hybrid keyboard between membrane and mechanical

Razer Ornate V2 is the second generation in a series of keyboards based on mechanical membrane technology with the stated aim of offering “The best of both worlds”. Users liked the original model for its versatility and Razer created an improved version that we will discuss in this article.

Choosing the ideal keyboard it is not easy for a demanding user. And let’s not say for those of us who have to spend all day tapping keys in multiple tasks, on various devices, and in different locations, at home, office or mobility. All of this complicates the choice.

Personally, I have tried many and for the desktop I have resolved the dichotomy with two different models. To work, a membrane Cherry with a flat and simple design, but very fast and the closest to the experience with the laptop. For the rest of tasks including games, the best mechanical keyboard that the budget allowed. As this method can be a hassle for most users, Razer’s solution has been to create a keyboard that sits halfway between the two described, but with a primary focus on gamers.

And it is that mechanical keyboards stand out in the high-end especially in the PC gaming market. Razer has a good collection of them, highlighting the outstanding BlackWidow Elite that we already reviewed or the impressive wireless BlackWidow V3 Pro. However, despite its undoubted advantages in some sections, this type of mechanical keyboard (more expensive, less silent and with a different user experience) is not liked so much by other users whose main computer use is not games.

The industry offers a great offer in quantity and quality as corresponds to one of the most important peripherals of the PC, but, Is it possible to create a quality keyboard that satisfies any user for any task? That is Razer’s ambitious goal with this series.

Razer Ornata V2, features

Technology Razer’s patented mechanical membrane hybrid
Keys ABS – 2.43mm Drive Travel – 3.3mm Overall
Polling rate (ultrapolling) 1000 Hz
Connectivity USB Type-A with 2.1 meter braided fiber cable
Different routing options
Backlighting Razer Chroma RGB. 16.8M customizable colors per key
Various Ergonomic synthetic leather wrist rest
Multi-function digital wheel and multimedia keys
N-key rollover
Programmable keys, profiles, macros
Dimensions 45.1 x 15.4 x 3.1 cm – Weight: 915 g – 1215 with wrist rest
Software Razer Synapse 3 – Windows

As is the manufacturer’s standard, the keyboard is delivered well protected in attractive packaging with prominence for the brand’s green color and main features. Add a quick guide to use on paper and a wrist rest that stands out for its quality as we will see later.

Technology

Razer repeats the hybrid mechanical membrane technology from the original Ornata, a true sign of identity of the series. It offers the softness and comfort of rubber membranes along with the experience of mechanical switches and its very defined tactile qualities including a loud but not shrill click.

The keys are of medium height and low profile, allowing rapid registration of keystrokes using a medium level actuation force and a actuation distance of about 2.43 mm and a total distance of 3.33 mm before playing the background. Compared to the 10-key rollover of the original model, the Ornata V2 has N-key rollover, allowing to record all the keystrokes simultaneously, so that we can execute several actions at the same time.

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Razer claims to guarantee up to 80 million keystrokes. A very high figure, although construction in ABS plastic of the keys on the Ornata V2 will be less durable than PBT keys and will tend to accumulate more grease or dirt over time. It must be remembered that we are dealing with a hybrid with a mechanical sensation, but which is still essentially a membrane, so we will not be able to hot-swap the keys as high-end mechanical keyboards allow.

Design

The first impression is that of a robust, elegant and quality full keyboard, built in ABS plastic with a matte black finish, whose general design has not changed essentially compared to the original Ornata. But it did improve in several sections.

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The most noticeable in sight is the addition of a multifunction digital wheel located above the numeric keypad. It acts as a volume control by default, although it can be customized for other tasks. Well conceived and resolved, next to it are three dedicated keys for media functions and additional ones below such as the one for gaming mode and macros.

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The usual LED indicators for shift keys or number lock have been moved to the space between web navigation keys and cursor arrows.

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The underside of the keyboard has another minor but adequate change. The routing options allow the connection cable to be placed where it best suits the user according to the location of each PC, to the left, in the center or to the right of the keyboard. The cable, although not removable, is of quality, braided fiber and generous length that exceeds two meters to reach the USB Type-A port where it connects with support Plug&Play.

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Another novelty is that now it has two possibilities of inclination by means of support feet compared to one that only had the original. There is no lack of rubber pads that prevent inadvertent slipping on the desk.

The keyboard incorporates a detachable wrist rest that deserves to be highlighted. It is attached by means of a magnetic connection to the lower part and is made of synthetic leather, very comfortable and quality, providing that premium touch that any user appreciates.

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Software and backlight

The backlighting provided by Chroma RGB technology is outstanding and one of the great assets of Razer keyboards. With 16.8 million possible color combinations, which can be programmed as the consumer sees fit, it provides an explosion of light and color and great symmetry throughout the entire keyboard as you will see in the images.

To manage it, the capabilities of the Chroma Studio module can be overwhelming in its potential, but it also includes predefined fast or advanced effects that can be used. Or disable all backlighting when you’re working on productivity tasks and don’t want colors. It also has physical keys to lower or raise the intensity level.

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All these controls and many more are managed from the software Synapse 3, one of the best of its kind. It will be difficult for a user not to configure the keyboard to suit any profile and style of play that is its main function, customizing the performance of each key and with the added possibilities of macros.

The software allows adding the installed games to each of the predefined profiles or those created by the user. Razer Chroma-enabled computers can integrate with games or apps for a true reverse lighting experience. A large number of games are supported, such as the Gears Tactics in the image.

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It should be noted that this keyboard does not have built-in memory, so the use of Synapse 3 is mandatory to save profiles, macros and thoroughly manage the keyboard.

Razer Ornata V2, user experience

It is difficult to convey the sensations in a few lines. A keyboard should be tested whenever possible because the experience will be different for each user. And more with this type of hybrid keyboard, which provides versatility of use, but may not offer the full experience of more ‘pure’ technologies, membrane for the fastest typists and the sensations and capacity of a true mechanical keyboard in games. And of those is that Razer has some of the best on the market and it’s hard not to compare them.

We liked this Ornata. The sensations of use are good and the performance effective whether you write or play. Keys are positioned at the correct distance, are soft to the touch, and allow fast, error-free typing in productivity tasks.

The clicking experience is satisfying for those who like mechanics and can be used perfectly for any game, powered by Synapse software and its capabilities for macro creation and profiling. RGB backlighting is excellent and absolute customization with the Chroma app. If you use other Razer peripherals, the control software allows integration and synchronization between all of them, facilitating their management.

Razer Ornate V2

Improvements to the Razer Ornata V2 over the original such as the multi-function digital wheel and physical keys for media control they are a successas well as the increased patch cord routing capabilities and added degree of tilt. Also noteworthy is the removable wrist rest for the quality of its synthetic leather and the comfort of use it provides.

Razer’s bet is risky and must be valued in its fair measure with an innovative concept that comes as an alternative to peripherals that, in truth, mostly follow the same line. If the great advantage of a hybrid concept is its versatility to cover various use cases, your problem may be not meeting all the expectations of the most demanding users.

In our opinion this Ornata more than fulfills its purpose, although it must be recognized that there are better solutions for those who prefer ‘pure’ membrane or mechanical technologies. The user will have to assess and decide.

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Razer Ornata V2 is available in the manufacturer web portal with a price of 109.99 euros including VAT and free shipping to Spain. We believe that the official price should be tighter considering that Razer focuses this keyboard on gaming and for this segment it has in catalog really remarkable mechanical models for very little price more.

Fortunately, the retail channel sells this keyboard at a lower price and can currently be purchased at PcComponentes by 89,99 euros and in Amazon by 84,99 euros. These are indeed more attractive prices for a quality peripheral that has the ambitious goal of offering “the best of both worlds” in keyboard technology.

Final assessment
SUMMARY

The Razer Ornata V2 is a quality keyboard with mechanical membrane technology that aims to offer “the best of both worlds”. The sensations of use are good and the performance effective whether you write without errors in productivity tasks or if you play, with all kinds of customization of keys, macros, profiles and excellent backlighting.

Build quality8

User experience and software8

Installation and configuration8.5


Source: MuyComputer by www.muycomputer.com.

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