Razer’s low-profile DeathStalker keyboard returns with mechanical switches

Razer has announced a trio of new mechanical keyboards today that revives its decade-old DeathStalker range. Unlike the original DeathStalker models, which had laptop-style membrane switches, the new DeathStalker V2, V2 Pro, and V2 Pro Tenkeyless feature low-profile optical mechanical switches, which should be longer lasting, feel more tactile, and respond quicker than the old model. You can read my colleague Alice Newcome-Beill’s in-depth, hands-on review of the DeathStalker V2 Pro right here, or read on for a summary of the whole range.

The wireless, full-size DeathStalker V2 Pro is available today for $249.99, while the two other models will follow in the third quarter of this year. The DeathStalker V2 Pro Tenkeyless maintains the wireless operation of the standard V2 Pro but drops the numpad for a more compact form factor and is also more affordable at $219.99. There’s also a wired model, the DeathStalker V2, which has a full-size layout and will cost $199.99.

The three keyboards come with a choice of either Razer’s clicky or linear low-profile switches, which are both rated for up to 70 million key presses (a little less than the 100 million Cherry rates its low-profile linear switch for). Both are optical, which in theory helps with input latency by reducing the so-called “debounce delay” of traditional mechanical switches.

For the wireless models, there’s a choice of connecting via Bluetooth or otherwise via an included 2.4GHz USB dongle. With Bluetooth, there’s the option of saving connections to up to three devices, but the HyperSpeed dongle offers lower latency. (Razer advertises that it offers a polling rate of up to 1,000Hz, resulting in less than 1ms of latency.) For reference, Corsair’s competing Slipstream dongle offers a wireless polling rate of 2,000Hz, which is theoretically more responsive. Battery life is rated at up to 40 hours on the V2 Pro or 50 hours on the V2 Pro TKL.

Between Razer’s new keyboards and Logitech’s recent MX Mechanical, it feels like low-profile mechanical keyboards are experiencing a growth spurt in popularity, offering the slim form factor of traditional laptop-style keyboards alongside the tactility and durability of mechanical keyboards. For more details on the V2 Pro, check out Alice’s full review.