If you've ever looked for a gaming headset (or even if you haven't), you're familiar with Razer's history, high-quality audio, and stellar reputation. This applies to the Razer BlackShark V2, which the firm is touting as the "ultimate esports headset." It's an old name with a fresh lease of life, like a phoenix rising from the ashes. Has everything worked out? We all know Razer headsets are among of the finest on the market, but the Razer BlackShark V2 could be the greatest of them all.

Before we get into the meat and potatoes of the BlackShark V2 review, it's worth noting that Razer recently announced the BlackShark V2 Pro, which is a wireless version. This was produced as part of a wireless trifecta that also included a tether-free DeathAdder (probably the greatest gaming mouse) and the BlackWidow, which is perhaps one of the best gaming keyboards. It goes without saying that going wireless and removing the cable enhances the quality of the BlackShark V2. We've also included the latest prices on that headset here to give you more options - it's a price hike, but it's justified because it includes Razer's HyperSpeed wireless connection and a battery life of up to 24 hours, as well as an additional audio chamber for even better game audio and a brand new mic. Overall, that's a fantastic wireless set, and one of the best wireless gaming headphones available.


For those who are familiar with the original, the Razer BlackShark V2 features a design that is only loosely based on it. The earcups and maybe the general form factor are comparable, but otherwise, it's a unique design that looks well at home in the gaming headset market of 2020.

The earcups are tidy ovals for a more comfortable fit, and they - like the headband - have superb cushioning that makes them extremely pleasant to use and wear for long periods of time. It's also worth noting that the BlackShark V2's fabric material changes somewhat from the leatherette on the V2 X, and it's noticeably more comfortable as a consequence. Because the earcups mould to your skull and the full 'length' of the headband is cushioned, you'll have a highly comfortable fit that filters out background noise simply by design.

At first sight, you might not believe it. The earcups have a 'detached' design, with simply a light metal frame and the essential Razer-green wires connecting them to the headband. This has a significant impact on weight, as the headset only weighs 9.24 oz (262g). When worn, it's scarcely perceptible, and there's no strain from wearing them for an extended period of time.

The mic is removable, which helps to keep the weight down elsewhere. Yes, there is a large volume dial on the left cup for onboard control, but it is far superior than the tiny sliders or buttons seen on rival headsets. The braided cable's connector plugs into a USB sound card, which adds a little complexity to the design.

Naturally, the sleek Razer aesthetic of matte black and brilliant green is strewn all over the place. Similarly to the ports on Razer's Blade laptops, Razer's green appears within the USB connector.


When you look past the design, things start to get pretty intriguing. This is because the BlackShark V2 isn't just another Razer headset; it's a Razer headset with all-new functionality. These greatly improve its quality.

The TriForce Titanium 50mm drivers from Razer are the first highlight. These sections divide the audio driver into three parts: lows, middles, and highs, allowing the Razer BlackShark V2 to have different sounds inside each frequency. Rather than using a single driver to handle all of the sound, our three-in-one technique treats each level separately. As a consequence, sound is crystal clear across all frequencies, with no muddiness or blurring. Here, clarity and detail reign supreme.

The same may be said with the new microphone. This is Razer's new HyperClear Cardioid microphone, which has been designed to accurately reproduce your voice while minimising background noise (or obstruction to your face). While the mic is a great addition on its own, it's also intended to connect with the USB sound card, allowing you to increase or adjust your voice output with a variety of options. I'll add that the default settings are fantastic right out of the box, and fiddling with them felt a little excessive, but the option is there if you want to personalise your experience.

While the headset's architecture only allows for two onboard control capabilities, the addition of the new THX Spatial Audio app expands this tenfold. This is triggered with Razer's Synapse 3 software, and it gives you access to a world of audio customization, refinement, and control. This elevates the already fantastic Razer BlackShark V2 headset to new heights. You may adjust the form and quality of your audio by moving virtual speakers closer or farther away from you, choose from a variety of pre-tuned EQ's and settings (or create your own), and take use of a fresh new feature meant to improve particular games: On August 8, 2020, THX Game Profiles will be launched.

These are pre-tuned profiles that have been built with direct feedback from game developers for games like Apex Legends, Valorant, and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, enhancing the audio experience and getting them as near to how they are'meant' to be as possible. I was able to put a handful of them to the test, and they add even another layer of effective and advantageous personalization. These totally new and interesting features allow the Razer BlackShark V2 to provide far more than the competition, and I haven't even mentioned how wonderful it sounds.


Simply told, it sounds great. The BlackShark V2 has some of the greatest game audio, if not all audio, that I've ever heard on a gaming headset. Every flutter of wind through the woods, every yell through the snow or over gunshots, and all the microscopic auditory elements of life in the Wild West can be heard in Red Dead Redemption 2. Everything is very clear and completely immersive. Using the BlackShark V2 to complete my Control playthrough was also a true pleasure.

Despite not wanting to leave the auditory immersion I was in, I had to force myself away from the singleplayer games to test the new BlackShark's mic. My current favourite online game is The Division 2, which I play with two friends, and they were instantly surprised by the clarity of my voice. Furthermore, the incidental noises of a post-apocalyptic Washington, D.C. were masterfully depicted, with previously unheard features like echoes and wind bouncing off tall buildings suddenly audible and distinct. The gunshots and action, on the other hand, expertly cut through the ambient noises, giving the game soundtrack a lot of depth. Meanwhile, my voice - and the voices of my colleagues - sliced through the din, ensuring that nothing went unnoticed or unnoticed in the din.

Apex Legends is a terrific way to put any headset to the test, and the BlackShark V2 was a great match for it (especially since it was one of the game profiles I was able to try out). With the Game Profile turned off, the headset seemed completely at home in Apex Legends, with footsteps and gunshots being crystal clear and expertly placed in the soundscape to aid in identifying enemies. However, with the Game Profile enabled, everything appears somewhat crisper, more detailed, richer, and more balanced. I would suggest it.

I was able to test the two primary modes within the THX Spatial Audio app, Environmental Mode and Competitive Mode, by switching between single-player and online multiplayer games. The former is superior for single-player games since it accurately replicates sound around you based on the game's universe, whilst the latter excels at detecting friends' and adversaries' positions, giving you superb spatial awareness. When you combine this with the previously described Game Profiles, you have a winning combo.

The Razer BlackShark V2 is quickly becoming my go-to PS4 headset, despite the fact that it's not the most natural gaming partner (it's mostly focused on PC gaming). When it's PC-bound, you don't have the flexibility and variety that the software and USB sound card provide, but it's still great; you get the microphone's inherent quality and the TriForce drivers.

When it comes to non-game applications, the mic is ideal for meetings because it is very clear for my colleagues while also presenting them crisply. The same could be said for viewing TV and movies on it. The BlackShark triumphed where others struggled to produce rich and fulsome voice and discourse. And if something isn't quite right, all it takes is a minor tweak in the app to make it perfect.

Now it's time for some music. Although I'm not an audiophile or overly fussy, my ear is tuned well enough to know when a headset feels 'right,' and given that the headset was great for music-driven game sequences like those in Doom or Control's Ashtray Maze, it came as no surprise to learn that this extended to everything else from sweeping orchestral soundtracks to metal music, country and bluegrass, and everything in between.

Should you buy it in the end?

All audio here - in games, music, cinema, and job use - has a balance and clarity that I haven't heard in a long time, if ever. And that's without improving any game audio in the app or tweaking the EQs here and there. Allow for some tweaking and optimization via the software, and the sound card truly shines, improving every usage of the headset and the music it provides.

I can't emphasise enough how well the BlackShark V2 and the app work together. It's still one of the greatest gaming headsets I've ever used without the software, but with it, the audio reaches previously unheard-of levels of clarity, richness, and quality. This, I believe, will be a crucial means of enhancing PC gaming headphones in the future (Razer or not, given that the THX Spatial app works with any headset). However, despite the headset-app combo's great versatility, those who like the plug-and-play-straight-out-of-the-box method have nothing to fear: the settings are so superb by default that it's still a truly outstanding gaming headset even before you've done any tweaking.

If you've read all of my opinions, the high score shouldn't come as a surprise, and considering its price, the Razer BlackShark V2 is one of the simplest gaming headphone recommendations I've ever made. This is a world-class piece of equipment. It is not only one of the greatest Razer headsets ever made, but it is also one of the best PC gaming headsets and one of the best gaming headsets of 2020.