The Logitech G413 was our favorite budget gaming keyboard of yesteryear. Now, as the Logitech G513, it has seen a major makeover with RGB lighting, an included palm rest and even a whole new linear switch.
The result is a more fully-featured keyboard in a still compact and streamlined frame. However, all those extra fixings add up to a substantially higher $149 or £159 (about AU$200) price, moving away from the budget-minded nature of the $89 (£99, AU$149) Logitech G413.
By rising to this mid-range category, this gaming keyboard also faces a new set of competitors, including the $159 (£159, AU$215) Corsair K70 LUX RGB and $149 (£149, AU$189) Cooler Master MasterKeys MK750.
Deciding between the Logitech G513 and its rivals can be a tough choice, but after typing on the company’s far superior Romer-G Linear switches, we wouldn’t want to buy another Cherry MX Red keyboard in our lifetime.
The Logitech G513’s overall design doesn’t see many changes at all compared to the Logitech G413. It’s still an incredibly compact keyboard made of a rigid plastic frame with a sheet of aircraft-grade 5052 aluminum to serve as its top plate.
Most brushed metal finishes in the PC world are fingerprint magnets, but Logitech’s blend of aluminum and magnesium seems to be engineered to repel them. The frameless design of this keyboard also features floating key caps that make cleaning up dust and food crumbs with a can of compressed air a lot easier.
As mentioned before, the Logitech G513 introduces a new customizable, per-key RGB lighting system. It’s as bright and vibrant as the illumination that the company has integrated into its higher-end peripherals, and the new LightSync technology helps you synchronize lighting effects across your entire gaming setup.
The leatherette palm rest is also a welcome addition. It’s padded with memory foam and is large enough to support all types of hand sizes. Although it’s heavily weighted to keep it in place, magnets as utilized in the Razer BlackWidow Chroma V2 would have done a much better job of keeping it secured to the peripheral.
Last year, we didn’t appreciate that the Logitech G413 only had toggleable function keys and not dedicated media buttons, and we're still disappointed this year. While we could see this decision was made maintain the keyboard's small form factor – the Corsair K70 LUX RGB is larger due to an extra row of media controls, for example – the Cooler Master MasterKeys MK750 and MSI Vigor GK80 have both proven you can have shortcut keys while maintaining a compact, frameless design.
The USB passthrough, while convenient, still remains to only to be a USB 2.0 port despite how ubiquitous USB 3.0 has become over the last decade.
By comparison, the Romer-G Linear switch feels firm but without introducing too much resistance. Thanks to the boxy nature of the underlying mechanism, each key press actuates evenly and comes to a nearly silent stop. Comparatively, we’ve always felt Cherry MX Red offers so little resistance, the keys chatter and feel uneven when actuated.
Easily the biggest difference between this keyboard and its predecessor is it commemorates the introduction of Logitech’s Romer-G Linear switch. Up until now, the peripheral’s maker’s only proprietary key switch has been a tactile one.
Logitech promises its new Romer-G Linear switch delivers a quieter and 25% faster keystroke than its leading competitor. After using the keyboard for a week straight, we feel the peripheral maker has fully delivered on its claims and developed a key switch that’s better than the Cherry MX Red switch.
Not only does it feel faster while gaming, the Romer-G Linear switch is something we actually enjoy typing on. Our biggest pet-peeve of reviewing keyboards with Cherry MX Red is they’re often not good for anything other than gaming and feel terrible to type anything beyond our Steam logins.
The Logitech G513 is more of a step-up model than a true sequel to the Logitech G413. It’s higher-end price alone is enough to give us pause to check out other competing products, whereas its predecessor was easily the most well-equipped budget gaming keyboard.
However, after extensive use of Logitech’s Romer-G Linear switches, we can’t imagine going back to a Cherry MX Red board. Despite the continued fumbles with the USB pass-through and lack of dedicated shortcuts, the quality and feel of this keyboard makes it well worth its asking price.