The Cooler Master CK721 is a 65% wireless MECHANICAL keyboard that punches above its weight to deliver as both a work and play keyboard while including features that are only available in pricey mechanical keyboards.
- Fantastic cross-device compatibility
- Keycaps and switches feel good
- Full RGB customization
- Versatile connection options
- Short battery life
Mechanical keyboards like the Cooler Master CK721 are popular with PC gamers, but the best ones can be used for pretty everything else. Whether you need to type away a college essay or respond to a few work emails, a comfortable mechanical keyboard will get the job done. However, finding one that fits all your needs is never easy, especially if you need a full-sized keyboard for your desk and extras like function keys and wireless functionalities.
With the Cooler Master CK721, you have the best of both worlds. This 65% wireless mechanical keyboard fits the bill for both work and play, is easy to use, and includes some features from its full-size siblings like the Cool Master CK552 Gaming Keyboard. And, it can be had at a very competitive price, making it one of the best small-form-factor mechanical keyboards you can buy right now.
About the Cooler Master CK721
Here are the specs of the keyboard in this review
- Connectivity: Wireless 2.4 GHz, Bluetooth 5.1 & USB Type-C cable (included)
- Dimensions: 13.15 x 4.65 x 1.46 inches (without palm rest)
- Weight: 1.68 pounds (without palm rest)
- Material: Sandblasted aluminum (top plate), plastic
- Special features: Full RGB support, on-the-fly key controls, universal compatibility
The Cooler Master CK721 comes in a choice of three Cherry MX key switches: Red, Brown, and Blue. Our review unit has Cherry MX switches, rated for up to 50 million keystrokes. Talk of excellent longevity! They are also linear and cool, so if you like your keys quiet, Cherry red is the best pick.
For the general profile, you have a choice between Gunmetal and Silver White for the color schemes. All of these variations offer full support for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android devices, and unofficial, they can support Sony PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 consoles.
What we like
Full-size keyboard in a compact body
It’s just awesome to see a full-size keyboard experience recreated in a 65% keyboard, and Cooler Master went further to add special controls that let you change what certain keys can do – you don’t need any additional software. Here, you can control the RGB backlighting, media controls, system and keyboard brightness, swap devices, and do so much more with a few key presses.
There are two options for accessing the media controls on the CK721: the dial and on-the-fly-controls. There’s a silver dial in the upper right-hand corner consisting of four profile settings. Profile one controls the computer volume, profile two is for media controls profile three is for display brightness, and profile four controls the keyboard’s RGB lighting. Might look like a lot of work at the beginning, but you’ll simply get accustomed.
Simple, Slick design
Just beautiful. The Cooler Master CK721 has a utilitarian design but you’ll love how nice it looks. Elsewhere, the keyboard is compatible with many different devices, just the way I like my keyboards. Whether you need to play on PlayStation Remote Play or your new PS5 or simply relaxing at home, this keyboard offers seamless compatibility and a very adaptable experience, all the down to the swappable faceplate.
The CK721 offers support for Bluetooth, wireless, and wired connections. With Bluetooth, you can connect the keyboard to up to three devices at the same time and switch between them via the FN key and the DEL, PGUP, or PGDN keys. There’s also an embedded removable panel on the left of the keyboard that lets you connect the keyboard wirelessly to one supporting device (2.4Ghz wireless connection).
There’s also a removable aluminum top plate that comes in two colors: Gunmetal and Silver White, which simply customize the look and experience of the keyboard, which is just timeless, especially for a keyboard that can be used for both work and play.
Seamless multi-device compatibility
As mentioned above, the Cooler Master CK721 keyboard works across most devices; you can use it with your PC, handhelds devices, and unofficially with PlayStation and Xbox consoles.
When gaming on Mac or PC, you can make do with a wired connection as t provides the best response time of 1ms (millisecond). However, should you opt to go wireless, 8ms isn’t too bad. I’d vouch for wired connection if you’ll be doing competitive gaming, since having the lowest latency will mean you get the best experience possible.
Again. You won’t have any issues using the keyboard with different mobile phones like the Apple iPhone 13 Pro, Google Pixel 6 Pro, and the Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra. Better still, with a Samsung phone, you can take advantage of its Dex mode, or Samsung’s desktop mode, which allows you to navigate your phone via a computer through emulation.
What we Don’t like
Battery life would be better
The Cooler Master CK721 boasts 72 hours of battery life on a single charge. That may sound like a lot, but it isn’t, especially when compared to similar mechanical keyboards from Asus, Razer, and the rest.
The Asus ROG Falchion is yet another 65% mechanical keyboard that can hold juice for up to 450 hours (with RGB off), while the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini Hyperspeed can last up to 203 hours (RGB off). Again, during rigorous gaming, the Cooler Master CK721’s battery life drops to 40 and 45 hours, depending on the games you will be playing.
Should you buy it?
Yes. Even with its middling battery life, the keyboard has a lot going for it.
While most of us prefer full-size keyboards, especially if you will be working with numbers, there’s something unique with compact keyboards that always brings us back to them. Just a few compact mechanical gaming keyboards deliver a similar experience, the likes of the Corsair K70 RGB Pro, but the Cooler Master CK721 not only gets the task done but punches above its weight with a sleek design and a luxurious design.
Its price puts it in the same class as the HyperX Alloy Origins 65 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard and the Razer Huntsman Mini 60% Gaming Keyboard. All three keyboards rock the same features and build quality, including the swappable aluminum faceplates, multi-device support, and wireless connectivity.
Should you need a wireless keyboard with the best battery life, there’s the Asus ROG Falchion. Otherwise, if all you need is a fantastic, compact keyboard that does it all, the Cooler Master CK721 delivers the most bang for your buck than anything else. Have it at the top of your short shopping list!