Why are keyboards important in a gaming rig? Why can’t you just hook up a normal $10 keyboard and play competitive games? Are expensive keyboards really necessary?
Well, the answer is not as simple as you may think. Keyboards play a very crucial role in competitive games as well as a casual gaming experience. Sure you can use a normal $10 keyboard for day to day tasks but when it comes to gaming, this does not suffice.
To take full advantage of competitive games, you need a high end, premium keyboard. Even if you are not a competitive player, you still need a decent keyboard to fully enjoy your games. Keyboards are not just about pressing keys. They maximize your overall gaming experience.
Good gaming keyboards provide a unique experience when using them. Except for just pressing keys, they also have many additional functionalities that gamers can make use of. These functionalities may include wrist rest pad, shortcut keys, extra function keys, etc.
If you are a competitive gamer you need to go for the most premium keyboard there is. As of now, there are many good competitors. All have their pros and cons. No device can be perfect as it may have some pros that may be cons for other people.
The keyboard switches are the primary decision making factor. The switches decide how your overall experience will turn out. We have traditional membrane switches, mechanical switches and finally optical switches.
That being said, the keyboard we have chosen to review today is from Razer. Razer has a very good reputation when it comes to making gaming products, and Razer delivers here too.
Razer Huntsman Elite Premium Keyboard
Razer has launched two premium keyboards. The Razer Huntsman and the Razer Huntsman elite. Today we’ll be discussing the Huntsman Elite as we are in search of the most premium gaming keyboard there is.
They come with the latest optomechanical switches which are a combination of optical and mechanical switches. These are the latest and greatest switches designed by Razer themselves which provide good tactile feedback with the lightning-fast response time. These are one of the best switches on the market as of now.
The build quality is premium considering the price tag. As of now, you can get it from their official store for $199.99. Prices may differ.
With macro keys and media buttons, you can have direct access to most things from the keyboard itself.
It is directly targeted at competitive players as it houses the best of the best materials and functionalities.
Let’s talk about the features separately and why they are so important.
Design and Build
These premium keyboards are built from aluminum that gives it a sturdy feel. This material ensures there is absolutely no flex to the keyboard whatsoever. The high-quality build ensures it will last quite some time.
Coming to the keycaps. They are built from traditional plastic used in previous keyboards from Razer. The key caps have got a concave shape where your fingers naturally land.
The overall design is very slick. The matt black finish gives it a premium and sleek feel. The design is neither too minimal, neither too overkill. The feel is very good in the hands and using it feels like you are using a premium device.
The top right corner houses the media keys along with a volume dial that also acts as a button to mute or unmute volume. All these features at the tip of your fingers.
Equipped with OptoMechanical Switches
Coming to the main highlight of this device. Contrast to traditional mechanical switches, these use optomechanical switches. The difference is plain and simple.
Mechanical switches use physical metal contact to register a keystroke and send a signal. This causes delays sometimes and being physical contacts causes some lag.
The new optomechanical switches use infrared beams of light to register a keystroke. When the key is at a normal position, the beam of light is blocked. When you press down on the key, the light falls on a sensor and that’s an actuation.
So other than faster response time why are they important? Well, firstly they have very few moving parts that mean longer life span of the keys. They are two in one. Meaning they have the super-fast speed of optical light along with the tactile feedback of a mechanical switch.
The keys have shorter travel and lower actuation force required. Their clicky optical switch actuates at 1.5 mm and their linear optical switch actuates at 1.0 mm. Both require around 40 grams of actuation force.
All in all, it is built for speed and precision to give you the edge in games.
Leather Wrist Rest
Being a premium keyboard it comes with a wrist rest that is made from leather. Leather will last quite some time before wearing out.
The wrist rest connects through a magnet with contact points. It ensures you feel the most comfort while gaming on this keyboard.
In a nutshell, using the wrist rest, you can game for longer durations without feeling fatigued.
RGB is a must when it comes to gaming but normal keyboards only house RGB under there keys. Razer goes a step ahead and places RGB lighting under their keys and all around the keyboard as well. All four sides are RGB and can be configured as a color or transition effect.
The Huntsman Elite comes with onboard memory so you can configure a profile and save it directly to the keyboard and take it with you anywhere you like.
Multi-Function Digital Dial
The top right houses multimedia keys that allow you to play/pause, play next and play previously. Among them, there is a dial that allows you to change brightness or volume. The dial also acts as a mute/unmute button. You can configure them through synapse software.
Overall it is a very fast keyboard in every aspect. With the premium build quality and extra features, this is a must get device for gaming enthusiasts.
Photo Credit: Razer.
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