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Are you keyboard customization-curious? Razer has just the thing for you

Razer just launched its first hot-swappable mechanical gaming keyboard. Here's what you need to know.
Written by Artie Beaty, Contributing Writer

While Razer has become a prominent name in the gaming industry for its keyboards, it hasn't made too much noise when it comes to the world of keyboard customization – until now.

Judging by just the name, it might seem like the BlackWidow V4 75% keyboard, released Thursday, is just a smaller version of the V4 Pro. But it's actually a whole lot more.

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For the first time ever, Razer is offering a mechanical keyboard that allows for full customization while still keeping a focus on gaming performance. It allows for hot-swap PCB, meaning users can switch out the tactile switches for another set without soldering, and most mechanical switches are supported, either 3-pin or 5-pin configuration.

Razer keyboard switches

Users who want to swap out the standard plate-mounted stabilizers for third-party ones are in luck, Razer says, as the V4's PCB has the screw holes to support those. And like the rest of Razer's BlackWidow keyboards, the V4 supports per-key lighting with underglow. 

If you're not familiar with the world of keyboard customization, it's become popular in recent years with computer enthusiasts and gamers looking for something a little different. 

Instead of settling for the standard keyboard, customization lets users not only set their own layout, but even change the keys to have a different feel, look, and sound. Custom keyboards are generally regarded as being more durable too, plus they offer improved gaming and typing performance. 

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Unfortunately, Razer's newest keyboard stops just short of being 100% customizable, as the warranty is voided if the case is opened up. But given that Razer hasn't really approached this market before, it seems like a nice middle ground for people who want to dabble in making their keyboard their own or who are just looking for a more premium keyboard than Razer usually offers. 

Fair warning: Keyboard customization can quickly become an expensive hobby.

Two colors of the BlackWidow V4 75% are available. There's the base model in black, which is available now from Amazon, MicroCenter, and Razer's site, and the $200 "White Edition" that will be available in September.

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