There's no doubting that the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed is a piece of compact PC gaming class. It's a wonderfully compact 65% form factor gaming keyboard from one of the world's most premium and respected gaming brands. But is it right for you?
That's what this Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed review is designed help with - it's obviously one of the best gaming keyboards, but that doesn't mean it will be perfect for every PC gamer. I've been testing this keyboard out for a few weeks and this is what I think about it.
Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed review: price and release date
The Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed release date was May 25th, 2021. As such, the gaming keyboard is now available.
The Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed price at launch is £179.99 GBP / $179.99 USD / €189,99 MSRP / AU$329.95.
To see today's best deals on the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed check out the pricing table below.
Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed review: design and build quality
Take the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed out of its box and the first thing you'll notice is its compact form factor. Then the next thing you'll notice is the characteristic Razer design, with the board a chunky, dense thing full of sharp angles and matte black finish.
Indeed, despite its more compact size this gaming keyboard feels very planted on the desk, which was a SecretLab MAGNUS Metal Desk, and it radiates a feeling of robustness thanks to its aluminium chassis. This is no lightweight thing that will easily move about or get knocked out of position during intense gaming sessions.
Underneath the keyboard you get a pair of keyboard legs, which can be positioned in two different angles in terms of lean, as well as the recess for the keyboard's Wi-Fi connection dongle, which neatly can be carried around in the device (perfect for when travelling with the keyboard to gaming events).
Speaking of this dongle by the way, it is capable of acting as the wireless gateway for multiple Razer products, so if you own other new Razer wireless products such as the Razer DeathAdder V2 Pro, then they can both be piggybacked off the same dongle, thereby freeing up precious USB ports.
Of course, the major design note, though, is that this keyboard has a 65% form factor, which is very on-trend right now in terms of esports. This compact design sees Razer collapse the numpad and F-keys and hide their functionality behind other keys, with their activation triggered by pressing a "fn" function button first.
Despite this smaller form factor, direction keys are still present, though.
The only other design point of note is that this keyboard does not have a permanent wired connection. You can use it plugged in of course, but I guess if you buy this keyboard then you're going to want to make use of its wireless functionality, so you can hide its USB Type-C charging / power cable entirely if so desired.
Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed review: performance and features
And, speaking of wireless functionality, the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed delivers both 2.4GHz Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connections. These can be toggled between or off entirely with a small switch located on the back left of the board. Obviously, if gamers are gaming wirelessly then the 2.4GHz mode is preferable, but for when the keyboard is used for just regular computing, you can save some battery life by switching to Bluetooth.
In terms of performance I didn't register any difference between the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed running on cable and running wirelessly to be honest, but then again I am not an esports competitor where milliseconds can make the difference between pwnage and being pwned.
In terms of battery life the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed is good for up to 200 hours of charge on a single charge, but let me tell you, you will not get anywhere near that unless you use the keyboard without any lighting turned on and exclusively on Bluetooth mode.
Turn on the Razer's impressive Chroma RGB lighting system, which is controlled through the firm's Razer Synapse software suite, and you'll see that battery life fall rapidly. Over a couple of weeks I recharged the keyboard a couple of times, though, and I was using it for mixed use work and gaming in a medium strength capacity.
Multiple intense all-night gaming sessions with Chroma lighting modes like the impressive "Fire", which has the keys simulate the look of a burning fire with flickering flames, and you'll be recharging it more, though.
To be fair, charging back to full power only takes a few hours, though, and providing you've got you cable handy and connected to your PC then you're never going to be in a position where you don't have any juice.
In terms of the bread and butter key performance, the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed that I tested came with yellow Razer-brand mechanical switches, which are designed to have silent activation. This is the choice I would choose if I were buying one of these keyboards as I do a lot of typing. However, if you want the full clack then you can bag they keyboard with green switches instead.
Regardless of which switch type you plump for, the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed comes with an advanced selection of key features, including Doubleshot ABS Keycaps, N-key roll-over and fully programmable keys with on-the-fly macro recording. The keys are rated by Razer to have an 80 million keystroke lifespan - so, yeah, you'll not have to worry about that.
In terms of gaming performance, I used the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed to play Doom Eternal, Mass Effect: Andromeda, Cyberpunk 2077, Hitman 2 and Knights of the Old Republic, so a pretty decent spread of experiences. And I really liked what I experienced. After an hour or so of getting used to the different layout, I found using the keyboard to be a comfortable and precise experience, and didn't witness any lag at all.
Indeed, I think unless you're playing a very fast paced game like Doom Eternal, and you're doing so at a professional level, then you're probably not going to notice any difference between this keyboard wired or wireless, so I think that is something to applaud Razer for.
Is the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed a typer's dream? No, I wouldn't say so. But I think that is not really its raison d'être and really it is confined I think on that point due to its 65% form factor more than a lack of quality. Key presses are super precise and linear in actuation, and the silent switches make a great muffled thud, which is pleasing to the ear.
But, yeah, what I would say is that anyone thinking of ringing up this keyboard should consider exactly what they're going to use it for before pulling the trigger, and especially so considering its undoubtedly high price point.
Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed review: verdict
Overall, then it's easy to recommend the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed to gamers who are looking for these things: a compact design and split wired/wireless functionality.
If you want these things, due to space constraints or aesthetic choices, and have a premium budget to play with, then the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed is the new go-to premium 65% form factor choice.
It's a gaming keyboard, though, first and foremost - and for that it is excels. It's all round high quality of components also means its pleasant to type on, too, but really that is not its forte and I personally would prefer a full-size keyboard if I were to spend more time typing than gaming.
This is really just due to the limitations of the form factor in a pure typing environment. For gamers though who will be using this board to game just as much or likely even more than type, though, it's a great balance and clearly a quality fit.
Of course, there is no real hiding from that price, though, and being honest I feel you are very much paying a double premium here, firstly for the Razer brand, and then second for this top-of-the-pile more niche product.
Because, truth be told, you can get a quality, full-size gaming keyboard such as the Hyper X Alloy Elite 2, or even a rival small form factor keyboard such as the Logitech G915 TKL for much less than the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed.
Heck, Razer itself even makes multiple premium quality keyboards that offer truly top tier gaming performance, such as the Razer Huntsman Elite and Razer Blackwidow V3 Pro that can be picked up for same if not less money.
As such, I think only those gamers with very specific requirements will likely get maximum value out of the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed right now. If the keyboard sees the sorts of discounts Razer's other boards currently have soon, though, then that is a different story all together, and will make this keyboard easier to recommend to more gamers than it currently is.
Regardless, though, the quality of the Razer BlackWidow V3 Mini HyperSpeed is evident in every part of its package, so if you're in the market for a small form factor gaming keyboard you simply have to check this out before making a purchasing decision.
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