Just in time for the spooky season: SteelSeries limited-edition Ghost collection impressions

Well-executed designs.

Photo by Colton Deck

Following up its popular Rainbow Six Siege Black Ice collection, SteelSeries is giving two more of its high-profile products a drastic overhaul. While the new Ghost collection isn’t as game-specific or unique as the recent Black Ice collection, it still stands out as one of the more visually striking colorways in mainstream gaming peripherals. 

The Ghost collection features the tried-and-true Apex 7 TKL keyboard and the impressively lightweight Aerox 3 Wireless mouse. SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL launched in 2019, while the Aerox 3 Wireless dropped in 2020, making them both fairly seasoned products. Despite not being as fresh-off-the-line as the Prime Mini series of mice, the Ghost editions of the Apex 7 TKL and Aerox 3 Wireless attract attention based on aesthetics alone. 

Razer and other competitors have been onto the white and silver theme for some time now, but SteelSeries’ already-unique designs look more intriguing dipped in white. And although the keyboard and mouse may share the same success, both items achieve the same result in different ways. 

SteelSeries Aerox 3 Wireless Ghost Edition

Photo by Colton Deck

Looking at the Aerox 3 Wireless Ghost Edition, the mouse is a far cry from its standard-looking predecessor. The translucent shell nails down the ghost theme with ease and does much of the heavy lifting in separating it from the original. Despite the aesthetic change-up, the mouse retains its matte finish.

Pairing the translucent white shell with the RGB underglow creates a unique effect reminiscent of the Roccat Kone Pro Air’s trigger lighting. Similar to the Kone Pro Air, the translucent shell diffuses the RGB lighting in a fluid and vivid fashion. It’s a simple, yet striking way to bring a little more life to a gaming setup. 

Aside from looks, the Aerox 3 Ghost Edition features the same specs as the original. SteelSeries includes its Golden Micro IP54 switches, TrueMove Air sensor, AquaBarrier coating, and Quantum 2.0 Wireless with 2.4GHz and Bluetooth connectivity. Other returning features include the Super Mesh USB-C cable, which sees a gray finish this time around, and 100-percent PTFE mouse feet. SteelSeries packs it all into a 68-gram package that doesn’t suffer from its move to a new colorway. 

SteelSeries Apex 7 TKL Ghost Edition

Photo by Colton Deck

Competing with the likes of Razer and Glorious’ white and silver keyboard colorways, SteelSeries had its work cut out. While there isn’t anything too original about the Apex 7 TKL Ghost Edition’s colorway, the preexisting design of the keyboard lends itself well to the Ghost overhaul. 

Photo by Colton Deck

The more unique elements of the standard Apex 7 TKL’s design differentiate it from the pack. Looking at the metal roller, OLED Smart Display, and wrist rest, these standard features make a surprising impact on separating the Ghost Edition from the other white and silver keyboards. The light wrist rest takes away from the perceived footprint of the keyboard, while the OLED display creates a little contrast. Even the small metal roller and media key work to maintain distance from the competition, and that’s without considering functionality. 

Photo by Colton Deck

Another standout feature here is the PrismCaps keycaps that work similarly to the Aerox 3’s translucent shell. These are doubleshot PBT pudding keycaps, meaning they have an opaque top with standard shine-through legends but boast translucent sides. This allows for the same fluid lighting effects as the Aerox 3 but on a much grander and eye-catching level. 

Similar to the Aerox 3 Wireless Ghost Edition, there’s nothing new mechanically speaking. Aside from the wrist rest, roller, and media key, SteelSeries fans will recognize the Apex 7 TKL as very much the same keyboard. The TKL includes a USB passthrough, SteelSeries Red switches, three-way cable routing, and an aircraft-grade aluminum alloy top plate. 

For those who are curious, the SteelSeries Red variants function similarly to the Cherry MX Reds many gamers know and love. SteelSeries’ switches have an actuation point of 2 millimeters and an operating force of 45 grams, putting them right on par with the original Cherry MX Red switches. They’re quick on their feet and smooth to the touch but nothing to write home about in terms of gaming experience. 

SteelSeries has been crushing it with its limited-edition collections. While the Ghost collection isn’t anything gamers haven’t seen before, it’s a thoughtful follow-up to the Black Ice collection. Seeing more big-name peripheral manufacturers putting their hats in the ring with high-quality limited edition collections is refreshing. If SteelSeries continues to put out thoughtful iterations of its best products regularly, the company could carve out a niche for itself.