Razer Cynosa V2 Keyboard Review

Tested using Methodology v1.0
Reviewed Sep 22, 2020 at 08:23 am
Razer Cynosa V2 Picture
8.1
Gaming
2.9
Mobile/Tablet
6.7
Office
6.6
Programming
4.7
Entertainment / HTPC
Connectivity Wired
Size
Full-size (100%)
Mechanical
No

The Razer Cynosa V2 is a great wired gaming keyboard with full RGB backlighting and programmable macros. It has rubber dome switches that feel light to type on, but may feel too mushy for some people and can be compared to the generic keyboards that accompany most PC purchases. It has programmable macros and full RGB backlighting, both of which can be customized in the Razer Synapse 3 companion software. Unfortunately, there's no onboard memory, and it feels cheap. Overall, this could be a great choice for casual gaming but isn't suited for competitive hardcore gamers.

Our Verdict

8.1 Gaming

The Razer Cynosa V2 is a great keyboard for gaming. Despite scoring much better than the original Razer Cynosa Chroma, it offers a very similar typing experience and feels almost identical. It has customizable RGB backlighting. Unfortunately, it uses ABS plastic keycaps which feel very slippery. Also, the switches are very light and may not be the best choice for hardcore gaming.

Pros
  • Customizable RGB backlight.
  • Programmable macros.
  • Multiple incline settings.
Cons
  • Mushy rubber dome switches.
  • Slippery ABS plastic keycaps.
2.9 Mobile/Tablet

The Razer Chroma V2 is a wired-only keyboard and can't be paired with mobile devices.

6.7 Office

The Razer Cynosa V2 is an okay keyboard for office use. It's quiet and shouldn't disturb those around you. The tactile rubber dome switches and long pre-travel distance should help reduce typos, but they may feel too mushy for long days of typing. Also, ergonomics are only okay as it doesn't include a wrist rest. The companion software, Razer Synapse 3, isn't available on macOS or Linux.

Pros
  • Long pre-travel should prevent typos.
  • Multiple incline settings.
Cons
  • Customization software not available on Linux and macOS.
  • No wrist rest.
  • No multi-device pairing.
6.6 Programming

The Razer Cynosa V2 is a decent keyboard for programming. Typing quality is only okay, and you shouldn't feel any fatigue over extended periods. Build quality is also just okay, as it's made of cheap plastic and uses ABS plastic keycaps. Also, there's no multi-device pairing, and the companion software isn't available on Linux or macOS.

Pros
  • Customizable RGB backlight.
  • Programmable macros.
  • Multiple incline settings.
Cons
  • Customization software not available on Linux and macOS.
  • No wrist rest.
  • No multi-device pairing.
4.7 Entertainment / HTPC

The Razer Cynosa V2 is bad for use with a home theater PC. It's a wired-only keyboard, which isn't ideal if your couch is a good distance away from the computer. Also, it doesn't have a trackpad for navigation.

Pros
  • Customizable RGB backlight.
Cons
  • No wireless capabilities.
  • No trackpad.
  • 8.1 Gaming
  • 2.9 Mobile/Tablet
  • 6.7 Office
  • 6.6 Programming
  • 4.7 Entertainment / HTPC
  1. Updated Feb 05, 2021: Converted to Test Bench 1.0.

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Dimensions
Height
1.2" (3.0 cm)
Width 18.5" (47.0 cm)
Depth
6.6" (16.8 cm)
Depth With Wrist Rest
N/A
Weight
1.92 lbs (0.872 kg)

This is a full-sized keyboard that's about as large as the original Razer Cynosa Chroma.

6.0
Design
Build Quality
Keycap Material ABS

The Razer Cynosa V2 has a mediocre build quality. The entire thing is made of lower-grade plastic and has a similar level of flex as the Razer Cynosa Chroma. Our unit has a slight kink in it and doesn't sit flat on the table; however, your experience may vary. The keycaps are doubleshot ABS plastic and feel slippery. The keys are pretty stable, except for the spacebar, shift, and enter keys. The incline feet are stable in the lower position but less so when using the higher setting. Razer claims that it's spill-resistant, but we don't test for this.

6.5
Design
Ergonomics
Board Design
Straight
Minimum Incline
2 °
Medium Incline
4 °
Maximum Incline
7 °
Wrist Rest No

The ergonomics on this keyboard are okay. The board naturally sits at a 2-degree incline, and there are two additional incline settings if you need to raise it higher. Some people might need a wrist rest, but sadly, there isn't one included in the box. If you want something with a wrist rest, consider the Razer Ornata Chroma.

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

This keyboard has outstanding RGB backlighting. The keys are individually-lit, and the frosted plastic plate between them and the lights make the colors more gradient and smooth. The backlighting can be customized on Razer's Synapse 3 software, and you can easily control the brightness via hotkeys.

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

The Razer Cynosa V2's rubber cable retains kinks fairly easily.

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

The Razer Cynosa V2 is a wired-only keyboard.

Design
Extra Features
Media Keys
Dedicated
Macro Programmable Keys
All
Trackpad / Trackball No
Wheel No
USB Passthrough
No
Numpad Yes
Windows Key Lock
Yes
Lock Indicator Caps, Scroll & Num lock

The Razer Cynosa V2 has 'Game Mode' and 'Sleep Mode' buttons, as well as dedicated media keys. All keys are macro-programmable, including the media keys, either through the Razer Synapse 3 companion software or directly on the keyboard itself.

Design
In The Box

  • Razer Cynosa V2
  • Quick Start Manual
  • Razer stickers

Typing Experience
Typing Experience
Keystrokes
Key Switches
Rubber Dome
Feel
Tactile
Operating Force
58 gf
Actuation Force
40 gf
Pre-Travel
2.3 mm
Total Travel
3.6 mm

The Razer Cynosa V2 uses rubber dome switches. They don't require much force to actuate and feel mushy to press. The long pre-travel distance can help reduce typos but also results in a less responsive gaming experience. If you're looking for a similar keyboard that has mechanical switches, check out the Keychron C2.

6.0
Typing Experience
Typing Quality

It doesn't do much to differentiate itself from generic keyboards that come standard with the purchase of a PC. The keycaps are cheap, slippery ABS plastic that attracts the oil from your fingertips. The tactile switches also feel mushy, which may be disappointing for gamers, but shouldn't cause any noticeable fatigue over long periods of use.

Typing Experience
Typing Noise
Noise
Quiet

Typing on this keyboard is quiet enough that it shouldn't disturb anyone around you.

7.1
Typing Experience
Latency
Latency Wired
13.2 ms
Latency Receiver
N/A
Latency Bluetooth
N/A

The latency is a bit high for a wired keyboard. It shouldn't be noticeable to most people, but it's not ideal for competitive gamers.

Software and Operating System
7.3
Software and Operating System
Software & Programming
Software Name Razer Synapse 3
Account Required
No
Profiles
6+
Onboard Memory
No
Cloud Sync
Yes
Macro Programming
Software and Onboard
Ease Of Use
Easy
Software Windows Compatible
Yes
Software macOS Compatible
No

The Razer Cynosa V2 is compatible with Razer Synapse 3, where you can customize the RGB backlighting and program macros. Unfortunately, Synapse 3 isn't available on macOS and there's no onboard memory, but since you can save up to six profiles to the cloud with an account, you can bring your settings from one computer to another. If you want a keyboard with software support for macOS, take a look at the Logitech G213 Prodigy.

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

This keyboard has decent compatibility. It's fully operational on Windows, but Razer Synapse 3 doesn't work on macOS or Linux. Also, 'Print Screen', 'Pause/Break', and 'Scroll Lock' don't appear to work on macOS.

Differences Between Sizes And Variants

We tested the Razer Cynosa V2 in black, and there are no other variants.

Compared To Other Keyboards

The Razer Cynosa V2 is an upgraded version of the Razer Cynosa Chroma. It uses rubber dome tactile switches that have a long pre-travel distance, which should help reduce typos but may feel too mushy for competitive gamers, who may want to consider the Razer BlackWidow Tournament Edition Chroma V2 instead. While the Cynosa V2 has two incline settings, it lacks a wrist rest like the Razer Ornata V2. The full RGB backlighting and programmable macros can be customized in the Razer Synapse 3 companion software.

See our recommendations for the best gaming keyboard, the best wireless keyboards, and the best mechanical keyboards.

Razer Ornata V2

The Razer Ornata V2 and the Razer Cynosa V2 are fairly similar gaming-wise. The Ornata V2 has slightly lower latency, and it provides a better typing experience as its Mecha-Membrane switches don't feel as mushy as the rubber dome switches on the Cynosa V2. They both have two incline settings, but the Ornata V2 includes a detachable wrist rest.

Razer Cynosa Chroma

The Razer Cynosa V2 is a slightly better keyboard than the original Razer Cynosa Chroma. The V2 has dedicated media keys, but that aside, offers a near-identical experience.

SteelSeries Apex 3

The SteelSeries Apex 3 and the Razer Cynosa V2 are both full-size membrane gaming keyboards. While the Razer scores higher for gaming, it's only so because it has individually-lit keys, while the SteelSeries has 10-zone backlighting. The SteelSeries has a lower input lag, and its keys are a bit easier to actuate because they require less force. It allows for higher incline settings and includes a wrist rest to provide a more comfortable typing experience. Also, its build quality is much better than the Razer.

Razer Ornata Chroma

The Razer Ornata Chroma is a better keyboard than the Razer Cynosa V2. The Ornata has a better typing experience due to the unique mecha-membrane switches that provide clicky feedback. That said, the V2 is much quieter and has dedicated media keys.

Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard

The Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard and the Razer Cynosa V2 are both full-sized keyboards with rubber dome switches. The Razer has individually-lit RGB backlighting, and its keys require much lower operation force, making its keystrokes feel lighter. The Corsair only has zone backlighting, but it has significantly lower latency, a detachable wrist rest, and companion software compatible with macOS.

Razer BlackWidow Tournament Edition Chroma V2

The Razer BlackWidow Tournament Edition Chroma V2 is a better keyboard than the Razer Cynosa V2. The TE may only have one incline setting but has a detachable wrist rest. Furthermore, it uses Razer Yellow switches, which feel linear and will be better suited for gamers. That said, the Cynosa has dedicated media keys.

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