HomeReviewsPeripheralsRazer Ornata V2 Keyboard Review: THE HYBRID ADVANTAGE

Razer Ornata V2 Keyboard Review: THE HYBRID ADVANTAGE

Introduction

When talking about gaming devices, Razer is one of the first brands that comes into mind. Razer has become the world’s leading lifestyle brand for gamers and their products are synonims with top-notch performance. In 2017 Razer launched the Ornata Chroma that came with the unique “mecha-membrane” keyswitches, which blended elements of membrane and mechanical keys. This year we have the second iteration of the keyboard, dubbed the Ornata V2 that adds media controls to the Ornata.

Experience the best of both worlds with the Razer Ornata V2—featuring a hybrid switch that merges the benefits of membrane keys and mechanical switches into one singular design.

The Razer Ornata V2 is quite similar to the first version, it uses the same clicky Razer mecha-membrane switches as before, has a good magnetic wrist rest and full RGB lighting.

Specifications and Features

SWITCH TYPERazer™ Hybrid Mecha-Membrane Switch
KEY FEELTactile click with soft, cushioned touch
SIZESFull Size
LIGHTINGRazer Chroma™ backlighting with 16.8 million customizable color options
WRIST RESTYes
ONBOARD MEMORYNA
MEDIA KEYSDedicated Media Controls
PASSTHROUGHNone
CONNECTIVITYWired
KEYCAPSABS plastic
OTHERS

The Razer Ornata V2 is a full-sized keyboard that’s about as big as the previous Razer Ornata Chroma. The main differences are:

  • Dedicated media keys and a digital wheel
  • Cable routing to angle forward (instead of on the side)
  • 3 more lighting features: Ambient Awareness, Audio Meter and Wheel lighting

Packaging and Accessories

The Razer Ornata V2 comes packed inside the typical Razer packaging with mostly black background and green accents on the top. There’s a big photo of the keyboard all lit up, as well as a few major features detailed on the front.

On the back, there’s an in-depth breakdown of the main features, as well as the Mecha-Membrane switch technology.

Inside the box, the keyboard is protected by air gapping cardboard on the front and back, and durable foam padding on the sides. There’s also a plastic shield over the top. Inside the box we have the usual stuff: Razer documentation, the Ornata V2 keyboard and the wrist rest.

Closer look

The Razer Ornata V2 is a full-sized keyboard with a full leatherette wrist rest, which feels great and the keycaps have uniform profile. The keys are low profile and have a subtle matte finish and a fine font on them. Overall the keyboard looks premium from the first moment you touch it. The foam wrist rest has a black leatherette finish that feels comfortable even after long hours of typing or gaming.

The keyboard indicator lights are placed above the arrow keys, which is a bit unusual, but you get used to them quickly. In their place, in the top right we now have multimedia buttons, which make little sense on a gaming keyboard, but they can be remapped using the software.

On the back, both the wrist rest and the keyboard have rubber paddings which prevent it from moving around on the table. The keyboard also have height adjustable feet with 2 different positions to choose from.

The cable is long and fully braided and the USB connector is green (of course).

The keycaps are made of ABS plastic with a matte finish on them that makes them feel just a bit more high-end as opposed to the usual semi-glossy coatings. Because the key caps are very thing, not much light should be able to come through but Razer added some white elements between the keys and the RGB light is actually great.  You can remove the keycaps to see in the membrane and switch, and the clicking mechanism just don’t expect to swap out the keycaps given the stem design.

Software

You can customize the keyboard with the Razer Synapse and you have plenty of options to play with. You can ajust RGB lighting and remap the buttons. Unlike other producers, within the Synapse you can control all your Razer gear.

The lighting tab lets you adjust the brightness and basic effects of the RGB. If you want advanced lighting features, you can use the Chroma Studio. You have 11 predefined lighting profiles including Spectrum Cycling, Ripples, Audio Meter, Ambient Awareness and Wheel lighting. The RGB lighting on the keyboard is amazing. Of course you can customize every key if you wish, or you can choose default profiles, adjust brightness and colors.

Every button on the keyboard can be re-assigned to a different function and if you don’t need the media controls you can assign various functions to those buttons. You can also record macros on the fly and when you do it, holding the FN key lights up the function buttons. If you do plan to use the multimedia controls though, they are awesome. The volume wheel is nice and responsive and can be clicked to mute it too.

Performance

We’ve looked over all the features and now it is time to put them to the test. First of all lets talk about the comfort. Comfort wise the keyboard is great, the wrist rest is an amazing addition, providing a good grip and it  is fairly plushy. Typing wise the keys are low profile and they feel good, providing good grip. The keys are well spaced and you can type with no issues. The switches are clicky, but the noise is not the loudest.he keycaps don’t feel too bad for ABS plastic, although they don’t feel as nice as PBT keycaps.

We usually do not test the media features on a keyboard, but since the Razer Ornata V2 has the media buttons we ran them through our tests. The controls available allow you to adjust the volume, mute, play/pause, skip track and stop your media. These buttons are the same as the rest of the keys, which is a nice addition.

Of course we tested the keyboard in games as well and while everything feels fine, there were some small hickups with the shift key not staying pressed. Position wise, they keys are well placed for both typing and gaming and it feels natural. Despite being marketed as a gaming keyboard, the Razer Ornata V2 doesn’t really feel like one, but something of a professional office keyboard (if you don’t mind the RGB lights, which can be turned off, BTW).

Conclusion

If you can’t afford a premium Razer gaming keyboard, but still want something close to it, the Razer Ornata V2 is a great solution: well priced, beautiful lights, some clicky sounds and the Razer logo on it, all make up for a good looking piece of hardware. Bottom line is that the Ornata V2 is a decent full-sized gaming keyboard with a decent price. If you are a gamer though you can squeeze out another 20 euros and grab a mechanical keyboard from Razer.

The best features of the keyboard are the wrist rest and the lighting. The rest is one of the best I’ve seen so far and the lights are just amazing. The Razer Ornata V2 would be better though with better quality key caps and dropping the membrane. It is what it is at the end of the day and if you want a good looking keyboard, for gaming or working you can grab it. It belongs somewhere in the “middle-world”, not really a gaming keyboard, not really an office keyboard either.

REVIEW OVERVIEW

Build Quality
Features
Performance
Value

SUMMARY

Razer Ornata V2 is a decent all-day keyboard for gaming and typing jobs. It has a great wrist rest, so you can use it all day without issues, it has amazing lighting and the keys have nice clicky sounds, but it is a membrane keyboard at the end of the day. you can call it a high end office keyboard or a low end gaming keyboard. It does have something out of the both worlds though.

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