Reviewed: HyperX Alloy Core RGB Gaming Keyboard

The tactile membrane keyboard for gamers on a budget

HyperX Alloy Core RBG Gaming Keyboard

by William Austin-Lobley |
Updated on

VERDICT: The HyperX Alloy Core is a great (and affordable) gaming keyboard that compromises on some flashier features, to focus on delivering what counts.

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Reviewed: HyperX Alloy Core RBG

HyperX KB5ME2 Alloy Core RGB Gaming Keyboard1 of 1

HyperX KB5ME2 Alloy Core RGB Gaming Keyboard

The Review

The Rundown

HyperX’s Alloy Core RGB (KB5ME2) is a full size membrane gaming keyboard, featuring RGB lighting, dedicated media and game locks keys, and the signature HyperX radiant light bar.

HyperX Alloy Core RGB Gaming Keyboard

Intending to bring a high-quality gaming experience without a high-quality price tag, the Alloy Core loads membrane soft-touch keys, with anti-ghosting and anti-rollover, into a durable plastic body to achieve “stability and reliability for gamers”. Lighting is controlled via the on-board keys, while the Game Mode key disables the Windows key to help avoid in-game disruption. The media keys provide a dedicated and easily-accessible method of control for both music and video, as well as volume and muting control.

The Experience

Membrane gaming keyboards don’t receive much love in the gaming community, who on the whole tend to prefer individual, tactile and ‘clicky’ mechanical switches. One major issue here, however, is that mechanical switches are more expensive. In the past, if a gamer on a budget was looking for a tactile keyboard, they’d likely have to opt for a cheap gaming keyboard with sub-par mechanical switches. The HyperX Alloy Core RGB is here to challenge this dynamic.

The Alloy Core offers gamers a highly pleasing and affordable membrane gaming keyboard, that boasts a tactile feel that isn't dissimilar to that of the mechanical switch. It’s clear that HyperX has put a lot of time into getting the feel right with this keyboard, and it pays off with the keystrokes, which manage to replicate an individual trigger sensation of rival mechanical-based models. The soft-touch keys subtly ‘clunk’ when pressed, offering a welcome physical feedback with quick spring-back. During our testing, we never encounter any issues with misread or failed keystrokes.

HyperX Radiant Bar Alloy Chrome

As a result of the membrane, the keystrokes are quiet, a factor that those looking to stream on Twitch or YouTube may want to consider (especially if they’re using an all-in-one unit, like the Logitech StreamCam, to capture their audio). The media and Game Mode keys are chunky, pronounced, and operate as expected, though the plastic is noticeably poorer than elsewhere on the keyboard.

The keyboard’s body and keys are entirely constructed from plastic, a decision no doubt made to reduce unit cost. This worried us slightly, as we prefer a sturdy base of alloy to reduce bounce, yet the Alloy Core proves to be a durable and stable unit, with no board flex and a tough key feel. The keyboard’s impressive construction quality and material strength is, in part, due to its size – the Alloy Core is a large keyboard. And in turn, this size is related to the on-board mechanics.


The HyperX Alloy Core RGB is a stand-alone unit with no software suite, meaning that all feature and RGB control is in-built. All RGB colour customisation is actioned from the keyboard itself, via dedicated keys and FN-actions, which are both simple to use, and limiting. There are six lighting effects to choose from, from fades to waves, though most will stick to the stationary illumination, the colour of which can be set by toggling through the available choices. There are also three brightness settings, 100%, 50% or off (though we’re not convinced ‘off’ is technically a setting).

Though illumination choice is limited, allowing the absence of high-spec lighting functions draw heavy criticism is a little unfair.

The HyperX Alloy Core is a great gaming keyboard that compromises on some flashier features, to focus on delivering what counts. A model to consider for entry-level gaming builds and anyone on a budget.

Reviewer use: General office work, FPS and RPG gaming.

HyperX KB5ME2 Alloy Core RGB Gaming Keyboard

Reviewed: HyperX Alloy Core RBG Gaming Keyboard

Reviewed: HyperX Alloy Core RBG Gaming Keyboard1 of 1

HyperX Alloy Core RBG Gaming Keyboard

Five Features


The membrane provides a comfortable keystroke which is responsive and reliable. It’s quiet too, which is ideal for Twitch streamers.


HyperX’s keys work with the membrane to create a tactile and solid keystroke feel with accompanying ‘clunk’, comparable to that of a mechanical switch.


The user can choose from one of six lighting effects, Colour Cycle, Spectrum Wave, Breathing, Solid, 5 Zones and Aurora, and three brightness settings.


The Alloy Core has been built to resist up to 120ml of liquid thanks to its liquid run-off and underside drainage.


The HyperX runs from a single USB connection, and the cable is braided to resist wear, twisting and heat.

If we were to change one thing…

We feel that the Alloy Core would benefit from more brightness options. An additional ‘75%’ and ‘25%’ choice would be appreciated, and wouldn’t increase the unit price.


The Technical Bit

Connection type: USB 2.0

Special keys: Media control, volume control, lighting control and Game Mode

Requirements: Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 8, or Windows 7.

William Lobley is a Content Writer for WhatsTheBest, specialising in technology, gaming and outdoors. He also writes for Empire Online.

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