If you thought the original Razer Huntsman was fast, you’ll be shocked at the new one Hunter V2 and V2 keyless. Both mechanical keyboards feature an 8,000Hz polling rate, eight times that of the original Huntsman, for an almost lag-free playing experience.
The Razer Huntsman V2 and stripped-down Tenkeyless Huntsman V2 (which does away with the numeric keypad, media controls, and volume wheel) use optical IR switches to detect key presses. These optical switches are a far cry from the bouncy physical switches found in most mechanical keyboards, but they’re comfortable to use and offer a ridiculously fast response time. (Most gaming keyboards have a poll rate of 500 to 1000 Hz. Poll rate describes how many times a keyboard reports its status to your computer every second, by the way.)
Will a 8,000Hz polling rate make a real difference when playing games? Generally speaking, the answer is ‘yes’, although there are a lot of factors at play here. If you are using a low refresh rate display, for example, input lag can be very difficult to perceive. The single-core performance of your processor can also limit the benefits of a low-latency keyboard, and of course some people just can’t tell the difference between 1ms and 30ms of input lag.
On the other hand, polling rate and other technical factors aren’t the only things that make a keyboard faster. The Huntsman V2’s optical IR design doesn’t need to check when a key is pressed, so it eliminates the millisecond debounce delay found in most mechanical keyboards. In addition, optical switches could mitigate the perceived Delay Caused by Key Movement: The distance a key must travel before a keystroke is recorded. (Razer hasn’t discussed the key journey of its Huntsman V2 line, so take what I’m saying with a grain of salt.)
Other enhancements to the V2 series keyboards include new double-tap PBT keys, which are extremely durable and (more importantly) have transparent captions. RGB light shines through these keys, illuminating every character on the keyboard with impressive clarity and crispness.
Razer is now selling the Hunter V2 and V2 Tenkeyless for $ 200 and $ 160, respectfully. Both keypads are available with click or silent switches. By the way, these aren’t the first keyboards to carry a “V2” moniker – Razer also sells a Huntsman V2 analog keyboard which replicates the adjustable input of console controller joysticks or triggers.