Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset review

Reasonably cheap, surprisingly cheerful

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We’re all familiar with Razer and its vast range of gaming peripherals, ranging all the way from keyboards and mice to controllers for mobile devices and wireless earbuds. Given how Razer has managed to penetrate essentially every corner of the market. We take a look at one of their more budget offerings, the Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset, and see if it can uphold Razer’s reputation at the lower end of their pricing spectrum.

Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset

Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset

Driver diameter

50mm

Connectivity

Wired w/ optional included USB sound card

Frequency response

12 Hz – 28 kHz

Compatibility

PC, Mac, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and mobile devices

Pros

Lightweight

Comfortable

Great build quality

Cons

Mediocre sound quality

Tech Specs

Driver diameter

50mm

Connectivity

Wired w/ optional included USB sound card

Frequency response

12 Hz – 28 kHz

Compatibility

PC, Mac, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and mobile devices

Weight

0.6 lbs / 262 g

Cable length

1.8 m / 5.91 ft

Mic sensitivity

-42 dB V/Pa, 1 kHz

Mic frequency response

100 Hz – 10 kHz

Pickup pattern

Unidirectional

What’s in the box & setup

  • Razer Blackshark V2 wired headset
  • Removable Razer HyperClear Cardioid mic
  • USB sound card
  • Product info guide

 

Razer appears to have saved some money here, as the headset comes packaged in a functional, but unimpressive box. Just a regular cardboard box with some marketing photography and a brief list of features on the side. No fancy magnetic clasps or spongy form-fitting protective foam here, but it’s just about robust enough to secure your headset in transit. We like that Razer has chosen to spend more money on the product itself, rather than wasting it on a box that most people will dispose of instantly.

Given that the Blackshark V2 is a wired headset, setup boils down to plugging the headset into the sound card, and the sound card into a vacant USB port on your PC. You don’t have to download Razer’s Synapse software to make this headset work, but it’s recommended as it allows some EQ adjustment which will allow you to get the most out of this headset.

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It’s also worth noting that the USB sound card isn’t necessary for basic functionality. But, if you skip the card and plug the headset into a 3.5mm jack you won’t be able to adjust the Blackshark V2’s EQ in software, so we recommend utilizing the soundcard as it’s unobtrusive and no extra hassle.

Design

Razer has taken some inspiration from the world of aviation for the visual design of the Blackshark V2, as the wire yoke and symmetrical earcups mirror the aesthetics found on the headsets of helicopter and airline pilots. There are some small instances of flair, such as the vibrant green cables connecting the earcups to the headband, and the inescapable three-headed snake logo on each earcup. The only other instance of branding is an additional ‘RAZER’ logo embossed across the headband.

The headset is almost entirely matte black aside from the aforementioned logos. Despite being modeled off of a pilot’s headset, the design is understated enough to keep most people happy and we certainly liked the look. The earcups have some of the nicest-feeling memory foam to be found in the $100 price range, and are upholstered in fairly soft black fabric. The headband has the same fabric on the contact side but without the lovely memory foam, it’s still comfortable, but the memory foam would make it stellar. The cable and USB sound card are also visually unassuming. They use matte black and minimalist design, meaning they will easily integrate with your setup’s pre-existing aesthetic.

 

Build quality

Given that the Blackshark V2 only weighs a minute 0.6 lbs/262g it feels surprisingly solid. The adjustment mechanism is particularly impressive, as the earcups slide up and down on skinny rods that look set to bend or snap at the slightest touch. But no, they feel robust and we are surprised to say that we are confident that they’ll stand the test of time, which is surprisingly excellent.

Aside from this, the construction and materials all feel serviceable, the majority of the headset is plastic but it doesn’t feel too cheap, for the $100 price range we’d say the Blackshark V2 makes par. It won’t impress anyone, but it won’t break quickly either.

We found the headband to have a large amount of flex, but not so much as to make it feel floppy. When subjected to vigorous bending, the headband returns back to form flawlessly, which isn’t always the case for headsets on the cheaper end of the spectrum. We’d have liked to see more metal in the construction here, but despite the largely plastic construction, this headset is more than robust enough.

Sound quality

The ‘Razer Triforce titanium 50mm drivers’ may sound opulent, but the sound they produce is nothing of note. They sound good enough for most gaming applications, and won’t leave you disappointed.

The Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset isn’t overly bassy like so many gaming headsets, particularly on the cheaper end of the spectrum. The EQ options in Razer’s Synapse program allow you to adjust and save your favored audio profiles. With a bit of fiddling, you can get the Blackshark V2 to sound pretty good, it’s just a shame it requires user adjustment The headset can tend to sound a bit muddy at higher volumes, but it’s far from the worst audio quality to be found in this price range.

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The bass is fairly powerful and highs have some decent definition, it’s hard to find any major flaws in such an even soundscape. We like the sound that this headset produces, but that’s about it. There’s nothing fantastically impressive here. However, we do have to give some kudos to the passive noise cancellation which is pretty damn effective.

The removable boom mic performs adequately but doesn’t impress, and we did experience some crackling when subjecting it to a sound test. This can be super annoying to your teammates, especially in competitive scenarios. Other than that, it has reasonable levels of noise cancellation and usually manages to filter out unwanted background noise.

Comfort

This is where the Blackshark V2 performs very well, mostly due to some excellent material choices and the aforementioned light weight of the headset itself. They have what we’d consider a medium clamping force, which is further softened by the small flex present in the adjustment mechanism. The padding on the earcups, combined with the soft fabrics make this headset an effortless wear, and it remains as such for extended periods of use, with no fatigue of the ears of overheating. With all of these factors combined, the Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset is an incredibly comfortable set of earphones that we could wear all day long.

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The Blackshark V2has an impressive 1.5 inches of adjustment travel, leaving us confident that it will comfortably fit any head, from a small bean-like skull to the head of Joseph Merrick himself. The padding on the headband is fairly slim, but that’s all it needs to be given how light the headset is, and it hasn’t caused any problems in our testing. This is one of the most comfortable headsets in this price bracket, by quite a considerable margin.

Final verdict

We were fairly impressed with the Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset, its comfort is absolutely outstanding and the build quality is surprisingly good, despite its pretty flimsy appearance. The sound quality is bang on average and can be good with some user adjustments. The mic is a bit of a letdown, with some crackling here and there which might make it less ideal for intense competitive gameplay wherein communication is vital.

We recommend the Blackshark V2, if you’re in the market for a decent all-rounder for a variety of uses and applications. We particularly like the aviation-inspired design. However, if you’re into competitive team-based games, it might be worth looking elsewhere for more reliable mic quality, for example, the ASUS ROG Delta S Animate or Corsair HS80.

Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset

Razer Blackshark V2 gaming headset

Driver diameter

50mm

Connectivity

Wired w/ optional included USB sound card

Frequency response

12 Hz – 28 kHz

Compatibility

PC, Mac, PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and mobile devices

0 /5
Editor's Rating
4/5

We were thoroughly impressed with the Blackshark V2, it has immense comfort and surprisingly impressive build quality, its sound may be mediocre, but it’s far from the worst we’ve experienced. If you’re in the market for a mid-range headset and you’re not too picky about sound quality, we recommend the Razer Blackshark V2