Razer is one of the biggest names in the world for high-end gaming hardware. However, that’s certainly not the limit of their product range, having created everything from a toaster to mobile phones. Of course, today I’ll be focusing on their latest headphones, which promise class-leading performance in more ways than one. The Razer Opus are their flagship headphones, so they do come in at a premium price. Of course, Razer is no stranger to some more expensive hardware, and that’s still around the same price as their Nari Ultimate headset, BlackShark V2 Pro and the Kaira Pro.
The Razer Opus may cost about the same as other Razer headsets, but that’s where the similarities end. These are more purpose-built audiophile headphones rather than just purely a gaming headset. They’re THX Certified, promising highly accurate audio and low distortion. There’s also active noise cancellation (ANC) technology, which will help remove a lot of ambient noise, blocking out traffic, the sound of the bus/train/plane you’re on, general background noises, etc. Of course, it’s not all just fancy features, as the underlying hardware is pretty important too. You’ll find a pair of 40mm dynamic drivers, running at 12 Ω (1 kHz) and with a frequency response of 20 Hz – 20 kHz. There’s also an omnidirectional MEMS microphone, which runs at -38 dBV/Pa (1 kHz). You can check out the in-depth specifications here.
- THX Certified Headphones: Tested and optimized by experts in cinematic audio immersion at THX Ltd., the headset presents a rich, balanced soundstage for all your movies, music and gaming
- Advanced active noise cancellation (ANC) technology: Whether you’re watching a movie or rocking out to your favorite track, shut out all distractions with advanced ANC tech which detects and nullifies all incoming noise
- Engineered for comfort: With plush leatherette memory foam ear cushions, a well-balanced weight and snug clamping force, you can keep the headphones on throughout long commutes and remain in supreme comfort
- Ambient Mode: Press the Power Button to instantly toggle between ANC On, ANC Off, and Ambient Mode, which amplifies ambient noise for a heightened sense of awareness—useful when crossing the road or to simply get a sense of your surroundings
- Auto Pause/Auto Play: Removing or resting these earphones around your neck pauses the audio. When you’re ready to continue, simply pop your headset back on and get right back into your movie or music
What Razer Had to Say
“Introducing our wireless THX® Certified Headphones equipped with advanced active noise cancellation (ANC) technology. Experience pure, high-fidelity sound with zero distractions for all your entertainment wherever you go.” – Razer
Packaging & Accessories
The front of the box is not the typical design we usually see from Razer. The black and green “gamer” looks been replaced with metallic fonts, soft grey tones, and a more professional look overall. You can see the headset and that it has THX Certification, Bluetooth, AAC Codec Support and SBC Codec Support.
Around the back, things are a little more technical, with details about the included carry case, 3.5mm jack, and the ANC with Ambient Mode.
Open up the box, and you can see it’s well presented, with the headset on the right in its carry case.
On the left, you can see a lovely statement from Min-Liang Tan, the Razer CEO.
The carry case is fantastic, it’s not too big, and while it has some flex to it, it’s pretty tough too, so it should absorb some serious knocks and bumps easily enough.
Open it up, and you’ll find the headset neatly stored, as well as a small pocket and a bag for the other components.
On its own, the case is nice and light, and it has a nice soft interior to keep the headset in excellent condition.
Included in the box, you’ll find a handy Airline Adaptor so you can use these with in-flight entertainment systems. There’s also a small pouch with cables in it.
A USB cable can be used for charging the headset, and a 4-pole 3.5mm cable that can be used on any compatible audio device; mobile, console, hi-fi, etc.
A Closer Look & Performance
The headset looks very understated from the moment you take it out of the box. Personally, I rather like that too, especially given how often I deal with gaming headsets that are quite vibrant and visually aggressive by comparison. Razer is making clear efforts to differentiate this from their gaming range and go straight for a more professional and serious approach.
Branding has been kept tasteful, too, no bright green here, just a crisp silver logo on the side.
It says THX on the back of each ear cup, but frankly, I’m not sure why, as it said so on the box, it’s not like I’ll forget. Obviously, the headset has a folding design, making it fit in the much smaller carry case.
Fold those ear cups out, and they snap into place easily enough, thanks to a metal friction clip on each side. However, even at their full size, I find the headset is quite slender, which bodes well for when you’re sitting in a cramped airline seat and don’t want it rubbing against the seat when you’re half asleep.
The right ear cup has all of the built-in controls and ports. Here you can see a USB C port for charging and a 3.5mm audio jack.
Below that, there’s a power button. However, it’s also the Bluetooth pairing button (hold when powering on) and ANC mode switch (tap).
Below that, you have three media controls. These take care of volume, skipping, playing, pausing, answering the phone, that kind of thing; it’s all pretty straight forward really.
Since they’re designed for travelling, Razer has taken ergonomics seriously. The ear cups can be rotated inwards, allowing you to wear them around your neck between uses.
The ear cups also twist a little in the opposite direction, ensuring you can get a clean fit around your ears every time, distributing the force/weight of the headset more evenly too.
The mounts are recessed into the ear cups, allowing them to sit flush and reduce the headset’s overall size.
However, there’s a good range of pivot, which again helps them fit around your ears a little better.
Another nice detail is the overall durability. The headset is nice and flexible, but actually, you can bend the crap out of it, really, and it always just springs back to true every time.
The ear cup padding is gorgeous, and while there’s not an excessive amount of it, the overall lightweight design of the headset means it’s more than enough.
It’s a memory foam padding, but it creates an airtight seal that effectively cushions the headset because of that soft leather finish.
There’s a good amount of space in here too, and despite having a big head and big ears, I didn’t feel any hot spots after extended wear.
The sliders on the side allow for plenty of adjustment, and even my big head didn’t require the sliders to be maxed out, so it should fit just about anyone!
Overall, it fits as well as any headset could. It’s remarkable how comfortable this thing is!
As you can see, the ear cups are a closed-back design. However, it’s more than that, as they’re designed to really isolate the sound in and out, so while the ANC will do the heavy lifting, they’ll block a lot of noise passively anyway. However, the ANC is very powerful. Since I can’t bloody travel anywhere at the moment. I cranked up some airplane noises on YouTube and turned up the bass till my speakers were making my desk vibrate. I then planted my elbows on the desk, and it did a good job of simulating how you can feel and hear the plane noises (an outstanding job, actually). With the ANC off, the results were actually excellent; the passive isolation is strong.
However, with ANC on, I could still feel the sound vibrations, but it sounded like nothing more than a small desk fan. Quite impressive, really, as the sound from the speakers was likely scaring the hell out of the people living next door (seriously). There’s an ambient mode too, so you can hear your surroundings, allowing you to enjoy a conversation, hear some announcement for your train, etc., without having to remove the headset or stop your music.
The Opus Headphones are Bluetooth, that’s the primary mode for using them, and easily the best way too. You can use the 3.5mm cable too, of course, but that’s more like a backup should you be sat on a plane or want to pair it up to your ancient iPod or something. There’s a Razer Audio app for mobile, which you should download, as it allows you to change a few things.
Select your headphones in the app.
It’ll likely tell you there’s an update, and it did. You MUST have the headset at 75% charge to apply it though, which pissed me off. As if 60% battery and being plugged into a power bank wasn’t enough… oh well. by the time I had a cup of tea, it was at 100% at least.
There’s a switch for turning on THX mode. However, with it off, you can choose from four preset EQ modes. They all sound great actually, I’m sure they have their uses, but honestly, leaving it on THX mode sounded the absolute best to me.
There are some options here to enable the audio pause mode too. It’s actually quite a cool feature, and if you take the headphones off and wear them around your neck, it pauses your media. When you put the headset back on, it’ll resume, nice and simple, but it works well enough that I’ll leave it enabled.