Just this last Christmas, I treated myself to a brand new gaming keyboard and mouse. Razer is the Nike of gaming peripherals and I’ve never given their products a try, so I went for it. This article is no endorsement of Razer and their products, but one of the most interesting perks of owning Razer gear is a certain piece of software that allows you to help manage your hardware.
Razer Synapse is the software I’m talking about. It allows you to store keyboard and mouse configurations to the cloud, tweak the settings on your devices, and unlock the full functionality of your products. One question I constantly see people asking for help with has to do with creating macros for your Razer keyboard. A huge portion of Razer keyboards support macros, and I’d like to show you how you can create them in this article.
First and foremost, you need to know if your keyboard can create macros through Razer Synapse.
On their official website, Razer offers a list of keyboards that support their macro-recording functionality. Here is that list:
- Razer DeathStalker Ultimate
- Razer DeathStalker
- Razer BlackWidow Ultimate 2013
- Razer BlackWidow 2013
- Razer BlackWidow Tournament Stealth Edition
- Razer BlackWidow Tournament Edition
- Razer BlackWidow Ultimate Stealth 2013
- Razer BlackWidow Stealth Edition 2013
- Razer Orbweaver
- Razer Nostromo
- Razer Anansi
- Razer Lycosa
- Razer Arctosa
If you own any of those Razer keyboards, you’re in luck.
Razer Synapse is Razer’s response to having such a huge line of products that support so much varying functionality. After you install your Razer hardware, downloading Synapse allows you to configure everything from a single application.
I am currently using a Razer BlackWidow as my keyboard and Razer DeathAdder as my mouse. These are the two most popular Razer products. Here is an example of what the Synapse interface looks like with these two products:
The above screenshots shows a Macros tab. Any keyboard with macro support will have that tab in the Synapse interface.
Setting Up Macros
Many keyboards, such as the BlackWidow, support automated macro recording through a hotkey on the keyboard. I’ve used it, and I find it to be a pretty inefficient way to get your macros working effectively. It’s a great idea for something on-the-fly, but keyboard macros require a little more pampering. That’s why I’m going to show you how to set up your macros manually.
The first thing you need to determine is what macro delay you need to use.
- Record delay will relay your macros back at the exact speed that you’ve recorded them.
- Default delay allows you to set up a specific delay that will occur before every single action during the macro.
- No delay will perform the macro instantly.
This requires a certain amount of judgment from the user. What type of a macro are you recording? I’ll offer a few examples:
- For chat-based macros in a game, I’d recommend selecting the no delay option. If the chat macro takes longer to execute than it would for you to type out manually, then what is the point? Be advised that this type of macro may depend on you to insert certain delays throughout the process for it to execute properly. For example, if in a game it requires you to press the Enter or Tab key before you can type your message, you’d want to insert a short delay before macroing that key to ensure that it is processed first.
- The default delay option is wise to use when you’re executing a short macro that is very important and precise. For example, macroing hotkeys to cast a certain chain of spells in a game. Putting a delay in between each keystroke helps ensure that all of your spells are cast.
- Record delay is good to use in situations where you need to automate keystrokes at a very specific timing. This can only be achieved otherwise by manually inserting delays of varying times, so this method could save you some time if you’re accurate with your keystrokes.
Let’s set up a macro now to see how the software works. I’ll use Notepad in this situation.
The first step is to choose the recording delay you want to use, as aforementioned. Let’s first check out the default delay. Click the Record button, activate the window you want to record your macro in, and begin. When finished, reactivate the Synapse window and click Stop.
Every key press and release is recorded, as you see above. Since we chose to use the default delay, there is an automated delay after every single action in the recording. Let’s now record with no delay.
Above, the delay between each press and release does not exist. However, the macro still needs some cleaning. The mouse press and release represents clicking into the Notepad window (and at the end of the macro, back off of it) to begin recording. Thus, we need to delete that. You can click either the press or release, highlighting it in the list, and then click the trash bin icon.
Now let’s assume we want to quickly modify this macro to work in a game we play. We’ll need to insert a Tab before the macro for it to activate an in-game chat window. Click at the very top of the macro list, click the Insert button, and select to enter a keystroke before the selection at no delay. Record, press the Tab key, then stop.
When your macro is to your liking, you’ll need to bind it to a key. Do this by selecting the Keyboard tab and clicking on the key you wish to use. Assign the key as a macro, select the macro you wish to use with the key, and select a playback option. Now you’re all done!
Recording macros using Razer Synapse may seem intimidating at first, but it is not very difficult at all.
Using Synapse is one of the great perks of owning a Razer keyboard, and I’ve become addicted to setting up macros. They are a huge time saver and they give you a serious competitive edge when you’re playing a game. Let me know if you run into any issues setting up your macros in the comments and I’ll offer any help I can!
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