, inside a well-sized box that has paper packaging all around the product box itself for protection against shipping and handling issues.

The product box itself has a black color scheme with printed illustrations and wording all over the place. On the front, we see a full keyboard print showing the exact keyboard inside, right down to the color of the keyboard frame and keycaps, alongside the company and product names and some salient marketing features. This continues on the back with more features listed in multiple languages, along with a disassembled cutout of the keyboard, which was interesting to see. Two seals and two flaps here make sure you get the keyboard untampered and in new condition.

Open the box and we see the keyboard itself front and center, underneath which lies a quick start guide. The other two included accessories are a detachable cable and a set of replacement keycaps along with a keycap puller. The guide has a section on how to use the secondary functions as well as the onboard macro functionality of the keyboard, and the cable is 5' long and with gold-plated connectors - a male micro USB on the keyboard end and a male USB Type-A on the computer end. It would have been nice to see USB-C on the keyboard end, as more and more devices are going that way, but this being an incremental change to an existing keyboard, it re-uses the same mold and PCB, so I was not expecting a design change here necessarily.

The included ring-style keycap puller is made out of plastic, and I would have liked to see Cooler Master include a wire-style puller as they did with their higher-end keyboards in the past (Novatouch TKL, for example). The ring-style pullers can potentially scratch the sides and bottom of keycaps when used. Cooler Master also provides seven replacement keycaps for the Q, W, E, R, A, S and D keys to add some flair to the keyboard. Unfortunately, these are thin (0.92 mm wall thickness on average) ABS plastic keycaps, which has these feel like an incomplete feature here. They also have laser-etched legends, and the keycap material is more on the transparent side, allowing a lot of light to pass through all sides which, in combination with the absence of any backlighting having been mentioned on the keyboard product box, leads me to believe there is indeed no backlighting here at all. This would also be in line with their naming scheme for their keyboards, wherein the "Pro" moniker is used for their backlit keyboards.
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