Computex 2016: Corsair hands-on


Located within the Grand Hyatt Hotel in a suite usually reserved for dignitaries and those with unimaginable wealth, Corsair separated itself from the rest of the Computex show floor. The company opted for a quieter interaction with media and clients.

This year was yet another outing for Corsair’s Bulldog, much like last year. The difference this time is that it’s gone through some improvements internally, even though externally it’s identical to what we’ve seen before. Shipping in some countries already, the Corsair Bulldog was joined by another familiar product in the form of the companion Lapdog. Again, it’s another product that we saw last year, but with improved ergonomics and stability which overall results in a more stable platform for your couch/sofa computing needs.

As VR was the in thing this year, Corsair demoed the Bulldog’s ability to handle full-sized graphics cards which can power high frame rate VR applications. What other ventures Corsair may embark on as far as VR is concerned remains to be seen, but between Overwatch being played on a ridiculously large 4K screen (over 70 inches of it) and the VR experience provided by the Bulldog, gaming remains at the heart of Corsair’s products and is very much part of their product DNA.

In line with this, the recently announced Corsair K65 RapidFire with MX Speed switches was on show as well. With a lower actuation force and a lowered key travel distance (1.2mm), this keyboard forms part of the K series and K65 in particular, placing it above the much-celebrated Strafe MX Silent. It follows the familiar K65 design apart from an improved aluminium chassis and finish, with new key switches and of course RGB colour support via CUE. Complementing this exclusively gaming-orientated keyboard was the K series LUX which uses a new LED that is not only much brighter than previous ones, but has a longer lifespan as well. As part of the K series, like the RapidFire this keyboard is also within Corsair’s more premium range and as such you’re looking at over R2,000 locally. From the brief time spent with it, there seems to be some sense in investing that much in the keyboard as it once again oozes quality like no other offering on the market.

More in line with the Corsair of old and certainly the highlight of our visit, we got our first glimpse of two new Corsair DDR4 lines – the first being the Special Edition DDR4 3,200MHz kits which are initially said to be shipping at a super-low C14 latency. Sporting new heat spreaders and LEDs, this super-limited set of memory uses the finest Samsung chips which are not only selected from an already good series, but hand sorted for the ultimate in performance. Clock speeds are said to go well past the 4GHz mark while maintaining spectacularly low timings, making for arguably the fastest kits of memory to ever come from Corsair.

With virtually everything about the memory built anew, the LEDs (powered by the DIMM slots) can be controlled via software as well. A first in the DRAM business and certainly something that those fortunate enough to get their hands on a kit will appreciate. Again, this is said to be an exclusive line of memory kits, with less than 1,000 kits available to the entire world. If you’re looking to bag yourself one of these, it’s advisable that you keep an eye on the Corsair website and order a kit as and when they’re made available. By all indications these will likely sell out within a week.

Fortunately, if you don’t have the funds for the Dominator exclusive kit, then you should consider the new Vengeance LED series, which also sports a new heat spreader and LED lighting system that can be controlled via software. This series will have regular availability and it too will reach capacities as high as 64GB and scorching frequencies above 4,300MHz.

We’ll be sure to have a closer look at one of these kits and the peripherals that Corsair had on display soon, so stay tuned for those reviews.