Now that seemingly every PC component vendor has at least one RGB LED-illuminated keyboard in its respective product portfolio, the companies that got to that market first are releasing second-revision hardware. A couple of weeks we told you about Corsair's updated K95 RGB Platinum keyboard. Today is Razer's turn to launch a refreshed RGB LED keyboard, the BlackWidow Chroma V2.
The headlining feature is the addition of a new mechanical switch option, Razer's "Linear and Silent" Yellow switch. The yellow option complements the "Tactile and Clicky" Green and "Tactile and Silent" Orange options that carry over from the original BlackWidow Chroma. Razer says all three options are good for 80 million key strokes. For comparison's sake, Cherry lists a 50-million-key-stroke lifespan for its popular MX switches, not that we've ever heard of one breaking.
The BlackWidow Chroma V2 is fairly hefty, even for a full-sized keyboard. The keyboard measures 18.7" x 6.7" x 1.5" (48 cm x 17 cm x 4 cm) and weighs in at a substantial 3.3 lbs (1.5 kg). Some of that real estate goes to the block of five dedicated macro keys on the far left edge of the keyboard. A USB pass-through port and headphone and microphone jacks also help justify the Chroma V2's dimensions.
The included Razer Chroma software requires a Razer Synapse registration, so privacy-conscious users might look elsewhere for their disco-lights fix. That aside, the software offers per-key LED lighting control, multi-layer lighting effects, and inter-device color synchronization.
The Razer BlackWidow Chroma sells for a stout $170 regardless of switch choice. The version with the Green switches is available now. The Orange and Yellow models will be arriving on January 30.