Review and Test of the COUGAR Vantar Gaming Keyboard
For The Best Play and Work Experience
Who does not appreciate a mechanical keyboard? If you have not lain, your hands on one you are missing fast speed with an excellent response and functionality.
However, there are a number of important things to consider such as large dimensions, the height of the switches, noisy keycaps, and a high price. In this case, it is worth looking towards classical membrane models sold at a reasonable price and best suited for the user.
We were lucky to get our hands on the COUGAR Vantar game keyboard designed with a scissor-membrane mechanism, compact body, and customizable backlight.
What is in the box?
You receive the COUGAR in a medium-sized black box made of cardboard. On its front side, there is a picture of the keyboard. The box shows the available colors of illumination and a short list of advantages. The back of the box presents you more descriptive and detailed information of the features in several languages, including Russian. Together with the keyboard, we only found the user documentation included.
First, the main attraction of the COUGAR Vantar is the small dimension and weight. With the compact design, it takes up less space on your desk. This makes it a great game keyboard to take to LAN parties. At the same time, the design comprises dark colors with low-key keys and a translucent edging around the borders.
The main material used is a matte plastic. The top panel has textures similar to metal. The base is ordinary and a little rough. The build quality and stiffness of the structure are good: visually all the elements are well adjusted and processed, and during our testing, we found no restrictions or excessive squeaks.
On the lower part, there are five small-rubberized legs for using the device on smooth surfaces and two folding plastic ones with overlays. There is a sticker with technical information and the manufacturer’s logo found at the bottom of the keyboard. There is no drainage system, which indicates the lack of protection from spilled liquids.
The keyboard casing has a wedge comfortable to use. In this case, the folding legs allow you to change the slope of the working area. All this allows you to manage even without a pod stand during typing or games, although it would not be required. The USB cable is nylon braided, but in our case, there is no stiffening found at the output and has a filter at the end. The cable itself has a length of 1.6 m and offers moderate flexibility.
COUGAR Vantar belongs to the class of scissor-membrane keyboards with low-profile keys found in laptops. The caps of buttons are flat. It creates a feeling that they have a light soft-touch coating, although, in fact, it does not. They have a standard dimension (15 x 15 mm), but for convenience, the bottom rows increased to a height of 19 mm.
The distance between the keys is 4 mm. The layout is presented in a standard “American” version with a single-level [Enter] and oblong [Left Shift] and [Backspace], as well as an additional digital block. The symbolic elements are marked with a reliable laser engraving. However, due to the translucent coating, you can hardly distinguish them with the illumination turned off, which also depends on the ambient light.
The main keypad is added with the [FN] button, which is located near [Windows] on the left side of the case. With its help, you can activate the usual multimedia actions, which are works with all the function keys [F1-F12]. Gamers will find it convenient to disable the [Windows] key ([FN] + [Windows] is activated).
With the Anti-Ghosting system, the keyboard to recognize up to 19 simultaneous clicks without any problems, however, only around the WASD area, including the arrows block. Another interesting feature is the ability to instantly switch the function of the WASD-block to the arrows (FN] + [W]), without having to poke around in the game settings, which could be useful to left-handers.
The COUGAR Vantar keys have a short and easy stroke, which can be the cause of accidental triggering, with a slightly sluggish tactile response and very quiet operation. If you are used to, working with laptops there is no need of rebuilding the keyboard, but takes time to get used to. The keyboard is equally well suited for typing and for lengthy gaming sessions. In addition, your hands do not get tired.
This is a modern gaming device equipped with LED-backlighting, and not only for the keys themselves, but around the edges as well. In our case, the kit includes 8 colors and 8 modes of operation. Modes and colors are switched using the combinations [FN] + [1-8].
In some modes, you can change the animation speed and direction ([FN] + WASD or arrows), and in others – the brightness ([FN] + [PgUp] / [PgDown]) within three levels. To enable/disable illuminations, use the combination [FN] + [Home]. No additional software or drivers are needed.
The backlight is not of the brightest, but it does not cause any complaints. It looks nice, although, it’s a matter of preference. It does lack built-in memory.
COUGAR Vantar is a classic low-profile keyboard. The advantages of the gaming keyboards are the compact design, low-key appearance, and good quality performance. The scissor-membrane mechanism is quite suitable for typing of text and games. There is a traditional set of keys supporting multimedia actions, the ability to lock the [Windows] key and Anti-Ghosting technology with support for up to 19 simultaneous keystrokes. It is worth noting the possibility of instant switching of functions of WASD-block to arrows. Modern gaming solutions are hard to imagine without illuminations. In our case, we have eight colors with different modes of operation, not only for the keys, but also for the border of the case, which somewhat enhances the overall effect. The symbols could be a bit more readable when not using the illumination light and it lacks the Ukrainian layout and built-in memory. Otherwise, if you are looking for an inexpensive low-key keyboard with good functionality, the COUGAR Vantar deserves your attention.
- Great design
- Good quality materials and assembly
- Great standard layout of keys
- Inward type key
- Support for a number of additional actions
- The ability to lock the [Windows] key
- Support for 19 simultaneous clicks (Anti-Ghosting)
- Possibility of switching the WASD-unit to arrows
- Effective backlight with flexible settings
- Scissor-membrane switches
- The absence of the Ukrainian layout
- Symbols unreadable without activated illumination
- Lack of built-in memory