The Razer Cynosa Chroma is a premium gaming keyboard with 16.8 million colors and customizable backlighting. It’s compatible with PC, PS4, Xbox One, and macOS/Linux but can be used on mobile devices if you use the USB-C to Micro-USB cable. The only drawback of this beautiful piece of hardware? It retails for USD 450!

The Razer Cynosa Chroma is an entry-level keyboard with some nice gaming-oriented features but, for the most part, falls short in terms of performance.

We’d previously put several of Razer’s premium-grade keyboards and mice through their paces, so we figured it was about time we did the same with their less-priced products. With that in mind, today, we’ll be looking at the Razer Cynosa Chroma, a colorful, RGB-enhanced budget gaming keyboard that competes against a slew of similarly priced competitors.

The Cynosa is a keyboard with various excellent RGB choices, good build quality, and altogether programmable keys that hit the stores. However, since it is a low-cost option, the features are restricted. For example, mechanical switches aren’t included, and there are no specific media keys. So it’ll be fascinating to see how this compares against the K55 from Corsair, the Alloy Core RGB from HyperX, and the Redragon K552 from Redragon.

So, with that in mind, let’s not waste any more time and get right to work.

Pros

  • Nice Aesthetics – A decent looking design considering the price point
  • Hotkeys  – Users can adjust media settings via hotkeys found on the F-buttons
  • Decent value for money – A keyboard that showcases a good deal for cash if you like RGB
  • Anti-ghost and Key Rollover – Great for games that require several key bind or “button bashing.”

Cons

  • Build Quality – Plastic construction that does feel a little flimsy
  • Limited Features –Doesn’t’ really offer many premium features

DSC03276

Keyboard Size & Weight

  • 950g in weight
  • Size: Extra Large
  • 463mm/18.22 inches in length
  • 154mm/6.06 inches in width
  • 31mm/1.22 inch in height

Tech Support for Keyboards

  • Membrane Rubber Domes Membrane Rubber Domes Membrane Rubber Domes Membrane Rubber Domes Membrane
  • Windows 7, 8, and 10 are supported.
  • No media keys
  • RGB stands for “full RGB.”
  • No passthrough
  • Wired connection
  • 2m cable length

What’s Included in the Box?

DSC03265

The Cynosa, like other Razer products, has a green-on-black color scheme. The Cynosa Chroma is shown in full RGB mode on the front of the box, which is relatively conventional. More information about the keyboard is available on the rear, including the size and weight and some extra information on the features.

We find the following items inside:

  • Cynosa Chroma Keyboard by Razer
  • Razer User Guide
  • Notes of Welcome

Design

DSC03275

Compared to other models in the Razer keyboard family, the Cynosa doesn’t offer much innovation. However, this is a keyboard that is touted for its RGB capabilities. So it wasn’t the end of the world when Razer revealed this device with essentially no physical design — as long as the RGB could live up to the moniker.

With that in mind, the Cynosa Chroma has an all-black color scheme and, for the most part, a boxy form. The keyboard’s primary body is completely made of plastic (as one would anticipate at this price point) and has been given a modest matte roughness for added grip when gaming and typing. Apart from the little RGB logo at the bottom of the keyboard, the Cynosa has been further stripped back and now lacks all evidence of Razer branding.

DSC03278

The Razer Cynosa’s underbelly has very little in the way of design characteristics as well. For example, there are no cable routing or USB/Audio passthrough choices. However, it comes with four rubber pads to assist hold the keyboard on most surfaces, as well as two pop-out feet to modify the keyboard’s height. The feet offer two height adjustments, which elevate the back of the keyboard more than the HyperX Alloy Core RGB. The cable is 2 meters long and seems quite sturdy and non-abrasive, despite not being braided.

Overall, the design is straightforward, and there isn’t much to say about it — until you turn on the RGB. Now, we’ll look over the RGB in more depth later, but it’s the keyboard’s saving grace from a design standpoint. The practically limitless customization possibilities contrast beautifully with the black keycaps to produce a pleasing gaming appearance. We won’t go into much more depth for the time being, but know that the RGB on the Cynosa Chroma is among the finest among cheap keyboards.

DSC03277

Features

Razer has always been known for cramming as many functions as possible into its peripherals, whether it’s a high-end keyboard or a cheap mouse. Thankfully, the Cynosa Chroma has adopted the same philosophy. So we were pretty interested to see what this keyboard brought to the table – apart from the RGB – since it is a keyboard that costs around $50.

So, let’s get right to work.

Switches

Let’s start with the most crucial part of any keyboard in gameplay — the switches. Unfortunately, the Razer Cynosa does not have mechanical switches. Instead, users will be greeted with the silent and squishy feel of the membrane rubber dome switch on the Cynosa Chroma. Oh, the delight. We’ll take Razer’s claim that its membrane switches are “soft cushioned keys with gaming-grade performance” with a grain of salt.

Cynosa’s switches are very standard for a device at this pricing range. They’re membrane switches, and they feel spongey for the most part, like most switches of this kind. However, they do have a slight tactile edge, which I like. When comparing them, there wasn’t much of a difference between the Cynosa switches and the HyperX Alloy Core RGB switches. If I had to criticize anything, the Razer had a little higher actuation point. However, in terms of design and feel, they were very generic.

On a more positive side, the Cynosa features a membrane design that provides spill protection. The Razer’s survivability limit is not listed on their product website, unlike the HyperX Alloy Core, which can successfully tolerate 120ml of spilled liquid. I tried sprinkling some water on the keyboard, and it appeared to operate well after that. So, yes, it’s waterproof.

RGB Lighting

RGB (RGB) Lighting is an area Razer has exploited over the last couple of years, offering some of the best RGB lit peripherals the market offers. So, with that in mind, we naturally expect big things from a keyboard that has been named after its proprietary RGB technology. Thankfully, we were not disappointed.

Even though it’s a cheap keyboard, the Cynosa has striking RGB that exceeds anything else in its price range. Most keyboards in this price range include some RGB zones, generally 5-8, that run vertically or horizontally across the board. On the Cynosa, however, this is not the case. The Chroma RGB Studio allows you to customize each key. The Cynosa comes with a plethora of presets to pick from and an almost endless amount of RGB customization (using 6.8 million colors). Whether you want a simple color cycle or something more complex like the ripple effect, you’ll be delighted to know that the RGB on this keyboard has it all.

DSC03274

Hot Keys

Unfortunately, no media keys are included with this keyboard. But then, neither does the more costly BlackWidow, which excels in almost every way – so that’s not surprising. It does, however, come with conveniently positioned hotkeys, which make the Cynosa a lot more flexible. Hotkeys are similar to media keys, except they operate only when a function button is pressed. So, for example, the FN button is located to the right of the spacebar, and when pushed, it illuminates all of the necessary media keys while darkening all other keys. It’s a beautiful feature, and although they aren’t actual media keys, they’re the next best thing.

Anti-Ghosting & Key Rollover

The Cynosa, like many current keyboards, has anti-ghosting and critical rollover, which is helpful in specific gaming settings. For example, when numerous keys on the keyboard are pushed simultaneously, the unregistered keypresses are known as keyboard ghosting. Keyboard makers include key rollover technology onto their boards to prevent this. This technique enables the keyboard to read and record every pushed key, regardless of how many are hit simultaneously.

It’s worth noting that crucial rollover is available in various configurations, ranging from 2-key to every key. Razer has included a 10-key rollover on this board, which means ten keys may be pushed at the same time, and all will register. So, for the vast majority of game situations, this is more than adequate.

Software Package for Synapse III

Finally, there’s the Synapse III software application. Despite the fact that this is a software package that can be used with other Razer peripherals, it’s still worth noting because of the variety and customization it provides to this keyboard. In the previous several years, Synapse has gone a long way. Every time we evaluate the program, it seems to improve. Finally, this time, it nearly seems user-friendly!

For the most part, consumers utilize Synapse III to put up their RGB setups. It does, however, provide a lot more. Users will be able to build individual profiles for specific circumstances – like video editing or gaming – program every button on their keyboard to their particular requirements, and connect all of their peripherals – yes, for RGB reasons – within Synapse.

One of the best features of the Cynosa is that Razer enables users to remap every key on the board. As a result, players have a lot more options when it comes to game situations. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to store profiles for on-the-fly use since this keyboard doesn’t have onboard memory.

DSC03279

Results from the Field

Finally, we get to the most crucial review stage: hands-on testing. In this part, we’ll put the Razer Cynosa through its paces to evaluate how it performs in terms of build quality and a variety of gaming situations.

So, let’s get right to work.

I’m the kind of guy that enjoys competitive esports games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. As a result, when I choose a peripheral, it must be of the best quality, with exceptional responsiveness, accuracy, build quality, and overall feel. So, I was disappointed when I switched from my Ducky Miya Sakura to the Razer Cynosa Chroma (a keyboard designed for gamers who choose RGB above accuracy). For the most part, though, I will be holding a purely neutral judgment for this review.

I began by playing CS: GO, my favorite fast-paced first-person shooter. It didn’t take me long to realize that these switches had nothing to do with mechanical controls. However, how did they do against other membrane-style keyboards with comparable prices? I have to reaffirm what I mentioned previously in the article: the switches don’t feel great. They’re exceedingly mushy and don’t have much of a tactile reaction. Furthermore, the actuation pressure necessary to trigger each keypress is excessive, and the responsiveness is lacking. I played on this piano for several days, and my disillusionment deepened with each passing day. Annoying.

Shortly after CS: GO, we put the Cynosa through its paces in a few MMO games. Now, gamers prefer MMO-style games and opt for keyboards with macro keys, such as the Corsair K55. Unfortunately, this keyboard does not have that feature, so we were off to a bad start. I played World of Warcraft for a time and wasn’t entirely satisfied with how the board felt. Fortunately, Razer included their new HyperShift feature on this keyboard, enabling users to double the number of usable keys on their board. As a result, that one gets a huge thumbs up.

Aside from gaming, I spent some time exploring the almost limitless array of RGB colors available on this keyboard. As a result, I can see why Cynosa was given the Chroma moniker.

I began by trying out a few of the settings. I was pleasantly pleased by the outcomes. You’ll have access to various options, including color cycles and subtle gradient changes, as well as starlight and ripple effects — reactive RGB that sends a shockwave through your keyboard with each keypress. I dipped my toe into the Chrome Studio water after trying the presets to see what it offers. The quick answer is that there is a lot.

Within the Chroma studio package, users will be able to modify practically every key on their board. Each part of the keyboard is divided into a grid, with each piece housing a separate key. Choose the key you wish to alter and utilize the choices in the sidebar to make your selection. That’s fantastic.

Overall, the performance testing of this keyboard left me a bit perplexed as to how I felt about it. On the one hand, it’s not ideal for games that need quick reactions or complex keybindings. On the other hand, it is relatively quiet and boasts one of the most excellent RGB outputs of any keyboard in this price range.

DSC03276

Conclusion

With that, we’ve finally concluded this essay. This is where we provide our final thoughts on the Razer Cynosa while also addressing some of the significant concerns that may have arisen – is it worth buying?

In the end, the Razer Cynosa Chroma is a bare-bones keyboard that handles the basics well. However, it has superb RGB, several valuable features oriented toward gamers, and a pleasing design for the most part.

However, this is a gaming keyboard, and I believe it falls short in that regard. By any measure, the membrane switches aren’t the finest, and the absence of macro keys means it falls short in the MMO market.

Compared to other keyboards of comparable price, I believe this is a wonderful keyboard for first-time gamers. It comes in at a fairly reasonable price while providing great looks and exciting functions. However, if responsiveness, accuracy, and build quality are more important to you, I’d suggest looking at something a bit more high-end.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Cynosa Chroma worth it?

A: Yes, the Cynosa Chroma is worth it. This is your best bet if you want to get started in VR games and are looking for a headset that will not break the bank.

Is Razer Cynosa any good?

A: Razer Cynosa is an excellent mouse that works well on various surfaces. It has a great sensor, and it feels good in your hand.

Is the Razer Cynosa Chroma durable?

A: The Razer Cynosa Chroma is a durable gaming mouse and will last for many years.

Related Tags

  • is the razer cynosa chroma hot swappable
  • razer cynosa chroma v2 review
  • razer cynosa chroma v1
  • razer cyanosis chroma key switches
  • razer cynosa lite
You May Also Like

11 Best Wireless Routers In 2022

The days of using a wired connection are long gone to connect…

Moleskine Soft Dot Grid Notebook Review

The Moleskine Soft Dot Grid Notebook is a classic, flexible and timeless…

The Best Motherboards For AMD Ryzen 7 2700X Processors

With the release of AMD’s Ryzen 7 2700X processor, there are several…

Top 15 Best Piano Keyboards in 2022

The piano keyboard is essential for creating music that we all know…