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Tesoro Durandal & Durandal Ultimate

Stylish Gaming Keyboards

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Author: Jouni 'Jipa' Vasama
Published: 04.05.2012
Updated: 07.05.2012
Manufacturer: Tesoro
Product Group: Keyboards
In English In English
Suomeksi Suomeksi
 

In use

 

Tesoro Durandal & Durandal Ultimate - Stylish Gaming Keyboards
 

In use both of the keyboard feel really nice and well put together, you can hit the keys pretty hard without any extra rattles or squeaks. The typing touch of the Durandal is very close to the Qpad MK-50 and MK-85 with their red switches, changing from one switch type to another makes a surprisingly big difference to the overall feel. While the red switches are pretty close to your regular rubber dome keyboard in terms of button force, the black switches have significantly higher actuation force. It's all boils down to one's personal taste, but for me the black switches proved to be more pleasant to use.

The Ultimate, on the other hand, pack the brown switches which we haven't had before. In the Qpad review I said that I liked the tactile feedback of the blue switches, but just couldn't tolerate the noise, so the brown switches really seem to offer the best of both worlds with clear tactile feedback but without the nerve-wrecking noise. Like other keyboards with individual leds for each key, the red backlight of the Ultimate can be set ridiculously bright.

Really the only downsides about both models are related to the wrist rest. The Durandal obviously lacks the whole feature, but also the Ultimate comes with a slight inconvenience. The diamond plate/brushed-theme continues on the wrist rest, and in use the left hand rests on a diamond-plated area, while the right hand sits on a smooth brushed finish. Having different materials under the hands can be rather irritating.

 

"Who made what?"

*Note* Click the picture for larger version
  Pose

After all the similarities with the Qpad MK-85, I decided to open both keyboards and see if they really are identical, and here's the result - yes they are. Never mind the green piece of PCB on the Tesoro Ultimate, it's there just to move the indicator leds to the right location.



Conclusion

Durandal Ultimate

PROS 
  • NRKO over USB
  • Backlight
  • USB-hub
  • Build quality

    CONS 
  • Wrist rest texture
  • Award
    Gold Award!
    Durandal

    PROS 
  • Build quality

    CONS 
  • No wrist rest
  • Award
    Silver Award!


    The Durandal-keyboards are a successful game-opener from Tesoro. Launching two models makes sense as well, because not everyone is willing to pay premium for the back light and the extra connectivity. The Durandal is a good, solid keyboard, but unfortunately lacks the wrist rest. The Ultimate, on the other hand, is clearly a top of the line product, there just isn't much to add. Just choose the switch type of your liking and you'll have a great keyboard for years to come.

    Looking at the price tags, the Ultimate is in the same 150 € region with the Qpad MK-85, so choosing between these two models boils down to the looks of the keyboards. The Durandal, on the other hand, is priced at around 100 euros, which is quite simply too much for a basic mechanical keyboard.

    Update 07.05.2012: We just got the actual retail prices of these keyboards in Scandinavia and they are 79 € for the Durandal and 114,95 € for the Durandal Ultimate. This really changes things, because that means the Durandal costs exactly the same as the Qpad MK-50 and other "basic" mechanical keyboards, while the Durandal Ultimate offers impressive value for money!


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