When you think of Razer you think about anything but budget gaming peripherals. The Razer Ornata Chroma gaming keyboard is one of the few exceptions from the rule. This is quite intriguing because high-quality gaming keyboards require expensive components. When you see a cheap gaming keyboard, it is clear that some compromises have been made but just how good is the Razer Ornata Chroma gaming keyboard?
Build Quality & Design
The design of the Razer Ornata Chroma gaming keyboard is nothing spectacular. It has a simple box-type of design with raised mechanical switches, RGB backlit keycaps and a generous wrist pad. The only gripe some will have with the wrist pad is its height. There is a considerable gap between the surface the keyboard is on and the surface of the wrist pad. Also, the wrist pad is not removable. What is good about it is the texture. Razer used a padded leather surface which makes it comfortable to use when compared with keyboards that use a hard surface for their wrist pad.
Looking at the build quality, there is nothing much to complain about. The keyboard is heavy and sturdy. It lacks the metal support more expensive keyboards have which prevents them from bending. It is still sturdy enough and the board does not flex all that much. All the keycaps are well finished and the RGB LEDs look gorgeous like on any Razer keyboard.
Switches and Typing Experience
Being a gaming keyboard, Razer had to use some sort of mechanical switch. Since Cherry switches would have made the Razer Ornata Chroma gaming keyboard much more expensive, they decided to use their proprietary “Mecha-Membrane” switches. These switches are neither mechanical nor are they fully membrane switches. They are a mix of both which does give them that mechanical feeling but they use a silicone dome that gets depressed to register a stroke. It takes a bit to get used to but what is certain is that they are superior to regular membrane keyboards.
For gaming, the keyboard feels responsive, keycaps are well designed and well placed and the tactile sensation provides good feedback. You will not find yourself in situations in which you second guess what key you have pressed or press too many keys by accident.
One thing that could have made the Razer Ornata Chroma gaming keyboard score higher is some macro keys and multimedia keys. The Ornata is a basic semi-mechanical full 104 keyboard with nothing else extra. There are no bells and whistles that we usually see on much more expensive keyboards. Razer may have excluded those to keep the price down and certainly, there are plenty of gamers that just want a plain keyboard.
The Razer Ornata Chroma gaming keyboard comes with an attractive price tag. It is not a fully mechanical keyboard but it manages to reproduce that sensation of typing on cherry switches. Unless you are a hardcore keyboard enthusiast, you will not be bothered by the slight tactile differences. It works very well while gaming and for productivity apps. Integration with Razer Synapse is as good as you would expect. Overall, the Razer Ornata Chroma is a great keyboard designed for a market segment that has not been a focus for Razer thus far and you should give it a chance!