Review: SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL Wireless (2023) Keyboard

Right around this time last year, we took a look at the SteelSeries Apex 3 TKL Keyboard. It was a nice example of how much quality and functionality SteelSeries can put into a $44.99 product. This time around, we are looking at SteelSeries’ latest iteration of their flagship tenkeyless keyboard, the Apex Pro TKL Wireless. The Apex Pro TKL Wireless is armed with SteelSeries’ own OmniPoint 2.0 switches, Quantum 2.0 Dual Wireless connectivity, and an OLED Smart Display. Add in per key RGB illumination and customizability via the free SteelSeries Engine software, and this keyboard is set to take your PC gaming to the next level.

Let’s dive into the SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL Wireless keyboard to see what this flagship keyboard has to offer.

SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL Wireless (2023) Specs
Key SwitchesOmniPoint Adjustable Mechanical
Switch RatingGuaranteed 100 Million Presses
On-Board Memory5 Custom Profiles
Processor32 bit ARM
Adjustable Actuation Points0.2-3.8 mm
ConnectionWired / 2.4 GHz / Bluetooth
Battery Life37.5 hours (Wireless) / 45 hours (Bluetooth) (default lighting)
Width355 mm / 14 in
Depth128 mm / 5.04 in
Height42 mm / 1.65 in
Weight1070 g / 2.4 lbs
Specs taken from product page.
Build, Features and Feel

A purchase of the Apex Pro TKL Wireless Gaming Keyboard comes with a detachable braided USB-C to USB-A cable, a wireless USB-C dongle, an extension adapter, a keycap puller, and a magnetic wrist rest.

SteelSeriesApex Pro TKL Wireless Gaming keyboard sports a solid no-nonsense build. At a glance, you have a wireless tenkeyless keyboard, complete with per-key RGB illumination, dedicated media controls, an OLED corner display and a removable magnetic wrist rest. Going a bit deeper, you have an aircraft grade aluminum alloy top plate, Double Shot PBT keycaps, and height adjustable tilt legs on the bottom.

On the rear, you have the USB-C port used for charging the keyboard and using it in wired mode. Right next to that sits the switch that toggles the keyboard between its two wireless modes, 2.4Ghz and Bluetooth. Whenever you connect the keyboard to a PC using the USB cable, wired mode takes precedence, regardless of what the switch is set to.

The headlining physical feature of the SteelSeriesApex Pro TKL Wireless is its OmniPoint 2.0 mechanical switches. Using magnetic sensors, these switches can initiate a contactless keystroke activation that can actuate anywhere between 0.2mm and 3.8mm of key press depth. Not only can you tune when a key press is actuated by the nearest 0.1mm, but you can also set two bindings to the same key. In this setup, the action you activate is determined by how deep your key press is.

Video by SteelSeries YouTube Channel

Moving onto the upper right of the keyboard, the OLED Smart Display works in tandem with the media controls next to it. By default, the wheel button controls your PC’s volume, where pushing down on the wheel button toggles mute on and off. The button below that controls media with single, double and triple presses. Single presses play and pause, double presses perform a “Next Track” while triple presses trigger a “Previous Track”.

However, holding down this button opens a contextual menu on the OLED Smart Display. The display shows a set of features and options for the keyboard that you can control without using PC-installed software. From here, you can control illumination, macros, profile toggling, display options,  and the actuation levels of the OmniPoint 2.0 switches. From the keyboard directly, you can even record macros and bind them to specific keys, again without needing to use the SteelSeries Engine software. You can even create and bind on-the-fly macro creations directly from the keyboard itself.

Starting off with comfort, typing and pressing keys on the Apex Pro TKL Wireless feels like a dream. The OmniPoint 2.0 switches have just the right amount of resistance without getting in the way of your most urgent keystrokes. Thanks to this resistance, you are able to take full advantage of the finely adjustable actuation points of the OmniPoint 2.0 switches. This typing experience is reinforced by the Apex Pro TKL’s weight, aluminum alloy plating, and rubberized feet which keep the keyboard 100% stable throughout its use.

You then must consider the keyboard’s rich feature set. You can access many of the features directly from the keyboard and without the use of software. This is especially handy in the gaming tournament scene where you might not have the option to install the complementary SteelSeries GG suite or the SteelSeries Engine. Thanks to its three connectivity options of wired, 2.4Ghz wireless and Bluetooth, the Apex Pro TKL Wireless is ready for virtually any usage scenario. Toss in a battery life of up to 37.5 hours on 2.4Ghz wireless or up to 45 hours on Bluetooth, and you have yourself an impressive keyboard in the Apex Pro TKL Wireless.

More Features and Performance

The free SteelSeries GG and the SteelSeries Engine customization software opens up the entirety of functionality available within the Apex Pro TKL Wireless keyboard. Firstly, you have the basics options that would you expect from any gaming peripheral customization software. You can set per key mappings to perform virtually any action. Keys can be set to perform keystroke combinations, windows actions, or macros that you can create with ease. You also have a very wide variety of per key lighting effects that you can employ, complete with full RGB control.

You can even go as far as to customize your own default image for the OLED Smart Display.

However, what is unique with the Apex Pro TKL Wireless is its customizable keystroke actuation levels and what you can do with them. For your more single action keypresses, you can control how deep the key needs to travel before actuation occurs. Whether you want your actions to occur at the lightest of taps at 0.2mm or the heaviest of presses at 3.8mm, you can tune this down to the nearest 0.1mm.  However, it does not stop there. As mentioned before, this also gives you the opportunity to dual bind keys. This allows them to perform two different actions depending on how deep your keystroke is.

When it came to Destiny 2 gameplay, I did not have many options for exploring the customizable actuation levels of the Apex Pro TKL Wireless. Being as heavy-handed as I am with my peripherals, I preferred to have all keystroke actuations at the farthest travel distance of 3.8mm. This allowed me to rest my fingers on the keys between my very deliberate key presses. Before making any custom actuation tweaks, I took full advantage of the keyboard’s naturally fast response time and actuation in Destiny 2’s. Even though I am a controller main in Destiny 2’s PVP, I was still able to successfully ride the Apex Pro TKL Wireless to the Lighthouse in the last week of Season 18.

However, I got to explore much more of what the Apex Pro TKL Wireless had to offer in Apex Legends. Here is where I set dual bindings for the WASD keys, which allowed me to walk on soft presses and run on more deliberate presses. I was able to move queity without having to always resort to crouching whenever I snuck up on targets. Needless to say, it was pretty handy having this level of control without having to hold down on accompanying keys. It is the kind of control that controller users take for granted when they use analog sticks. The Apex Pro TKL Wireless shined brightly in this game as well as my movement felt as natural and crisp as I would want from any FPS I play.

A feature I did not realize was active by default in the SteelSeries GG appwas its automatic recording of squad eliminations in Apex Legends. When I killed my first squad using the Apex Pro TKL Wireless, the Moments app within the SteelSeries GG suite alerted me that a recording was complete. At first, I thought I accidentally pressed an assortment of keys that triggered it. However, it turns out that Apex Legends was one of the games that SteelSeries GG integrated with.

When I closed Apex Legends, Moments showed me the recordings of my eliminations during that gaming session, giving me to option to save and/or share the recording with others. Best of all, this background operation did not seem to affect my connection, performance or framerates in game.

I was sure to make full use of the three connections during my time with the Apex Pro TKL Wireless. First and most importantly, the difference in keyboard to game responsiveness was negligible at best when comparing wired and 2.4GHz wireless connections on PC. If there was any input latency when I was vetting the 2.4Ghz wireless connection, I simply did not notice it.

I then explored all three connections during my day-to-day usage. I used it in wired mode on my PC, 2.4GHz wireless on my Xbox Series X, and Bluetooth for my office laptop. It was quite handy being able to swap between the three connections without having to move my keyboard at all in my home setup.

The SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL Wireless keyboard sports a very rich feature set and an impressive level of performance throughout all use cases.

Final Thoughts

While $249 may seem like a large financial leap for some when buying a keyboard, it is well worth it with the Apex Pro TKL Wireless. This keyboard more than justifies its price point, touting a premium build, excellent performance, and an impressive array of features. Given its tenkeyless frame and varies connectivity options, this keyboard is an excellent companion for in-home, tournament and travel use cases. SteelSeries’s Apex Pro TKL Wireless Gaming Keyboard is a solid investment that should hold you over for a very long time.

Feel free to check out the SteelSeries’s Apex Pro TKL Wireless (2023) Gaming Keyboard for yourself by clicking here. If wireless connectivity does nothing for you, you can also check out the $189.99 wired version of the Apex Pro TKL (2023) Gaming Keyboard by clicking here.

† As usual, there are no affiliate links contained within this post. We were provided a SteelSeries Apex Pro TKL Wireless Gaming Keyboard for review purposes and were not compensated for this review.