I like the circular highlight the ringlights cast on the background but I don't like them as key lights
Not sure what you mean about "circular highlights". Do you mean the halo effect around the subject?
I bought mine specifically for models that are near backgrounds/walls. I really like the look of it and it's used in high end glamor photography all the time. It works great for a key light and/or in combination with some fill. It's really for very specific uses though and I'd recommend someone getting a beauty dish before a ring flash.