Razer Ornata V2
Mecha-Membrane Gaming Keyboard
There’s no denying that the mechanical keyboard designed for gaming (including the many Razer
keyboards we’ve covered in the past) has garnered the most attention in recent years. And vied for your full WASD attention. But it’s a style of keyboard that comes with a notable cost of entry - due to the per-key mechanical switches made up of individual components and parts designed for responsiveness and durability.
Plus, they offer that clicky sound and feel that dates back to the age of the typewriter.
The gamer-focused Razer Ornata V2
presents an alternative, a hybrid of sorts that utilises a membrane switch with mechanical touches to offer-up the sort of tactile feel and feedback you normally associate with a mechanical keyboard. Except not quite. The “mecha-membrane” as it’s referred to here essentially utilises the normally less-expensive membrane style of switch (which is basically a rubber pad that triggers each key located on a single circuit) and it’s softer feel in a like-for-like version of a more premium Razer mechanical keyboard.
The only issue is that the Ornata V2 feels more like a premium membrane keyboard versus an affordable mechanical alternative.
Look and Feel
Alongside the somewhat hefty price-tag the best way to view the Razer Ornata V2 is that it’s a premium membrane-style gaming keyboard. This is not a bad thing in and of itself, the all-plastic build is sturdy and the feel of each key – although clicky and tactile in a mechanical way – falls into the soft and cushiony membrane realm. There’s a responsiveness that’s comfortable to use across gaming and general typing too, so when used in either scenario it’s fine.
The gamer-focused Razer Ornata V2 presents an alternative, a hybrid of sorts that utilises a membrane switch with mechanical touches to offer-up the sort of tactile feel and feedback you normally associate with a mechanical keyboard.
To be honest, it’s a feel that many out there prefer over mechanical and it’s not hard to understand why. Outside of the plastic shell everything here is impressive, from the braided USB-cable to the cushiony leatherette wrist-rest to the Razer Chroma RGB support, dedicated media keys, and great if bloated Razer Synapse software. The Ornata V2 also includes a volume wheel that has this great scroll wheel feel to it – something you’d normally find on a premium gaming mouse. And with the wrist-rest connected the Razer Ornata V2 looks slick and stylish sitting on a desk, there’s nothing about the overall look that feels like anything but a Razer product designed for gamers.
Switch Type: Razer Hybrid Mecha-Membrane Switch
LED Color: RGB
Cable: Wired (USB)
Dimensions: 463.0mm x 154.0mm x 32.5mm
Product Weight: 1.2kg
Again, there’s the price. The Razer Ornata V2 fits into this weird mid-range spot where its features are premium – from dedicated media keys to comfortable wrist-rests to RGB to braided cables – but the use of a hybrid membrane switch ultimately makes it fall short of where it needs to be. With a wide range of different mechanical switches out there and mechanical keyboards to choose from you’d probably need to knock off $50 AUD from the Ornata V2 RRP to call it an absolute winner. The trade-off versus a full mechanical keyboard will make more sense and the inclusion of several premium features will also stack-up very well against the competition.
But the real question is – as a gaming keyboard – how does the Razer Ornata V2 perform when playing games? The answer to that is extremely well, and when using the Ornata V2 on a number of titles ranging from DOOM Eternal to Total War: Three Kingdoms to Overwatch and even Command & Conquer Remastered features like N-key rollover and the 1000 Hz Ultrapolling resulted in a smooth experience. The only real difference came down to feel, after a few hours I began to really notice just how accustomed I had gotten to a mechanical keyboard’s low actuation point and springy responsive feel.
The Razer Ornata V2 fits into this weird mid-range spot where its features are premium – from dedicated media keys to comfortable wrist-rests to RGB to braided cables – but the use of a hybrid membrane switch ultimately makes it fall short of where it needs to be.
In the end the Razer Ornata V2 is a great mix of technologies that results in a solid keyboard when used across gaming and general everyday typing. But with mechanical keyboards out there with metallic bodies also available in a similar price-range (albeit without the premium features and touches you’ll find here) the trade-off might not be worth it. If you prefer the feel of a membrane-style keyboard and don’t mind a clicky mechanical sound though – this might just be for you.