If you are into mechanical keyboards you may have heard of MONOKEI and its Standard, pre-built, mechanical keyboard line. Their recent collaboration with Jujutsu Kaisen is how they popped up on my radar: the brand designed two keyboards inspired by Yuji and Megumi, featuring their signature colors. I was recently sent one of the keyboards (the Megumi one) and now that I had time to use it for a bit in multiple scenarios, I want to talk a bit about it as it honestly positively surprised me.
As mentioned above, I am reviewing the MONOKEI Standard x Jujutsu Kaisen – Megumi Fushiguro edition keyboard with Cherry MX Brown keycaps (Reds and Silent Reds are also available). The wireless 80 percent keyboard comes with a braided USB-C to USB-C cable, some keycaps, a keycap puller, and a switch puller. The cable can be used to charge your keyboard but also to connect it to other devices, such as computers, phones, etc. To turn on the keyboard use the switch on the bottom of the keyboard. There are two light indicators on the keyboard: the upper one will blink purple to indicate the keyboard is on and is used for BT pairing and Caps Lock, while the bottom one will glow green while the device is charging.
The MONOKEI Standard wireless mode connects via Bluetooth (and can support up to four devices) and while the process is fairly simple I do have to say the lack of instructions in the box may make it a bit more difficult for you, especially if you are not tech-savvy. Thankfully, all the information needed to do this can be found online with some digging. There is a single light indicator that blinks when in pairing mode (which opens through long-pressing FN+P). Once you actually manage to find the FN key (it’s under Enter) the process is simple – the second light indicator from the top will blink white. All that is left to do (if you are on Windows) is to type in the Bluetooth code.
If you want to add more devices, you should be able to do so by holding FN + P + NUMBER (1-4). The wireless mode works without any hiccups (even with the finicky Bluetooth driver on my laptop) and it’s solid even while playing slower games. However, if you do want to game wired is the way to go, I did some minor testing with Genshin Impact and Lethal Company and the slight delays that are common with wireless devices can be quite annoying in emergencies.
The specifications on the official website say that the 1000mAh battery can last up to 30 days with 8 hours per day usage time. I haven’t managed to drain it fully yet, but I can say that it did charge in about 45 minutes while connected to my laptop. The port for the cable is in the middle of the front of the case and the cable is fairly long so you shouldn’t have any problems keeping it plugged in on your desk. Keep in mind that there is no dust cover.
One issue I am noticing is the fact that the Caps Lock indicator only works if the keyboard is plugged in. I have to admit that I am not sure if this is by design to preserve battery life because there is no instruction manual and information online can vary. In addition to this, there is no customization software and I found myself missing some keys such as Print Screen and Alt. Instead, there are three Shifts on Windows – the third one is actually on a keycap that has a camera icon. A bit of customization wouldn’t hurt in this instance. Also do note that all the keycaps are not generic – you have JJK and MONOKEI designs but that doesn’t tell you much in terms of what those keys do until you press them.
Before I get to how the keyboard looks and feels, let me just briefly mention the box it comes in. It’s airtight, very sleek, and does a job of the box very well but it looks quite cool because it features Jujutsu Kaisen art. It’s something you wouldn’t mind keeping around as a fan of the franchise and it’s great that they put this effort into the box and not into slapping characters’ faces on the keyboard itself.
The keyboard weighs 0.9kg and while it’s not too heavy it still manages to carry some nice weight, which makes the typing experience nicer, in my opinion anyway. It doesn’t feel flimsy and it sticks to the surfaces thanks to the tiny rubber feet at the bottom (which are not adjustable). The lack of adjustable height options didn’t bother me because of the way I type but do keep in mind that you might need some kind of wrist rest since the keyboard does feel a bit tall (to me, I imagine this depends on hand size as well). In my opinion, it also feels a bit too big to carry around if used daily.
Monokei x Jujutsu Kaisen keyboard comes in two colors: Yuji’s orange and blue and Megumi’s mint and blue. I was a bit skeptical about the color schemes at first, but after seeing it up close I have to say that it works. The accent keys are a slightly darker green (ESC and enter) and they feature the Jujutsu Kaisen logo and MONOKEI logo, respectively. Windows keys have the Tokyo Jujutsu High (or Tokyo Metropolitan Curse Technical College) crest, which is a nice touch. The only other logo of JJK is on the front side of the case. The bottom has a sticker with product specifications, Megumi’s face, and an embossed MONOKEI logo. Overall, it’s not too much and the subtle branding does well in keeping the keyboard somewhat elegant and not too gamer-like, which can be a challenge with a series like Jujutsu Kaisen.
The keyboard layout is QWERTY, with hiragana sublegends on the Jujutsu Kaisen edition. Hiragana definitely makes the keys look fuller, but it’s not too much and is actually quite nifty if you are learning Japanese or are, well… an anime fan. The typing experience is very smooth, the keys aren’t too loud but also not too quiet. The keyboard does have plate foam and silencing foam. but at times you can hear the Cherry MX springs – which again might be due to the way I type and the surface I keep the keyboard on.
This keyboard isn’t backlight, it has no RGB lights and the only lights you do get are two tiny indicators in the corner. Since the keys are dark they help mitigate the lack of backlight, but I wish it had at least a bit of light since I often type in the dark.
MONOKEI x Jujutsu Kaisen – Impressions
It’s up to you to decide if the $168 ($139 right now) price point for the limited edition MONOKEI x Jujutsu Kaisen keyboard is worth it: the regular Standard is a bit cheaper and you are paying for the branding with the collaboration edition. But, if you are a fan of this anime series or want to gift this keyboard to someone I think it would be a good choice. The collaboration also features mousepads, so you would be able to complete your collection.
I love the subtle branding, as I said it’s not too much but I know that it is there and it looks pretty cool. Typing is satisfying, the sound is really good for a pre-assembled keyboard and the battery life is great. While I do wish it was backlit and had customization software, I really can’t complain because the build quality feels nice. One thing I can’t help but wonder about is what kind of color schemes would they have with other characters as a focus.
So far I’ve used the keyboard through the majority of Jump Festa ’24, as well as quite a few Genshin and Lethal Company playthroughs. As a laptop user, it’s not necessary to have but it is quite comfortable. The fact that it feels sturdy makes me feel better about being a “heavier” typer because I don’t have to worry about destroying my laptop’s space bar. Overall, I will keep using it, mainly for the fact that typing on it feels quite satisfying.
Images: courtesy of MONOKEI
The MONOKEI x Jujutsu Kaisen keyboard was sent to Anime Corner without the expectation of a review.