After diving into gaming with RGB backlit keyboards, elite brand Das Keyboard has returned its focus to productivity. Like the company’s recent MacTigr keyboard for Apple users, the $199 Das Keyboard 6 Professional showcases the exemplary build quality and design that define the brand’s reputation, while offering some very simple yet advanced features like USB-C and detachable ports. feet. You’d rightly expect even more features at this price, but assuming you can afford it, the 6 Pro is a joy to type on.
Das Keyboard Goes Pro
6 Professional returns to the classic Das keyboard design: It’s a full-size wired keyboard with a standard 104-key layout. The design is black and white and fully functional, with a black anodized aluminum top case and black dual ABS keys that provide a sharp contrast to the white LED backlight. It weighs a hefty 2.7 pounds, so it’s not a keyboard you’ll want to put on your lap.
(credit: Kyle Cobian)
The utilitarian RGB lighting from the fourth- and fifth-generation Das Keyboard models is gone, along with support for the company’s Q configuration software. RGB aside, the lack of configuration software limits access to other customization options that underpin most high-end keyboards, including the ability to remap keys and create macros.
Unlike the MacTigr and some of the company’s other recent keyboards, the 6 Pro brings back the classic Das tab in the top-right corner with a large volume rocker. On it you will find a large aluminum scroll wheel and four operating buttons — Play/Pause, Skip Track, backlight brightness control and a key to put the computer to sleep. Das Keyboard markets the sleep button as an environmentally friendly feature because it simplifies the process of temporarily reducing your computer’s power consumption without turning it off. It’s doubtful you’d buy a keyboard for this reason, but if your habit is to sleep instead of shutting down the system at the end of the day, it’s nice to be able to do it with a single button.
The most striking feature of the Das Keyboard 6 Professional is the USB-C support, which is a leap into the modern age. The keyboard cable has USB-C connectors, although a USB Type-A adapter is included. More importantly, it includes two pass-through USB-C ports on the back of the top right tab. I’m crazy about a keyboard that doubles as a USB hub, and that goes double for a keyboard that gives you extra USB-C ports (probably because I only have one USB-C port on the back of my desktop).
(credit: Kyle Cobian)
An unusual novelty are the screw-on keyboard feet – round plastic feet with rubber pads instead of the usual folding tabs to support the back of the keyboard. I’m of two minds about them: On the one hand, removing the inner feet helps keep the keyboard flat if you like it. On the other hand, this means that more parts take up space or are misplaced. That said, the keyboard is more stable on these legs than some I’ve used with thinner, taller supports.
The 6 Pro’s focus on productivity also extends to the limited selection of mechanical switches. The keyboard we tested features Cherry MX Brown tactile switches that are quiet with a tactile impact. You can also opt for the Cherry MX Blue click switches, which have a similar feel but a louder, tinny sound. I generally prefer brown type switches as they offer a great balance of resistance and travel to create a satisfying feel. Typing on the 6 Pro is comfortable and nimble, whether you’re spending 10 minutes on an email or all day typing, say, a keyboard review.
(credit: Kyle Cobian)
That said, I find it odd that Das Keyboard doesn’t offer an option for the third of Cherry’s core options, the MX Red linear switches. The linear switches lend themselves more to gaming as they have a light touch, but I have to imagine some users might like the launch keys on an office keyboard.
Verdict: Even keyboard feel
The Das Keyboard 6 Professional is an excellent mechanical keyboard. Its Cherry MX switches feel great, as always, and despite only having a few extra features, they feel strong. There aren’t many keyboards with a dedicated sleep key, and almost none with dual USB-C ports. While dropping configuration software seems like an odd omission, only a limited number of power users will likely miss it.
On the other hand, it doesn’t look good to be missing features for $199, leaving the 6 Pro short of the Editors’ Choice award. Basically, it falls in the gap between elite productivity keyboards like the wireless Logitech MX Mechanical with a full suite of productivity features, and enthusiast keyboards from companies like Drop, Ducky and Vissles, which are primarily focused on feel and aesthetics. In the end, this middle ground is actually the sweet spot for anyone who cares about typing feel but wants a full-size layout and a few quality-of-life features. The 6 Pro is sleek and focused; everything he does, he does well.
Das 6 Professional keyboard
The Das Keyboard 6 Professional cargo keyboard is light on features but provides an excellent typing experience focused on productivity.
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