Razer Deathstalker review 
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Zoe Hawkins
July 23, 2014 at 12:30 pm

Whether you’re a PC gamer or just a normal human being, you probably spend a ridiculous among of time employing mouse and keyboard throughout the day. However, not all keyboards are the same – there is a ton of variety out there, although the Razer Deathstalker might just be my new favourite.

Razer deathstalker

Wanna touch it?

As the device my hands rest on more than anything else throughout the day, my mouse and keyboard comfort are paramount to me. I have an ergonomic mousepad, but keyboards can be a trickier matter. However, the Razer Deathstalker provides fantastic support thanks to a fixed wrist rest that has a carbon-fibre finish to make it feel smooth. The keyboard rests at an angle that puts the keys at a comfortable height while ensuring that your wrists are kept in carpal-tunnel preventing position.

Thanks to the low-profile Chiclet style key caps, the Deathstalker is a pretty quiet keyboard. While some people prefer something clunkier when typing, I like the way the keys are quick and responsive (without being overly sensitive) – I was able to keep my typing speeds up without it sounding like a furious pounding of keys. The low profile keys and membrane infrastructure are ideal for faster movements. The actual feel of the individual keys is smooth while still matte enough to make them comfortable and modern.

Razer death stalker 1

Size does matter

Unlike the big brother keyboard, the Razer Deathstalker Ultimate, the plain old Deathstalker is just the right size. Unlike other “smaller versions” of keyboards, the Deathstalker still includes a number pad, making it a full sized experience without taking up your entire desk. The keyboard is also extremely light and thin, making it perfect for packing up and taking with you if you attend LAN events or simply like to have your keyboard of choice with you when you travel.

Unfortunately, you might need a USB hub if you intend to take it with you on the road. Unlike other popular keyboard, the Deathstalker doesn’t have any extra USB ports built in. This means that it takes up USB without letting you plug a mouse or headset into it. I see no design reason why they did this, except to maybe keep the keyboard light and slim. However, this was a major flaw for me – I already struggle with having enough ports and I don’t like when keyboards don’t help in that department.

The spacing on the keys is fairly standard, although I did find the size of the keys slightly different to what I was used to, leading to some unintended typos and imperfect smiley face emoticons. Of course, every new keyboard takes some adjustment and within a few days I was back to touch typing without those errors.

Razer death stalker

Make it your own

Thanks to compatibility with Razer Synapse 2.0, the Deathstalker has some cool customization. First of all, I greatly appreciated that it had two modes – normal and gaming mode. This means that when I’m just doing my day to day typing and work, my normal macros are set. However, switch on the gaming mode and I can get all the anti-ghosting and programmable macros that I need. Razer Synapse 2.0 even lets you adjust the brightness of the lights or put them to pulsate, something I have no understanding of why anyone would want. As usual with Razer products, there is no choice of color for your backlighting, but at least it’s green instead of the usual red or blue that other PC components tend towards.

Conclusion

I am truly sad at the thought of giving back this keyboard. I want to keep it forever and ever, but with an RRP of R2 499 for the one with the embedded LCD acreen, and R1000 for this vanilla version,  I will have to hum and haw a bit more before I dish out that kind of cash. It is probably worth that money, but it still seems like a lot to pay for a standard gaming keyboard.

Pros

Cons

  • Incredible comfort
  • Responsive
  • Sleek
  • Steals USB port
  • Limited lighting customization
  • slightly expensive

Conclusion

Rad

Razer Deathstalker was reviewed by Zoe Hawkins

Wielding my lasso of truth, I am the combination of nerd passion and grammar nazi. I delve into all things awesome and geek-tastic. I believe people should stop defining themselves and just enjoy playing games, so let's get on with it!

  • Alien Emperor Trevor

    All that green. Exactly what I don’t like about a lot of the current Razer stuff.

    • Sith JJ

      Damn it. Now you’ve made me see that and only that.
      My DeathTaker can change its light colours to just about anything you want, this will cause clashing of colours problems for me.

      • Alien Emperor Trevor

        lol. Then set it to green. :P

        • Sith JJ

          And leave it on one colour forever? Madness!!!

          • Admiral Chief Saxon

            Rainbow pony?

          • Alien Emperor Trevor

            My mouse doesn’t even get its lighting switched on most of the time heh.

          • Sith JJ

            I make a point of changing mine regularly.

  • Sith JJ

    Now this has my attention. DeathStalker could go well with my DeathTaker

  • Morne Nell

    Why USB and not blueteeth, very expensive for old technology

    • https://www.youtube.com/user/scavengefightbuild Gerhard Davids

      I’ll take old and reliable over new and wonky any day.

      Bluetooth for a device like this would require hella battery packs. To hell with that.

      • Morne Nell

        My Logitech mouse has one rechargeable battery and when the battery does run out I use a usb cable to charge while still working, very convenient. What is nice about Bluetooth is the distance an everything is wireless.

        • https://www.youtube.com/user/scavengefightbuild Gerhard Davids

          Adding that rechargeable battery pack (one strong enough to power the lighting) along with Bluetooth would punch the price up quite a bit.

          Being an already fairly expensive product this wouldn’t help much. Blootooth also has connectivity headaches and for desktops without native adapter it means you are still chewing a usb port.

    • Rags

      Think wireless just adds more latency.

      • frikkenator

        Nah not really anymore, but you can pick one: Looks good with lots of lights or wireless.

      • Morne Nell

        No not at all if that was the case the new generation consoles would not be successful at all, everything is wireless, headphones, controllers, mics to name but a view.
        I don’t experience any form of lag

        • Rags

          Considering how much input lag an average tv has you probably won’t notice it. Also everyone seems quite happy playing ‘next-gen’ games at 30fps. #masterracethings :P Edit, actually powering all the features like the lcd and lights will put a fast drain on batteries.

    • Sageville

      Wired vs Wireless I suppose.

      Wireless requires batteries and/or chargers, whereas wired just works.

  • Ottokie

    That looks so comfy and love the green backlighting as always with Razer, but I wonder if it will feel awkward if you game because you loose that button pushing feeling.

    • https://twitter.com/andreferhelst Aries

      Like my shock absorbers for my keys

  • Admiral Chief Saxon
  • Sir Rants A Lot Llew

    I honestly feel that that much money for a keyboard is a waste. Yikes. So much money

    • Brother Tucker

      ” slightly expensive “

      • Sir Rants A Lot Llew

        Only ever so slightly

  • Sageville

    R2500 for a keyboard?

    • Brother Tucker

      hahahaha

    • Sith JJ

      It has a function called suggestive typing where you say random words and it writes you a short story based on those words.
      Usually with catastrophic results.

    • MakeItLegal

      YOU SAID it :)

      • Mossel

        I have and R80 Genius keyboard. Had it for more than 7 years, still no issues.

        • MakeItLegal

          Wow ! Makes me ponder …. But I just got a laptop for edting on the go , will have to wait

  • Pieter Smal

    *slightly expensive… cough*

  • VampyreSquirrel

    “Slightly expensive”? SLIGHTLY? lol!

    That’s more than I spend on petrol every month.

    • Alien Emperor Trevor

      Understatement of the year.

      Razer prices are becoming a joke. Add R500 for every time someone says premium, gamer, or whatever the coolest new buzzword is.

    • Mossel

      I wish I could say that’s more than I spend on petrol every month…

  • MakeItLegal

    mmm want want

    chomp chomp

    edit , r2500 ? thats half the price of a brand new CPU (i7)

  • FSR

    A membrane keyboard for R2500… lol, no thanks.

    • Charl van der Merwe

      guys come on, this version is R1000 the one with the LCD is R2500

  • Rags

    No mechanical switches? Can buy a Logitech cherry brown with white backlit for R1k less. oO

    • Guest

      Speaking of mechanical keyboards, would you or anyone else happen to have any suggestions for a cheap-ish mechanical keyboard I can buy?

      Cheap because I want it for work and would like to leave it at the office.

      Don’t need any of the bells and whistles like fancy macros or backlighting and such.
      Just a good, reliable mechanical keyboard.

      TIA.

      • Rags

        There are not really ‘cheap’ mechanical keyboards. CoolerMaster has standard keyboard with various types of mechanical switches at around ~R1k. And steelseries one for under a grand too: http://www.wootware.co.za/steelseries-6gv2-gaming-keyboard.html
        But for work unless you are used to those keyboard you may opt for a higher price and more ergonomically shaped keyboard with wrist support etc.

  • Xcalibersa

    like all Razor products, expensive crap

  • Viking Of Science
    • Johann Coetzee

      zboards are ultimate junk…. uncomfortable and desk-cloggers

  • Mossel

    “Slightly expensive”, My R80 Genius keyboard disagrees.

  • Sageville
  • Dylan Smtih

    your pricing is abit off? the DeathStalker ultimate is the pricing above. the standard one without the pointless screen is roughly R1000 +-

  • VampyreSquirrel

    People go on with “gaming keyboard!”… lol… pffffft… I’m using an R80 Logitech keyboard.

  • bethcwhitehorn

    Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go? to tech tab for work detail

    ?????? Jobs700.Com

    ============================

  • Garrett Miller

    There’s just nothing that will compare to my IBM Model M.

    No matter how much backlighting and other fanciness is on the Deathstalker, there will be nothing that will make me want to use a rubber dome or those new mechanical keyboards.