Razer Blackwidow Chroma: Check The Best Board For Gaming

razer blackwidow chroma

If you’ve spent any time playing MMOs on a stock keyboard, then you know the pain of wrist fatigue and repetitive stress on your fingers. Gaming keyboards like the Razer BlackWidow Chroma are designed to fight that fatigue, making it easier to play for longer periods of time. If you’re looking to take your gaming experience to the next level, then the best place to start is with upgrading your keyboard to one of the popular options from Razer.

What Is the Razer BlackWidow Chroma?

The BlackWidow was the most popular board on the market when it was introduced in 2010, and in the near-decade that’s passed, not much has changed. The Razer BlackWidow Chroma is one of the top-selling gaming keyboards around, and for a good reason. This is a wired, mechanical keyboard that offers full back-lit key control and the ability to program individual buttons with custom macros.

Razer makes a lot of great gaming keyboards, but it can get confusing when trying to compare the different features; there are a lot of them available from this manufacturer. Razer has been making these types of gaming peripherals for a long time, so they have amassed a catalog of special tools and features for every keyboard. We’re going to dive a little deeper into the Razer BlackWidow Chroma and help you decide if this is the keyboard you’ve been looking for, just the tool to take your game to a higher level.

Product Specs

The Razer BlackWidow Chroma was designed from the ground up for gaming, so there aren’t any needless features weighing down the hardware. Razer has their mechanical switches and internal systems, so everything was manufactured and integrated with the gaming experience in mind. There are dozens of individual features that make the BlackWidow stand out, but we want to call out a few that got us excited to work with this keyboard.

Razer Brand Mechanical Switches

While most modern gaming keyboards are using the popular Cherry MX switches, Razer goes all in for their in-house brand of mechanics. The RMS (Razer Mechanical Switches) were designed with anti-ghosting and tactile feedback in mind. Regular stock keyboards do not allow for hyper-paced key presses, making fast play-styles difficult to master. Sometimes entire key presses will just drop out because the signal strength or pressure applied was too weak. These problems are eliminated with the RMS enabled keys on the BlackWidow.

Not only are they fast and responsive, but they are tough. The keys are rated for up to eighty million clicks, an industry leader in durability. This is meant to be one of the longest living boards you will ever buy, and if you’re a full-time gamer or dedicated MMO player, that life is important.

Razer Chroma SDK

The Chroma system of back-lit keys makes it possible to customize the effects of the board. This is the most common feature on Razer gaming keyboards, but the Razer BlackWidow Chroma has an extra trick up the sleeve. There's a selection of popular games that take advantage of an open SDK package. This means that certain game manufacturers can pre-program lighting profiles for their games.

When using a Chroma SDK enabled device, like the BlackWidow, some games can have event-based lighting. This means the back-lit keys and color profile will change based on things happening during the game, highlighting important macros, or even just adding to the play experience with certain lighting effects.

Additional Macro Keys

It would seem like a given at this point, but why get a macro-enabled keyboard with no macro specific keys? While some players like the feel of a stock board, others prefer to program their customization without stepping on preexisting setups. The BlackWidow has an extra flank of “M” keys that are meant to stand separate from the standard set, giving you an easy to program option to add into your game.

Pricing

The low-end price for most Razer gaming keyboards starts around $50, with the higher end models topping out at over $200. There seems to be a real correlation between the overall price and the complete suite of options, which gives the beginning gamer a lot of different features to choose from. There can be a swing in prices depending on where you purchase the board, but the BlackWidow was fairly consistent wherever we checked for availability.

How it Compares

We have picked three popular gaming keyboards from the same manufacturer to compare against the Razer BlackWidow Chroma. Razer is one of the leading makers of entry-level gaming keyboards, so it’s helpful to compare these different setups with one and other to see how the features truly stack up.

  • Razer Cyanosa Chroma
  • Razer Ornata Chroma
  • Razer Huntsman Elite
Razer BlackWidow Chroma: Clicky RGB Mechanical Gaming Keyboard - 5...
  • Multi-Award winning Razer Mechanical Switches - Razer Green Switch with tactile bump and audible click for the best...
  • Extreme Durability- Razer mechanical switches are rated up to 80 million keystrokes and come with a 2-year warranty
  • Powered by Razer Chroma – Individually programmable backlit keys with 16.8 million color options
  • price
  • ease of use
  • comfort
  • design quality
  • warranty

Since all the comparisons on this review are from the same manufacturer, Razer, they share the same basics, a limited warranty on all of their mechanical keyboards. They guarantee all parts to be defect free for up two years after purchase.


Pros

  • Great key switches for gaming
  • Easy to program
  • Durable and comfortable

Cons

  • Key switch hardware not for regular typing
  • Not as much customization as others
Razer Cynosa Chroma Gaming Keyboard: 168 Individually Backlit RGB Keys...
  • The #1 Best-Selling Gaming Membrane Keyboard in the US: Source - The NPD Group, Inc., U.S. Retail Tracking Service,...
  • All-around gaming performance: Able to execute up to ten commands at the same time with built-in key rollover...
  • Ultimate personalization & Gaming Immersion with Razer Chroma: Fully syncs with popular games, Razer hardware, Philips...

The biggest difference between the Razer BlackWidow Chroma and the Razer Cyanosa Chroma is hard to see, but it’s a big one. Are you prone to spills or other accidents around your keyboard? If the answer is yes, then you might want to look into the Cyanosa. The least expensive keyboard we reviewed happens to be the toughest too. This standard-sized gaming keyboard comes with a special interior design that helps protect against major spills and liquid infiltration. This is especially helpful for an active desktop or a younger gamer that might be more prone to accidents.

  • price
  • ease of use
  • comfort
  • design quality
  • warranty

This keyboard carries the Razer limited two-year warranty that covers defective parts.

Pros

  • Spill-resistant design
  • Good looking back-lighting
  • On-the-fly macro recording

Cons

  • No extra macro key placement
  • Painted keys feel cheap
Razer Ornata Chroma Gaming Keyboard: Hybrid Mechanical Key Switches -...
  • High-Performance Mecha-Membrane Switches Provides the tactile feedback of mechanical key press on a comfortable...
  • Ultimate Personalization & Gaming Immersion with Razer Chroma Fully syncs with popular games Razer hardware Philips Hue...
  • Fully Programmable Macro Support Razer Hypershift allows for all keys and keypress combinations to be remapped to...

The Ornata from Razer introduces yet another type of hybrid board from the manufacturer. The mecha-membrane system offers durability and protection from dust and other particles while giving the tactile feedback needed from mechanical key systems. The domed rubber keys use a soft-cushion membrane that is gentle on the electronics but still offers the mechanical click players love. The keys are set into the frame at mid-height, making it easier to use swift moving controls and rapid successive presses.

  • price
  • ease of use
  • comfort
  • design quality
  • warranty

This keyboard is covered for two-years under the Razer limited warranty.

Pros

  • Rubber dome keys feel good
  • Responsive click with a light press
  • Great looking back-lit display

Cons

  • Still uses the Razer Synapse Application
  • Partially mechanical keys
Razer Huntsman Elite Gaming Keyboard: Fastest Keyboard Switches Ever -...
  • The #1 Best-Selling Gaming Keyboard in the US: Source - The NPD Group, Inc., U.S. Retail Tracking Service, Keyboards,...
  • Faster Than Legacy Mechanical Switches: Razer Optical switches use light-based actuation, registering key presses at the...
  • Ultimate Personalization & Gaming Immersion with Razer Chroma: Fully syncs with popular games, Razer hardware, Philips...

This model is the most expensive we reviewed against the Razer BlackWidow Chroma, and it has the feature list to stand by that price. The Huntsman Elite introduces a new keyboard system from the manufacturer, a hybrid of optical switch technology and good old-fashioned mechanical actuating keys. Razer is calling their new hybrid system the Opto-Mechanical switch, and it’s as fast as it is innovative. These new switches are a literal game-changer for players, as they offer the tactile response of traditional mechanical switch systems, but has unparalleled speed on successive key presses.

  • price
  • ease of use
  • comfort
  • design quality
  • warranty

The Razer Huntsman Elite comes with the standard limited warranty from the manufacturer which covers for all defective parts for up to two years.

Pros

  • Solid frame design
  • Limited key ghosting
  • Good tactile feedback

Cons

  • Complicated programming options
  • Synapse system is buggy

Razer BlackWidow Chroma - The Final Verdict (4/5 STARS)

After reviewing all four boards, we have to say that the Razer BlackWidow Chroma is definitely the best. The macro recording paired with a streamlined Synapse application makes for a great introductory gaming board. You still have the full capabilities of the Chroma RGB system and can even use certain SDK commands from supported games. It’s for these reasons and more we have given the BlackWidow four out of five stars.

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