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The BlackWidow is the entry level mechanical gaming keyboard from Razer. Under the hood, the keys are powered by Cherry MX Blue key-switches with 50g. of actuation force. It has a suite of gaming features which includes an additional 5 programmable macro keys which allow for on-the-fly macro recording, and has support for up to 10 software profiles. Some features that are present in the Ultimate edition are absent here, including a USB hub, audio jacks, and back-lighting.
The BlackWidow has multimedia keys, and has a gaming mode which disables the Windows key. This will prevent accidentally popping out of the action if the key is accidentally pressed.
Razer includes what it calls Ultrapolling which is capable of a rate of 1000Hz and a response time of 1 ms. The keyboard uses a durable braided cable for its USB connector, a PS/2 option is not available.
If you are curious if this omission will affect you, please read What is the Difference Between PS/2 and USB Keyboards? At a bit over 3 lbs. it has a hefty feel, and won’t shift during intense gaming sessions.
For the gamer on a budget, the BlackWidow is a great option. It costs much less than the Ultimate edition, at the cost of the USB hub, audio jacks, and back-lighting. For all intents and purposes, this is a fair trade-off for the price difference. For those who don’t have a gaming focus, but still want the glossy modern style and Cherry MX Blue key-switches, look to the Das Keyboard Model S Professional. Otherwise this is a fantastic gaming keyboard, and it’s certainly worth your consideration.