Trust Callaz TKL mechanical keyboard review: for gamers
Up to a point, the Trust Callaz TKL mechanical keyboard impresses.
REASONS TO BUY
Solid feel and performance
Affordable price point
REASONS TO AVOID
No companion software
No numeric keypad
No wireless option
The Trust Callaz TKL mechanical keyboard is likely to appeal to gamers with limited desk space or who move around a lot and require portability. It's a strong contender for one of the best gaming keyboards on the market right now, and we've been testing it out.
In case you're wondering, the TKL in the name stands for TenKeyLess: the ten keys in question comprise the number pad, so this isn't the keyboard to buy if you rely on those keys. However, for many users, this will be an unnoticed omission.
Even with its unique RGB lighting, the Trust Callaz GXT 834 isn't just for gamers, and you could easily argue that it's one of the best mechanical keyboards, if not one of the best keyboards period, available. Continue reading for our complete review of the device.
REVIEW OF THE TRUST CALLAZ TKL MECHANICAL KEYBOARD: DESIGN AND SETUP
If you've used any Trust gear before, you won't be surprised by what the Callaz keyboard has to offer in terms of design and construction: this is a no-nonsense, well-made, solid-looking input device. While it does not appear or feel ultra-premium, it does give the impression that it will last you a long time (Trust promises key lifetimes of 50 million presses).
The Trust Callaz measures 367 mm x 137 mm x 35 mm (14.4 inches x 5.4 inches x 1.4 inches) and weighs 659 grams when it comes to key design specs (23 ounces). A mechanical TKL keyboard cannot be squeezed into a smaller space, but if you want something even more compact, you can opt for one of the 60 percent keyboards on the market, which cut off even more keys.
The underside of the keyboard is mostly plastic, but the top of the input device has a metal plating that adds a touch of class to your gaming setup. There are no dedicated keys for media playback or other shortcuts, but the function keys can perform these functions with the help of the Fn key at the bottom.
Caps lock and scroll lock are indicated by small blue LEDs in the lower right-hand corner of the keyboard, as is the Trust GXT logo. It's as simple as plugging the keyboard into a spare USB-A port to get it up and running and ready to use on both Windows and macOS.
REVIEW OF THE TRUST CALLAZ TKL MECHANICAL KEYBOARD: FEATURES AND PERFORMANCE
We're happy to report that the Trust Callaz is a fantastic keyboard to use: the keys have a good amount of travel and feel responsive to the touch, and the clicking sound produced by the Outemu red linear switches is audible but not too loud (it's unlikely to wake up the neighbors). The keys are well spaced and easy to press, and the font used on the keycaps is appealing.
With an 8 ms response time and support for n-key rollover – which allows the keyboard to accept input from multiple keys at once – you'll have no trouble gaming with this keyboard, and it won't let you down even in the tensest situations. It'll work fine for other computing tasks as well, and we noticed an improvement in our typing speed (though we don't have any scientific evidence to back that up).
One disappointment is that there is no software to accompany the Trust Callaz keyboard: you can't configure shortcut keys or anything like that, and you can only adjust the RGB lighting by cycling through the 20 different modes using the dedicated key on the keyboard. Trust produces good utilities for its other gaming equipment, so it's odd that this device isn't supported.
You can change the speed and brightness of the key lighting, as well as turn it off completely, but you can't change the colors or create your own lighting configuration. Having said that, the lighting is excellent, with vivid and bright rainbow colors on display. In the box, you will find a keycap remover in case you need to swap them out.
REVIEW OF THE TRUST CALLAZ TKL MECHANICAL KEYBOARD: PRICE AND VERDICT
In terms of gaming keyboards, the Trust Callaz is fairly basic, and it's priced accordingly. Check out the widgets on this page for the most recent online deals, but at the time of writing, the keyboard is available for around £45. You won't find a gaming keyboard like this for much less, so everything else about the device must be viewed in that light.
We would have liked to see a configuration utility and more control over the RGB lighting, and it's also a shame that the only connection option is via a (nicely braided) USB-A cable. There is no USB-C dongle included in the package, and there is no wireless option – though to be fair, most gamers prefer to go wired.
Overall, we enjoyed testing the Trust Callaz TKL mechanical keyboard and would be happy to use it as our primary keyboard in the future. The mechanical switches and keys are the most important features here, and they work perfectly – responsive, well-balanced, and with just the right amount of travel (4 mm) for our typing style.
All things considered, this will appeal to those who want a keyboard specifically for gaming, and specifically in the TKL form factor – particularly those on a tight budget. If this describes you, the Trust Callaz may be the perfect fit, but for everyone else, there are plenty of more advanced gaming keyboards available (for a bit more money).