As a gaming brand, Razer rarely sets its sights on the boutique mechanical keyboard market. That’s changing with the BlackWidow V4 75%, which features hot-swappable switches (3 or 5-pin), factory-lubricated stabilizers, a gasket-mounted plate, two layers of sound-dampening foam, and a tape-modded PCB with extra screw holes for stabilizer mods. Not to mention, this keyboard marks the return of Razer’s beloved Orange Tactile switches.
This version of the BackWidow V4 uses a 75% layout, meaning that it lacks a numpad and places the arrow keys under the right Enter key – the right Shift key is truncated to make room for the arrow keys. Also, this keyboard retains the mute button, volume wheel, and pause/play controls from the V4 Pro, but it lacks additional media controls. While the 75% layout isn’t a super-popular option for gaming, Razer likely chose this layout to mirror the Keychron Q1, a popular “custom” keyboard.
The BlackWidow V4 75% is comparable to popular keyboards from Keychron and Drop, but it’s still a Razer product. Chroma RGB lighting (under glow and per-key) is at the core of this design, as is the Razer Synapse software. Some people may see this as a plus, as Synapse is a familiar tool that integrates with Alexa, Govee, Philips Hue, and other smart home products. But keyboard enthusiasts tend to be evangelical when it comes to software. The lack of QMK and VIA customization may prove to be a hurdle for Razer.
However, Razer’s default Gen-3 Orange Tactile switches are sure to turn some heads. These switches are a bit unorthodox for gaming (most people prefer smooth linear switches), but they’re excellent for typing, as they’re both comfortable and resistant to accidental keypresses. Razer also enhanced its Orange Tactile switches with a “cleaner sound profile” and a higher bump point — the part of a tactile switch that provides some resistance to your keypress — which should further improve the typing experience.
This keyboard is also notable for its 8000Hz polling rate and magnetic wrist rest. But oddly enough, this keyboard requires a wired USB-C connection. Bluetooth and 2.4GHz connectivity are not supported, which seems like a bit of a missed opportunity.
You can buy the Razer BlackWidow V4 75% today for $190. It comes in black and white colorways, and of course, the magnetic wrist rest is included with your purchase. Just bear in mind that similar keyboards, such as the Keychron Q1, are actually less expensive than Razer’s offering.