The Ducky x Varmilo MIYA Pro has taken the #1 spot in our roundup of the best 65% keyboards.
The MIYA Pro features an excellent typing experience along with an incredibly convenient form factor that is quite uncommon.
Let’s dive into the review and pick this keyboard apart.
The Ducky x Varmilo MIYA Pro is a 65% mechanical keyboard that comes loaded with Cherry MX switches, PBT keycaps, and a soft white backlight.
Coming with super smooth stabilizers and swtiches, the keyboard has an excellent typing experience that is only matched by a few enthusiast keyboards.
A notable feature is also the slightly detached arrow keys which make them much easier to feel for and adds to the uniqueness of the keyboard.
With a ton of interesting designs available, the MIYA Pro is sure to impress many. We got ours in the Mac colorway and design, but there are several other options out there such as:
- Ducky MIYA Pro Pro Panda White 65%
- Ducky MIYA Pro Koi 65%
- Ducky MIYA Pro Forest Fairy 65%
- Ducky MIYA Pro Sea Melody 65%
- And many more
You can also find the MIYA Pro on Amazon if you’re interested in checking it out.
In The Box
The Ducky x Varmilo MIYA Pro comes packaged inside a tasteful box that includes an interesting design.
From our experience with Varmilo, they tend to put a lot of effort in their artistic designs, this keyboard is no exception.
The contents inside the box all look deliberately chosen. With specialized Varmilo-branded items, everything looks a touch better than usual.
Here’s what we found in the box:
- Keycap puller: Coming with a crystal blue handle, the keycap puller features a wire design making it easy to remove the keycaps without worrying about scratching the sides of the keycaps. The handle is also ergonomically shaped for easier usage.
- Dust cover: A plastic see-through dust cover is also included to place on your keyboard when not in usage. This should prevent dust and other junk from accumulating on your keyboard.
- Power cable: A white USB-C to USB-A power cable is also included. A cable management velco strip is also included to keep things tidy. The cable itself is slightly nicer than usual and includes the Varmilo branding.
- Additional key: A second CAPS LOCK key is also included with an small see-through indicator on it. This should help notify you if Caps is turned on/off. An interesting add-in I’ve never seen before.
- User manual: And of course, the infamous user manual is also included. Like most, I preceded to throw this to the side until I wanted to learn how some of the lower layers work (more on this later).
The build quality of the keyboard is quite nice.
With a very sturdy plastic frame and relatively zero flex, this keyboard feels like brick.
The side profile is slightly angled which should help with typing ergonomics and ease of use. A single kickstand adjustment is also available for use.
In this price range, I would have liked to see multiple adjustment angles, but for me personally it’s not a big deal.
The only issue is the rubber covers can slip off if you’re not careful.
On the back-right side of the keyboard is a USB-C port which allows you to plug in the power cable from a convenient location.
Typically, the left side is considered standard as it tends to look better with a custom coiled cable, but this is a small nitpick and won’t impact 95% of you reading this.
Overall, the build quality is pretty good.
The build could definitely benefit from an aluminum frame and a more intriguing case design, but it gets the job done well enough.
When looking at the keycaps there are few awesome things that jump out at me first.
Although the keyboard comes in a 65% layout, the bottom row is standard. This means you can swap out the keycaps for almost any aftermarket set. This is highly uncommon with this size of keyboard.
In addition, the arrow keys are slightly detached making them easier to find and press.
On other keyboards its really easy to press the wrong key when reaching for the arrows.
Huge props in this department.
The keycaps come in a durable design made of PBT plastic.
They feel slightly textured and the PBT plastic will keep the legends and keycap tops from wearing down overtime.
There are also sub-legends printed on the front of the keycaps that indicate what keys can be pressed on a lower layer. Very helpful information.
The keycaps come in a tasteful design and are sculpted to improve the typing experience, making it so you don’t need to stretch your fingers quite as far when typing.
The keycap design on our particular keyboard is a bit plain, but there are several more interesting options out there with colorful and unique designs.
It mainly comes down to what you’re looking for in the design.
When it comes down to picking out a switch, there are several great and classic options.
You get your pick of the litter from the entire Cherry MX lineup. Here is a full breakdown of the options.
- Cherry MX Black: A heavy linear option that is great for gaming.
- Cherry MX Brown: A tactile switch that is a great pick for most.
- Cherry MX Blue: A loud and clicky option, great for annoying coworkers.
- Cherry MX Red: Smooth and light. Perfect for gaming.
- Cherry MX Clear: A heavy tactile switch for those with a heavy touch.
- Cherry MX Silver: Shorter actuation switch which is better for gaming.
- Cherry MX Silent Red: Super silent and stealthy. Great for the office.
And there you have it, several great options to choose from.
Just keep in mind, some variations might cost a little extra to choose from due to availability.
Cherry MX switches are known for their supreme quality and the fact that they go through rigorous testing to make sure they stand the test of time.
A Cherry MX switches will typically last for around 100 million keystrokes, which should last for years and years before even thinking about breaking.
The stabilizers are extremely well done.
This is not something that I say lightly. When looking at the typing experience, most pre-built keyboards lack in this department.
They are buttery smooth, super stable, and have almost zero rattle.
Coming pre-lubed from the factory, the stabilizers cut out most of the friction and vibration found in a non-lubed set of stabilizers.
Ducky keyboards have always been known to have super powerful firmware and the MIYA Pro does not disappoint.
With several mode swapping options, you are able to seamlessly swap between Mac & Windows functionality, making it great for either operating system.
You are also able to swap out the number row and function row on the top row by pressing a combination of keys. The page up and page down keys with have an LED light to indicate which is active.
At first, I thought the LED was broken on one of the keys, when in fact it’s actually a pretty genius way to notify the user of which layer is active.
You can enable Windows lock as well if you tend to press it on accident when gaming and don’t want to exit your full-screen applications at inopportune moments.
The Ducky x Varmilo MIYA Pro is a keyboard that we’ve heavily recommended in the past and we’ll continue to recommend in the future.
Few keyboards bring such an excellent typing experience followed by such a variety of interesting designs.
With PBT keycaps, Cherry MX switches, a super unique form factor, standard bottom row, and more – the list just goes on and on.
For a keyboard that’s a could years old at this point, it has really set trends that many manufacturers are still trying to catch up with to this day.
I will say, however, it would be nice if some of the features of this design were updated, such as wireless connectivity, multiple kickstand angles, hot-swap sockets, and even RGB lighting.
Although the way the keyboard comes as-is is still an excellent option.
Good luck and happy typing!