Just like most manufactures, Razer has continued to evolve their software over the years. With their company getting larger and larger that software evolvement has accelerated. They have expanded with their own voice communication software for example, they also went through and revamped their peripheral software. With the new software came a few “quirks” that some people have complained about considerably online and I have mentioned in previous reviews as well. For the Blackwidow we have the same Synapse 2.0 software as before so when I installed it I was quickly greeted with the two issues that have been a sticking point.
After installing the software you will have to download another update, after that you will have to reboot your PC in order to be able to use it. As someone who doesn’t reboot my pc very often this was a little frustrating and obviously an inconvenience. Don’t plan on installing the software real quick with your game paused or anything like that. The other issue is once you have everything up to date you have to register and sign in with an account in order to be able to use the program. The reason for this is because your settings are stored on the cloud. It would be nice if they offered the option to just skip the sign-in and loose the cloud function for people who are bothered by it.
Moving beyond those issues and onto the actual software, the first page you land on has a large photo of the Blackwidow on it. Down on the bottom of the software there is a second photo, when running more than one rwazer device you will see each here, allowing you to tweak and tune each in one program. Back on the large image each key on the keyboard can be clicked bringing up the key assignment menu. Here we can rebind each key to a whole list of ability’s from mouse functions, macro’s, launching programs or shortcuts, as well as multimedia functions. Unlike some of the competition, you aren’t limited to just the keyboards 5 macro keys. Here we can program any key at all to do whatever you need it too. For example, you could reprogram the entire number pad with all of your additional macros.
On the lighting tab, you have only a few options. You can set the entire keyboard to pulsate or if you would prefer a solid lighting, you can set the brightness. At the bottom, you also have the option to turn all of the keyboards backlighting off whenever your monitors turn off. This is perfect if you have your PC in a bedroom or any other room that light pollution could be distracting.
I mentioned the gaming mode function on the keyboard itself earlier, on our third tab we can actually configure what this button does. Here you can turn gaming mode on and off. Additionally you can select what keys you would like for that mode to turn off. Most only turn off the windows key but Razer slipped in the option to turn off Alt-F4 to keep you from force closing your game and also the Alt-Tab option. It’s great they allow you to pick and choose as I wouldn’t mind the Alt-F4 and Windows key options but I Alt-Tab constantly when gaming.
The last page of the Synapse 2.0 software is dedicated completely too recording macros. Here you can setup your macros and add or remove delays as needed to get it to work perfectly for you.