Reviews: Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case for the iPad Pro

The iPad Pro is a great laptop replacement for some users but only if it’s paired with the right keyboard. The Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case might work well for some iPad Pro users, but not for others.

razer case ipad pro

When Apple released the iPad Pro it was hailed as a possible laptop replacement for some users. While the iPad Pro itself is a fantastic device, very few people could use it as a laptop replacement with just the on-screen keyboard. An external keyboard is definitely a must-have for the iPad Pro to get the most out of it.

But which keyboard should you buy? The Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case is certainly worth considering, it sells for $169.99 at Amazon. Here's part of the official description of it on Amazon:

This revolutionary technology with slim chiclet keycaps raises the bar for ultra-mobile keyboards
Featuring optimized actuation and reset points and an actuation force of 65g, the world’s first low-profile mechanical switch delivers the exact same performance as a full-fledged mechanical keyboard.
Whether you’re out at night or surfing before you go to bed, each key is individually backlit for even illumination throughout.
With 20 brightness levels, you can easily adjust the Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case to perfectly suit any setting you’re in.
The Razer Mechanical Keyboard case not only protects your tablet, but it also gives you added flexibility whenever you need it.

The MacStories review of the Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case

Federico Viticci, who uses only iOS as his only operating system for work, has a very detailed review of the Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case for the MacStories blog:

After some research and despite its less-than-stellar reviews, I bought a Razer mechanical keyboard case for the iPad Pro. I’ve been working with this keyboard for over a month now, and not only am I more efficient because of it – my back doesn’t hurt anymore and I’m typing faster than ever.

The Razer mechanical keyboard case for iPad Pro is a peculiar product aimed at a specific audience: people who work from an iPad Pro every day to justify the cost, who want a keyboard case with an adjustable kickstand, and who need backlit keys to type in the dark.

I happen to be exactly that kind of iPad user. This keyboard has flaws and questionable design decisions – you could argue that it doesn’t even look nice – and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone looking for a entry-level iPad keyboard case or standard Bluetooth keyboard. However, despite the things Razer could have done differently, the functionality of the kickstand-keyboard combo is unparalleled. As a heavy iPad Pro-only user, this is the keyboard I wanted to work faster and more comfortably from anywhere.

The Razer mechanical keyboard case is my new favorite way to type on the iPad Pro. It’s not for everyone, but it’s just what I was looking for.

More at MacStories

I tend to put a lot of stock in Federico’s opinions when it comes to the iPad Pro and its accessories. As I noted above, he uses only an iPad for his daily work, so he has to get the most out of his device.

What Amazon customers are saying about the Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case

But it’s always good to get some other opinions as well, so I took a peek at what some folks were saying at Amazon in the reviews for the Razer keyboard case, and not all of it was wine and roses:

Jon Henshaw: “I was excited when I first heard about this keyboard. Razor has an excellent reputation for making great hardware, especially for gamers. I ordered it directly from Razer (before it was offered via Amazon) but ended up returning it for a full refund after testing it out for a few days.

I’m not giving it 1 star, because I’m not a gamer, and I realize some people may really like the loud mechanical keys. I also appreciate that they made something for Apple and I’m hoping they fix some of the issues I described in this review and don’t abandon making things for Apple devices altogether. I also think it looks good and other people probably won’t care about all of the things I care about. The backlit keys are certainly awesome, so if someone is looking for a mechanical gaming-like keyboard that they can use in the dark on their iPad Pro, they’ll probably like this…as long as they don’t tap too much on the screen ;)”

Amazon Customer: “Really, really, really wanted to like this case. The action of the keyboard itself is good, and the texture of the case is also good, however, the metal bar used as an easel, will not stay flat against the back of the iPad when it is closed. They enclose instructions showing where to press the stand to get it to “close” (magnetized, I think its supposed to be), however breathe on it it the stand pops up again probably about a 20 degree angle. Doesn’t affect the overall case, but allows the stand to catch on things too easily because it won’t lay flat. For the cost, I expected (and really, really, really) wanted it to work. I have a Razer desktop gaming keyboard which I love, so getting this seemed like a no-brainer. Very disappointed. Don’t waste your money.”

Tabularasa: “I never buy products that haven’t been thoroughly reviewed and picked apart, so this was a new adventure for me. The mechanical keys, sleek black matte-finish and the Razer name made it a no-brainer. So I did it. First impressions, I love it. The keyboard is everything I’m used to using on a daily basis and was able to breeze through about 500 words at my usual rapid-fire pace without any issues. I’ve had my hands resting on it for a while now and I don’t notice any disparities in the matte-finish on the keyboard. I don’t find it heavy or bulky either, in fact, it’s smaller than the last case I had on my iPad and it’s still a million pounds lighter than my laptop. I sit on the floor and do all my typing, yes it’s bad all around doing that, but this sits perfect on my thighs, no wibble-wobble when I hammer my fingers on the keyboard. While the screen does bounce some, it doesn’t bounce anymore than the other case I had but then again, I use the pencil as my finger and I don’t feel I need to jam it against the screen, like I do when I use my finger.

All-in-all, I think it’s a great product for me. Is it a great product for people that will have issues with the things I don’t? Probably not. Can some be overlooked? Yes but others, not so much for some users. To each his/her own, which is why there are many products out there for the choosing. Is it worth the price? Nothing is ever worth what people charge. With that said, I feel the price is justified because of the technology in bringing the mechanical-style keys to a keyboard case. Full disclosure, I hated the Apple Keyboard and this is the same price, so comparing the two, this is a far better product, in my opinion. I don’t mind the lack of smart connector either because I wasn’t overly impressed with it on the Apple Keyboard. So far, there has been no lag, no dropping, no delay, nothing. Will it get worse over time? Unknown but for now, I’m sold and very happy with my purchase.”

Nato: “I bought and ipad pro for on-the-go digital art and was subsequently consumed by accessory fever. I thought for sure there would be more gadgets out that would upgrade this thing to the robo-art machine I was dreaming of. I saw this case with it’s odd metal kickstand and it’s backlit mechanical keyboard and thought this would be a worthwhile investment. I’m also a huge gamer and like the Razer name, despite only owning their Firefly RGB mouse pad. I was curious about the mechanical keyboard.

I was in love with it at first! It looks GREAT and feels very solid - at first. I liked the kickstand mechanism for the variety of angles and it made for a relatively sturdy drawing stand at certain angles. The keys feel wonderful to type, and have a very clicky feel to them, which I liked even better than my Macbook keys. I spent some time typing in a chat room on Twitch and had no problem keeping up. I closed up the case to see how thick it was. It doubles the size, but that didn’t bother me. I put it in my padded laptop backpack sleeve - it fit fine and didn’t feel too heavy. However, the case and they keyboard don’t really stay together that well when closed. There’s about a half inch of slop near the hinge and the two parts dislodge with minimal effort. I opened the keyboard a little while later only to discover two keys had popped out of place. I discovered that these keys have the same crappy chicklet hinges all laptop keyboards use, and they were impossible for me to put back in correctly. One popped back on, never to feel the same again, and the other never would snap back into place. Sad that the keyboard didn’t live up to the hype it set for itself. Happy for Amazon’s return policy, for which I give this one star (in addition to the star for it’s looks).”

StatGeek: “I took a chance and bought this iPad Pro keyboard/case for my wife as a gift before a trip. I read all the reviews and was worried it would be a flop, but she loves it. Said the typing experience was so far beyond the Apple smart cover that she won’t go back, and this has become the go-to travel solution for work.

Note to others - the ‘kickstand’ does close reliably once you figure out the trick. It comes with a slip of fabric protecting the case from the metal kickstand that shows you to place your thumbs in the middle of the kickstand and press it closed firmly. By firmly they mean, “not slowly.” If you follow those instructions (thumbs placed, press closed with authority) it stays closed every time.

Downsides:

It’s heavy. Not as heavy as her 15" MBP, but very noticeably heavier than the apple smart cover. The metal kickstand could scratch other things in your bag. The ‘clamshell’ effect isn’t great - there’s enough slack in the hinge area that even after it’s closed, the two halves don’t always align perfectly.”

RAko890c: “So. The keyboard clicks enough to get you mean looks in the coffee shop and feels great. That part is wonderful.

The case portion is really poor. There’s a portion that hooks around the iPad firmly. It’s a big pain to take off, so you just always leave it on, and separate it from the keyboard when you don’t need keyboard. You definitely want to separate it from the keyboard, since the keyboard would like to fall off and if you grab the iPad wrong it will just fall to the floor.

The top case has a metal kickstand that can’t stay flat against the back of the screen. If you fuss with it a bit you can make it “pop” flat but if you take away your hand it will pop back out again. The kickstand being metal with sharp edges is especially a problem. Within a week of getting it I had cut my hand, scuffed a piece of wood furniture and scratched my new leather couch. It’s also in the way when you try to carry the iPad and if you position your hand wrong, it’s really easy to pinch your finger behind the kickstand (and OUCH it hurts).

Having the kickstand was nice at first - I can prop up my iPad while reading recipes, yay. But due to how awkward it makes holding or setting down the iPad, I ended up having to move the kickstand often during use - Push it out a bit to use as a handle when carrying it, lay it nearly flat when not using it, swing it wider when wanting to view the screen. After about 2 months of this, the plastic around the hinge on the kickstand broke, and now it’s an even bigger pain to deal with.

It basically made my iPad into a huge PITA. If it had cost $30, I would be mildly annoyed. But this cost $170, which made it is just criminal.”

More at Amazon

As you can tell from the comments above, the folks who posted reviews on Amazon had differing experiences with the Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case. You’ll have to make up your own mind between the mostly positive review at MacStories and the negative comments posted at Amazon, sometimes beauty really is in the eye of the beholder.

More reviews of the Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case

I’ll leave you with some additional reviews of the Razer Mechanical Keyboard Case that will help you make your buying decision.

9to5Mac: A great typing experience with a few compromises

Macworld: Luxurious keys for iPad Pro

The Verge: Razer’s iPad Pro mechanical keyboard is indulgent typing heaven

Six Colors: The quest for the perfect iPad Pro keyboard continues

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