Star Wars-themed peripherals for the office

Star Wars-themed merchandise is everywhere these days, from Yoda keychains to Darth Vader toasters. So when Razer's Stormtrooper Edition peripherals marched into my office, I was naturally sceptical.

The set consists of Razer's Blackwidow Lite mechanical keyboard, Atheris wireless mouse and Goliathus Extended mouse mat.

The keyboard and mouse are more for office than gaming use. So this Stormtrooper edition is obviously targeted at those who want to make a statement about their Star Wars allegiance or simply want to look cool in the office.

And they do look cool, even if you are not a hardcore Star Wars fan like me.

Shunning Razer's usual all-black design, the set has a black-and-white theme.

The keyboard has a predominantly white base with black stripes across its length. A Stormtrooper graphic above the directional keys breaks the monotony of the stripes, with the escape key having the Imperial crest instead of "Esc". I also like the smooth metallic feel of the base and the subtle "Razer" logo below the space bar.

It is a compact tenkeyless keyboard, which means it lacks a numeric keypad, but takes up less table top space. It comes with a detachable braided fibre cable for easy transportation.

  • FOR

    • Well-designed and cool-looking 

    • Superb for office use 

    • Priced the same as originals 

    AGAINST 

    • Not for gaming 

    SPECS/RAZER BLACKWIDOW LITE STORMTROOPER EDITION 

    PRICE: $149.90 

    SWITCHES: Razer Orange switches, tactile and silent with 45g actuation force 

    FEATURES: White LED backlight, 10-key rollover anti-ghosting

    RAZER ATHERIS STORMTROOPER EDITION 

    PRICE: $84.90 

    SENSOR: 7,200 dpi optical sensor 

    CONNECTIVITY: Bluetooth LE, 2.4GHz 

    RAZER GOLIATHUS EXTENDED STORMTROOPER EDITION 

    PRICE: $56.90

    DIMENSIONS: 29.4cm (length) X 92cm (width) X 0.3cm (height) 

    RATING 

    FEATURES: 3/5 

    DESIGN: 5/5

    PERFORMANCE: 4/5 

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 4/5 

    OVERALL: 4/5

Instead of Razer's Chroma RGB backlighting with up to 16.8 million colours, the Blackwidow Lite keyboard offers white LED backlighting. But when you press the Caps Lock key, it will turn green to show that Caps is turned on.

It uses the Razer Orange mechanical switches, a quieter version of the tactile and clicky Razer Green mechanical switches, which require slightly less actuation force.

If you still find the keys too noisy, Razer has included O-rings that can be inserted at the base of each key to dampen the sound when the keys are pressed.

The keys felt mushy with the O-rings, so I did not use them. Plus, I have always preferred a loud clacky keyboard.

The Atheris Stormtrooper Edition mouse has a mostly white exterior and sports a Stormtrooper helmet motif on its top, unlike the all-black exterior of the original. There is no sign of a Razer logo until you look at its bottom. Nothing lights up on this mouse.

The top has a smooth finish, instead of the matte finish of the original Atheris. I prefer this smooth surface as it feels more comfortable to touch.

There are still the rubber side grips, five programmable buttons and 7,200-dots-per-inch optical sensor of the original, and it still connects to PCs via Bluetooth or a 2.4GHz USB dongle.

Its symmetrical design means that it is equally great for right-and left-handers. Its compactness and small footprint - about the size of a name card - makes it more of a travel mouse. But despite its petite size, it is surprisingly comfortable to use.

The third peripheral of the set, the Goliathus Extended Stormtrooper Edition mouse mat, is the cheapest item here but probably the most eye-catching. This is thanks to its huge size - 92cm wide by 29.4cm long.

Five Stormtroopers in different poses and the Stormtrooper wording adorn the centre of the mat. It looks just awesome.

Its micro-textured cloth surface allows you to glide your mouse quickly and accurately, while its anti-slip rubber base means it will not move about regardless of how violently you move the mouse or other things on its surface.

It feels as though much thought has gone into the design of these peripherals.

Furthermore, they are priced the same as the originals, rather than with the usual premium for such licensed products.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 14, 2019, with the headline 'Star Wars-themed peripherals for the office'. Print Edition | Subscribe