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Razer Launches Tartarus Gaming Keypad

By - Source: Razer Press Release | B 19 comments

Here's the successor to the Nostromo.

On Thursday Razer launched the Tartarus membrane gaming keypad, the company's successor to the popular Nostromo. It packs 25 programmable keys and an eight-way directional thumb pad, allowing for unlimited macro lengths and an infinite number of game profiles. It's available now locally and worldwide for a mere $79.99 / EU €79.99.

"The Razer Tartarus places an infinite amount of control into a single hand—literally—affording immense flexibility, power and an ultimately free other hand, which is a deadly competitive advantage," says Min-Liang Tan, Razer co-founder, CEO and creative director. "For serious gamers, this keypad can make the difference between victory and defeat."

The device features 15 backlit keys connected to an adjustable wrist rest, and a thumb module mounted to the right. Thus, for anyone who has never used one of these form factors before, your fingers rest on the keypad, your palm on the curved plastic rest, and your thumb on the eight-way thumb pad. The ALT button resides above the thumb pad and a miniature space bar underneath. The LEDs located above the thumb module indicate which key map group is activated.

According to Razer, the thumb pad allows gamers to move with more precision while also acting as modifier keys for the fifteen main keys and the ALT button, multiplying the keyset count by eight, thus generating 128 different command options. The palm rest can be adjusted to accommodate gamers with piano fingers by gripping the level underneath and pulling the palm rest away from the actual keypad.

As for additional specs, the list is small: a braided fiber cable, full anti-ghosting, an improved ergonomic form factor compared to the Nostromo, and instantaneous switching between the eight key maps. There are four thin rubber pads on the bottom, preventing the device from sliding across the desktop in heated gaming moments. Unfortunately, its design doesn't play well with left-handed gamers although it's possible to merely use the 15 keys.

"The Razer Tartarus is enabled to be configured with Razer Synapse 2.0, the proprietary software that functions as the brain of the keypad," the company said. "Razer Synapse 2.0 allows users of Razer products to save custom profiles and sync them from anywhere in the world through the cloud system to be accessed from any computer anytime, anywhere."

For more information about the new Tartarus, head here. Stay tuned for an actual in-depth review of this new Razer PC gaming peripheral.

Display 19 Comments.
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  • 1 Hide
    shadowfamicom , August 15, 2013 6:28 PM
    I just want a low profile macro keypad... is that so hard to ask? I don't enjoy these extra grips. Just low profile, macro keypad. 5x4.
  • -1 Hide
    naihan , August 15, 2013 7:08 PM
    Don't underestimate the power of these things in RPGs ladies and gents. They're deplorable for anything where the main actions are done on your mouse (FPS, Skyrim, ETC), but for games like WoW, Guild Wars 2, and Dragon Age, it's IMPOSSIBLE to go back after you've used it for a while. It feels so natural.
  • 0 Hide
    bystander , August 15, 2013 7:34 PM
    Quote:
    naihan wrote:
    Don't underestimate the power of these things in RPGs ladies and gents. They're deplorable for anything where the main actions are done on your mouse (FPS, Skyrim, ETC), but for games like WoW, Guild Wars 2, and Dragon Age, it's IMPOSSIBLE to go back after you've used it for a while. It feels so natural.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with them for any of those games. It just takes the place of the keyboard. The thumb stick takes the place the WASD keys. The only types of games I don't use this type of keypad (using the G13 atm, have used the Nostromo in the past) is strategy games.
  • 1 Hide
    falchard , August 15, 2013 7:58 PM
    A Membrane Keypad is not worth $79.99 regardless of how many flashy lights you add to it. On top of this since Nostromo has become a Razer Product, the build quality has fallen to being trash. I fear what kind out atrocities Razer can pull off with their own iteration of it.
  • -1 Hide
    amk09 , August 15, 2013 9:32 PM
    I don't know about you but I need a lot more than 15 keys for a modern day fps. It's a cool ass idea, but I'm way too attached to the traditional mouse and keyboard setup.
  • -2 Hide
    amk09 , August 15, 2013 9:39 PM
    I don't know about you but I need a lot more than 15 keys for a modern day fps. It's a cool ass idea, but I'm way too attached to the traditional mouse and keyboard setup.
  • -1 Hide
    bystander , August 15, 2013 10:39 PM
    Quote:
    I don't know about you but I need a lot more than 15 keys for a modern day fps. It's a cool ass idea, but I'm way too attached to the traditional mouse and keyboard setup.


    They do have shift states, so you can push a single button that changes the hotkeys for everything. You just put the less twitching items on another shift state, and have the primary setup as the twitch stuff. You can also make it so different shift states are setup for different combat scenarios or how ever you want.
  • -2 Hide
    kennai , August 15, 2013 11:26 PM
    What kind of keys is the pad using?
  • 0 Hide
    StrangeDaze , August 16, 2013 4:51 AM
    I love Razer, but I'll stick with my Wolfking Warrior keypad instead. Unfortunately, Woflking went out of business years ago, but I managed to stock up before they went belly up. A programmable version would be nice, but it still works better than anything I've seen (for me at least).
  • -1 Hide
    shin0bi272 , August 16, 2013 6:08 AM
    I have a nostromo... its collecting dust because its very uncomfortable to use and while it sounds like a cool idea its crap. This by extension is also crap dont buy it.
  • 0 Hide
    ajcroteau , August 16, 2013 7:59 AM
    I really like the idea of having a seperate keypad for playing MMO's however I've tried both the Nostromo and Logitech's solution. They were both extremely uncomfortable and the keys on the keypad were stiff and fingers became fatigued quickly... It'll be interesting to see what comes of this new solution...
  • 0 Hide
    qlum , August 16, 2013 10:39 AM
    I still have my Belkin N52te of which this is a far successor and I have to say its macro keys are quite useful even if razer really makes shitty macro software that didn't even work with mouse inputs let alone worked more complex scripts
  • 0 Hide
    Avus , August 16, 2013 10:44 AM
    @#$%*x2342544! Another left hand only (for right hand mouse user) gaming keypad!! Everyday I (a left handed mouse user) am praying that my Zboard Fang don't break because NO ONE made gaming keypad for left hand mouse users!!! I play almost all kind of games (except racing) using the Zboard Fang because it is kind of hard to reprogram all the keys to the "numeric pad" side of the keyboards...
  • 0 Hide
    bystander , August 16, 2013 2:38 PM
    Quote:
    @#$%*x2342544! Another left hand only (for right hand mouse user) gaming keypad!! Everyday I (a left handed mouse user) am praying that my Zboard Fang don't break because NO ONE made gaming keypad for left hand mouse users!!! I play almost all kind of games (except racing) using the Zboard Fang because it is kind of hard to reprogram all the keys to the "numeric pad" side of the keyboards...


    If you don't use the thumb stick, you could use the Logitech G13. Except for the Joystick, it isn't designed to favor either hand.
  • 0 Hide
    vestibule , August 16, 2013 7:25 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    naihan wrote:
    Don't underestimate the power of these things in RPGs ladies and gents. They're deplorable for anything where the main actions are done on your mouse (FPS, Skyrim, ETC), but for games like WoW, Guild Wars 2, and Dragon Age, it's IMPOSSIBLE to go back after you've used it for a while. It feels so natural.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with them for any of those games. It just takes the place of the keyboard. The thumb stick takes the place the WASD keys. The only types of games I don't use this type of keypad (using the G13 atm, have used the Nostromo in the past) is strategy games.


    I kinda like the idea of using a stick instead of WASD for movement, though IDK how well that would work for strafe jumping in Quake Live.

    I did get a Cyber Snipa Game Pad V2 years ago before I switched to a mechanical keyboard, much cheaper and works really well for FPS. Sometimes you have to push the buttons a bit harder than you naturally would, but works great for strafe jumping because buttons don't travel nearly as far as keys. It's very similar to the gamepad on the Steel Series Merc, not sure how it compares.

  • 0 Hide
    bystander , August 16, 2013 8:03 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Quote:
    naihan wrote:
    Don't underestimate the power of these things in RPGs ladies and gents. They're deplorable for anything where the main actions are done on your mouse (FPS, Skyrim, ETC), but for games like WoW, Guild Wars 2, and Dragon Age, it's IMPOSSIBLE to go back after you've used it for a while. It feels so natural.

    There is absolutely nothing wrong with them for any of those games. It just takes the place of the keyboard. The thumb stick takes the place the WASD keys. The only types of games I don't use this type of keypad (using the G13 atm, have used the Nostromo in the past) is strategy games.


    I kinda like the idea of using a stick instead of WASD for movement, though IDK how well that would work for strafe jumping in Quake Live.

    I did get a Cyber Snipa Game Pad V2 years ago before I switched to a mechanical keyboard, much cheaper and works really well for FPS. Sometimes you have to push the buttons a bit harder than you naturally would, but works great for strafe jumping because buttons don't travel nearly as far as keys. It's very similar to the gamepad on the Steel Series Merc, not sure how it compares.


    I'm not exactly a FPS expert, but if you make the right and left directions as strafe, and just not bother with the turning keys on the joystick, I imagine you can strafe just just fine. Your mouse is for turning, so you may not care about the turning ability of the joystick.
  • 0 Hide
    vigilante212 , August 17, 2013 8:22 AM
    The Nostromo was like $40 before razor bought them, why would I pay $80 for garbage? The build quality went to shit when they took over. I have had my Nostromo for 7 years using it almost every day and other than a key sticking occasionally works flawlessly. I also don't like the fact that they got rid of the easy to see 4 way button on the side and replaced it with the thumb switch, it was much easier to feel the button I was pressing after I took the hat off mine.
  • 0 Hide
    going toofar , September 4, 2013 1:12 PM
    I think it is really disappointing that they are not supporting left handed gamers. Why should we have to adapt to right handed controls. i feel like the arrow keys are placed on the right side of the keyboard for a reason.
  • -1 Hide
    karm2865 , September 5, 2013 10:52 AM
    Now if they would just make a right handed one