I made the switch from the Pok3r (well, the Code VP3) to the Race 3 and I’m mostly happy with it. There are a few changes I made to make the transition a bit simpler, and I recommend anyone who has a programmable keyboard try these suggestions as well.
The thing about the Pok3r I loved is how much I could do without moving my fingers a significant distance. The arrow keys were FN + I, J, K, and L. This is an amazing setup for web browsing and general daily usage. It’s a lot more convenient than moving your fingers all the way over to the arrow keys. I quickly programmed my Race 3 to do this. I also set FN + H to Home and FN + E to End.
Unfortunately the default layer of the Race 3 is not programmable, so I’ve switched over to the red LED layer full time. This causes a red LED (hence why I call it the red LED layer) to light up under the space bar, which is pretty ugly. I put some black tape over it and it’s no longer an issue.
The picture above shows the keyboard equipped with the RGB keycaps, but I like the gray keycaps much more so I quickly moved back to them. Cherry MX Blue is still my switch of choice. I do not like the lack of bumps on the F and J keycaps that come with the keyboard. Instead, there’s a very subtle dip that isn’t subtle enough for me, so a lot of the time my fingers come to the G and K keys and it’s very annoying.
I’m not sure if I’d recommend this keyboard over the Pok3r, but it’s a very solid keyboard and it’s a very good middle ground for someone going from a full size or tkl keyboard to something smaller. I went from full size with numpad all the way to the Pok3r and it took me a while to get used to it, but eventually I fell in love. I’m still not in love with the Race 3 like I expected to be…
Update: I returned this keyboard. I did not like it nearly as much as my Pok3r.