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Saitek Eclipse III - Review

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Old 05-09-09, 06:13 PM Thread Starter   #1
JamesXP
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Saitek Eclipse III - Review


Hey guys, just got this keyboard a few days ago and thought i'd write a short review for y'all.

This is Saitek's keyboard the 'Eclipse 3' this is their latest keyboard in the eclipse line, It is advertised as a 'Multimedia/Office Keyboard' this keyboard retails at around the 40 mark, This puts this keyboard around the level of other keyboards such as the Logitech G11, Razer Arctosa, Microsft Recluse and the Microsoft Sidewinder X6.

It is a very large keyboard, it measures at (Width, Depth, Heigh): 9.3 Inches x 1.4 Inches x 18 Inches, This keyboard is so large that it doesn't fit in my keyboard tray, if this is where you are planning on putting your keyboard be sure that you have the space to accomodate it. They keyboard is made out of a solid plastic, the keys are laser etched and there is also a wrest that you can fit to the keyboard if you need it.





In my opinion, one of the best things about this keyboard is the backlighting, It is very consistent across the board with the exception of it being slightly brighter at the left control key, You can choose several different colours for the backlight, including:
  • Blue
  • Purple
  • Pink
  • A darker pink
  • Red








Video of backligh changes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aR23R...eature=channel (best viewed in HD)


You can control the backlights brightness in 4 steps, and you can also have the backlight completely off, There is a top bar on the keyboard which contains all the controls for the backlighting and volume, also there are keys to control your media player. There is a nifty volume bar which when you have the driver installed The light moves up according to what volume you set.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=42BHAkItHBY (best viewed in HD)

Another nice feature of this keyboard is the Microphone/Headphone audio pass through, although if your 3.5mm jacks have a large casing they may not fit in the small gap that the keyboard provides, I also find that the angle which they plug in at can be awkward at times.



The keyboard also has 6 shortcut keys on either side I do not think there is a way to change what these keys do, but they all work very well but sometimes I can accidently hit them while in a game, which can be annoying, but it is happening less recently, as I get used to the keyboard more.





Conclusion:
I think this keyboard is wel worth the 37/$56 I payed for it, it has lots of nice features and the backlighting; I think is one of the best going. I would reccomend this to any type of user, whether you be a gamer, casual user or a crazy student who writes lots of essays


If you need any more info just ask

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Last edited by JamesXP; 05-09-09 at 06:22 PM.
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Old 05-09-09, 06:55 PM   #2
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Thanks for the review. I bought an original version because the "II" keys smeared after a relatively short period of time. Hopefully the "III" is better.

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Old 05-09-09, 07:31 PM   #3
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I had the Eclipse II for a while, but that became unresponsive, and was replaced by the Cyborg, the cousin and predecessor of the Eclipse III. I must say, it is a terrible keyboard. The plastic looks cheap, fingerprints add up quickly, keys seems to grind on their way down when pressed, making an annoying sensation, and the back lighting went very quickly on mine, before some of the keys randomly snapped in half, such as the space bar, which was probably weakened by the two springs supporting it, instead of one, causing it to bend and eventually shear, which is ironic because the space bar and WASD keys were reportedly made of "steel".

Bottom line: Saitek has disappointed me multiple times, I wouldn't buy from them again. After a year or so of average use (8 hours a day on the PC), both my Eclipse and Cyborg began to die.
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Old 05-09-09, 07:37 PM   #4
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Nice review JamesXP, thanks for the input.

might just have to have a look at this board, for my next keyboard purchase,

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Old 05-09-09, 07:39 PM Thread Starter   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesman32 View Post
I had the Eclipse II for a while, but that became unresponsive, and was replaced by the Cyborg, the cousin and predecessor of the Eclipse III. I must say, it is a terrible keyboard. The plastic looks cheap, fingerprints add up quickly, keys seems to grind on their way down when pressed, making an annoying sensation, and the back lighting went very quickly on mine, before some of the keys randomly snapped in half, such as the space bar, which was probably weakened by the two springs supporting it, instead of one, causing it to bend and eventually shear, which is ironic because the space bar and WASD keys were reportedly made of "steel".

Bottom line: Saitek has disappointed me multiple times, I wouldn't buy from them again. After a year or so of average use (8 hours a day on the PC), both my Eclipse and Cyborg began to die.

I also didn't like the look of the cyborg, fortunately my keys seem fine so far, I have been using this keyboard for around a week now and hopefully I will get many years of service from this awesome keyboard.

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Old 05-09-09, 07:52 PM   #6
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Im on a Eclipse II and I love it. Though the III looks a lot better...

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Old 05-09-09, 11:03 PM   #7
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Eclipse I in my lap, Eclipse II on the desk next to me, and I have never had a complaint about either. The Keys have held up well with no issues, the KBs are both sturdy though the II in a bit chunkier.

Ill check out the III but it looks a lot like the Razer Tarantula and if it is anything like that I wont be going any closer then a check it out look.

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Old 05-09-09, 11:29 PM Thread Starter   #8
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It is alot thicker than the tarantula, but i'm not much of a keyboard expert, I like this keyboard alot because they keys aren't mushy like on alot of keyboards.

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Old 05-09-09, 11:30 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hi-yield View Post
Thanks for the review. I bought an original version because the "II" keys smeared after a relatively short period of time. Hopefully the "III" is better.
I have the Eclipse II and havn't had a problem yet. How is it even possible for the keys to smear when they are laser etched??

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Old 05-10-09, 07:30 PM   #10
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Eclipse I for a few years now for fps games, no smears and no problems =)

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Old 05-10-09, 11:10 PM   #11
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The Eclipse Keyboards were always nice in my opinion. I'm currently on a Saitek Cyborg, and the Eclipse III looks a bit better than this.

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Old 05-10-09, 11:47 PM   #12
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Not being able to re-map the side buttons is a bit of a bummer, I could probably overlook that though. How long is the cord on it? I'm currently using a bluetooth wireless setup, but the more gaming I do with it the less I'm impressed with the bluetooth aspect. It has inherent 'features' that don't mesh well with gaming.

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Old 05-11-09, 09:37 AM   #13
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well done

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Old 05-11-09, 09:38 AM Thread Starter   #14
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Unfortunately the corsd isn't very long i'd say around 1.5M, but it works.

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Old 06-10-09, 01:28 PM   #15
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I had a saitek eclipse I, and it was the worst design I've ever used in my life. Yes, ergonomically it was nice, and the lighting is great, but the keys smeared off much too easy. On top of that, it was incompatible with games that used joysticks (unless you went into the hardware menu and disabled the volume keys)... but this was partially their fault and microsoft's.

All I know is, I wouldn't ever trust one again. Plus I'm one of those smarmy folks that swears by mechanicals. Even my girlfriend has caught the bug of mechanical keyboards, and now percieves mechanical keyboards as being of higher value and being easier to use.

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Old 06-10-09, 03:42 PM   #16
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pretty colours.... im stuck with blue on my G11... id give anything for a bit of variety....

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Old 06-10-09, 04:33 PM   #17
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Thanks for the review JamesXP.

Ditto on the Eclipse II. I like it blue.

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Old 06-10-09, 04:35 PM   #18
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i got the cyborg and i wish it went blue lol i get 2 shades of green but no blue
it is a well made keyboard but you would think for a gaming keyboard you would be able to hit more then 2 keys at the same time my 19 buck microsoft will let me do about 5

so i always have it around when i do climbing maps in css

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Old 10-07-10, 04:19 AM   #19
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+1 on the 2 keys at a time, I'm using a microsoft keyboard that I got for $20 that only lets me use 2 at a time which really sucks for fps games. I had the saitek II but the clip on the bottom of the spacebar broke so the spacebar would only work if you hit it right in the middle which was a pain in the butt so it got recycled into the firepit for some nice colors and black smoke.

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Old 10-08-10, 07:56 PM   #20
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Nice review! I bought like 10 refurbished Eclipse II for $17 2 years on black Friday at fry's. I may look from more this year hehe.

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