The Mionix Wei mechanical keyboard is the Swedish company’s first keyboard since 2011, with the company being better known for its extremely elegant mice, of which I am a huge fan.
Sometimes, less is more. It’s hard to think of anything that describes the Mionix Wei better, as this might be one of the most perfectly stripped back keyboards on the market. You’re not going to find any fancy macro keys, no outrageous shapes, and definitely no ghastly fonts strewn across its keys. Instead, what you see is what you get. What you get, is one of the most elegant keyboards on the market today, outside of the enthusiast market.
It should really come as no surprise that the Mionix Wei comes in such an elegant form, given the brand’s firm stance on being the most aesthetically pleasing out there. Take a look at the Mionix website, and you’ll see what I mean. With a gorgeous slate grey exterior, with a splash of color added by the rubberized logo on the side and of course, the RGB lighting, this is a stunning keyboard that takes a welcome step away from the usual Textured black plastic we’ve come to know and expect.
Mionix isn’t afraid to step outside of the norm, and those who’ve noticed the brand’s Castor and Avior mice might have noticed the rather interestingly named striking colors on offer. Ice Cream; a lovely light blue, French Fies; a vibrant yellow, and Frosting; a flat, bold pink that’s quite obviously a favorite with us here at n3rdabl3. Well, not to be left out, the Mionix Wei boasts a full line of purchasable keycaps in all three colors, meaning you can match your keyboard to your mouse, or simply create something that looks like it’s custom built with bigger-brand reliability. Always a bonus. Now if Mionix could bring these colors to the Naos mice, I’ll be in all pink heaven.
Now, it’s worth noting that these keycaps aren’t cheap. If you buy directly from Mionix themselves then you’ll be paying $43 for that delicious color. Added to the fact that the keyboard retails with the company for $175 and you’ve got yourself a very pricey all be it gorgeous desk piece. It’s worth noting that the keyboard is available online for quite a bit under this, but given the quality competition at this and lower price points, it has to be seen as a negative.
The thing is, you get what you pay for, and while the Mionix Wei might be a rather sizeable investment, what you get is something that’s built to last, as well as look good. The switches (Cherry MX Reds, which we’ll get onto shortly) are mounted onto a study, aluminum plate embedded in thick, well-finished plastic. While it does not feature the braided cable of my beloved Naos 7000 mouse, the rubberized cable doesn’t feel cheap, in fact, the rubber is so thick it’s probably even safer. The cable features a vintage-style coil, which while looking nice, doesn’t really offer much in the way of stretchiness as the cable has a tendency to pull back with the added tension of the thick rubber. Thankfully, the cable is long enough to render this majorly benign but does question the coil’s existence in the first place.
Speaking of rubber, the entire base of the Mionix Wei is one giant rubber pad, adorned lovingly with the Mionix name. Now, with the addition of a giant rubber pad, is the removal of feet. There’s no height adjustment here, which while not an issue for myself, might well be an issue for others. At least offering an angled pad for users who like a more angled keyboard would potentially open up the keyboard to a slightly wider market, although the keyboard does have a nice natural slant to it as it comes, which makes typing very comfortable.
The keys are buttery smooth in feel, look, and action, with the later coming from the inclusion of Cherry MX Red switches. With so many knock-off switches on the market, genuine articles seem to be harder and harder to come by, especially as brands start making their own proprietary switches. Here’s looking at you, Razer. There’s nothing better than the original, and Cherry MX Red switches provide a smooth, linear keystroke with a 45g operating force and 2mm actuation point. I’ve been a huge fan of blue switches (not a sentiment shared by my colleagues when I’m typing in meetings) but it didn’t take long at all to get used to the smooth action offered by the Mionix Wei.
The keys themselves are made from a nice smooth plastic, with a quality feel that puts the Mionix Wei a step above the rest. The smooth finish allows your fingers to glide nicely across the keys, making typing and gaming an even more enjoyable, and speedy experience.
When it comes to bells and whistles, the Mionix Wei really is as barebones as they come. There’s no additional USB ports, no headphone jack, and dedicated multimedia keys are limited to volume up and down, play/pause, and skip. It is possible to hop into the Mionix Hub software and add additional keys as function options, which is a nice level of customization. The likely reason for this is the lack of any function markings on the keyboard itself, which gives a very clean look and allows for a level of personalization, even if it does mean an additional step.
The Mionix Hub is very minimalist in design, much like the keyboard itself. It offers what you need, and not an ounce more. you can change your bindings, change the RGB color, and update the firmware. Those are your options. You can nicely customize the color down to individual keys, handy for setting up a preset for gaming should you wish to illuminate your most used keys.
The Mionix Wei sets a standard for simplistic, functional keyboards. While the price point and lack of fancy features might well put it off of many peoples radar, the purchasable keycaps and overall style give a level of appearance and build that is usually reserved for the enthusiast market. Anyone after a no thrills keyboard that looks the business, look no further.