If the single colour backlighting and lack of bluetooth aren’t dealbreakers for you, you can save a good chunk of money here
The Redragon K630 Dragonborn is the successor of the K530 Draconic that was released in 2020. The Dragonborn is available in two versions: there is a full RGB offering and a more budget-friendly single backlighting version. The most notable change from the K530 is the removal of Bluetooth, and Redragon has addressed a few issues, such as the Caps Lock LED that would only turn on when Caps Lock was activated. The single backlighting version I have here today comes in at a very budget friendly price of R600, which translates to about $40.
While the K530 Draconic was a decent first attempt from Redragon, there were a few hiccups. One glaring issue was the Caps Lock LED. It would only be illuminated when Caps Lock was turned on, so during general use this LED would usually be off, and it really stood out like a sore thumb. Great to see that Redragon has addressed this issue, and the Caps Lock indicator has been moved to the side of the case. There were a few other issues, including a Magic Fn key that had a two-second delay and wonky macro buttons. These two features have entirely been cut from the K630. Another feature that has been removed is the Bluetooth connectivity. The K530’s Bluetooth was quite quite erratic and unreliable, so Redragon just decided to make this a wired keyboard. The Dragonborn feels like a more polished version of the Draconic, even though it isn’t as feature-rich.
So it seems like the single backlighting version is currently only available with Brown switches. These are of course the rebranded Outemu Browns, a tactile switch with an actuation force of 55g. This switch feels pretty similar to other budget Browns like Cherry MX and Gateron, offering moderate tactility with some pretravel before the bump. No issues with stem or housing wobble, however Outemu Browns do have considerable metal ping—lubing is highly recommended.
All things considered, these are solid budget switches, and I like the smooth feel with the rounded bump. The K630 is a hot-swap board, and if you’re looking to replace these Browns I’d recommend the Outemu Purple or Sky switches. Overall the Dragonborn offers a decent typing experience, more or less what you would expect from a R600 mechanical keyboard. The biggest drawback for me was the metal ping, which is a combination of the switches and plate vibration. Even though I’d rate the ping as above average, it should mostly be masked by ambient noise and I don’t think it’s a dealbreaker. Definitely not as bad as something like the Redragon K556. The stock performance of the stabilisers is so-so, and there is moderate rattle on most of the bigger keys. But again, one cannot be nitpicky at R600 and it is forgivable.
The K630 makes use of Outemu hot-swap sockets, and as always just remember that these sockets are only compatible with other Outemu switches. In comparison to Kailh and Gateron hot swap sockets, a bit more force is required to remove the switch, so make sure you have a decent switch puller. It actually looks like the switches are soldered to the PCB, but that is in fact the Outemu hot swap sockets that are soldered. These are very similar to Millmax sockets. If you’re interested in using non-Outemu switches, you would either need to file the pins or desolder these sockets and replace them with another kind.
Redragon have once again opted for two Fn layers, which is why there is an Fn1 and Fn2 key. The Fn1 layer features the F-row, Nav Cluster and arrow keys, and on the Fn2 layer you have your RGB controls and macro recording functionality. The double Fn layers feel kind of redundant, as they could easily have put everything on one Fn layer. The Fn layers are fairly comprehensive, although I would like to see the addition of media controls in the future.
Looking at the build quality, we have an ABS plastic case and double shot ABS keycaps with a steel mounting plate. The bottom features two fold outs with a rubbery surface for extra grip. I didn’t actually need to use these, as the case has a natural ergonomic angle. The ABS keycaps have a fairly smooth surface, as opposed to the more textured surface you typically find on Redragon’s ABS keycaps, so I am a little worried about grease collection and shine here.
The Dragonborn is a pretty good-looking board, featuring a matte black case with some branding on the front right. Great to see that Redragon isn’t using that thick, blocky font on their 60% boards, and the legends actually look very elegant—the font on the modifiers is quite big though. The keycaps have that glossy side finish that Redragon is known for. I feel like they could have gone for a less divisive colour on this version, maybe something like white. I don’t have anything against pink, however it might be a dealbreaker for some. The RGB looks pretty understated, as the black mounting plate doesn’t give much of an underglow, but the shinethrough is nice and even. There are a total of 18 colour modes, and you can cycle through these with Fn2 + 9. You also have control over the brightness, and the backlighting can be switched on and off. The K630 comes with the standard 61-key ANSI layout, so it’ll be easy to find compatible keycap sets. I was really curious to see what the Razer Mercury White keycaps would look like with the pink backlighting, and it’s a great combination.
There doesn’t seem to be any software for the K630 yet, even though it is mentioned on the Redragon website.
So in summary I actually think that the K630 Dragonborn offers really good bang for buck. If the single colour backlighting and lack of bluetooth aren’t dealbreakers for you, you can save a good chunk of money here. Good to see that Redragon has ironed out all the issues with their first release, and this feels like a more polished keyboard.