Anne Pro 2 Review

Get the Anne Pro 2 on Amazon

We’re taking a look at the Anne Pro 2 today. This is a high-end 60% board that is similarly priced to the Ducky One 2 Mini. I was very eager to try this board as I use the One 2 Mini as my daily driver. Looking at the package contents, there is a quick start manual, a USB-C cable of 1.7 metres, a wired keycap puller, and also some very nice looking coloured keycaps. The Anne Pro 2 has all the features you would expect. It is available with Gateron or Kailh box switches, and comes with 1.3mm double shot PBT keycaps. There is Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity and you can pair with up to four devices – the keyboard comes with a 1900 milliamp hour battery. It can also be used in wired mode with the USB-C cable. The only thing missing really is that it is not hot swappable.

I’m always excited to just start typing on any new keyboard – it doesn’t even need to be plugged in. It tells me a lot about how the keyboard is going to perform. I immediately liked the feeling and sound of the Anne Pro 2. The Kailh box reds are buttery smooth, there is virtually no stabiliser rattle, and the board makes a very soft and gentle sound with no metal pinging. This is what separates the Anne Pro 2 and Ducky boards from a 50 dollar budget board, the out of the box performance is just way superior. I love hunting for budget peripherals, but I’m yet to find one that can match the typing experience of these high-end boards. The Kailh box reds have an actuation force of 45g with a total travel of 3.6. In terms of smoothness they’re right up there with the Gateron optical reds – just no scratchiness on these. The keyboard has a soft and gentle bottom out sound, and what really impressed me is that there is no metal pinging, no matter how hard you press the keys. This is actually very rare on keyboards nowadays. But where this board really shines is the stabilisers – pretty much no rattle on the bigger keys and this really enhances the typing experience. It’s just fun to type on a board like this, and I’m constantly looking for an excuse to type something. As far as fast typing goes, I reached a max of 139 on the Aesop typing test, only one off my personal best. The Kailh box reds also worked great for gaming.

Another thing that really impressed me was the layout and software. Everything is just super easy and intuitive. So F1-12, the Nav cluster and arrow keys are on the Fn1 layer, and on the Fn2 layer you will find the RGB and Bluetooth controls. Caps Lock acts as a Magic Fn, which means you can set it to be Fn1 or Fn2. What’s nice about this is by using Caps Lock as Fn1, you can access the arrow keys which are conveniently placed on WASD. So you get arrow functionality without having to lift your fingers from the Home row. This is the first time I’ve used arrow keys like this, and for me it’s just as easy as having dedicated arrow keys. But if this arrangement is not to your liking, there is a super useful tap layer that gives you dedicated arrow keys on the bottom right. When tapping these keys, they act as dedicated arrows, but when holding them they will act as modifier keys. For example, if I tap right Shift, it acts as up arrow, but when I hold it in I can use it as a modifier key. The only real limitation is going to be you cannot hold arrow keys for extended movement, and also when doing a Shift Delete, you’ll have to make sure that Shift is detected as a hold and not a tap. With the software you can set the tap sensitivity. So for example a sens of 200 milliseconds means that anything under 0.2 seconds will be detected as a tap, and anything over will count as a hold. So if you find that the tap arrow keys aren’t registering, your keystrokes are probably too slow and they’re being registered as holds, so just increase the sens by a little bit. The default of 150 was a bit low, so I bumped it up to 300. So as long as you tap 0.3 seconds or quicker, it registers as a arrow key. You can always just disable the tap layer if it isn’t required. I ended up using both Caps Lock and the tap layer for arrows, depending on the situation – extremely convenient.

The software of the Anne Pro 2 is lightyears ahead of anything I’ve tried before, and it is constantly updated and improved. Not only is it intuitive but it gives you functionality that you just don’t find with most boards. What I like here is that you’re always on the Default layer, and you don’t need to switch between layers. You can do button remapping on any of the layers, and this is huge because it gives you the power to make the keyboard behave just the way you want it to. For example you can completely customise the Fn1 layer to your liking. It was super easy for me to add complete multimedia controls on the Fn1 layer, which was awesome. You can also remap to dedicated arrow keys on the Default layer, not that I even needed to do this because using Caps Lock or the tap layer was very convenient. What’s also nice is you can put your most used Fn1 functions on the right, so that they’re accessible with one hand. For example I can place my volume control on the right, and move lesser used functions to the left. I guess the side printing on the keycaps will then be wrong, but not the end of the world. Having complete control over each layer is a game changer for me. After you’ve customised the layers to your liking, you can then save it as a new profile. You can then easily switch between profiles or revert back to the default configuration. There is macro recording capability, and just note that assigning macros to keys is done from the macro tab. As far as the RGB goes, you can create your own RGB profiles and save up to 16 modes per profile. You can then choose one profile to save on the keyboard, and the colour modes can be selected with Fn2 + 9. You can also create your own static colour modes. The software is just miles ahead of anything I’ve used before, and it was so easy to get this board up and running. I literally didn’t run into a single problem.

Setting up Bluetooth is very easy. You start by flipping the wireless switch on the bottom of the board. Then you hold Fn2 plus 1 to 4 for five seconds to go into pairing mode. You can pair with up to 4 devices and switch between them on the fly. I did have some difficulty pairing my phone, but it worked after a few attempts. If you run into this issue, try clearing the Bluetooth bind with the software. I didn’t experience any input lag when playing CSGO and the Bluetooth 4.0 felt snappy. When the keyboard is running wirelessly, there is an auto sleep mode to preserve battery life. You can control the idle time before this sleep mode is activated – anywhere from 10 seconds to 60 minutes. When returning to the keyboard in sleep mode, it responded immediately, which was nice. Not only can you check the remaining battery life on the software, but by pressing Fn2 + 8 it is displayed on the number row. Just press Fn2 + 8 again to return to your RGB mode from before.

As far as looks go, this white version looks insanely good. I don’t know what it is, but the lighting looks so smooth and rich, and flows very nicely. It really looks elegant as opposed to flashy. The white mounting plate gives a beautiful underglow, and the keycaps have a creamy white colour. I like the medium font, as it allows more backlighting through while maintaining a professional look. I didn’t feel inclined to do any kind of keycap customisation, as I loved the stock look. The coloured keycaps included in the packaging did add a nice touch though. RGB controls can be accessed on the Fn2 layer. You can switch between the 16 modes, turn the backlighting on or off, and there are a whopping 10 brightness levels.

Build quality is excellent. The keyboard has a fair amount of heft to it thanks to a steel mounting plate. The plastic casing is strong and there is minimal bend in the frame. There are no fold outs, only four non-slip rubber feet on the bottom. I found the angle of the case very comfortable, so no issues there. I msut say that I quite like these plastic cases as opposed to metal ones, as the bottoming out sounds softer.

The Anne Pro 2 is right up there with the Ducky One 2 Mini, and I’m having a hard time choosing between these two boards. This is one of those rare cases where the keyboard will not leave my desk after the review. This board made a big impression on me, and if you’re looking for a high-end board, you cannot go wrong with the Anne Pro 2.


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