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Razer's gaming keyboards now sport a more pared-down design

The BlackWidow X line is $10 cheaper than the original and even more robust.

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Razer debuted an expansion to its popular line of BlackWidow gaming keyboards, dubbed the BlackWidow X. These are nearly identical to the original BWs, save that they've been stripped of their plastic cover plates -- leaving the milled aluminum frame exposed -- and they incorporate a new style of switch that has been developed in-house, rather than the Cherry brand switches the original line employs.

Both of these revisions mark significant improvements over the predecessors. The stripped down aesthetic of the BWX no only partially exposes the lower sections of the keys (which makes the Chroma lighting system underneath really pop), it also shaves $10 off the price of each keyboard. So while the BlackWidow Chroma will set you back $170, the corresponding BlackWidow X will cost $160. The same applies to the BWX Tournament edition ($130 for Chroma capabilities, $70 without) and the BWX Ultimate ($100) -- they're all $10 less than their original BlackWidow counterparts. All of these come with a 2-year warranty.

What's more, Razer has transitioned to a new kind of switch -- you know, the actual computery bits that activate a key when you press it. Yes, "computery bits" is the technical term for it. These new Razer Mechanical Switches are rated for 80 million clicks -- that's 4-5 year under normal use, 2-3 years if you're gaming with it regularly -- 20 million more clicks than the originals.

Now, this might be a bit overkill for some folks. That's why Razer isn't doing away with those Cherry MX blue switches altogether. Instead, the the company is building them into a select series of keyboards that are even less expensive than the BWX line, starting at just $60. Head over to the Razer store for complete listings and price points.

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