Razer launches a shorter, faster version of its Huntsman Elite keyboard

(Image credit: Razer)

Razer is expanding its keyboard lineup with another Huntsman model that is different from previous versions in a few ways. The primary difference between the new Huntsman Elite Tournament Edition and other Huntsman keyboards is it trades the dedicated number pad for a compact design. That is not the only change, though.

The TE model also debuts new "linear optical switch" with a faster actuation. Interestingly, Razer appears to be moving on from calling these opto-mechanical switches, though the new version functions the same way—an infra-red light beam detects when a key is pressed.

That is known as the actuation point, and for the TE model, it reduced the distance from 1.5mm to 1mm. Razer points out this is twice as fast as traditional linear switches. That's true if comparing to ones like the Cherry MX Red and Black, but not Cherry MX Speed switches, which have an actuation point of 1.2mm. Razer's are still faster, though (see our guide to mechanical keyboard switches for more info on the various types and characteristics).

Razer said it manufactured its own proprietary tooling to produce sturdy doubleshot PBT keycaps for the TE model.

"Designed to withstand intense training and competitive use, these keycaps are able to resist wear and tear and retain their texture, keeping the Huntsman Tournament Edition looking brand new even through extended use," Razer says.

The features are otherwise similar to the regular Huntsman Elite, which we named one of the best gaming keyboards. It has a detachable USB-C cable, hybrid onboard storage for saving up to five profiles, and of course RGB lighting.

We have not spent any hands-on time with the new model, so we can't say how the new switch compares to its predecessor. For anyone who wants to take a chance on the new TE model anyway, it's available now for $129.99.

Paul Lilly

Paul has been playing PC games and raking his knuckles on computer hardware since the Commodore 64. He does not have any tattoos, but thinks it would be cool to get one that reads LOAD"*",8,1. In his off time, he rides motorcycles and wrestles alligators (only one of those is true).