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Keyboards

Anne Pro 2 Review

What cord, we don't need no stinking cord!

  “The Anne pro 2 stands out in the crowd that is 60% mechanical keyboards, with its fantastic software, quick tap arrow key function, fantastic build quality, rock-solid Bluetooth connection”

    If you have been following my articles lately you’ll know that I just finished up my guide on building a mechanical keyboard on a budget. YEAH! , I know we didn’t actually build a keyboard. We customized an existing platform but I figured that was the best approach for the masses. I’m fairly sure most people don’t feel as comfortable with a soldering iron as I do or even own one for that matter… So I’d call that series a success and I think the end result speaks for itself. On the heels of that series that contains over 5 thousand words, the Anne pro 2 was placed on my deck… So the goodness that is 60% mechanical keyboards continues.

    Notice I said the goodness, and that’s completely accurate with Anne Pro 2 60% mechanical keyboard. This thing, to be honest, is beyond good, it’s ludicrously good for the asking price and the features that it provides. One would think that being a 60% keyboard like many others, the Anne pro 2 would be more of the same. Well it’s not, it does have a few tricks up its PBT keycaps. All that said,  let’s get into the review.

   Let me ask you all a question first, have you ever had to do something so overwhelming that you didn’t know where to start. Well, that is the Anne Pro 2 review. This keyboard packs so many features that it would make a rocket scientist head spin. In truth though that’s a good thing, especially in the ocean of 60% mechanical keyboards available today. If you don’t do something to set yourself apart you’ll simply get left behind and Obins Lab the creators of the Anna pro line of keyboards have been doing just that. The Anne pro 2 took the strengths of the first and improved upon it’s very few weakness and has delivered a keyboard that anyone would be glad to have on their desk.

    I’ll start with simple things like appearance. This is an easy topic as the Anne Pro 2 only comes in 2 colors, White or black and that’s it. I have the white and I’ll admit it’s going to take something special to force me to replace the keycaps. I’ve never owned a white RGB keyboard and WOW!!! the RGB effect with the white keycaps and base plate is something otherworldly. The Glow is stunning and puts a smile on my face every time I turn the RGB on. I’d imagine the black will be like the GK61 that I reviewed here. It will look fantastic as well, but it won’t pop like the RGB of the white version.

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    I’ll continue with RGB backlighting. RGB lighting is a subjective thing, some people hate it and won’t be caught dead with it, some people won’t buy a keyboard without it. If you fall into the non-RGB group you can completely turn it off as you can with all RGB keyboards that I’ve ever tested. If you’re an RGB fan then you can turn it on and adjust the brightness level to your liking. If you want the brightest glow possible get the white version. If you plan on replacing the keycaps it really won’t matter which color Anne Pro 2 you choose. Digging deeper into the land of RGB, the Anne pro 2 will arrive with 14 color profiles pre-installed. This is 6 solid colors and 6 animated effects like the popular rainbow wave and 2 triggered effects that react to keys being pressed. Adding or removing a color scheme with possible per key RGB if you choose is by far the easiest of all the 60% keyboards that I’ve reviewed to date AND easier than Logitech or Corsairs software too! There is one glaring omission when it comes to RGB and that is the ability to control the speed of the animations like rainbow wave, this can be added through a software update but it’s still weird that it’s not here from the start. Overall the Software for the Anne Pro is better than the GK61 and the Ducky One 2 mini which has none.

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    Next, let’s talk keycaps. The Anne Pro 2 comes with thick double shot PBT keycaps. If you’re new to TLR or mechanical boards, most keyboard ship with ABS plastic keycaps. ABS tends to be the least durable of the materials used to make keycaps. PBT, on the other hand, is considered to be a premium material. The Anna pro 2 ships with PBT, double shot means the keycap mold has 2 plastics shot into the mold. The first is the outer color and shape of the keycap, the second is the legend (letters, numbers, and symbols) this results in a key cap that is more durable and one that will retain the legend throughout the keycaps lifetime. The keycaps feel premium under the finger and I’d say rank up there with the best aftermarket keycaps that you can buy.

 

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    Switches. Oh, those glorious switches… (RANDOM: on the topic of glorious, we will have a few keyboards to review from Glorious PC Gaming Race soon) now back to the switches. Obins Lab is giving you a larger choice than most when it comes to mechanical switches. I chose the Kailh Box Browns, I’m a tactile switch kind of guy.

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    The Kailh Box Browns offer a more tactile feel that starts at top of the keypress when compared to the Gateron Browns. I’ll admit Gateron is still a smoother press, but the Kailh are in no way a bad choice, it’s just a different more tactile feel when typing. The great thing when it comes to switches is the choice is completely yours. Anne Pro 2 are available with Cherry MX Blue, Cherry MX Brown, Cherry MX Red, Gateron Brown, Gateron Red, Gateron Blue, Khail Box Brown, Khail Box Red and finally Khail Box Whites. For those of you that were counting that’s 9, count them 9 different switches that are available from 3 manufacturers. Keep in mind that you also have a choice of 2 keyboard colors so that’s 18 possible keyboard variants that you can get. THAT IS NUTS!!

    If you want to read about the different switches you can read our article on mechanical key switches here.

    Overall build quality is superb, the back plate is painted steel so the chassis has little to no flex when twisted. The case is made of 1 very stiff quality piece of plastic, it has zero give on the sides when compared to something like the Ducky one 2 mini.  Under the bottom, you’ll find 4 rubber nonadjustable feet which to me isn’t a big deal. I think Obins Lab chose an angle that will be fine for most people. If you look at the picture below you’ll notice an on and off button… This is one of the standout features that I listed above.

    Another standout feature of the Anne Pro 2 is the quick tap arrow key function. I can’t count how many times I’ve used the feature in the time that I’ve had the Anne Pro 2. Other keyboards like the Ducky and GK61 require you to hold the function key and press a button which will function as the arrow key. On the Anne pro 2, you simply tap the right shift, FN, menu or right control key which are where you’d expect the arrows to be and they function as arrow keys. This is genius and I can’t believe no other 60% keyboard has ripped this feature off yet.

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What cord, I don’t need no stinking cord!

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    I figured the “we don’t need no stinking wire” line above would have given it away already. Anne Pro 2 has Bluetooth… Yeah, I said it, I didn’t stutter… Anne Pro 2 has Bluetooth. When it’s connected via the USB-C cable it charges and works as a wired keyboard, no different than any other. When the cable is disconnected, however, the party goes on. The Anne Pro 2 can be connected to up to 4 devices and can be swapped on the fly by pressing the FN2 button along with the 1-4 key.

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NOTE: The blue rubber keys are Tai Hao and can be purchased here. If you’re willing to wait you can find them from other vendors online cheaper.

    I hear you already ” I don’t need Bluetooth” and you might not. If you don’t the Anne Pro 2 is still a great keyboard, but maybe the GK61 at half the price is what the Dr ordered. I myself find the Anne Pro 2 to be a much better typing experience on my Ipad Pro vs any of the other alternative. Being a robust and sturdy design and a 60% keyboard its easy to carry around in my backpack. Other random benefits are a cleaner desk with one less cable strung across it, plus no more typing with the Alexa remote when searching on the fire stick or cube (that’s annoying, I know someone has felt my pain).

    One last thing worth mentioning is that Obins Labs provides a red USB-C cable and extra colorful PBT keycaps and a wire keycap puller with each Anne Pro 2. It’s cool that you can spice up the keyboard and make it your own right out the box which is more than I can say for most of the keyboards on the market.

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   Overall thoughts

    The Anne pro 2 stands out in the crowd that is 60% mechanical keyboards, with its fantastic software, quick tap arrow key function, fantastic build quality, rock-solid Bluetooth connection with up to 4 devices, and Obins Labs provides you with a choice of 9 different key switches and 2 different color cases. If that doesn’t stand out from the crowd I don’t know what does.

    The typing experience with the Khail Box Browns has been nothing but fantastic. Obins Lab software is some of the best that I’ve used when it comes to remapping a keyboard. The Anne Pro is simply the complete package when it comes to 60% mechanical keyboards.

    Who should buy the Anne Pro 2? If you are in the market for a 60% keyboard and other keyboards such as the GK61 doesn’t come with the switch that you want it’s likely the Anne Pro 2 does. If you have a device such as an iPad, Android tablet or a Samsung phone that uses dex the Anne Pro 2 is probably for you. If you want a really clean wireless setup… Again the Anne Pro 2 is probably for you.

    The Anne pro 2 can be found here for around $100, that’s twice what the GK61 cost… Is it 2 times better, yes and no. If you order a set PBT keycap for the GK61 like I did at $30 that brings the cost of the GK61 to $80. If you factor in an extra $20 for an easier to use software and Bluetooth then the Anna Pro 2 begins to look like the deal that it is. As always only you can decide if the Anna pro 2 is right for you if it is please consider using our link below to order your own.

Buy the Anne Pro 2

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$3.00

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