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Razer BlackWidow V3 Keyboard Review

Tested using Methodology v1.0
Updated Dec 20, 2021 at 11:38 am
Razer BlackWidow V3 Picture
9.4
Gaming
2.7
Mobile/Tablet
7.8
Office
7.7
Programming
5.4
Entertainment / HTPC
Connectivity Wired
Size
Full-size (100%)
Mechanical
Yes

The Razer BlackWidow V3 is a full-sized, mechanical gaming keyboard, and it's a wired variant of the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro. It feels very well-built and has good ergonomics, with two incline settings and a wrist rest. It has full RGB backlighting with individually-lit keys that you can customize with the Razer Synapse 3 software, which allows you to set macros to any key. The linear Razer Yellow switches on our unit have a low operation force and a short pre-travel distance, providing a light and responsive gaming experience, but it may cause more unintentional typos. If you prefer a tactile feel, it also comes in clicky Razer Green switches. This keyboard also comes in a TenKeyLess size, called the Razer BlackWidow V3 TKL.

Our Verdict

9.4 Gaming

The Razer BlackWidow V3 is exceptional for gaming. It has remarkably low latency, and the linear Razer Yellow switches on our unit have both a low actuation force and a low pre-travel distance, resulting in a light and responsive gaming experience. This keyboard feels very well-built, and you can adjust the RGB backlighting or set macros to any key using the customization software.

Pros
  • Light and responsive switches.
  • All keys are macro-programmable.
  • Great build quality.
  • Customizable RGB backlighting.
Cons
  • Spacebar is noisy.
  • Low pre-travel distance may cause more typos.
2.7 Mobile/Tablet

Theย Razer BlackWidow V3 is a wired-only keyboard and isn't designed for use with mobile devices.

7.8 Office

The Razer BlackWidow V3 is good for office use. It feels very well-built and has good ergonomics with two incline settings and an included wrist rest. The Razer Yellow switches on our unit provide a good typing experience, but the linear feel and low pre-travel distance may cause some accidental keystrokes. They should be quiet enough for most office settings, but the space bar on our unit is quite loud. This keyboard is also available with clicky Razer Green switches, which many users may prefer for typing, but we expect them to be louder.

Pros
  • All keys are macro-programmable.
  • Great build quality.
  • Good ergonomics.
Cons
  • Spacebar is noisy.
  • Low pre-travel distance may cause more typos.
7.7 Programming

The Razer BlackWidow V3 is good for programming. It feels very well-built, and you can adjust the RGB backlighting and set macros to any key using the customization software. The linear Razer Yellow switches on the unit we purchased provide a good typing experience, but the low pre-travel distance might cause unintentional keystrokes, and some users may prefer to buy this keyboard with the clicky Razer Green switches instead. While it works with Linux and macOS, the customization software is available on Windows only.

Pros
  • Light and responsive switches.
  • All keys are macro-programmable.
  • Great build quality.
  • Customizable RGB backlighting.
Cons
  • Spacebar is noisy.
  • Low pre-travel distance may cause more typos.
5.4 Entertainment / HTPC

The Razer BlackWidow V3 isn't designed for use with a home theater PC setup. It's a wired-only keyboard, so you need to run a cable from your couch to your PC. Also, it doesn't have a built-in trackpad, so you need to use a separate mouse to navigate on-screen menus. On the other hand, it has full RGB backlighting, making it easy to use in a dark room.

Pros
  • Customizable RGB backlighting.
Cons
  • Spacebar is noisy.
  • Low pre-travel distance may cause more typos.
  • Wired-only design.
  • No integrated trackpad.
  • 9.4 Gaming
  • 2.7 Mobile/Tablet
  • 7.8 Office
  • 7.7 Programming
  • 5.4 Entertainment / HTPC
  1. Updated Feb 18, 2021: Converted to Test Bench 1.0.
  2. Updated Dec 10, 2020: Review published.
  3. Updated Dec 07, 2020: Early access published.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Dimensions
Height
1.7" (4.2 cm)
Width 17.8" (45.1 cm)
Depth
6.1" (15.4 cm)
Depth With Wrist Rest
9.1" (23.0 cm)
Weight
2.21 lbs (1.002 kg)

Theย Razer BlackWidow V3 is a full-sized keyboard that takes up some space on your desk, especially if you use it with the wrist rest. If you prefer a slightly smaller size, it comes in a TenKeyLess version.

8.0
Design
Build Quality
Keycap Material ABS

It has excellent build quality, similar to the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro. It's mostly made of plastic, and it has a matte black aluminum top plate that exhibits little flex. The doubleshot ABS keycaps are good quality and slightly textured. Some of the larger keys, like the spacebar, Shift, and Enter keys, wobble a bit, and the stabilizer on the spacebar rattles louder than the other stabilizers. The incline feet are very grippy, and they do a good job keeping the board in place.

7.5
Design
Ergonomics
Board Design
Straight
Minimum Incline
4ยฐ
Medium Incline
6ยฐ
Maximum Incline
8.5ยฐ
Wrist Rest Detachable

It has good ergonomics. It's a straight board design that has two inclines. It comes with a wrist rest that you can place below the keyboard, but it doesn't attach to it since there aren't any connectors.

10
Design
Backlighting
Backlighting Yes
Color
RGB
Individually Backlit Keys
Yes
Color Mixing
Great
Effects
Yes
Programmable
Yes

It has outstanding RGB backlighting that you can customize through the Razer Synapse 3 software. White backlighting looks great, with no visible mixing of red, green, and blue. You can control the brightness directly on the keyboard with the function keys.

Design
Cable & Connector
Detachable
No
Length 6.4 ft (2.0 m)
Connector (Keyboard side)
Not Detachable

The Razer BlackWidow V3 has a stiff, braided cable that retains kinks from the packaging.

0
Design
Wireless Versatility
Bluetooth
No
Bluetooth Multi-Device Pairing
No
Proprietary Receiver
No
Battery Type
No Batteries
Design
Extra Features
Media Keys
Dedicated
Macro Programmable Keys
All
Trackpad / Trackball No
Wheel Yes
USB Passthrough
No
Numpad Yes
Windows Key Lock
Yes
Lock Indicator Caps, Scroll & Num lock

It has a few extra features, including a Game Mode key that locks the Windows key, a volume control wheel, and a media key. If you'd like a similar model with three dedicated media keys and optical switches, check out the Razer Huntsman V2.

Design
In The Box

  • Razer BlackWidow V3 keyboard
  • Wrist rest
  • Stickers
  • User manual

Typing Experience
Typing Experience
Keystrokes
Key Switches
Razer Yellow
Feel
Linear
Operating Force
43 gf
Actuation Force
41 gf
Pre-Travel
1.4 mm
Total Travel
3.6 mm

The Razer Yellow switches on our unit are linear and silent. They don't require a lot of force to actuate, thanks to their low operating force, and their short pre-travel distance should feel responsive for gaming. If you prefer a tactile feel, you can get this keyboard with Razer Green switches.

7.5
Typing Experience
Typing Quality

The Razer BlackWidow V3 we tested has good typing quality. The shape and spacing of the keys are pretty standard and shouldn't cause more typos. However, the linear Razer Yellow switches on our unit don't provide tactile feedback, which might cause unintentional keystrokes if you're not used to them. The doubleshot ABS keycaps feel nice to type on, but the Spacebar, Shift, and Enter keys aren't very stable. Additionally, the Spacebar is quite noisy compared to the other keys. If you prefer a tactile feel, you can purchase it with clicky Razer Green switches, though this will change the typing quality.

Typing Experience
Typing Noise
Noise
Quiet

The linear Razer Yellow switches on our unit are quiet and shouldn't bother those around you in an open office environment. However, the spacebar is noisy when pressed. We expect the clicky Razer Green switches to be significantly louder.

10
Typing Experience
Latency
Latency Wired
1.7 ms
Latency Receiver
N/A
Latency Bluetooth
N/A

The latency is outstandingly low and feels very responsive.

Software and Operating System
9.6
Software and Operating System
Software & Programming
Software Name Razer Synapse 3
Account Required
No
Profiles
6+
Onboard Memory
Yes
Cloud Sync
Yes
Macro Programming
Software and Onboard
Ease Of Use
Easy
Software Windows Compatible
Yes
Software macOS Compatible
No

The Razer Synapse 3 software is fantastic and allows you to set macros to any key and customize the RGB backlighting. You can also create as many custom profiles as you want and save up to four of them to the onboard memory. Unfortunately, this process isn't very intuitive or user-friendly for new users.

7.2
Software and Operating System
Keyboard Compatibility
Windows Full
macOS Partial
Linux Partial
Android No
iOS No
iPadOS No

The software isn't available on macOS or Linux, so you can't customize any settings. However, all keys should still work properly, except for the Pause Break and Scroll Lock on macOS.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the full-sized Razer BlackWidow V3 in Classic Black with Razer Yellow switches. It's a wired variant of the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro, but its wrist rest is less plushy, and the media controls look different. It's available in three different color schemes, although the BlackWidow V3 Quartz Pink and Halo Infinite colorways are only available in one size with Razer Green switches. If you prefer a more compact keyboard, it also comes in a TenKeyLess version called the Razer BlackWidow V3 TKL. You can see the differences in the table below.

Color Sizes Switches
Classic Black Full-size Razer Yellow (linear)
Razer Green (clicky)
Classic Black TKL Razer Green (clicky)
Quartz Pink Full-size  Razer Green (clicky)
 Halo Infinite Full-size Razer Green (clicky)

If you notice that your Razer BlackWidow V3 doesn't correspond to our review, let us know in the discussions, and we'll update the review. You can see our unit's label here.

Compared To Other Keyboards

The Razer BlackWidow V3 is an exceptional gaming keyboard. It feels very well-built and is comfortable to type on, but the linear feel and low pre-travel distance of the linear Razer Yellow switches may cause unintentional keystrokes. Like many Razer keyboards, this is an outstanding choice for gamers due to the outstanding latency, responsive feeling of the switches, customizable features, and RGB backlighting.

For more options, check out our recommendations for the best gaming keyboards, the best RGB keyboards, and the best mechanical gaming keyboards.

Razer Huntsman V2

The Razer BlackWidow V3 and the Razer Huntsman V2 are similar wired mechanical gaming keyboards, but the Huntsman V2 performs slightly better. The Huntsman V2 has much lower latency than the BlackWidow V3. It also comes with higher quality PBT keycaps instead of the ABS keycaps on the BlackWidow V3, and its wrist rest is plushier. It's available with Razer Linear Optical and Razer Click optical switches. On the other hand, the BlackWidow V3 is available with linear Razer Yellow and clicky Razer Green switches.

Razer Huntsman

The Razer Huntsman and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are both exceptional for gaming. The V3 comes with a wrist rest, dedicated media keys, and a programmable volume control wheel. It's available with linear Razer Yellow or clicky Green mechanical switches. On the other hand, the Huntsman comes with Razer clicky optical switches.

Razer Huntsman Elite

The Razer Huntsman Elite and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are both incredible full-sized gaming keyboards with similar performance. The V3 is available with linear Razer Yellow switches or clicky Razer Green switches. On the other hand, the Elite is available with Razer Linear Optical (Red) or Razer Clicky Optical (Purple) switches. It also has a plushier wrist rest and three dedicated media control buttons instead of one.

Razer Huntsman Mini

The Razer Huntsman Mini and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are both outstanding gaming keyboards. The Mini is a compact 60% keyboard, while the V3 is full-sized and comes with a wrist rest and dedicated media keys. The Mini is available with Razer Clicky Optical and Linear Optical switches, while the V3 is available with Razer's standard linear and clicky switches.

Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition

The Razer Huntsman Tournament Edition (TE) and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are very different keyboards. The TE is a TKL keyboard with linear optical switches, while the V3 is full-size and is available with Razer Yellow or Green mechanical switches. The TE's Linear Optical switches have a shorter pre-travel distance and lower operating force than the Yellow switches on the V3, making them more responsive. However, they're not as good for general typing because they're overly sensitive, which leads to more typos. The V3 comes with a wrist rest and has dedicated media controls, which the TE lacks.

HyperX Alloy Origins

The HyperX Alloy Origins and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are both fantastic gaming keyboards. They're each full-size and wired-only, but the Razer comes with a wrist rest, while the HyperX doesn't. They're both available in a variety of mechanical switches, and the units we tested each have linear switches that have a light typing experience. However, typing feels better on the HyperX because the keys feel more stable.

Razer BlackWidow Elite

The Razer BlackWidow Elite and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are both outstanding gaming keyboards with fairly similar features. The Elite has a USB passthrough, and the wrist rest is more comfortable. It provides a better typing experience mainly because the V3's keys are not as stable, and its Razer Yellow linear switches are a bit too sensitive due to their short pre-travel distance and low operating force. Also, they don't give any tactile feedback, which the Razer Orange switches on the Elite do. Both keyboards offer a clicky switch option, and the Elite has a third, linear switch option as well.

Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro

The Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are both fantastic gaming keyboards. The V3 Pro can be used wirelessly or wired, and you can pair it wirelessly with up to three devices simultaneously. Also, it comes with a plushier wrist rest. Also, its keys are more stable and wobble less. On the other hand, the V3's linear Razer Yellow switches have a shorter pre-travel distance and lower operating force than the V3 Pro's clicky Razer Green switches, giving it a lighter and more responsive feel.

Razer BlackWidow

The Razer BlackWidow V3 is an updated version of the original Razer BlackWidow which makes several improvements. While the original is only available with clicky Razer Green switches, the newer version is also available with linear Razer Yellow switches, which are the switches we tested. They provide a lighter actuation than the Green switches and are quieter. Latency is also lower on the newer version and it has better ergonomics as it comes with a wrist rest.

Razer BlackWidow Tournament Edition Chroma V2

The Razer BlackWidow Tournament Edition Chroma V2 and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are both fantastic wired gaming keyboards. The units we tested each have linear Razer Yellow switches, and the Tournament Edition is also available with Razer Orange and Razer Green switches, while the V3 is also available with the Green switches. The main difference is that the Tournament Edition is TenKeyLess (TKL) and the V3 is full-size, so it has dedicated media keys. Typing feels a lot better on the Tournament Edition because it comes with a plushy wrist rest.

Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed

The Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed is a wireless and compact version of the wired Razer BlackWidow V3. The V3 is a better choice if you want a full-size board with a dedicated F-row, dedicated media keys, and a volume control knob. On the other hand, the V3 Mini HyperSpeed is a better choice if you want a smaller board to give you more space on your desk. It can pair with up to three devices at once via Bluetooth, and you can also use it via its USB receiver. Both boards are available with clicky Razer Green and linear Razer Yellow switches, but our V3 Mini HyperSpeed unit's Razer Green switches had a quality control issue where certain switches were much quieter than others.

ASUS ROG Claymore II

The Razer BlackWidow V3 and the ASUS ROG Claymore II are both full-size gaming keyboards, but the Razer is wired, and the ASUS is wireless. The Razer has a dedicated media key and marginally lower wired latency. It's available with clicky Razer Green and linear Razer Yellow switches. On the other hand, the ASUS has a USB passthrough and a modular Numpad, which you can put on either side of the board or remove completely to make the board a TKL size. Also, you can use the ASUS wirelessly via its USB receiver. It's available with clicky ROG RX Blue Optical Mechanical switches and linear ROG RX Red Optical Mechanical switches.

SteelSeries Apex 3 TKL

The Razer BlackWidow V3 is better for gaming than the SteelSeries Apex 3 TKL. The Razer is a full-size keyboard available with two types of mechanical switches, while the SteelSeries is TKL and has rubber dome switches. However, the Razer is also available in a TKL size, and the SteelSeries has a full-size variant as well. The mechanical switches on the Razer provide a better gaming and typing experience, and the keyboard has much lower latency. It also has better ergonomics because it comes with a wrist rest, and it has individually lit RGB backlighting, while the SteelSeries is limited to 8 lighting zones.

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