Razer Piranha Gaming Communicator

Written by Joe Martin

February 9, 2008 | 07:32

Tags: #headphones #headset #mic #microphone #music #piranha #skype #teamspeak #voice #voip

Companies: #razer

Can you hear me?

Thankfully, what the Piranha lacks in comfort it compensates for in audio performance and although the headset was hurting my head, it was soothing my ears. I tested the Piranha with a selection of audio sources and covered pretty much every musical style I could bear to listen to.

In all of the music tests, the sound came through clearly and fully without any of the muted tones or tinny qualities that may be delivered on lesser headphones. It didn’t matter if it was Regina Spektor, Black Sabbath or Imogen Heap, the sound was always praise-worthy.

When it came round to gaming, the performance was about the same and the Piranha headset rendered sounds across beautifully in both Pirates of the Burning Sea and Portal. Plus, I sneaked in some Team Fortress 2 when nobody was looking and they sounded pretty good in that too.

No particular aspect of the sound stands out as fantastic, but the overall effect is enjoyable and if I had to choose a single word to describe the sound then I’d choose Unified and Balanced. Then you’d tell me that that’s two words and I’d slap you and tell you that it’s my article and I make the damn rules, OK?

Razer Piranha Gaming Communicator Conclusions Razer Piranha Gaming Communicator Conclusions
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The microphone for the Piranha is quite good too and although it seemed a little short to me at first, in practice it was just the right size. The rubbery partition in the middle of the mic stalk is a good little feature and ensures you don’t accidentally bend the wrong bit or snap the microphone off.

The uni-directional microphone turned out to be as sensitive as it was needed to be and the usual little bit of volume tweaking made it perfect for online gaming. The only real weakpoint for the microphone in fact is the dongle, which has a microphone mute switch on it that was a little bit to flimsy and easy to turn on or off by moving.

Razer Piranha Gaming Communicator Conclusions Razer Piranha Gaming Communicator Conclusions
Click to enlarge

Conclusions

The Razer Piranha is a worthy follow-up to the Razer Barracuda in some regards, though not in others. While the sound performance is clearly above-average at worst and the design is interesting to look at, my experience with the Piranhas turned out to be almost as painful as an encounter with some Pygocentrus nattereri.

The other insurmountable problem to get over with the Piranhas is the staggering cost of the headset – £53.39 in the UK or $69.99 in the US! At those prices, I’d personally demand a little bit more than the Piranha is offering.

When it comes down it, the Piranha is a half-decent headset with excellent bark, but awful bite and if you’re wondering why I’m using a dog-based metaphor instead of a fish-based one then I’m afraid I can’t really offer an adequate explanation – maybe something fishy is going on...

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