Gamdias Hermes E2 Review

While the E2 isn’t overly impressive, it should be just fine as an entry-level budget mech

Gamdias Hermes E2 on Amazon

The Gamdias Hermes E2 is a budget tenkeyless mech featuring Gamdias’ own certified mechanical switches. It boasts 7-colour rainbow backlighting with 1000Hz polling rate and N-Key rollover. This keyboard is very attractively priced in South Africa at only R600, which can be a risky price bracket as there are often trade-offs at such a low price.

The typing performance is passable for an entry-level mech. The Gamdias Certified Brown switches were decent, not much different from your run-of-the-mill budget switch like Outemu or TTC. There is a fair bit of wobble and spring ping, but they offer a solid bump and I was able to reach my normal typing speeds. The actuation force feels around 55g, so a medium to heavy feel. The stabilisers consist only of a wire that clicks directly into the keycaps. Needless to say, Gamdias cheaped out on the stabs, but they are usable and at this price point users aren’t too nitpicky. The space bar actually felt quite good, as long as you press it towards the middle. The bigger keys feel inconsistent and mushy when you press towards the edges. Overall the metal ping is quite high on this board, but this is fairly typical for a budget mech. This is not a hot-swap board, so if you’re looking to lube, you’re going to have to desolder.

The Hermes E2 actually has six lighting zones, not seven as advertised. These lighting zones are fixed, so it isn’t possible to set the board to a single colour, for example. There are two colour modes namely static and breathing. The backlighting controls include speed and brightness adjustment, which can be accessed through the Fn layer. The Caps Lock LED will only turn on when Caps Lock is activated, and the same goes for Scroll Lock. I’m not really a fan of this arrangement, but it is what it is. The backlighting actually looks good, with even shinethrough and punchy colours. I also like this particular combination of colours.

In addition to the backlighting controls, the Fn layer has a set of media controls, a keyboard lock and windows lock. The Fn key is actually positioned on the left side where you typically find the Windows key. Needless to say, I was permanently hitting the Fn key expecting the Windows menu to pop up.

The chassis is quite attractive, with a glossy finish around the sides and a metal top plate. The Hermes branding between the arrow keys and Nav cluster actually looks quite sleek. The bezel is a bit bigger than it needs to be, but it doesn’t detract from the aesthetics. The Hermes E2 features a bold and blocky font, and while this isn’t really my style, I’m sure the younger generation will find it appealing. The keycaps have more of a smooth surface, and not quite sure why Gamdias describes them as textured. The keycaps are just plastic that is painted black, and they’re fairly thin with walls of 0.8mm. With this stabiliser style, you won’t be able to replace the modifier keycaps with a third party set.

The E2 isc lightweight at 640g, so I guess that’s good for portability. The case feels quite robust considering how thin it is, and there wasn’t too much frame bend. We have a non-detachable cable that is 1.5m in length. The underside features three rubber feet and two rubber tipped fold-outs. The Hermes E2 isn’t supported by the Gamdias Hera software, so you’ll have to use something like AutoHotkey for remapping.

So in summary, the E2 is a R600 keyboard that feels like a R600 keyboard. I think the Marvo and T-Dagger boards offer better bang for buck at this super low price point, but it’s difficult to find one with non-blue switches. While the E2 isn’t overly impressive, it should be just fine as an entry-level budget mech.

One thought on “Gamdias Hermes E2 Review

  1. I really like this keyboard. but there is one thing I hate, the Win key button is on the wrong side of the keyboard. This means that one hand short cuts now require two hands to execute.

    Like

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