A few years ago, I bought my first mechanical keyboard and I instantly became one of those assholes that hate membrane keyboards. The feel of a mechanical keyboard and, more-so, the responsiveness and precision of a mechanical is very difficult to match. I was eager to see what the hybrid Razer Ornata had to offer.
The overall design matches Razer’s overall look and feel; sleek black lines, the mat finish keeps the keyboard looking like any other Razer peripherals you might already have. There is a magnetic snap on palm rest which adds to the comfort level this keyboard offers. It has the latest and greatest chroma features including the new “fireplace” effect which, as someone who doesn’t care much for the chroma features, even captivated me for a while.
— Cthulouw (@ThatsPrettyLouw) June 23, 2017
Unfortunately for me the “mechanical” portion of the keyboard simply didn’t measure up, it felt like it only had the noise of the mechanical keyboard I was used to and none of the benefits. The actuation points were definitely not as precise as the 50g the Widow offers. We tested up to 6 simultaneous key presses but it does offer the usual anti-ghosting technology for up to 10 (what 10 keys do you need to press at the same time, honestly).
What I would expect from a hybrid board should offset the negatives of a mechanical keyboard, mainly the sound and the resistance it offers (personally I like the resistance) while maintaining most of the advantages, mainly the precision, which I can’t rightly say this board does.
On the plus side, it does offer the quality you can expect from other Razer products, all the great gimmicks of the chroma features as well as the “on the fly” macro recording, so if you want something closer to a mechanical keyboard without dropping the serious cash that normally means, then the Ornata might be for you.
I got Cthulouw to play a little with it as well so she could give the opinion of a “membrane” lover.
As someone that prefers the feel of a membrane keyboard, what with its pillow-y button presses, I was pleasantly surprised to find out that Razer had decided to make a “Mecha-Membrane” keyboard. I got rather excited when I was allowed to play around with it for a bit.
I was captivated by the rather simple, yet sleek and shiny design of the Razer Ornata Chroma. I was mesmerized by the beautiful dancing lights that accompany all Chroma products, but because this was a membrane hybrid; they seemed to me to be flashing even brighter. The buttons ached to be caressed… so I did.
Man, was that anti-climactic. Down the button went, and *click*, up it sprung. It was as if a membrane keyboard had its keys frozen, or if a mechanical switch had gone slightly limp. Only slightly. It had sparse amounts of the membrane feeling, and all the clicks of a mechanical.
Razer products are highly praised, and a lot of the time they should be. But there are times, like with their Kraken headphones, where they missed the mark ever so slightly and it ends up spoiling the whole thing. So, the Ornata Chroma might be great to look at, but its keys lean far more towards mechanical than a membrane fan like myself would want, and lacks the precision a mechanical fan needs.
The only thing I truly loved about the Ornata Chroma, apart from its fire themed light setting, was the ergonomic wrist rest you get along with it. If they could just mass produce that and sell it individually, I’d be a very happy gamer.