Razer Huntsman mini gaming keyboard vs. Razer Cynosa Chroma gaming keyboard

Gaming & Accessories

Razer started in San Diego, California in 2005 and focused on making the Boomslang gaming mouse. Since then, the company has branched out to manufacture high-quality gaming peripherals like keyboards, headphones and laptops.

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Are Razer Huntsman mini gaming keyboards or Razer Cynosa Chroma gaming keyboards best? 

Razer has been producing gaming peripherals for a long time and has become one of the leading brands among casual and professional players alike. The company is best known for its gaming keyboards, headphones, and products that use brightly colored lights.

When you think of a gaming keyboard, you probably conjure images of big, fully-featured boards with a lot of buttons, switches, and functions. That’s not incorrect, but a gaming keyboard doesn’t need to be large. Or have hundreds of keys. If function over form is important, you could get more enjoyment from a much smaller keyboard.

Razer Huntsman mini gaming keyboard

Razer Huntsman mini gaming keyboard

The Huntsman mini from Razer is one of the smallest gaming keyboards that you’ll find. But just because it has a diminutive stature on a desk, it doesn’t mean that it lacks functions or reduces your ability to take down enemies. It’s available at Amazon.

Razer Huntsman mini gaming keyboard pros

What makes this keyboard a mini, is that it has the bare minimum keys that you might need when gaming. It doesn’t have a Numpad or function keys, and the bezel around the keyboard layout is incredibly tight. If you require those keys, they are accessible through secondary functions and shortcuts. In keyboard terminology, it’s what they call a 60%-keyboard, as it is only 60% the size of a full-sized one. 

But power comes in small packages, as the Huntsman mini uses Razer optical switches for faster and lighter key presses. The optical switches also use fewer moving parts so they will last longer and require to be swapped out less frequently. The Huntsman mini is compatible with the Razer Clicky optical switches and the Razer Linear optical switches. 

Since it is a Razer keyboard, it naturally comes with RGB lighting as well. You can customize the five lighting zones on the board and per-key, and there are also several lighting presets you can choose from. 

The keyboard connects to your computer through a detachable USB-C cable, making it convenient to pack up or unpack. There is also a cable latch to ensure that the cable doesn’t accidentally come out in the middle of a game.

In terms of construction, the casing of the Huntsman mini is made from durable aluminum that will be able to withstand the effects of regular wear and tear. The mini is available in two colors, both of which have a matte finish. This reduces the appearance of fingerprints and it’s easy to clean.

Razer Huntsman mini gaming keyboard cons

The mini doesn’t have the dedicated function keys, but they can be accessed through different secondary combinations. That in itself isn’t a bad thing, but what most gamers won’t like is that it doesn’t have dedicated macro keys.

These keys are used to store complex combinations that would otherwise require nimble and dexterous finger movements. Without the macro keys, it could limit your key combinations and increase your frustration. But with that said, any key can be programmed to work as a macro key.

For comfort, the Huntsman mini offers very little. There is no wrist or palm rest, and since the bezel is rather close to the keys, it can be uncomfortable during long hours of gaming.

Razer Cynosa Chroma gaming keyboard

Razer Huntsman mini gaming keyboard

Razer has several gaming keyboards available in their entry-level category, and the Cynosa Chroma ranks rather high. It is a full keyboard, is compatible with Razer’s Synapse 3 software, and is made from durable materials. It’s available at Amazon.

Razer Cynosa Chroma gaming keyboard pros

The Cynosa Chroma is a wired keyboard with a full set of keys, which includes a function-key row at the top and a numpad on the right side of the board. Above the numpad is a row of media control buttons that allow you to change the volume, mute, play, or skip.

As with all Razer keyboards, it also has brightly colored per-key backlighting, powered by Razer’s Chroma RGB software. This means that you can change the color of selected zones or the lighting behind individual keys. It is also compatible with Chroma-integrated titles, changing the colors on the board to correspond to what’s happening in the game.

The keys themselves can be mapped to different commands through Razer Synapse 3. By creating different profiles, you can store your macro combinations to each one. This comes in handy, as the keyboard doesn’t have dedicated macro buttons.

On the underside of the keyboard, there are two grooves in different directions for cable routing. This is great, as it allows for better cable management and to make sure that the cables don’t get in the way when playing games.

Gaming shouldn’t be a messy hobby, but accidents do happen. That is why Razer also made the Cynosa Chroma durable and spill-resistant. It’s not waterproof, but will be able to withstand slight liquid spills, and is easily cleaned.

Razer Cynosa Chroma gaming keyboard cons

The keys on the Cynosa Chrome are traditional Rubber Dome membrane switches, meaning that you can’t swap them out for faster or more responsive switches. This is in contrast to optical or mechanical switches that allow for some customizability.

Other than key the membrane keys (which is great if you are into those), there isn’t a lot that’s wrong with it. It doesn’t come with a palm or wrist rest, so that can be a bit uncomfortable but if you don’t use one, then it won’t be missed. 

The power cable to the keyboard doesn’t detach either, but at least it is a very generous six feet in length. 

Should I get a Razer Huntsman mini or Razer Cynosa Chroma gaming keyboard?

Each gaming keyboard has its own merits and drawbacks, and it might just come down to what you prefer when deciding which one is best. Both make use of Razer’s fantastic RGB lighting system, and both have grooves for cable management.

But where the Cynosa Chroma beats the Huntsman mini is in the size. Nothing is better than the feeling of a full-size keyboard and having all the functions available at your fingertips. Sure, most of the functions can be programmed on the Huntsman mini, but when speed is of the essence, no gamer likes to fiddle or remember the combination.

It is good to keep in mind though, that the Huntsman mini is indeed an excellent keyboard. If you are in the market for a mini model or have the need for one, you definitely won’t regret the purchase.

Other Razer keyboard recommendations

Razer BlackWidow Chroma V2

Razer BlackWidow Chroma V2

One of Razer’s best-selling keyboards, the BlackWidow is a mechanical board with built-in RGB lighting which can be set to per-key. It has five dedicated macro keys on the left side of the casing and a full row of Function keys at the top. To charge additional USB devices, it has audio and USB pass-through. The plush wrist rest can be detached. It is available at Amazon.

Razer Huntsman Elite

Razer Huntsman Elite

If the mini keyboard isn’t your thing, then the full-size Huntsman Elite will be perfect for you. It is a hybrid keyboard, meaning that it falls in between a mechanical and membrane device. It still has a membrane dome switch but also the clear audible click of a mechanical keyboard. It is also capable of RGB lighting that can be customized any way you like it. It comes with a wrist rest which is detachable and programmable macro keys. It is available at Amazon.

Razer DeathStalker Gaming Keyboard

Razer DeathStalker Gaming Keyboard

The DeathStalker is like the name implies: quiet, low-profile and deadly. It uses slim chiclet keycaps for no-noise typing or gaming. The membrane keys are also backlit in the signature Razer green color and are fully programmable with on the fly macro recording. It comes with a fixed wrist rest, dedicated gaming mode, full row of Function keys and a numeric pad. It is available at Amazon.

 

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Logan DeLoye writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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