Razer BlackWidow Elite Review: Is this mechanical gaming keyboard worth the price?
We’ve been reviewing Razer keyboards ever since we launched, starting with the Cynosa Lite, and we’ve been curious as to what they could bring to the ultimate-high-end of keyboards.
The SteelSeries Apex Pro has been our go-to keyboard, with the key-travel and its customisation with certain games and the keys itself essentially showing up other manufactures what could be done instead of bringing out yet another RGB keyboard.
When Razer sent us the Blackwidow Elite, their take on the ultra-high-end, we were wondering just if it could take over the mantle of the Apex Pro.
In a word; almost. But it brings some fantastic features that make it one to consider buying one. Keep reading for our full review!
Right away you’ve got the well-built mantra of what Razer brings to its products. You’ve got two ports by the side for a USB-pass-through port, and a 3.5mm headphone jack so you’ve got easy access for a USB stick and some headphones, without having to plug into your monitor, or to the PC tower. Alongside this, there’s three buttons for ‘play’, ‘skip’ and ‘previous’, while a disk can be rotated to configure the volume. Every part of this has been very useful while using the Blackwidow, but the only caveat to this is the ports it requires.
Two USB ports and a headphone port. This totally depends on the placement of what’s plugged in currently to your PC, so some re-jigging of wires may be needed here. It’s purely a testament to the power that the keyboard requires, but one can’t help but wonder, in 2020, if there isn’t an easier solution to this by now. Probably not wireless, but surely something where it gives the user an easier time.
great response and a feel
The keys are a Razer-made mechanical switch, giving them a great response and a feel. Playing games such as Serious Sam and Sea of Thieves was a treat with this keyboard, with every tap and every hurried press to crouch, strafe and jump never failed. We’ve reviewed a few keyboards so far, and as far as we’re concerned, this is one of Razer’s best when it comes to the keys. Every key has the right travel, the right click, and the fast response that you need.
Finally, the wrist-rest. Some scoff at this, but it’s important to keep those wrists comfortable. When you’ve got a full weekend planned, of no distractions, no meetings, no work, and full of gaming, those wrists will need to be comfortable. None of us want or left and right wrists aching before a match starts; you want to be ready for action.
This particular wrist-rest did the job, and did it well. Especially when typing in the group chat during a Halo 2 session, it really helped. Even attaching it to the keyboard was a breeze.
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Granted, the keys are fantastic, and so are the useful ports and short-cut keys, but what really counts from Razer, is just how well the RGB works here.
Compared to our last review of the Cynosa Lite, it’s night and day. Every key is individually lit here, so you can easily customise any key you wish to light in a certain way. It helps using Razer’s ‘Synapse’ app once again, so you can customise it to your bidding. If you have the full set of a mouse, headphones, and now a keyboard, the lights all be synced up with one another, so if you set it to a ’wave’ or ‘breathing’, the colours will match up to the timing and the placement, which is a nice touch.
easily customise any key
There is one aspect which lets it down though, and it may be related to a recent update of ‘Synapse’. When you plug a new Razer product into your PC, the app requires you to update itself, and then restart the PC.
For whatever reason, there were times that the start-up was much longer than usual, and after that, there would be occasional slow-downs and crashes, rendering the lighting configurations and anything else you’ve set, useless. We suspect it will be fixed in a future release of ‘Synapse’, but it’s worth mentioning here, as it did hinder our set-up of the RGB at the start.
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This is the top-end of keyboards, because of course it is. USB-pass through on the keyboard, fantastic RGB with its many configurations, alongside its sturdy build, it’s a keyboard that’s designed to be with you for a fair few years.
At £170 RRP, it is pricey, but a deal on Amazon will currently get you a Razer BlackWidow Elite keyboard for just £140.00. Click that link if you’re tempted!
For what you get, alongside it working well with other Razer products, this keyboard can be a great investment if you’re wanting to stream games, or if you want that extra edge in multiplayer sessions on Warzone!
Fantastic design with useful features
Great RGB with great customisation
Great, high-quality keys with extra clickiness
RGB Software let it down due to bugs
Can be pricey
This is a great keyboard, and while it doesn’t ascend past the SteelSeries Apex Pro, it’s still a great peripheral in Razers’ line-up.
The RGB is unparalleled here, especially after the half-hearted attempt that the Cynosa Lite brought to that. The keys as well have a great response-time, and just feel nice. Every press with that loud clicking brings a lot of satisfaction, especially when you’re typing in the group chat or needing to strafe away from an enemy.
The software lets it down slightly, and the £170 RRP can be on the pricey side, but let’s not forget about that £140 Amazon deal price! And if you want a keyboard to last a long while from Razer with some great RGB, you can’t go far wrong with this.