The cool thing about Razer is that they produce various gaming headsets to fit different gamer’s needs. If you want to go for those big wired over-ear headsets with a powerful sound, then there is the Razer Kraken or Thresher. If you don’t really like having a cable, then there’s the wireless Nari line. And if you want to get the best of all different worlds, then there is the Blackshark V2. It’s a slick, light headset that offers a very strong surround sound. Razer went for a simpler design dismissing all the lights and other aesthetic flourishes. The microphone is decent and the Blackshark V2 delivers even better overall performance delivers even better performance than the Razer Kraken Ultimate and the Kraken Tournament Edition. The price tag of about $ 100,00 seems to be pretty fair for what it offers.
One of the first things to notice is that the Blackshark V2 is one of the lighter Razer headsets. You can very clearly see that the design is still aiming for being a gaming headset, but it actually looks more like regular headphones compared to other models. Razer opted for oval earcups with matte black plastic shells on the V2. The earcups are connected with a neon green fabric wire which runs through the black headband. You can find a bright green Razer logo on the backside of each earcup. Both of the cups are connected to the headband with thin metal arms, which allows adjusting the fit while still enabling vertical pivot.
The earpads are made of soft memory foam covered in breathable fabric. This makes the headset really suitable even if the gaming session goes on for some extended hours. While the bottom of the headband is the same fabric as the earcups, the top side is made of faux leather.
The permanently attached wire has a range of six feet and runs into the bottom of the left earcup. The 3.5mm plug also enables you to use the V2 with basically any device. The flexible boom microphone is detachable and can be plugged into the port right next to the cable. The back panel of the ear cup features a volume dial and a mute button.
The Blackshark V2 comes with a tiny 1.75-by-0.6-inch 7.1-channel USB sound card which goes right into a USB port. On top of the sound card, there’s a green LED indicator that lights up when plugged in.
The quality of the microphone is not bad, although there is a bit of a de-emphasis in the bass and mid-range and a slight over-emphasis in the high range. This basically means that deeper voices might sound a bit distorted and hissing noises will come through more clearly. After testing for a while I actually recommend using the default microphone settings and leave all the extra features in Razer Synapse turned off. It is a cardioid microphone which means that the audio input is directed to your mouth area and outside noises won’t be registered that much. The microphone actually does a really good job at this.
Obviously, it’s not table microphone quality, but compared to its competitors in the same price range it performs really well out of the box.
The sound is defined by a strong bass and doesn’t distort, while keeping a very balanced sound through the whole spectrum even at maximum volume.
The Blackshark V2 performs very well in virtually any music genre. It offers a lot of presence in the lower frequencies and clear, detailed sound in the higher frequencies. This headset got quite a punch, but in a busy track, you can still differentiate very clearly the full bass from guitar strums, drums and vocals. Showing a very good balance to every single element of a song.
The isolation on this thing is great. Even though there is no noise-canceling used it actually is one of the best on the market.
The THX Spatial Audio simulated surround sound gives a very good sense of where sounds are coming from while gaming. However, when compared, the Logitech G Pro X Wireless simulated surround sound just does it a tad better. The orchestral music of games is clear and the sound of the weapons stays punchy, but don’t overdo it.
When playing Valorant the directional sound is a key element of the gameplay. Even though the overall quality of sound is really good, the directional sound felt a bit off at closer distances.
Due to the 3.5mm connection, you can use the Blackshark V2 gaming headset with a lot of different devices. To get the full potential of this headset though, you’ll best stick to using the USB-sound card when on a PC. This enables the software to use the THX simulated surround sound and also adds fine adjustments to the audio and microphone quality.
For comparison: If you don’t feel the need for the USB sound card, you can get the Blackshark V2 X for about $ 69,00. Apart from the sound card the models are very similar, with just some scaled-back design elements.
In the Razer Synapse software, you can add several tweaks to the audio, or use one of the pre-designed EQs. Some of the presets are Voice Clarity, Sound Normalization, or Bass Boost for example. The same goes for the microphone, as it also has various presets to choose from.
This Razer gaming headset really delivers. It’s a lightweight build with very refined sound quality, simulated surround sound, a decent microphone and is more than just comfortable. The package you get for $ 100,00 is quite impressive.
Unfortunately, the permanently connected cable is a bit of a disappointment, as a removable cable is much easier to replace than an entire headset.
If you’re looking for an amazingly good wired and affordable gaming headset though, then the Razer Blackshark V2 is one of the best options to get right now.