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Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro Keyboard Review

Tested using Methodology v1.3.1
Reviewed Mar 08, 2023 at 12:11 pm
Latest change: Test bench update Nov 29, 2023 at 09:32 am
Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro Picture
8.6
Gaming
6.4
Office
0.8
Mobile/Tablet
7.4
Programming
4.2
Entertainment / HTPC
8.9
Raw Performance

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is a mechanical gaming keyboard that continues Razer's BlackWidow lineup and is available with either linear or clicky switches. New features introduced with this entry include sound-dampening foam layers, pre-lubed stabilizers, dedicated macro keys on the left side of the keyboard, and a maximum polling rate of 8000Hz. This keyboard also has a rotary knob and a multi-function roller, both of which you can use to adjust volume, scroll through media, or adjust backlighting brightness and other keyboard settings. You can change the behavior of these controls and a wide range of other settings using the customization software.

Our Verdict

8.6 Gaming

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is an excellent gaming keyboard. It has exceptionally low latency, and the clicky Green switches have very low pre-travel and feel relatively light to press, making them very responsive. Unfortunately, these switches are somewhat inconsistent in how they sound and feel, but there's also a linear Yellow switch type available that we don't expect to exhibit this inconsistency. That said, the build quality is good overall. There are also many extra features, including a USB passthrough and eight dedicated macro keys that you can customize directly on the keyboard or within the customization software.

Pros
  • Exceptionally low latency.
  • Has two adjustable incline settings and an included wrist rest.
  • 8000Hz maximum polling rate.
  • All keys are macro programmable, and there are additional dedicated macro keys on the left side.
  • Full RGB backlighting.
Cons
  • Clicky Green switches are satisfying overall but individual switches sound and feel inconsistent.
  • While better than average, the ABS keycaps aren't as high quality as PBT keycaps.
6.4 Office

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is a good keyboard for office work, though it isn't designed specifically for this use. It feels well-built and has two incline settings and an included wrist rest for added comfort. The clicky Green switches are satisfying to type on, but they sound and feel somewhat inconsistent and are too loud for most open offices. That said, this keyboard is also available with linear Yellow switches instead, which are much quieter.

Pros
  • Has two adjustable incline settings and an included wrist rest.
  • All keys are macro programmable, and there are additional dedicated macro keys on the left side.
Cons
  • Clicky Green switches are satisfying overall but individual switches sound and feel inconsistent.
  • While better than average, the ABS keycaps aren't as high quality as PBT keycaps.
0.8 Mobile/Tablet

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro isn't suitable for use with mobile devices or tablets.

7.4 Programming

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is a good keyboard for programming. It feels well-built and has adjustable incline settings and a detachable wrist rest. You can program macros to any key, and there are eight dedicated macro buttons on the left side of the keyboard that you can program directly on the board or using the customization software. It also has full RGB backlighting with shine-through keycaps that are easy to see in darker rooms. The clicky Green switches are fairly light to press and provide satisfying clicky feedback. Unfortunately, some of these switches sound and feel somewhat inconsistent. This keyboard is also available with linear Yellow switches, which we don't expect to exhibit this same inconsistency.

Pros
  • Has two adjustable incline settings and an included wrist rest.
  • All keys are macro programmable, and there are additional dedicated macro keys on the left side.
  • Full RGB backlighting.
Cons
  • Clicky Green switches are satisfying overall but individual switches sound and feel inconsistent.
  • While better than average, the ABS keycaps aren't as high quality as PBT keycaps.
4.2 Entertainment / HTPC

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is a sub-par keyboard for an entertainment or home theater PC setup because it's a wired-only keyboard, meaning you'll need to sit close to your PC to use it. It's also large and difficult to move around, even with its wrist rest removed. It feels well-built, has dedicated media keys, and has full RGB backlighting with shine-through keycaps, making the legends easy to see in darkened rooms.

Pros
  • Full RGB backlighting.
Cons
  • Clicky Green switches are satisfying overall but individual switches sound and feel inconsistent.
  • While better than average, the ABS keycaps aren't as high quality as PBT keycaps.
  • Wired-only.
  • Large, even compared to other full-size options.
8.9 Raw Performance

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro has excellent overall performance with outstanding single-key and excellent multi-key latency. It's also one of few keyboards with an 8000Hz effective polling rate, delivering extremely consistent latency performance. The unit we bought and tested uses clicky Razer Green mechanical switches, which have very low-pre-travel. However, the biggest downside is that these switches require significant travel time on release, which is an issue if you play games requiring fast, repeated inputs. See the Multi-Key Latency section below for more details.

  • 8.6 Gaming
  • 6.4 Office
  • 0.8 Mobile/Tablet
  • 7.4 Programming
  • 4.2 Entertainment / HTPC
  • 8.9 Raw Performance
  1. Updated Nov 29, 2023: Converted to Test Bench 1.3.1.
  2. Updated Nov 15, 2023: We've found that latency results are impacted by the placement of the testing solenoid, so we retested this keyboard for consistency with other reviews. This review has been updated, and you can find more information regarding this retest here.
  3. Updated Aug 30, 2023: We've added text to this review for the new tests added in TBU 1.3.
  4. Updated Aug 30, 2023: We've converted this review to Test Bench 1.3, which overhauls how key input is evaluated. We've added new tests for Single Key Latency, Multi Key Latency, Data Transmission, and Chord Split. We've also introduced a new Raw Performance usage and adjusted how the Gaming and Office usage scores are calculated. You can see the full changelog here.
  5. Updated Jun 12, 2023: We've converted this review to Test Bench 1.2. This update introduces new Backlight Features and Backlight Clarity test boxes. We've also added a new Switches test box, added additional test comparisons to our Hardware Customizability test box that we introduced with our last Test Bench. For an in-depth look at our changes, you can see our full changelog here.
  6. Updated Mar 22, 2023: We've converted this review to Test Bench 1.1. This update adds several new tests addressing Hardware Customization, Macro Keys And Programming, and Wireless Mobile Compatibility. We've also added new objective evaluations to the Typing Noise test, and we've simplified several tests and removed several others that were no longer relevant. For an in-depth look at all our changes, you can see our full changelog here.
  7. Updated Mar 08, 2023: Review published.
  8. Updated Mar 03, 2023: Early access published.
  9. Updated Mar 01, 2023: Our testers have started testing this product.
  10. Updated Feb 24, 2023: The product has arrived in our lab, and our testers will start evaluating it soon.
  11. Updated Feb 21, 2023: We've purchased the product and are waiting for it to arrive in our lab.

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Differences Between Sizes And Variants

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is available in a black colorway with either Razer Green or Razer Yellow switches. There are no variants available at the time of writing. We purchased and tested this keyboard with Razer Green switches, and you can see the label for our unit here.

If you come across a variant of this keyboard or have a Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro that doesn't correspond to our review, let us know in the discussions, and we'll update our review.

Compared To Other Keyboards

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro continues Razer's popular BlackWidow lineup. As a departure from Razer's recent naming formula, this product is a wired-only model, while most other Razer products that carry the 'Pro' designation are wireless models. The standout features of this new entry are a handful of dedicated macro keys on the left side of the board and an 8000Hz maximum polling rate, which means it sends information to your computer eight times more often than most gaming keyboards with a standard polling rate of 1000Hz, producing exceptionally low latency. The build quality is similar to other flagship gaming keyboards from major brands like Corsair and Logitech. However, it uses lower-quality ABS keycaps, which are becoming less common on gaming keyboards at this price point. Additionally, the clicky green switches on the unit we bought and tested feel satisfying, but there's a noticeable inconsistency between individual switches, which is also an issue with several other models in this series, including the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro and Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed.

For more recommendations, see our picks for the best gaming keyboards, the best mechanical keyboards, and the best Razer keyboards.

Razer Huntsman V2

The Razer Huntsman V2 and the Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro are full-size wired gaming keyboards with very similar gaming performance. The Huntsman V2 has higher-quality PBT keycaps and is available with either linear or clicky Razer Optical switches. On the other hand, the BlackWidow V4 has additional dedicated macro keys, a higher maximum polling rate of 8000hz, and a multi-function roller bar which the Huntsman lacks. It's available with either clicky Razer Green or linear Razer Yellow switches.

SteelSeries Apex Pro

The SteelSeries Apex Pro and the Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro are full-size mechanical gaming keyboards. The SteelSeries has a customizable OLED screen and uses OmniPoint switches which let you customize the pre-travel distance of each key. On the other hand, the Razer has additional dedicated macro keys, a multi-device roller, and a higher maximum polling rate of 8000Hz. It's available with linear Razer Yellow or clicky Razer Green switches.

Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro and the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro are mechanical gaming keyboards in the same lineup. The V4 Pro is the newer version and is a wired-only model. It features several improvements, including foam dampening foam layers, eight dedicated macro keys, and a maximum polling rate of 8000Hz. On the other hand, the V3 Pro is a wireless model. Both keyboards are available with clicky Razer Green or linear Razer Yellow switches.

Razer BlackWidow V4

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro and the Razer BlackWidow V4 are wired mechanical keyboards in the same product lineup. The difference between these boards is that the BlackWidow V4 Pro has several additional features, including one more layer of sound-dampening foam inside the case, additional RGB lighting zones in the wrist rest, additional macro buttons on the left edge of the keyboard, and a programmable knob that Razer calls a 'command dial.' That said, the standard BlackWidow V4 has one additional macro key in place of the command dial, but it lacks the three additional macro buttons on the left edge of the case.

Razer BlackWidow V4 75%

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro and the Razer BlackWidow V4 75% are wired gaming keyboards in the same lineup. The LBlackWidow V4 Pro is a larger, full-size model.  It's available in linear, tactile, or clicky switch varieties and has dedicated macro keys, a USB passthrough, and a programmable control knob, which the BlackWidow V4 75% lacks. On the other hand, the BlackWidow V4 75% has a smaller Compact (75%) layout and a hot-swappable PCB. It only comes in a tactile switch variety, but it has a gasket mount system, a factory tape mod, and an FS4 plate, producing a better overall typing quality.

Razer BlackWidow V3

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro and the Razer BlackWidow V3 are wired mechanical gaming keyboards in the same lineup. The V4 Pro is the newer version and features several improvements, including eight additional dedicated macro keys, sound-dampening foam layers, and a higher maximum polling rate of 8000Hz. Both keyboards are available with either clicky Razer Green or linear Razer Yellow switches.

Razer DeathStalker V2 Pro

The Razer DeathStalker V2 Pro and the Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro are full-size mechanical gaming keyboards. The DeathStalker V2 Pro is a wireless model with a low-profile design. It's available with linear Red or clicky Purple Razer low-profile optical switch types. On the other hand, the BlackWidow V4 Pro is a wired-only model with somewhat better gaming performance and a higher maximum polling rate of 8000Hz. It's available with liner Yellow or clicky Green Razer switches.

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Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Dimensions
Size
Full-size (100%)
Height
1.7" (4.4 cm)
Width 18.4" (46.7 cm)
Depth
6.0" (15.3 cm)
Depth With Wrist Rest
8.9" (22.5 cm)
Weight
2.63 lbs (1.193 kg)

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is quite large, and the additional column of dedicated macro keys on the left makes it slightly wider than most full-size keyboards. That said, you can reduce the footprint of this keyboard on your desk by removing the wrist rest if you prefer.

7.5
Design
Build Quality
Keycap Material ABS

The build quality of this keyboard is good. The lower chassis is made of plastic, and the top plate is made of aluminum. The keycaps are made of ABS plastic, but they feel comparatively high-quality compared to most ABS keycaps and have pleasant textured tops. There are internal layers of sound-dampening foam and pre-lubed stabilizers, contributing to a more premium feel overall.

Unfortunately, the Razer Green switches have an inconsistent quality, with some keys lacking audible clicking sounds and requiring noticeably different amounts of force to operate. However, we've tested other models with the linear Razer Yellow Switches and didn't experience the same issues, so we expect this to only be a problem if you buy this keyboard with the Green switches.

6.0
Design
Ergonomics
Curved/Angled
No
Split Keyboard
No
Key Alignment
Staggered
Minimum Incline
Medium Incline
Maximum Incline
Home Row Height
34.9 mm (1.4")

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro has two plastic feet on the back edge of the keyboard that offer two incline angles. There's also an included plush wrist rest that attaches magnetically and provides additional support while typing.

6.0
Design
Hardware Customizability
Replaceable Cherry Stabilizers
Yes
Stabilizer Fixation
Plate-Mounted
Spacebar Stabilizer Size
6.25u
Size Of Right Mod Keys
1.25u
Hot-Swappable Switches
No
Switch Stem Shape
Cherry MX Style
Switch PCB Socket
Soldered
North-Facing Cherry MX Interference
Yes
10
Design
Backlight Features
Backlighting Yes
RGB
Yes
Per-Key Backlighting
Yes
Effects
Yes
Software Controllable
Yes

This keyboard has full RGB backlighting with individually-lit keys. You can adjust the brightness levels and customize the lighting and effects using the customization software. The wrist rest also has RGB lighting zones that activate when the wrist rest is attached to the keyboard.

9.0
Design
Backlight Clarity

This keyboard provides outstanding backlight clarity overall. That said, there's a faint red hue visible when set to white backlighting.

Design
Cable & Connector
Connectivity Wired
Detachable
Yes (Wired Only Keyboard)
Length 6.5 ft (2.0 m)
Connector (Keyboard side)
USB type-C

This keyboard comes with two braided USB-A to USB-C cables. One cable powers the keyboard, while the second cable is for the USB passthrough.

0
Design
Wireless Versatility
Bluetooth
No
Bluetooth Multi-Device Pairing
No
Proprietary Receiver
No
Battery Type
No Batteries

The Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is a wired-only keyboard.

9.1
Design
Macro Keys And Programming
Dedicated Macro Keys Count 8
Onboard Macro Programming
Yes
Macro Programming With Software
Yes
Design
Extra Features
Media Keys
Dedicated
Trackpad / Trackball No
Scroll Wheel
Yes
Control Knob
Yes
USB Passthrough
Yes
Numpad Yes
Windows Key Lock
Yes
Lock Indicator Caps, Scroll & Num lock

This keyboard has quite a few extra features, including common features for gaming keyboards at this price point, like LED indicators, Game Mode, and dedicated media keys. There's also a rotary knob on the top left and a roller bar on the top right of the keyboard; you can use both of these controls to adjust media volume, RGB brightness, or other customizable commands. There are a total of eight dedicated macro keys, including five keys in a column on the left side and three keys on the left edge of the keyboard.

This keyboard also supports a maximum polling rate of 8000Hz. Using a higher polling rate means your keyboard communicates more frequently with your computer, ensuring the lowest latency possible. However, it also consumes more system resources from your computer.

Design
In The Box

  • Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro
  • 2x USB-A to USB-C charging cable
  • Wrist Rest
  • User documentation

Typing Experience
7.5
Typing Experience
Typing Quality
Key Spacing
19.0 mm (0.748")

Overall, the typing quality on the Razer BlackWidow V4 Pro is good. The keys only exhibit minimal wobbling, keys are well-spaced, and while the keycaps are lower quality ABS, they feel superior to most ABS keycaps and have a slightly textured surface for added grip. Razer has also added layers of sound-dampening foam and pre-lubed the stabilizers on modifier keys with this model, so typing feels smoother than it does on previous entries.

Unfortunately, some of the clicky Green switches on the unit we bought and tested don't produce an audible click when actuated. Some switches also require different amounts of force to operate, producing a somewhat inconsistent typing experience. Note that this issue was also present on previous generation models with Green switches we've tested, including on the Razer BlackWidow V3 Pro and the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed.

This keyboard is also available with linear Razer Yellow switches. Based on our testing with other Razer keyboards using Razer's Yellow switches, we don't expect them to have the same inconsistent quality as the Green switches.

3.1
Typing Experience
Typing Noise
Average Loudness
62.2 dBA
High Pitch Clicks
Yes

The Razer Green switches are satisfyingly loud and clicky, but there's some inconsistency in how individual switches sound, and some keys don't provide clicky feedback, making it difficult to know when you've actuated a key.

This keyboard is also available with Razer Yellow switches, which are linear and much quieter. We also don't expect them to exhibit the same sound inconsistency as the Green switches, based on other similar Razer keyboards we've tested.

Typing Experience
Switches
Switch Name
Razer Green
Switch Type
Mechanical
Feel
Clicky
Analog
No
Typing Experience
Keystrokes
Operating Force
57 gf
Actuation Force
51 gf
Pre-Travel
1.8 mm
Total Travel
4.0 mm

Overall, the Razer Green switches are fairly light to press and feel quite responsive due to the short pre-travel distance. They also have satisfying clicky feedback to let you know when you've actuated a key. Unfortunately, there's a noticeable inconsistency in how much force it takes to operate some keys, and some keys don't provide audible clicking feedback.

This keyboard is also available with linear Razer Yellow switches, which provide a smooth linear keypress without any tactile feedback. Based on our tests with other Razer keyboards, we don't expect these Yellow switches to suffer from the same inconsistency issue.

Performance
9.5
Performance
Single-Key Latency
Best Connection
1.7 ms
Best Connection Std Dev ±0.1 ms
Wired
1.7 ms
Receiver
N/A
Bluetooth
N/A
PCB (Estimated)
0.0 ms

This keyboard has exceptionally low single-key latency. It's also remarkably stable due to its effective update rate of 8000Hz, delivering an extremely responsive and consistent-feeling experience for gaming in any genre for casual or competitive play.

8.6
Performance
Multi-Key Latency
Connection Evaluated Wired
Key Press
1.7 ms
Key Release
34.0 ms

Overall, this keyboard has excellent multi-key latency performance. Key press latency is exceptionally low and remarkably consistent. However, key Release travel is significantly higher. While it's normal for mechanical switches with low pre-travel to have a noticeably higher delay on key release, the result for this keyboard is unexpectedly high.

We're unsure why this keyboard, in particular, performs this way, as the result is very unusual compared to other similar Razer keyboards we've tested and other major flagship gaming keyboards from other major manufacturers. This high key release latency is only a major issue for games that trigger on release, such as some Rythym games. It can also be a bottleneck for performing extremely quick repeated keystrokes.

If you'd like to share your experience using this keyboard, let us know in the forums.

9.6
Performance
Data Transmission
Connection Evaluated Wired
USB Polling Rate
8,000 Hz
Effective Update Rate
8,000 Hz
N-Key Rollover (NKRO)
Yes
Multiple Keys Per USB Report
Yes

This keyboard has outstanding data transmission performance. It has full n-key rollover and can send multiple keystrokes per USB report. Furthermore, this keyboard has a maximum 8000Hz polling rate and a true 8000hz effective update rate to match, so performance isn't bottlenecked by scan rate or other latency components, providing exceptionally consistent latency performance.

7.8
Performance
Chord Split
4 Chord Split Delay
6.1 ms
8 Chord Split Delay
9.7 ms

This keyboard has good and fairly consistent chord split performance with relatively low 4-chord and 8-chord split delay, making it well-suited for playing rhythm games that require multiple simultaneous inputs.

Software and Operating System
Software and Operating System
Configuration Software
Software Name Razer Synapse 3
Software Windows Compatible
Yes
Software macOS Compatible
No
Onboard Memory
Yes
Profiles
6+

The Synapse 3 software is well laid out, easy to use, and offers plenty of adjustable features. You can customize the RGB lighting, set macros to any key, and reassign keys. You can also enable a 'Game Mode' to disable Alt+Tab or Alt+F4 commands and assign a Hypershift button to enable a secondary layer of programmable keys. Note that certain settings, including custom RGB settings, can't be saved to onboard memory and require the software to run in the background.

However, like the software options from other major manufacturers, this software receives criticism for requiring frequent updates and taking up disproportionate system resources. You may find this software frustrating if you prefer more lightweight software options or no software at all.

10
Software and Operating System
Computer Compatibility
Windows
Fully Compatible
macOS
Fully Compatible
Linux (Ubuntu 22)
Fully Compatible
Media Key Compatibility
Windows, MacOS & Linux

This keyboard is fully compatible with Windows, macOS, and Linux. However, the customization software is only available for Windows, and certain OS-specific buttons don't function in macOS, including Scroll Lock and Pause/Break.

0
Software and Operating System
Wireless Mobile Compatibility
Android
Not Compatible
iOS
Not Compatible
iPadOS
Not Compatible
Media Key Compatibility
Not Compatible