RGB light­ing for ev­ery­one

Razer Cynosa Chroma

GAX (Malaysia) - - TEST - By Koh Wanzi

When it comes to key­boards, Razer’s prob­a­bly bet­ter known for its Black­Wi­dow line of prod­ucts. The com­pany in­tro­duced some­thing new with the Or­nata and its mecha-mem­brane keys, but it hasn’t had some­thing to fill the gap where the en­try-level Ly­cosa once stood.

That changes with the re­lease of the Cynosa Chroma and Cynosa Chroma Pro key­boards, a pair of rel­a­tively af­ford­able key­boards that fea­ture Razer’s sig­na­ture Chroma light­ing. We’re re­view­ing the Cynosa Chroma here, and the only dif­fer­ence between the two is that the Pro ver­sion has an ad­di­tional 24 dis­crete light­ing zones around the edges of the key­board.

Un­for­tu­nately, there are no me­chan­i­cal keys to be had for its RM299 price tag, and Razer de­scribes the mem­brane keys as 'soft-cush­ioned gam­ing­grade' keys, which may or may not be a way of ex­cus­ing their mushy feel.

But for what it’s worth, the mem­brane keys on the Cynosa feel way bet­ter than those on the Ly­cosa, and while they can’t com­pare to ac­tual me­chan­i­cal keys, we can see less picky users be­ing okay with them. Razer also says the key­board is spill-re­sis­tant, and while we didn’t get to test this out, at least there’s the as­sur­ance that the Cynosa will live through small ac­ci­dents.

Still, Razer’s mak­ing up for the lack of me­chan­i­cal keys by in­clud­ing perkey RGB light­ing that can be cus­tom­ized us­ing its Sy­napse 3 soft­ware. Per-key cus­tomiza­tions are a rar­ity at this price point, so it’s nice to see Razer mak­ing the fea­ture more ac­ces­si­ble to the masses.

The sheer de­gree of cus­tomiza­tion avail­able has al­ways been Chroma’s strong­est suit, and the Cynosa doesn’t dis­ap­point with its wide ar­ray of op­tions.

Each key also has its own in­di­vid­ual LED, so the light­ing is bright and quite even. The key­board base plate has also been col­ored white, which helps with more even light dis­per­sion.

Other fea­tures of­fered in Sy­napse 3 in­clude a ded­i­cated Game Mode, which lets you dis­able pesky keys such as the Win­dows but­ton or the Alt+Tab com­bi­na­tion. This can be a life­saver when you’re fran­ti­cally but­ton-mash­ing in game, so the Cynosa has most of the ba­sics cov­ered.

Build qual­ity could use some im­prove­ment, as there’s some flex to the light­weight, all-plas­tic chas­sis, but we prob­a­bly can’t com­plain too much at this price.

CON­CLU­SION An af­ford­able and func­tional gam­ing key­board for those who really like RGB light­ing.

There are two sets of key­board feet for vary­ing an­gles of el­e­va­tion.

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