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Razer Blackshark V2 Pro (2023) Review: Powerful Sound

Pros

  • Powerful and efficient sound.
  • Excellent microphone quality.
  • Marathon-like battery life.
  • Comfortable and ventilated wear.
  • User-friendly application with extensive settings.

Cons

  • Lack of high-frequency definition.
  • No wired functionality.
  • Limited controls and indicators.
Model Razer BlackShark V2 Pro
MICROPHONE Removable Razer™ HyperClear Super Wideband Mic
BUILD Ultra-soft FlowKnit Memory Foam Ear Cushions
SURROUND SOUND THX Spatial Audio
CONNECTIVITY Razer™ HyperSpeed Wireless Technology (2.4 GHz) + Bluetooth 5.2
BATTERY LIFE up to 70 hours
WEIGHT 320 g
OTHERS Advanced mic control features

As the premium gaming headset in Razer’s range, the 2023 edition of the Blackshark V2 Pro retains the core features of the 2020 version while introducing some changes. But are these changes improvements?

Introduction

The Blackshark V2 Pro (2023) includes typical features of an ambitious gaming headset. It’s a model with circumaural cushions and wireless transmission via a dedicated USB dongle, all Bluetooth compatible. Nearly identical in form to its predecessor, it stands out with its more modern USB-C connection and significantly enhanced battery life, increasing from 24 to 70 hours.

The strength of the Blackshark V2 Pro (2023) lies in its integration of 50 mm titanium speakers and compatibility with the Synapse 3 ecosystem, a software offering comprehensive settings. This headset is available in a classic black, as well as a white variant (the version tested) that’s slightly less versatile.

 

Razer BlackShark V2 Pro (2023) 2

Construction & Comfort

While not a premium build, the Razer’s design nevertheless combines seriousness and pragmatism. The use of metal is limited to the height-adjustment rods, with nearly everything else being plastic and synthetic leather. However, this doesn’t result in a shoddy product. The plastic is dense, the structure solid and well-assembled with no visible screws.
This quality extends to the synthetic leather headband, almost as convincing as genuine leather. The stitching is robust and integrates seamlessly with the padded, breathable mesh fabric headrest. This material, with its unique hexagonal patterns, is also on the cushions, contributing to one of the Blackshark V2 Pro’s strengths: comfort.

Despite its negligible weight (320 g), typical for a gaming headset, this Razer model quickly becomes unnoticeable when worn. The pressure is evenly distributed, not felt on the top of the head even after several hours of use. The cushions, with their special fabric, manage to be both breathable and insulating, a challenging combination to achieve.

However, the ear cushions could benefit from being slightly deeper. Currently, slightly protruding ears may touch the fabric covering the speaker grilles. This sensation isn’t uncomfortable, but it’s worth noting. This minor complaint joins our only real question about build quality: the thin plastic rods that create the junction between the headband adjustment and the ear cups seem to be the weakest link in an otherwise rigid setup.

Razer BlackShark V2 Pro (2023) 3

Accessories

Don’t expect an abundance of accessories with this almost strictly gaming-focused model, not even a soft carrying pouch. In addition to the flexible (detachable) microphone and USB-A transmitter/dongle, Razer includes a USB-A to USB-C charging cable sheathed in fabric, and a USB-A male to USB-A female extension cable to bring the transmitter closer to the headset.

The ear cushions offer both the benefits of synthetic leather (more insulating) and velvet (more breathable), with Razer providing only one set, thankfully easily replaceable thanks to the plastic clip-on frame.

Connectivity

In appearance, the 2020 and 2023 versions of the Blackshark V2 Pro are similar. In practice, the manufacturer has replaced the previous analog wired connectivity with a Bluetooth 5.2 chip. The classic 3.5 mm jack input is gone, leaving only the 3.5 mm jack for the microphone and a new USB-C charging port.
The USB adapter remains the core of the product’s functionality with the proprietary HyperSpeed connection, reducing latency to an imperceptible level for the user. This accessory is compatible with PC/Mac, PlayStation (4 and 5), and Nintendo Switch. Xbox users are notably left out in this version. The wired connectivity of the Blackshark V2 Pro (2020) offered some compatibility, which is no longer the case here. The HyperSpeed connection is stable in practice, and its range is above average.

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Meanwhile, the Bluetooth transmission covers the essentials, supporting SBC/AAC codecs with a decent range. However, without compatibility with the Razer Audio app, advanced functions are absent. It’s worth noting that while the two transmission modes seem entirely independent, it’s possible to be connected via both Bluetooth and HyperSpeed at the same time. However, the low-latency mode always takes priority, and combining the two audio inputs is not possible.

User Experience

Controls

The integrated controls are quite unique to Razer, as the brand almost necessitates the use of the Synapse app. There are two control buttons, a mute/unmute switch for the microphone, and a volume control wheel (linked to the connected OS).

One button, appearing as a simple on/off switch, acts multifunctionally, also enabling Bluetooth pairing, managing audio/video playback, and navigating a playlist with two or three presses.
The second button, located on the right, is also multifunctional, offering a selection of four main equalizers (including one customizable), as well as switching between Bluetooth and HyperSpeed modes.

Conversely, apart from the convenient microphone switch, there are no advanced settings. There’s no adjustment for microphone input, no game/chat balance, and limited precise indications about the headset’s status.

Application

Managing numerous products, Synapse (here in version 3) carries a reputation for complexity. However, almost everything works perfectly here. The interface is made intuitive with well-separated tabs, and the settings are numerous without being superficial.
Sound equalizers, THX Spatial (3D sound) modes, vocal enhancements, and numerous microphone adjustments are available. While integrated controls are clearly lacking on the headset, Synapse nearly covers everything.

Unfortunately, even though switching between different equalization profiles is retained regardless of connection type, console operation is necessarily limited (no application) compared to PC use. Moreover, while use on Apple environments is possible, there is no Synapse 3 software for macOS, and Synapse 2 does not apparently support the headset’s USB dongle.

Razer BlackShark V2 Pro (2023) 2 Razer BlackShark V2 Pro 2023 4

Audio

Continuing the Blackshark series, this new version features a high-end audio architecture, represented by two large 50 mm Triforce transducers with titanium membranes. Titanium membrane speakers have a mixed reputation, as they generally deliver very powerful sounds but lack linearity in the highs. Does Razer disprove this? Not entirely…

The sound reproduction is very successful overall. We’re not dealing with a balanced headset, but it smartly handles settings without excess. The default sound signature focuses on the bass, significantly accentuated, while placing some late peaks in the highs to maintain maximum clarity. Between these, Razer avoids making listening tiring or aggressive, hence a slight recess in the transition from upper-mids to highs.
Clearly, the quality of the speakers avoids most pitfalls. There are more detailed and articulated options in the bass than this Blackshark V2 Pro (2023), but the headset is broad and impactful. A slight spillover is felt, primarily from a bit too early emphasis in the lower-mids. In the higher spectrum, the slight dip around 4 kHz effectively prevents any aggression without becoming exaggerated, but a slight veil remains in the listening experience. The 10-band equalizer can partly compensate for the Razer’s behavior, but it’s impossible to achieve a truly balanced sound relying solely on the technical quality of the transducers.

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A glimpse of this quality is evident in gaming, the product’s true domain. The Razer is not the best we’ve tested, but it doesn’t have any significant flaws. Its decent handling of the soundstage is accompanied by a level of detail in the good average, resulting in a sufficiently immersive and effective rendering. Of course, we’re still far from the precision of an Audeze Mobius.
The THX Spatial Audio reproduction mode can, under certain circumstances, improve spatialization, but this upscaling technology remains quite limited. Capable of emulating multi-channel sound from a classic source (including stereo), THX Spatial Audio has the advantage of maintaining real coherence, giving the sensation of surrounding the user. However, it doesn’t fundamentally improve the precision of the sound environment. This doesn’t concern true Atmos renditions.

Microphone

An improvement over the first Blackshark V2 Pro, the detachable microphone is presented as a technological asset. It’s mounted on a flexible gooseneck and comes with a pop filter.
Unlike the speakers, the improvement in the microphone is undeniable. In this regard, the headset ranks among the market’s best, with balanced and clearly extended frequency reproduction. The gooseneck is well-sized to place the microphone near the mouth, and the pop filter prevents saturation.

Moreover, this proximity, allowing the mic to remain on low sensitivity, protects it particularly well against external noises. Against high-level office noises or keyboard typing at about twenty centimeters, the capture is admirable and hardly loses its naturalness. Thus, it’s never necessary to adjust the microphone settings, in our opinion.

Battery Life

Another improvement in the 2023 version is the theoretical endurance, increasing from 24 to 70 hours. This figure is almost perfectly respected, as we timed about 69 hours of operation via the HyperSpeed link.
This doesn’t set an absolute record, as some models exceed 100 hours, but it certainly ranks among the elite in its category. The recharge time is about 2 hours and 30 minutes.

Conclusion

The Razer Blackshark V2 Pro (2023) hasn’t yet found the formula for the ultimate gaming headset, especially with its simplified connectivity and controls. However, this device possesses impressive strengths, notably the quality of its microphone. Comfortable and durable, the latest in the Blackshark series is a solid choice.

★★★★★

Razer BlackShark V2 Pro (2023) - Premium Wireless E-Sports Headset (HyperClear Super Wideband Mic, TriForce Titanium 50mm Driver, HyperSpeed Wireless Technology, Up to 70hrs Battery) Black

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Amazon.co.uk
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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price £205.06 January 2, 2024
Lowest Price £112.49 February 7, 2024
Since November 23, 2023

Last price changes

£133.17 February 8, 2024
£112.49 February 7, 2024
£147.97 February 1, 2024
£199.00 January 31, 2024
£205.06 January 2, 2024
★★★★★

Razer BlackShark V2 Pro Wireless Gaming Headset 2023 Edition: Detachable Mic - Pro-Tuned FPS Profiles - 50mm Drivers - Noise-Isolating Earcups w/Ultra-Soft Memory Foam - 70 Hr Battery Life - Black

BUY NOW
Amazon.com
Wait For A Price Drop

Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price $199.00 December 4, 2023
Lowest Price $112.57 January 27, 2024
Since November 23, 2023

Last price changes

$199.00 January 31, 2024
$112.57 January 27, 2024
$133.85 January 21, 2024
$142.55 January 13, 2024
$199.00 December 4, 2023
5/5 (1 Review)

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Richard Garrett

Richard Garrett

As an expert on the latest techy stuff, the primary focus is PCs and laptops. Much of his time is split between smartphones, tablets and audio, focusing on the latest devices.
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