The people at Razer where nice enough to send me a Razer Lycosa to review. I loved the idea since the only real “gaming” keyboard I had ever used was the Logitech G15, so I was excited to see how these two amazing boards would compare against each other.
This keyboard is very stylish, featuring tactile, laptop-style keys with non-slip coating, and a mirror-finish black bezel around the keys. All topped off with a nice blue glow illuminating through each key. There are three lighted modes; on, off and “WASD” cluster lit. I just don’t get the point of only having just those keys lit. Sure, they are the most used in almost all games, but don’t you also need to see the other keys? Just a little needless I think.
The touch panel for the media keys and lighting control is a nice addition, makes it feel much more high tech. However, because of how the keyboard is lit, it is not very uniform. Some of the keys are not lit as brightly as others, and the top-half of the media touch panel is slightly dim and can be hard to make out the symbols in a low-light environment.
The packaging and workmanship on the keyboard is very nice. It doesn’t have that processed feel that other companies usually have. You can tell Razer takes pride in their work and it shows in the final product. As always, Razer’s software is some of the best out there when it comes to functionality and ease of use. You can bind any key on the keyboard to whatever key/action you wish. The only down-side to this is that the Lycosa does not have dedicated keys for binds, so every key that you bind is taking the place of a standard keyboard key. There are some cases, for example, the F-keys, where this is not a big problem, but it would be nice to have keys so that you do not have to sacrifice functionality to create a bind.
The Lycosa is very well thought out as a gamer’s keyboard. It is has media controls, back-lit keys, non-slip coatings, and much more. Yet another thing it can add to it’s collection of features is extra ports. Lots of new gaming keyboards offer this, but the Lycosa has a full speed USB 2.0 port, where as most keyboards have just a USB 1.1 port. It also has ports for both input and output audio. Great features, even if it does make connecting the keyboard to your computer a bit more confusing with the extra cables you must plug in, but they are optional. If you simply don’t want the extra ports, don’t plug the extra cables in.
So, in finishing, it’s a great keyboard, for gaming or otherwise. It’s comfortable and very functional. For me though, the G15 is a much better choice. Partly because it actually has keys devoted to being bound to whatever you wish, without taking the function away from any regular keys. But because I’ve found myself relying on the LCD so much, it has made the G15 a must-have for me. But, if I had a second monitor, I believe that the Lycosa could possibly be my choice.