Razer Blackwidow Lite promises quiet looks and quiet typing

Razer needs no introduction for its gamer gear, but RGB LED-bedecked hardware isn't going to fly in every setting. For folks who want the feel of Razer keys under their fingers without advertising that fact to the world, the company has just the thing. The Blackwidow Lite keyboard uses Razer Orange keyswitches for tactile but quiet operation, and it wraps those switches up in a discreet-looking tenkeyless board with an aluminum top plate and single-color white backlighting.

To further lower its profile, the Blackwidow Lite comes with rubber o-rings pre-installed under its keycaps that should keep clacking to a minimum. While this board may not have programmable backlighting, users can still create macros and assign keyboard shortcuts using Razer's Synapse application. If you want a straightforward mechanical board without the bling, the Blackwidow Lite rings in at a reasonable $90, and you can get it today direct from the company's site.

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    • FireGryphon
    • 1 year ago

    If Razer is trying to make his less flashy, why have a backlight at all? Just make a good keyboard without bling.

      • NoOne ButMe
      • 1 year ago

      because backlighting is an actual value add for some users?

      And razer does, or at least has, made keyboards without backlights?

      • lycium
      • 1 year ago

      I hate the RGB aesthetic, but soft white glow just looks great I think. I’m happy to pay money for the Code keyboard as I mentioned before, and this looks like a decent cheaper version (too bad they had to write RAZER on it – that’s where most of the savings goes)

    • Acidicheartburn
    • 1 year ago

    I like this.

    • Metonymy
    • 1 year ago

    Maybe I’m the only one who remembers and yearns for the keyboards on the early 80’s IBM DisplayWriters/Selectrics/3278 terminals. What incredible keyboards they were for fast typing: Virtually silent, took very little pressure (though could stand up to anything – I swear the 3278 keyboards weighed 10 pounds), you could always tell when you’d pressed a button.

    And while this may just be apocryphal, when the original IBM PC was introduced (with what are now revered keyboards) and everyone was horrified because they were so junky, loud, etc, someone I knew at IBM told me that the reason they keyboards were such crap is that the people running the Office Products division insisted that the new PC’s have crap keyboards so that they wouldn’t lose sales to the above products since no real typist would want to use them.

      • DancinJack
      • 1 year ago

      You’re not the only one, but it’s 2018. Plenty of people here still use Model Ms. Don’t get it twisted, friend.

      • stdRaichu
      • 1 year ago

      When I was shopping for a new mechanical keyboard, I stumbled across sites like [url=https://deskthority.net/<]Deskthority[/url<] and [url=https://geekhack.org/<]GeekHack[/url<] and learned more than I ever hoped to about new and retro mechanical keyboards; there's a very lively community of people restoring and/or customising all of those tank-like keyboards from the 80s and early 90s. I was only looking to see if anyone made an MX blues + red backlighting keyboard, but five days of wiki-walking later I start to see double-shots in my sleep... Be warned however, as I worry that too much exposure to sites like that might make you end up broke from spending all your money on a custom GMK keycap set, or completely insane like [url=http://mykeyboard.co.uk/microswitch/<]this[/url<]. You have been warned!

    • DancinJack
    • 1 year ago

    Actually not bad. I’d like some choice of the switches though. Browns (and possibly these Oranges) aren’t stiff enough for my liking.

    Apparently they’re 45G. Not enough for my superhuman strength fingers.

    • Srsly_Bro
    • 1 year ago

    Now the real question remains…

    Does it come with online connectivity as a feature?

    • Chrispy_
    • 1 year ago

    I’d buy this, even as a Razer product. Without any silly RGBLED nonsense it’ll work just fine without Razer Synapse, which makes it an exception to the (stupidly necessary) ‘avoid Razer’ rule.

    Are the Razer Orange like the MX Brown switches? Thinking of transferring my current mechanical to the office and that means I’m in the market for o-ringed linear, or browns.

      • Jeff Kampman
      • 1 year ago

      As tactile but silent switches, they should be similar to Browns.

        • BillyBuerger
        • 1 year ago

        Razer calling these “tactile and silent” is really bad marketing. These appear in all ways to be your standard tactile “brown” switch. While they are not clicky, they are far from “silent”. Calling them silent suggests that they actually do something to make them silent such as Cherry silent red/black or other damped switches are actually more quiet than non-damped switches such as these.

          • Chrispy_
          • 1 year ago

          Maybe Razer’s MX brown clones have a rubber bottom-out damper?

            • BillyBuerger
            • 1 year ago

            I was wondering that myself but nothing appears to indicate that. And to be “silent” it really needs to dampen the bottom and return sounds. That’s why o-rings don’t really work to silence a keyboard.

      • stdRaichu
      • 1 year ago

      I’d count myself also in the “no way am I buying a Razer” camp, and as such I’d point out that there’s plenty of TKL keyboards (IMHO better made than anything Razer make) that would fit your bill better than this one… for instance, if you don’t mind spending more money the Varmilo VA88M comes with an all-charcoal finish, white backlighting, PBT keycaps and a choice of MX switches including browns.

      (My current keyboard is technically RGB but all the keys were set to solid red within five seconds of being plugged in and haven’t been changed since… none of which required any software or interweb nonsense)

      • NovusBogus
      • 1 year ago

      Their newer devices use a new version of the configuration software (Synapse 3) and onboard memory so the days of mouse DRM may finally be coming to an end. Huzzah! This model says nothing of onboard memory in the tech specs, though as noted it’s just a basic TKL without any fancy features so there probably isn’t anything that needs to be stored in the first place.

      The description of the different keys on some other products would suggest that Orange is indeed their clone of MX Brown.

    • Kretschmer
    • 1 year ago

    I want to give Razer money just for releasing a keyboard without RGB LEDs and cloud connectivity. The lack of a numpad is sort of a pain, though.

      • Neutronbeam
      • 1 year ago

      Agree, but tenkeyless is exactly what I would want.

        • Voldenuit
        • 1 year ago

        Same. I switched from a full keyboard to TKL, and the reduced footprint is great for FPS gaming, because I have more space to mouse left and less separation between my arms.

          • Chrispy_
          • 1 year ago

          I never really do any Excel/Access number-heavy stuff anymore, and as a touch-typist I was always indifferent towards the number pad. I’ll use it if it’s there because of habit, but the number row is [i<]right there[/i<] for two-handed typing anyway.

          • Kevsteele
          • 1 year ago

          Just the opposite for me – I’m a lefty gamer who uses the numeric pad for gaming, with the mouse on the left of the keyboard. Keeps things nice and centered. 😉

            • Firestarter
            • 1 year ago

            they should make a WASD-less keyboard especially for lefties like you :p

      • prb123
      • 1 year ago

      Right. I want one for work, but need a full size keyboard there.

      • mudcore
      • 1 year ago

      Why? There are tons of RGB-less, cloud-less, non-Cherry switches equipped mechanical keyboards that have probably just as good if not better than Razer QA for nearly half the price on Amazon. Some even have numpads.

      • Airmantharp
      • 1 year ago

      Must have 10-key here too- but I like the idea!

      • Ifalna
      • 1 year ago

      Keyboard illumination is one of those few Areas where RGB LEDs actually make sense. I don’t get the hate.

      If you don’t want RGB, just switch to white.

        • Pbryanw
        • 1 year ago

        Yep, each to their own of course, but I actually like the green glow I’ve chosen for my Fnatic RGB keyboard – it feels easier on my eyes, and co-ordinates with my room’s furniture (which is the most important thing).

      • Captain Ned
      • 1 year ago

      1391401

        • Chrispy_
        • 1 year ago

        So noisy, so beige.

        I’m not going to try and change your mind or say that the Model M isn’t a great typing experience, but as someone who learned to touch-type on those buckling springs, I’m perfectly happy with tactile MX switches or their equivalents. The force/travel actuation graph for the Model M isn’t an exact match for MX blues but it’s certainly close enough that the difference is subtle and the all-important resistance/collapse at actuation is still felt and usable instead of bottoming out the key travel.

        I do really appreciate other modern features like backlighting, modern aesthetic, TKL variants, a modern key layout (one winkey, one context key), N-Key rollover, USB passthrough, integrated wrist-rest options etc.

        Just about the only thing I [i<]dislike[/i<] in modern keyboards is childish theming - so faux-military or angular robot plastic crap, RGBLED animated shenanigans and its associated software bloat. Thankfully there are definitely good options on the market without childish gimmickry.

      • FireGryphon
      • 1 year ago

      The control software for the keyboard is cloud-based, according to the product page.

        • Chrispy_
        • 1 year ago

        If you want control of a silly party-disco lights show in your keyboard, sure.

        Fn + F11/F12 controls the backlighting without the need for Synapse, based on the product images.

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