The Kraken series is the mainstream option for consumers who wish to invest in a pair of Razer headphones. The Pro variant from the Kraken family omits a few features offered by the more expensive 7.1 model, including surround sound and USB connectivity. That said, we've found the Kraken Pro V2 (opens in new tab) to do most things well.
This second generation introduces a new design that caters to those seeking enhanced comfort and durability. Glasses are becoming a more common sight in gaming (and prolonged computer use) to aid in the protection of eyes, which is something Razer took into account on the drawing board. Special "inmold channels" are present to reduce strain on the frame of a pair of glasses, which makes wearing both glasses and the headset less of a pain.
Even if you don't wish to use glasses, there are improvements that will affect your experience. Take the new headband, for example. It's now unibody aluminum, which reduces weight and helps with endurance for long gaming sessions. (The last thing any gamer wants is to have painful ears and a severe indent in their hairstyle.) Speaking of ears, there are even new cushions in the Pro V2 to help better block out unwanted noise.
As for actual sound, the Kraken Pro V2 performed admirably thanks to the new 50mm drivers (a jump from the 40mm ones found in the previous generation). Razer noted in the past that these drivers have been custom-tuned for balanced audio channels in games, communications and media. So it's easy to decipher what your teammates are screaming to you on Discord, while listening to ABBA and scoring a pentakill in League of Legends.
Simple and functional
There's nothing to scream home about the design of the Kraken Pro V2. It looks like a plastic headset, feels like a plastic headset, and it doesn't come packing pointless LED lighting. As a fan of PC lighting, I'm still lost as to why you'd want glowing ears while you're lost in a virtual world. Thankfully, Razer went for a functional design with the second-gen Kraken Pro. It shares similar styling with other Razer headsets like the Man O' War.
The green-and-white variants of the Kraken Pro V2 look much better than the black, in my opinion. If possible, check out the two alternative options to see if you enjoy the more striking appearance. As well as looking the part, a good gaming headset also has to perform when it matters most. Here's a list of specifications.
- Frequency response: 12 Hz to 28 kHz
- Impedance: 32 Ω @ 1 kHz
- Sensitivity (@1 kHz): 118 dB
- Input power: 30 mW (max)
- Drivers: 50 mm, with Neodymium magnets
- Inner ear cup diameter: 56 mm / 2.2 in
- Connection type: Analog 3.5 mm
- Cable length: 1.3 m / 4.27 ft. plus 2 m / 6.6 ft mic splitter adapter cable
- Approximate weight: 322 g / 0.71 lbs
- Frequency response: 100 Hz to 10 kHz
- Signal-to-noise ratio: > 55 dB
- Sensitivity (@1 kHz): -38 ± 3 dB
- Pick-up pattern: Unidirectional ECM boom
- Analog volume control wheel
- Microphone quick-mute toggle
Unlike the popular Man O' War headset, the cups on the Kraken Pro V2 can only be manipulated to accommodate larger heads. There's a lack of swivel in the joint, which I missed. While there's certainly a lot of plastic involved in the construction, the headset doesn't feel like it will shatter under strain. It's made of really good plastic.
Just like other headsets from Razer, the cups are huge. I had absolutely no issue with throwing the headset on and enjoying an immersive gaming experience with little background noise. Like the Man O' War, it's just so darn comfortable.
Can you hear me now?
To ensure you have maximum control over audio played through the cups and recorded with the retractable microphone, Razer opted to include an in-line control module. You'll find the usual configuration here, including a mute switch and a volume wheel. Coupled with the braided cable protection and matte finish, it's great to see such a premium package with second-gen improvements cost less than $100. That's right, these cans will set you back by only $79.99.
And for the price tag, you get a decent performing microphone. It's not groundbreaking, nor is it crystal clear like a condenser microphone setup, but you're also not investing hundreds of dollars. It's more than up to the task of communications with teammates and even some streaming too, just remember to turn up the input volume. Should you get serious about the latter, you may wish to look at alternative dedicated microphones.
The cups are a different story, however. You'll be thanking the upgrade to 50mm drivers, as you experience sound waves created by the Kraken Pro V2. I could see these being used with an external microphone for more serious setups. Bass can be slightly overpowering at times (and I'm only talking bass-heavy tracks here), but mids are pleasant and overall quality is excellent for this segment.
Should you buy a pair?
If you're on the hunt for a headset that doesn't cost more than $80, I recommend the Razer Kraken Pro V2. Sound quality is excellent, though microphone input is nothing special, and the entire package is solid for the price. As an added bonus, the headset and cups should last a good few years with heavy usage.
I like the headset a lot, but there is room for improvement. The microphone for starters. It's not the worst on the market and it will suffice for gaming, but there are better solutions in more affordable headsets. I would also like a detachable cable for wired headphones, which is something I'm still holding out for.
- Extremely comfortable.
- Premium look and feel.
- Solid sound experience.
- Somewhat uninspiring design.
- Quiet mic requires high input volume.
Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.
Do you think these would be a worth upgrade over my old Turtle Beatch x12's?
Mmmm! Breaded cable protection! Makes it MUCH tastier! 😜
Actually, I got a chance to use these at a friends house, they're not too bad, a little weighty but overall not bad.
Lol it actually does say "breaded". Do you want ants? Because that's how you get ants
I know, it cracked me up! Hey, I needed a smile today 😉
Plus.... there is that awkward diet thing... I try to stay away from breaded & fried stuff lately lol.
These have gotten my attention, but I haven't seen anything that makes me super excited. I think I'd still rather shell out another $20 and get the HyperX Cloud II. It has the most premium build quality of any headset in the pricerange I've seen, and it's incredibly comfortable.
The two negative mean squat to me, so I may just try and suss these out. Providers they don't have an "Aussie" mark up to over $150.
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