My Son and I are both PC gamers . Almost any night after our chores are done you can find us racing, shooting, flying, or exploring in some on-line world or another. When you spend that kind of time on a keyboard, your equipment choice matters. I type all day in my day job, my side job, and my hobby. I’ve racked up some serious keyboard XP.
I was willing to spend up to $200.00 for a great keyboard. That’s a lot of my total fun money budget so it has to be awesome to be worth the capital. The problem is, my kid needs a new board too. I need two new gaming boards for $200.00. I want real mechanical keys, multi-color backlights, comfort, and proven performance. For both. I need to feel a keyboard not just look at. I have done my homework; my short list:
- Corsair’s K series
- Razer’s Blackwidow
- Logitech’s G series
So we hop in the car and head off to the local tech stores. I lured my teenage, been a gamer his whole life, son to go on the trip with me because his expertise on the subject surpasses my own.
I am standing in the keyboard isle running my fingers over the keys of a Logitech when my son tells me I need to ” try this one, Dad!”. It looks menacing and aggressive sitting on the shelf. An expansive hunk of black. I’m in love as soon as I push down the first key. I heard my son mumble something about “Green Switches” and was instantly looking for this thing’s price tag. Razer BlackWidow Chroma V.2, $179.99!!! Ouch, almost my entire budget; there’s no way I’m getting two of them.
Unfortunately for my son, I am already planning my excuses for getting this awesome piece of tech and stiffing him until next time. Just as I am about to let fly with my pathetic reasoning for selfishness. My angelic son pipes up saying that I am “such a good dad “, I deserve to have the keyboard and he will be happy to wait. A quick price check from my mobile shows I can get it a few bucks cheaper on-line but this store does price matching and that means I can “HAVE IT NOW!” I can deal with the inner guilt later. I make my purchase and we head home.
While I am clearing out the old gear to make room for the new hotness my son mentions there’s another keyboard he’s been scoping out that we might still be able to swing. “You found a mechanical gaming keyboard for $30.00 ?”, I’m mentally picturing a POS. He spins his screen around and shows me an Amazon page listing Red Dragon keyboards. They look great. He proceeds to tell me that he researched this brand after hearing how good they are supposed be on Youtube. Their Amazon reviews are very positive and I can get both of the keyboards I wanted; I order the RGB Kumara.
Now that we know why I have two mechanical gaming keyboards, we can get on with the reviews and comparison.
Razer BlackWidow Chroma V.2
For me, what matters most are the feelings of each key click and a layout that fits my hands. You would be hard pressed if forced to argue there’s a better key click out there than Razer’s Green Switches. The precision of the key travel, punctuated by a perfectly satisfying click is extremely gratifying. The keys are spaced perfectly and the slightly indented caps conform to my finger tips like they were custom fit. They fit so well I became suscpitious that people with large hands might experience issues. I had my 6’4″ buddy try them out. He thought the fit was great too.
We’ve all seen backlit keyboards by now. Even multi-color RGB units are common place in any store that caters to the gamer crowd. Razer is taking lighting to the next level. Their Chroma system treats each of the keys as a pixel in active graphic displays that are impressive in a dark room. Furthermore the keyboard can become an output accessory in several games. While playing Overwatch my keys will match my character’s color scheme and my ability keys will highlight when they can be fire in the game.
Watch whatdouknow’s game editor put the BWCv2 through its paces in the short video clip below.
Redragon K552-RGB KUMARA RGB
Redragon (no, I didn’t spell it wrong) claims their switches are just like Green Switches and you know what? I have to give it to them. They have a great mechanical feel, good sound, and look good too. The keyboard is stout, it feels well made. Overall I’m impressed; there are plenty of built-in lighting effects, the Winlock function is nice, and it plays well.
Is is as good as the Razer? In a word, No. The Razer feels just a little better, its clicks are more confidence endusing, the application and integration with games are superb and its fit and finish is a step above the competition.
Watch our gameing editior take the Redragon through its paces.
The Redragon is no slouch; if I were on a tighter budget or just played causually I would get it in a heartbeat and be very happy with it. Razer just edges them out in the end but like the title of the article says “Its closer than it should be”.