Redragon S101 Gaming Keyboard Review – An Unexpected Gaming Combo

Redragon S101 Keyboard

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Current testing methodology is v1.2

Release Date
September 16, 2014
Price
$39.99
Weight
2.16 lb
Size
17.91 x 7.2 x 0.91 in

Having a decent gaming setup doesn’t necessarily mean breaking the bank, especially in an era where most gaming peripherals tend to be overpriced due to high demand, and of course, the brand name. This is why I dive into reviewing affordable tech and devices – to uncover those hidden gems or lesser-known products that could offer great value. In this article, I’ll be taking a closer look at the Redragon S101.

The S101 is my second keyboard from Redragon, following my purchase of the Redragon K502 Karura 2, which I reviewed recently. What caught me off guard, and in a good way, is that the S101 comes packaged with a gaming mouse that has a programmable RGB backlight – a rare find in this price range.

Let’s see how the Redragon S101 does and if it’s worth the purchase in this detailed review.

Best Value

Redragon S101

Gaming keyboard and mouse in a nice affordable package

4/5
Price Range: $
Brand: Redragon
Redragon S101 Keyboard - Logo

TL:DR;

The Redragon S101 is a gaming keyboard that comes with the Redragon M601 gaming mouse. It’s available in black and white to suit your preference or your setup’s theme.

The keyboard features 7-color RGB Backlighting for all 104 keys, and regarding ergonomics, it has a pair of flip-up legs and a wrist rest that didn’t help me that much but just added to the keyboard’s appearance. The Redragon M601 gaming mouse also has promising capabilities with adjustable weights, two programmable buttons, and a quick-adjustable DPI.

These two make a great combo deal for starters or those who are on a budget. It’s not perfect but for a price of around $30 to $60 depending on where you get it, it’s a great steal.

The Specs

  • Number of Keys:  114
  • Number of Mouse Buttons (Programmable):  6 (5)
  • Mouse DPI:  3200dpi
  • Mouse Scanning Speed / Frequency:  65ips / 3600fps
  • RGB Backlit:  Yes
  • Connectivity:  USB
  • Keyboard Type:  Membrane Keyboard
  • Numpad:  Numpad

What’s in the Box?

  • Redragon S101 Keyboard
  • Redragon M601 Gaming Mouse
  • Stickers
  • User Manual and Guide

Stuff I like

  • Affordable price
  • Backlight has nice saturation
  • Suitable for gaming and work
  • Music-dedicated keys
  • Very silent

Stuff I like less

  • Forgets the last setting for the RGB Backlight
  • Mouse needs software to change the RGB Backlight
  • Needs more RGB effects
  • Wrist rest isn’t that helpful

Comparable products to consider

Redragon K502 Karura 2
Redragon K502 Karura 2

First Impressions

After spending some time with the Karura 2, I got bored and wanted to explore more Redragon gear to see what else the brand has to offer. Don’t get me wrong, the Karura 2 is a solid gaming keyboard for its price but as a gamer, I wanted to expand my horizon and explore other options available in the market.

Finally, after patiently waiting for a week, the Redragon S101 arrived at my doorstep, and I was excited to dive into it. However, upon receiving the package, I noticed that the box had visible creases and dents despite being wrapped in bubble wrap. Thankfully, all the contents are safe.

The packaging box features an image of the S101 keyboard and the M601 mouse, with the words “Gaming Essentials” boldly written at the bottom right. 

Flipping to the back of the box, you’ll find another image displaying the keyboard and mouse from a different angle with details about the contents’ features written in different languages. The box does an excellent job of providing a total view of what’s inside.

Upon opening the box, you’re greeted by the sight of the keyboard and mouse neatly wrapped and resting on a cardboard base. You’ll also find a sticker and a user manual, ensuring you have all the necessary information.

Redragon S101 Keyboard - Mini wrist pad
Features an ergonomic design with a comfortable wrist rest | Make Life Click

Design and Build Quality

Appearance-wise, the Redragon S101 gives off a vibe straight out of a sci-fi movie from the ’80s or ’90s. Kidding aside, it’s appealing for a gaming keyboard with its distinct curves and edges.

Regarding the RGB backlight, it’s good but not exceptional. It lacks the smoothness of RGB animations found in pricier keyboards but it does the job of lighting up each keycap, especially in a dark setup. The keyboard also comes with a wristrest but it falls short in terms of providing much help. This might be subjective but it feels a bit too short for my comfort.

On a positive note, the design is well thought out. There’s a Redragon logo on the wristrest and it has a dragon scales texture, which is a nice touch that adds to the overall aesthetic of the keyboard. You’ll also spot another brand logo on the upper portion, lighting up in tandem with the keycaps and adding a bit of flair.

Additionally, there’s an extra set of buttons on the upper left featuring dedicated keys for My Computer, Search, Refresh, E-mail, Calculator, and Home Page, which I find useful. Meanwhile, the extra buttons on the upper right cater to Stop, Play/Pause, Previous, and Next, designed for music or video playback.

Sadly, these additional buttons don’t come with backlighting, which is kind of disappointing considering their functionality, yet it’s a commendable addition to a budget-friendly keyboard.

The Redragon S101 keyboard surprised me with its solid build quality, especially considering its $30 price tag. It’s made of plastic with a unique texture that’s kind of hard to describe but, honestly, it doesn’t bother me while I’m using it. I even gave the whole keyboard a little bend test, and it flexes a bit. But let’s be real — unless someone plans to put this through extreme tests like running a car over it, it should hold up just fine.

The keycaps are laser engraved and Redragon claims they’re super durable, never wearing out. I can’t say that for sure but just looking at the S101, it seems like it would take a lot of heavy use before those keycaps start to show any signs of fading.

Redragon S101 Keyboard - Keys with backlight
Each key is individually RGB lit to offer a clear display | Make Life Click

Plus, these keycaps have some kind of elastic coating that gives my fingers a better grip – it’s a small detail but adds to the overall comfort.

Unlike the Karura 2, the cable on this keyboard isn’t braided. Surprisingly, I sometimes prefer non-braided cables because some of the braided ones can be too stiff and make cable management a bit of a hassle. The keyboard also comes with a cable strap, which is a nice touch for keeping things tidy.

Underneath the keyboard, you’ll find flip-up legs that help you adjust the height and rubber pads to keep it from sliding around on your desk. Those little details make a big difference in comfort while using it.

Using the Redragon S101

I’ve gotta say, this keyboard shocked me when it comes to being quiet, especially at night. All I hear in the background is the hum of my AC and my laptop’s fan. Compared to my old keyboards that sounded like a tap-dancing show with their noisy keys, the Redragon S101 is a game-changer.

Those flip-up legs are unsurprisingly comfy, making a huge difference whenever I use this compared to my other keyboards. However, the wristrest doesn’t add much besides looking good. It’s more like a style thing than actually helping my wrists.

Now, the keys on the S101 are a bit mushy and wobbly but they’re really responsive. I like that I don’t have to press too hard but there’s this weird thing where my finger gets pushed back after I hit a key.

In a dimly lit room, the keyboard’s backlight looks decent. I prefer the white static color setting as it blends well with the black surface of the keyboard, especially with the Redragon logo lighting up at the top. What throws me off is that every time I start my PC, this keyboard forgets the last RGB setting that I used. I’ve heard that some third-party software could fix it but I don’t want to spend too much time or effort just to fix that.

Redragon S101 Keyboard - RGB color
Equipped with 7-color RGB Backlighting for all 104 keys | Make Life Click

RGB Backlight Settings

The Redragon S101 doesn’t come with dedicated software, so I’ve had to rely on its Fn keys for adjusting the RGB settings. It has the same RGB settings as the Karura 2 and offers a variety of options – 7 distinct RGB colors and several lighting modes – and here’s how to access them:

  1. RGB Color Cycle (Fn + Insert): This mode smoothly cycles through seven different colors across all the keys.
  2. Static Color Mode (FN + Home): You can set the entire keyboard to your preferred single color with this mode.
  3. Static RGB Color Mode (Fn + PgUp): It lets you select random colors for all keys; pressing Fn + PgUp repeatedly allows you to choose your preferred color combinations.
  4. RGB Disco Mode (Fn + Delete): Sections of the keys display different colors, resembling a disco ball.
  5. Breathing Mode (Fn + End): Backlights fade in and out, transitioning to another color.
  6. LED On/Off (Fn + PgDn): This command turns the backlight on or off.

Adjusting the speed of the RGB backlight animation is done by pressing Fn + Left or Right Arrow Keys, while Fn + Up or Down Arrow Keys control the backlight’s brightness.

My Thoughts on the Redragon M601 Mouse

The fact that the Redragon S101 keyboard is priced between $30 to $60 and comes bundled with a gaming mouse featuring RGB features is truly remarkable.

Using the Redragon M601 gaming mouse feels fantastic. Its size fits my hand perfectly and even after extended gaming sessions, it doesn’t cause any fatigue. My experience may be different from others though because hand sizes vary.

Redragon S101 Keyboard - Mouse lighting
Full-sized gaming mouse providing maximum comfort and support | Make Life Click

Additionally, the mouse has five programmable buttons, adjustable DPI, and customizable weights at the bottom. I tried using it without weights and I didn’t quite like the feel so I decided to return it to its original setting.

Pairing this mouse with the S101 doesn’t strike me as a marketing gimmick as both perform very well. However, my only issue lies in setting up the mouse’s backlight, which requires specific software that seems too much work for me.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THIS ONE?
Redragon S101 Gaming Keyboard, M601 Mouse, RGB Backlit Gaming Keyboard, Programmable Backlit Gaming Mouse, Value Combo Set [New Version]
Redragon S101 Keyboard

Conclusion

Overall, the Redragon S101 delivers a solid gaming experience without spending too much.

The keyboard’s RGB settings and responsive keys create an immersive gaming atmosphere, while the accompanying M601 mouse offers comfort during long gaming sessions with its size. It’s a nice addition but setting up its backlight might need extra effort and work due to specific software requirements.

Overall, the Redragon S101 combo provides good performance, comfort, and affordability for gamers looking for a reliable setup on a budget. It’s an excellent option for those who want value without compromising quality.

Redragon S101 Keyboard - Mini wrist pad
Redragon S101
Build Quality
Price to Performance Ratio
Ergonomics
Design
Performance
4

Shaik, a college student, part-time musician, and proud fur parent. Currently pursuing his degree in architecture.

As a part-time musician, Shaik enjoys expressing his self creatively through music. Whether it's writing original songs or performing covers, music is a significant part of Shaik's life

This post was last updated on 2024-06-07 / Some images from Amazon Product API & some links may be affiliate links which may earn us a commission from purchases.


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