Gaming

Comfortable set of headphones for gamers

As expected from a gaming headset, Razer's Kraken Pro V2 runs rather bass-heavy, with lots of emphasis at the lower end of the spectrum.
As expected from a gaming headset, Razer's Kraken Pro V2 runs rather bass-heavy, with lots of emphasis at the lower end of the spectrum.PHOTO: RAZER

Razer's upgraded Kraken Pro V2 headset has a stronger body and better all-round sound

When Razer first released its Kraken Pro headset back in 2014, gamers shuddered at its garish green colour scheme but nevertheless snapped it up bcause of its decent price point and gaming performance.

The Kraken Pro V2, the second version of the Kraken Pro, sports a more muted, classier black paint job, as well as upgraded internals and bigger drivers.

Released late last year, it is an analogue headset designed primarily for multiplayer gaming. A pricier variant of the headset, the Razer Kraken 7.1 V2, comes with in-built surround-sound virtualisation, which makes it more versatile.

The huge earcups, which rest snug and comfortable on the ears, are befitting of the 50mm drivers that reside within.

Comfort is key when it comes to gaming headsets. There's little point having sick sound quality when your ears are aching and begging to be released from the death-clamp of headphones.

And while I expected the Kraken Pro V2 to weigh on me after a while given its monstrous size, I was pleasantly surprised to find myself leaving them on for hours without much discomfort.

  • TECH SPECS

  • PRICE: $129.90

    FREQUENCY RESPONSE: 12Hz - 28kHz

    DRIVERS: 50mm

    CABLE LENGTH: 1.3m

  • RATING

    FEATURES: 3/5

    DESIGN: 3/5

    PERFORMANCE: 3/5

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 3/5

    OVERALL: 3/5

Despite their size, the headphones are lightweight and comfortable for long gaming sessions. While the earcups are made of plastic to achieve this lightness, they don't feel loose or frail. The aluminium headphone frame also feels sturdy, resulting in a pair of cans that can take a fair amount of abuse when jostling about in a bag.

As expected from a gaming headset, the Kraken Pro V2 runs rather bass-heavy, with lots of emphasis at the lower end of the spectrum. Audio quality is overwhelmingly warm and slightly dark, which tends to wash out higher-frequency details.

Still, they are a smidge less bassy than the original Kraken Pro, with a more balanced profile and clearer mid-range.

In noisy, frenetic games such as zombie shooter Left 4 Dead 2, the headset was able to balance out the frenzy of weapons firing all over the place while not overwhelming the voice chat and background sounds.

It also works well in games with built-in surround-sound support, such as Blizzard's multiplayer team shooter Overwatch.

The bendy mic, which retracts into the earcup when not in use, is decent. It does run a little soft, requiring me to speak a little louder, but is overall clear and audible.

Gamers do pay a bit of premium for the Razer branding, though, considering that these cans compete with other headsets in the sub-$150 gaming headset category, some of which offer additional features like surround-sound virtualisation.

But these cans are a good entry set for gamers who want a fuss-free, plug-and-play headphone and mic set-up, especially those who enjoy first-person shooters.

• Verdict: The Kraken Pro V2 is a more balanced pair of headphones than its predecessor. Its comfort and sound profile make it good for gaming, but not much else.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 08, 2017, with the headline 'Comfortable set of headphones for gamers'. Print Edition | Subscribe