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Written by Greg Schepers   
Wednesday, 26 December 2012
Table of Contents: Page Index
Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Mechanical Keyboard
Closer Look: Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Keyboard
Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Keyboard Detailed Features
Gigabyte Ghost Software
Testing and Results
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Mechanical Keyboard Final Thoughts

In terms of input devices, a keyboard is really where "the rubber meets the road." I would venture to say that the majority of gamers out there use one keyboard for both everyday use and for gaming. For those gamers that switch to a different keyboard to play games, it might just be time to take a look at the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium. This is a keyboard that performs both the role of the everyday keyboard and the role of the gaming keyboard brilliantly.

I do have a couple of suggestions for this keyboard. Let me preface the following by acknowledging that this is totally picking nits: the ports on the right side, which include the headset jack, microphone jack, and the USB 3.0 output, would be better served by being located on the back of the keyboard alongside the USB 2.0 output. If one was to use those ports, it could interfere with mouse manipulation. Also, even though the blue backlit keys are fine, it would be nice to have the ability to change colors.

One could argue that the same thought process that goes into justifying the purchase of a new bed is similar to justifying the purchase of a great keyboard; "I spend a third of my life on it, I should ensure that I make the right purchase." If you share that attitude, then the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Mechanical Gaming Keyboard should be given serious consideration. There has been as surge in the number of mechanical keyboards on the market, several of which are at a lower price point than the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium. However, considering its quality, performance, and functionality, you will not be disappointed by purchasing this keyboard. I wasn't; not at all. In fact, I had to purchase one for my wife because she was threatening to steal mine.

Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Keyboard

Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Conclusion

Before sharing with you my conclusion regarding the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Mechanical Gaming Keyboard, I would like to point out that this entire review is based on my personal experience with it and is, therefore, subjective. Some of the products we review at Benchmark Reviews are impossible to test objectively, keyboards being one of the product types that fall in that category. I would recommend that you do not base your decision to purchase this product based solely on this review.

For more than a month, the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Keyboard has been used extensively and thoroughly put through its paces. During this period, this keyboard has performed at a level that exceeded my expectations, regardless of the application (gaming or everyday use). The keys have a great feel to them; solid, responsive, and seamless transition from key to key. For those individuals accustomed to a dome-based keyboard, I anticipate typing on the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium to be a very positive experience.

Even though the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Keyboard has a standard layout, the designers were still able to achieve and attractive look. Backlit keys on a mechanical keyboard just looks great; I would like to have more color options for the backlighting than just blue, however. Some of the other gaming keyboards out there go overboard in terms of styling and use too many colors, or simply the wrong colors. This keyboard is basic black and with the lighting incorporated lighting features, it looks really good. I also appreciate the fact that the keyboard's surface has texture to it; so do the keys, but not quite as much as the rest of the surface areas.

As soon as you pull this keyboard out of the box, you will notice the quality of the construction. It has some weight to it; it is a mechanical keyboard after all. It certainly won't double as a fly-swatter, like some of the dome-base keyboards out there. The Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Keyboard is constructed mainly of hard plastic, yet maintains an extremely solid feel. The thick, two meter long braided cord with 18K gold-plated connectors just screams quality.

In terms of functionality, there are a number of features this keyboard has that you will appreciate. Probably the most notable feature, the Cherry MX Red mechanical switches, which are the high-end switches in the mechanical key world, provide a second-to-none experience. The feel and sensitivity of these keys are first rate all the way. Also, the Ghost software coupled with the profile keys on the board make everyday tasks easier and they greatly increase your gaming capability. Also, the wheels that control the backlighting for the keyboard and system volume are a nice touch. And, I can't forget the fact that the keyboard has a microphone jack, and headphone jack, a USB 3.0 output, and a USB 2.0 output, even though the first three mentioned might be in the mouse interference zone.

There are less expensive mechanical keyboard alternatives out there. As of December 2012 the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium sells for $129.99 (NewEgg /Amazon). Yet, I highly doubt that you will regret owning the Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Mechanical Keyboard. Considering that it has Cherry MX Red mechanical switches, is feature-rich and built of such quality, it may be difficult to find its equal at this price point.

Pros:

+ Cherry MX Red mechanical switches
+ Integrated USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 ports
+ Removable wrist rest
+ Adjustable backlighting
+ Ghost software - 5 gaming profiles
+ Quality of construction

Cons:

- Positioning of headphone/mic jacks & USB 3.0 port
- More variety of backlighting colors
- Expensive price

Ratings:

  • Performance: 9.75
  • Appearance: 9.00
  • Construction: 9.50
  • Functionality: 8.75
  • Value: 8.50

Final Score: 9.1 out of 10.

COMMENT QUESTION: What's the best keyboard you've ever used?

NewEgg.com

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Comments 

 
# Great Keyboard crap softwarePolly 2012-12-27 22:42
Why is it that hardware manufacturers cannot make support software, over worked, poorly laid out, lack of flow, no tool tip or like, if you gave a student a few dollars and a free set of requirements the he could not make software worst than this. ABSOLUTELY GREAT KEYBOARD. epic fail on the Ghost software
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# RE: Gigabyte Aivia Osmium Mechanical KeyboardArgos 2013-02-22 02:44
Well, it is a very good looking board, but as always, no special adaptations for FPS gamers. Still waiting for manufacturers to see the light.
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# USB3 socket on USB2 keyboard ?????huwyngr 2013-02-25 18:35
I'm puzzled as to how they get a USB3 socket on a keyboard that connects to the computer by USB 2 ...... well I'm puzzled that the review does not say that you can't get USB3 speeds that way ....

Or have they devised a way to do this? In which case I can't understand why they put a USB2 socket on ....

What am I missing?
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# RE: USB3 socket on USB2 keyboard ?????Greg Schepers 2013-02-25 21:19
Good question. The Gigabyte Aivia Osmium's braided cord is two meters in length and has four separate connections, which include the microphone jack, the headphone jack, the USB 2.0 connection, and the USB 3.0 connection. Pushing the gold-plated USB 3.0 connector into the USB 3.0 port located on the rear I/O of your PC (or any other USB 3.0 port on your PC) will give you USB 3.0 speeds from the keyboard. I apologize for not including this information in my original review.
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# RE: RE: USB3 socket on USB2 keyboard ?????huwyngr 2013-02-26 09:03
Top marks to your quick and informative reply Greg ....

Sorry they hadn't invented a USB2 to 3 converter

If it interests you here's the link to my post about the review -- I sysop on Compuserve on PCHardware and often post a link to a review here that catches my eye in the emails I get from you.

#community.compuserve.com/n/pfx/forum.aspx?tsn=1&nav=messages&webtag=ws-pchardware&tid=165657

Although this is the first time I've raised a query; more frequently it's drawing attention to a bit of hardware that sounds interesting.
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# RE: RE: RE: USB3 socket on USB2 keyboard ?????Greg Schepers 2013-02-26 09:17
huwyngr... I appreciate your help, sharing the link, and again I apologize for omitting this information from my original review.
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