If you fancy the convenience and simplicity of a console but crave the precision and speed of a mouse and keyboard, then the Razer Turret for Xbox One could be a worthy addition to your gaming setup. Featuring a sleek aesthetic, ergonomic design, and specs that rival Razer’s own PC keyboards, it looks just about as good as it sounds on paper. The question is, does it deliver the goods?
It does. Mostly.
The Razer Turret not only looks good but it performs well, and it comes with everything you need to make it an attractive choice for both console gaming on the Xbox One and Windows PC. However, there are a few limitations that stand in the way of it truly being the Xbox One gamer’s quintessential gaming keyboard and mouse.
In the box, you’ll find the wireless keyboard, wireless mouse, single unified USB wireless dongle, keyboard to mouse Micro-USB charging cable, keyboard to Xbox One/PC power adapter cable, power adapter, and product information guide.
All black and fitted with built-in wrist support, a retractable mouse pad, and Razer’s Mechanical Green Switches, the Turret keyboard is an attractive piece of hardware to look at. It’s not just for show either, as it comes with many of the same bells and whistles you’d find in any of Razer’s other keyboards. In fact, the Turret keyboard is very much like the Blackwidow Tournament Edition Chroma V2, but equipped with the option to go wireless, as well as Xbox One support.
The Turret keyboard has some weight to it. After checking the specs, I discovered it weighs in at a healthy 4.10 pounds. That’s more than double the weight of my Razer Huntsman, but I wouldn’t say it’s a problem. The weight, along with the rubber grip that runs along the bottom, proved to be very effective at keeping the keyboard from slipping off my lap during gaming sessions.
The Turret mouse, on the other hand, feels light as a feather and comes with its own set of attractive trappings that include Razer’s 5G advanced optical sensor with 16,000 DPI (which is a lot of technical jargon to say that it responds fast and requires less effort to move), and seven programmable buttons.
It also resembles another product in Razer’s existing line, the Mamba Wireless mouse. The design and size appear to be identical, with both featuring many of the same specs. It seems Razer has tweaked the designs of pre-existing peripherals to accommodate Microsoft’s console, adding in Xbox One wireless compatibility and Dynamic Lighting, which enables game-controlled LED effects.
The Razer Turret is marketed as the first wireless keyboard and mouse for the Xbox One. With 40 to 90 hours of battery life on a single charge (more generous than the console’s wireless controller), a wireless keyboard for a console sounds good in theory, but I remain skeptical. Most of my experiences with wireless keyboards and gaming have never ended well, with wireless interference and lag being the main reasons.
There’s nothing more infuriating than being on a kill streak and losing it because your fancy wireless keyboard suddenly stops responding. So, I decided to put the Razer Turret through its paces. I first connected both the keyboard and mouse to my PC using the included cables. The instruction guide suggests charging both peripherals first before using them, so I did. A couple of hours later, both were fully charged, so I disconnected the cables and plugged in the wireless dongle.
I immediately experienced interference, and I hadn’t even opened up a game. It was the same problem I had with a wireless Logitech keyboard I previously owned. The Razer Turret uses a 2.4 GHz wireless connection and a USB 2 connector, which can spell problems if you’re also using USB 3 peripherals on your PC.
Switching things around seemed to help, but didn’t completely alleviate the problem. This is an issue that’s not isolated to the Razer Turret but an annoying quirk with some wireless devices in general. When both Turret devices were plugged in via a wired connection on my PC, the experience was seamless.
Next, I tried the Turret with my trusty Xbox One S. Flipping it over, I pulled the latch on the side to release the retractable mouse pad. I placed the mouse on top of it and was surprised to find that the pad was magnetic – yet another clever way to keep everything in its place. The pull from the magnet added resistance to the mouse that made it feel weighty and planted.
The keyboard laid securely across my lap as I fired up my Xbox One S. Once the menu was up, I began clicking the mouse and typing buttons on the keyboard. No response. Hmm, maybe if I disconnected the wireless dongle and plug it back in? Nope. Turn off the mouse and keyboard, and turn it back it on? Nada. Turn off the Xbox One S and … nah.
At this point, I turned to Google. On Xbox support, I learned that only certain apps and games work with mouse and keyboard. It also doesn’t work with the Xbox user interface or in the home menu. I decided to see which games I could play to test the Razer Turret out, and I made another interesting discovery. A total of 22 games support mouse and keyboard controls on the Xbox One.
That’s just sad.
I can’t help but feel that the $250 price tag for a keyboard marketed specifically for a console that only has 22 games that support it is a little much, even if that list includes gems like Minecraft, The Sims 4, and Fortnite.
I pressed onward and settled on playing Fortnite, since it seemed the most relevant game and would give me an opportunity to try out the mouse and keyboard controls in a shooter on the console. I pressed the Xbox button on the keyboard, and it opened the quick menu, where I could arrow over to Fortnite and open it.
I decided to play Team Rumble because frankly, I suck at Fortnite, and can take all the help I can get. While I waited in the lobby for the match to begin, I used the directional keys to move and jump around. No interference. Nice.
The Battle Bus pulled up and we were off. I dropped down on the map, then scavenged for weapons, shield potions, and building resources as I prepared for late-game tomfoolery. Building was fast and easy, and the same applied to switching from building to shooting. I lucked out and managed to pick up a rare heavy assault rifle. I picked off enemies in the distance with precision that I sincerely forgot was achievable on consoles — and it was so much fun. In fact, that game ended in a Victory Royale and, quite possibly, the best kill count I’ve ever achieved in Fortnite.
Honestly, the Razer Turret surprised me. Even with its wireless quirks on PC, it is a worthwhile addition to the setup of any Xbox One and Windows PC gamer, especially with the option to go wired anytime you choose. It has the potential to become a nice option for gamers who play on the Xbox One console primarily and want the precision of mouse and keyboard controls. But the short list of games that support the platform, along with a $250 price tag, make it more of a novelty than anything else.
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