The Razer BlackWidow series has been the company’s purely mechanical gaming keyboard line for quite some time. This in contrast to the more e-sports focused Huntsman line featuring Razer’s optical mechanical key switches. I had used the Huntsman Ultimate for quite some time, enjoying the robust construction and precise key movements. I thought more traditional mechanical key switches to be passé. After getting the chance to check out Razer’s newest BlackWidow offering, the BlackWidow V4 Pro, I could not have been more wrong about mechanical keys – especially Razer’s. Now I now have a new favorite keyboard, so read on to find out if this new BlackWidow V4 Pro keyboard is worth your valuable time and hard-earned money.
Razer’s new BlackWidow V4 Pro looks stunning – a mixture of classy and stylish vibes along with gamer-focused functionality. Its black aluminum housing has a pleasing semi-gloss shine while the detachable magnetic wrist rest is is super-comfortable and features a stylishly-integrated Razer logo in the carbon fiber style pattern. Razer’s Chroma RGB lighting is the best it has ever been with the BlackWidow V4 Pro thanks to its per-key lighting and transparent light windows under each Doubleshot ABS key cap allowing for maximum light transmission. The RGB is bright, vibrant, and fully-customizable as part of the Razer Chroma Studio. I recently played Hogwarts Legacy and loved how the keyboard would run through various Harry Potter specific color schemes. Setting up and using the Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is easy thanks to Razer’s Synapse software suite. All you have to do is plug it in via the included USB-C to USB-A braided cable and make sure the Synapse software is installed. It will automatically detect the new keyboard and add it to its peripheral list.
The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro features the return of the five macro keys on the left perimeter of the keyboard as well as the addition of three buttons which run along the actual left side of the keyboard housing. These three dedicated macro keys are super-useful, although I did find myself hitting them by accident at times when, say, I put a water bottle next to the keyboard. Above the five macro keys sits the Command Dial. New for the BlackWidow V4 Pro, the Command Dial is a very cool macro control with eight default modes like web browser tab switching and zooming in and out. However, you can also do things like shuttle through video if, say, editing in Premiere Pro, or zoom in and out of images if you’re using Photoshop. It is worth noting that, while very cool and useful, I did accidentally hit it a few times when I was meaning to press the escape key. This is because that, while the BlackWidow V4 Pro is a full-size keyboard, its keys are actually spaced a little closer together than what I was used to with the Huntsman line. With a little use and practice, it became a non-issue, but don’t get frustrated if it happens to you a few times while acclimating to the keyboard. On the upper right quadrant of the keyboard is the dedicated media roller and four media keys which control things like play/pause, etc. The media roller has a nice, diamond texture allowing for smooth and controlled movements. The keyboard also comes equipped with a USB pass-through port. It requires you to plug a second USB cable into the keyboard and an additional USB port – but, once done, you’ll have an extra USB port on the keyboard to plug in a mouse, wireless dongle, etc.
The mechanical keys features on the BlackWidow V4 Pro come in two flavors: yellow (linear) and green (clicky). The linear yellow option is a quieter key switch offering a bit more smoother response while the clicky green switches offer a more audible rapport along with more precise actuation. I personally like the clicky green key switches but this is purely personal preference – either way the keyboard costs exactly the same amount. I mentioned Hogwarts Legacy earlier in this review and, while I did play the game through to its completion on the BlackWidow V4 Pro (and loved it), I also played Sons of the Forest, Microsoft Flight Simulator, Blood Bowl 3, and even edited some YouTube videos via Premier Pro. Suffice it to say, I put the Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro through its paces and no matter what I threw at it, the keyboard kept performing splendidly.
Overall, the Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro has become my new favorite gaming keyboard. Its blend of form, function, and features is second-to-none. The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro gaming keyboard retails for $229.99 at Razer’s official website and is available now.