The Razer Ornata V2 Hybrid Gaming Keyboard is meant to fill the gap in between mechanical gaming keyboards and the more traditional, membrane-based ones. It features what Razer has coined “mecha-membrane” switch keys. But what does that mean? A membrane-based keyboard is a traditional keyboard design going back decades. It has a bed of rubber that keys strikes down on to make it record the keystroke. A membrane keyboard is pretty standard and affordable, my wife uses one because she dislikes the mechanical keyboard for the keystroke clicking sounds. I, however, always use a mechanical keyboard, even when my previous board broke and I had to acquire a no-name import one. Nothing makes a gamer appreciate their gear like when they have to use some temporary replacement parts that aren’t quite cutting it, only to upgrade again.
The Razer Ornata V2 Hybrid Gaming Keyboard gives you the quiet membrane of a standard keyboard while also providing the characteristic click of mechanical keys. It works by creating a hybrid key that presses into the membrane but still has the click and key buildup of a mechanical key. The very creative combination results in a keyboard tactically feeling like a mechanical one still but the quiet is just slightly louder than a membrane-only keyboard.
Razer always commits itself to quality as well as forward thinking so you know your gear will be solid as well as effective. You get quality heavy weave material around the USB cable and there are three different directions you can route the cable out from under the keyboard for cable management. It comes with a plush, and detachable, palm rest that attaches to the keyboard via strong magnets. It has an easy-to-navigate media key area in the upper right corner of the board that has play, rewind, and fast forward keys. It even features a ridged media wheel which works great for quick sound adjustments when you are blasting your game or tunes and someone pops in to talk. Better still, it’s also programmable for whatever you can think of!
Razer has also been a champion of lighting effects and the Ornata V2 isn’t any difference. With Razer Chroma RGB’s 16.8 million colors, a bunch of built-in lighting effects, and the ability to reprogram it all giving gamers tons of lighting flexibility, this is a fine-looking keyboard. Reprogramming keys has always been a selling point of Razer keyboards, so you can fully reprogram the keys to make profiles, bindings and macros. It’s even Xbox One compatible giving your console play some shiny good times.
If there is any complaint to be made, it might be that the Razer Ornata V2 could use a few more bells and whistles as it is somewhat more spartan when compared to other Razer boards, probably to help keep the cost at a midpoint. I miss the USB pass through ports which made peripheral management, especially when traveling, so much easier. It does make sense to have the keyboard very user friendly with no learning curve since it is designed to attract users who don’t normally get gaming keyboards and ease back the sound levels for users who want a keyboard that is a bit quieter.
The Razer Ornata V2 Hybrid Gaming Keyboard has made me a believer that you can have a membrane key work great while gaming and have a mechanical key that is quiet throughout the house. There are gamers out there who will remain purists and only play a normal mechanical boards and there will be writers out there that can’t bring themselves to give a clicking keyboard a chance. To all of them I say it’s their loss, this keyboard will just make computer time better!