April 2013 Anthony Garland
Fond lovers of the Belkin Nostromo SpeedPad N52 – before Razer purchased and rebranded it – will be glad to know that Razer has finally created a worthy successor to the original Nostromo. Much like its predecessors, the all new Razer Orbweaver Stealth is a combination 20 key gaming keypad with a programmable eight-way thumb-pad. The reason these devices have achieved a cult like following is their customizability and the new Orbweaver is no exception. The keypad features adjustable thumb, palm and wrist rests for customizable ergonomics and all 20 keys –as well as the 8 way thumb-pad are fully mappable to any macro of any length you can create via the included Synapse 2.0 software. Laslty, the new Orbweaver Stealth also features 8 macro modes allowing for 224 possible combinations.
What makes the new Stealth different than the Nostromo is the mechanical key switches Razer has opted for. In this instance, Razer has opted for short throw mechanical keys which feature a featherlight 45 grams of actuation force and a mere 2mm throw distance. They are also silent any only feature tactile feedback so as to not annoy people around you. Taken as a whole, the Orbweaver Stealth on paper is a very nice gaming keypad.
While this Razer Store-exclusive model carries a price tag of $130, this is fairly reasonable for what it has to offer. If you have never used such a device, we would recommend a ‘try before you buy’ approach. These devices are not for everyone and not even all hardcore gaming enthusiasts like the feel and ergonomics of them. Also, while the keys are backlit, the color is not customizable so if you are not a fond lover of green this may annoy you.