Features & Specifications
Any gamer that has seen or used Razer’s Tarantula gaming keyboard will recognize the Razer pro|type keyboard at a glance as a white version of the Tarantula. The two keyboards are virtually identical save for the color, the built-in iPod dock on the Razer pro|type keyboard and the fact that the pro|type has only a line out rather than a jack for headphones and mic like the Tarantula does along with the dual USB ports.
Functionality wise the ability to make single key stroke macros for any application makes the Razer pro|type keyboard very functional. If you want to automate complex macros in Photoshop for instance you can bind everything to one single key via the Razer drivers and save the bound macros to one of ten different profiles which means you can store a total of 50 macros to the Razer pro|type keyboard. The really cool part is that you can set the Razer pro|type keyboard up to automatically start the program up that each of your profiles goes with.
With the iPod dock built in the Razer pro|type keyboard requires two USB connections to your computer. One connects the keyboard itself to your machine while the other connects the iPod dock. The dock is able to charge and sync your iPod and the dock fits most all dockable iPod around from the Nano to the iPod Video. The catch is that you have to order blanks for iPods other than the Video. My review unit didn’t come with the blanks for my iPod Nano, but I was still able to dock it with no issues. The actual charging prong holds the Nano tightly enough that it doesn’t come loose when not using the dock adapter made for it specifically.
One of the things I liked so much about the Tarantula was that I could remove any key on the keyboard and reprogram it via the Razer software. You can’t do that with the Razer pro|type keyboard, the only programmable keys here are the ten macro keys arrayed five on each side of the keyboard.
One of the things that surprised me most with the Razer Tarantula was the typing feel. Often purpose built gaming peripherals forgo all things in pursuit of gaming perfection, yet Razer didn’t do that. The typing feel on the Tarantula and the Razer pro|type keyboard are absolutely top notch. The keys have a very tight and tactile feel to them that touch typists will love, yet they are not so clicky sounding as some keyboards out there which is a big plus for many users who grow tired of loud overly clicky keys quickly.
If you already own an iPod dock you aren’t really gaining anything with the Razer pro|type keyboard other than the ability to consolidate your keyboard and iPod dock into one. That said if your desk is as crowded as mine that is a huge selling point. I wish that the Razer pro|type keyboard had integrated media card readers as well, and then I could have ditched another box lying on my desk.
The MSRP for the Razer pro|type keyboard is $129, up from the $99 that its twin the Tarantula goes for. I suspect the additional $30 probably goes towards licensing fees to Apple to use the iPod name and tech. Those in the market for a new keyboard with great functionality, good looks and great typing feel the Razer pro|type keyboard has all three in spades.
If you are looking for a keyboard and typing feel is one of the most important things you are looking for, it is hard to beat the Razer pro|type keyboard. In addition to great typing feel the pro|type has programmable macros and a built-in iPod dock to go along with its good looks. As far as office use keyboards go, the Razer pro|type keyboard is definitely at the top of the class.
Leading our review center, Shane McGlaun (Google) knows technology inside out. His extensive experience in testing computer hardware and consumer electronics enable him to effectively qualify new products and trends. If you want us review your product, please contact Shane.
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