After a first pair of true wireless headphones launched last year, Razer is hitting hard with its Hammerhead True Wireless Pro, in-ear headphones with active noise reduction. What to do against the leaders of the sector? This is what we will see in this full test.
When you think of true wireless headphones, the names of Sony , Apple or Sennheiser quickly come to mind. Razer entered this market in October 2019 with its Hammerhead True Wireless . A year later, new headphones were launched by the brand specializing in gaming, the Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro .
Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro Datasheet
This test was performed with headphones provided to us by Razer.
Comfortable headphones to use
The Hammerhead True Wireless Pro differ in several ways from the earliest version of Razer’s headphones. At the level of the case already, the new models partly take over the format of the Apple AirPods Pro. We will therefore have a case lengthwise with headphones that are stored vertically in the locations provided. The case is matte plastic with simply the Razer logo engraved on the cover.
At the level of the hinge, Razer has designed a mechanism strong enough, without too much slack to fear any fragility. Note also that the case can be opened quite easily with one hand, using the thumb. In addition, a small notch lets slide a finger or a nail to open the cover rather easily.
Still on the case, we will find a USB-C socket on the lower edge and an indicator light on the outside, which will indicate the state of the battery. Note also that with its rounded edges, the case of the Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro is not designed to stand upright. However, it is compact enough to be easily stowed in a trouser pocket.
Regarding the headphones themselves, here too Razer has changed its formula. Unlike the early models, the Hammerhead True Wireless Pro are not open-fit headphones, but in-ear headphones. In other words, the ears do not sit at the entrance to the ear canal, but enter it with the help of ear tips. And while we’re talking about tips, we might as well welcome the manufacturer’s proposal. Razer didn’t just supply three pairs of earbuds with its headphones, but seven.
This gives you six pairs of silicone ear tips – each with three different sizes and two different stiffnesses – and one pair of memory foam ear tips. Logically, the more rigid the tips are, the better the passive insulation and the more flexible they are, the better the comfort. More than ever, we recommend that you try the different pairs – both size and stiffness – to find the most suitable for your listening: the sound quality and comfort will only be enhanced.
Apart from the eartips, the Hammerhead True Wireless Pro take a cotton swab shape, like the Apple AirPods. You can also see the microphones for noise reduction on each rod. This format has the advantage of allowing good comfort of use with well-maintained headphones, the rod passing between the tragus and the antitragus outside the ear. I was able to wear the headphones for four consecutive hours – an entire battery cycle – without being embarrassed.
Note, however, that headphones are not the most discreet. However, contrary to what some Razer’s marketing images might suggest, the manufacturer’s logo, visible on each earpiece, is not illuminated. It’s always a win for discretion.
Finally, note that the headphones are IPX4 certified and are therefore resistant to sweat, rain or splashing, but cannot be immersed in water.
Convenient noise reduction, but not breathtaking
To connect the Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro to an Android smartphone, simply open the case and the headphones will go into pairing mode. Compatible with the Google Fast Pair solution , the headphones will then offer you the connection when your smartphone is nearby. On iOS, you just need to go to your iPhone’s Bluetooth settings to see the headphones appear.
By default, the headphone controls are pretty straightforward. On the left or on the right, one press will pause the music, two presses will go to the next track and three presses will return to the previous track. In addition, a long press for two seconds will activate noise reduction, environment mode or listening in passive mode.
Finally, three presses followed by a two-second press will activate the gaming mode, which we will come back to later. Overall, these gestures are fairly well recognized by headphones. Be careful, however, the single press must be prolonged to be recognized, otherwise the music will not pause or start again.
To go further with these different touch controls, it is possible to use Razer’s Hammerhead True Wireless application, available on iOS and Android. It will allow you to modify the keys if you want, for example, to have two presses to pause or to deactivate a gesture. However, you cannot use the headphones to change the volume, you will necessarily have to use the buttons on your smartphone. The headphones can also pause or play automatically when you take them off or back on. If they are not worn for ten minutes, they will also turn off automatically.
The application will also allow you to manage the active noise reduction of the headphones. In fact, in addition to passive isolation, Razer has integrated active noise reduction into its Hammerhead True Wireless Pro. This will be effective in suppressing dull noises like the roar of cars in the distance or the sounds of a fan. However, it will have a much harder time filtering out higher frequencies or more punctual sounds like the voices of people around you, the sound of a passing car, or rain on an umbrella. Don’t expect performance to match the Sony WF-1000XM4, Apple AirPods Pro, Jabra Elite 85T or Bose QC Earbuds , Razer’s headphones are clearly below.
Among the other functions offered by Razer in its application, we can cite the choice between two modes: game mode, for low latency and quick connect mode, to reconnect directly to the last synchronized device. While it is true that game mode significantly reduces Bluetooth latency, it is still quite noticeable. It must be said that latency is inherent in Bluetooth connectivity. It’s less and less noticeable in videos – most apps compensating for this delay in audio on video – but it is especially so in games. However, in the absence of democratization of the aptX Low Latency codec, this is a feature that should make life slightly easier for gamers.
Note also that the two headphones are independent and can be used alone one like the other. Thus, the earpiece that will remain in your ear, while the other is stored, will play mono sound with both stereo tracks.
Regarding the Bluetooth connection again, note that the Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro can only be connected to one source at the same time. The connection is stable and I haven’t had any major loss of connection. Note, however, a few small connection jumps when I had my smartphone in my pocket, with my hand over it, but the headphones adapted quickly.
Excellent sound quality
Regarding the audio part, the Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro are equipped with 10mm drivers. The headphones are also compatible with the most common Bluetooth codecs on the market, namely SBC and AAC. They therefore do not offer neither LDAC nor aptX or its derivatives.
For its headphones, Razer has partnered with THX. Logical, since the manufacturer bought the former division of Lucasfilm , responsible for sound effects, in 2016. By default, it is also the “THX” presets which is selected as listening mode. on headphones, but others are available, as we will see later.
To test the sound quality of the Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro, I connected them to a Oppo Find X2 Pro and used files stored on Spotify, in “very high” quality, therefore equivalent to 320 kbps.
The first thing that strikes you about the sound quality of headphones is the bass. It must be said that the partnership with THX suggested a sound very oriented towards low frequencies. On Billie Eilish’s Bad Guy , the bass fills the ears particularly well. Round and powerful, they are particularly effective for headphones of this format. The mids are not abandoned, however, and the singer’s voice is also heard very well.
On Come Away With Me , singer Norah Jones’ voice is also very detailed, without however erasing the piano chords or the cymbals in the background. The same goes for Michael Jackson’s Thriller , reproduced with amazing sonic precision by the Hammerhead True Wireless Pro. The highs are present, as is the bass line, without either overtaking the other.
Even on the sonic dynamics, Razer’s headphones offer a very decent result. This is especially audible on the crescendo at the start of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5. The soundstage might benefit from being a little more ample, but it’s hard to find any real flaws in the sound quality of the headphones.
As we have seen, the Hammerhead True Wireless application offers several sound equalization functions. In addition to the THX preset, you can also choose from four other modes: amplified, enhanced bass, vocal or enhanced clarity. Finally, the application also offers a mode “Individell” which, in addition to a translation problem, will allow you to select the sound signature yourself thanks to a ten-band equalizer. Overall, however, THX mode is sufficient for the vast majority of music types and we recommend that you keep it on by default.
To pick up the voice during calls, the headphones are fitted with two microphones at the end of the rod. Unfortunately, even in a calm environment, your voice will be particularly compressed for the person you are talking to. Headphones also have a hard time filtering out punctual noises, for example if you type on the keyboard while chatting.
Finally, in a noisy environment, in a street with rain for example, the Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro will manage to filter out ambient noise… at the expense of voice capture. During my tests, my interviewer told me that with compression and noise reduction, my voice was “on the verge of comprehension” .
Too limited autonomy
As for autonomy, Razer does not specify the capacity of the battery on board its headphones or in the case. Nevertheless, the brand communicates on four hours of use with the headphones alone and sixteen additional hours with the case.
For my part, putting the volume to 80% with noise canceling on, I was able to use the Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro for 4:19 before the right earbud ran out of battery, followed, 27 minutes later, from the left earpiece. It will therefore have taken 4:46 before completely depleting the battery of both headphones. This is a good result given the figure Razer reported, but many headphones now exceed 6 hours of battery life with noise canceling.
For recharging, once the headphones are in the case, it will only take an hour and four minutes before a full charge. This is also a very good score, especially since the headphones are able to recover half of their battery in just 20 minutes. Note, however, that the right earphone does not seem able to charge to 100%, the charge stopping when it reaches 98%.
Finally, on the charging side of the case, Razer provides a USB-A to USB-C cable, but no power supply. You will therefore need to use another USB charger such as the one on your smartphone or the USB socket on your computer. The case is not compatible with induction charging.
Price and availability of Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro
Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro headphones are already commercially available. They were launched at a price of 209.99 euros, but they can now be found for less than 160 euros.