The Razer Barracuda Pro could be the one wireless gaming headset to rule them all. Offering dual wireless/Bluetooth connectivity, a solid and robust design, built-in, unobtrusive mics, good battery life, and that sweet, sweet Razer-pedigree - on paper, at least, it does seem to be the complete package.
Never shy at throwing more entries into the best gaming headset space, Razer is clearly pushing the Barracuda Pro as a one-stop, solution to our multiplatform times and it could be just the ticket for those looking for such a one-and-done hit to cover their bases.
Design & Features
Design: Over-ear, closed back
Type: 2.4Ghz wireless (USB-C dongle); Bluetooth
Microphone: Dual Integrated MEMS Beamforming Noise-Cancelling
Compatibility: PC, PlayStation, Switch, Mobile
Impedance: 32 ohm
Frequency response: 20Hz - 20kHz
Tested on PC, PS5, and mobile.
As with the original Barracuda X (this has since got a revamp to go along with the full release of the full lineup this year) from 2020, the Barracuda Pro seems to have adopted the design that was first seen on the Opus headphones, and that has now been rolled out (or at least influenced) on to the designs of the Kaira PS5 headset and Xbox Series X headset families. That results in a pleasing design with rounded cups and no harsh lines or overtly 'gamer-y' design flairs. This really could be your pair of all-black headphones for the commute.
The stainless steel headband feels incredibly strong and sturdy, while the cushioning is well-placed and comfy, and there is a good amount of movement to the cups without them feeling loose - like my Kaira Pro for PlayStation did, unfortunately. Adorning those all-black cups are the usual handful of controls: a volume dial, power button, mic mute button, USB-C port, the two built-in mics, and the Razer SmartSwitch button - this allows you to toggle between HyperSpeed wireless and Bluetooth connections, and also cycle through the ANC settings.
Inside, the drivers are almost the same as the BlackShark predecessor: the 50mm Razer TriForce Bio-Cellulose are almost identical but should, in theory, offer something slightly richer. I'll admit, the difference, if any, is slight between the two when I did some back-and-forth testing between the headsets. They both offered very rich, well-rounded sound; but the BlackShark V2 Pro will offer that for significantly less money.
The headline is that the Razer Barracuda Pro does indeed offer that same excellent Razer audio quality we've come to know and love. It does it to a very similar level to that of the BlackShark V2 and V2 Pro, and this extends to other media too: I'm happy to use the Barracuda Pro for music, podcasts, and meetings at work as the audio is still excellent. I'm listening to the Arcane soundtrack with the Barracuda Pros as I write this review, for example, and it's a delight.
In gaming specifically, the headset's pedigree did indeed come to the fore. Hearing footsteps and enemy gunfire in Apex Legends was immediate and easy to discern; my units' noises, attacks, and combat encounters were all presented to me beautifully in Dawn of War III and Red Alert Remastered, and the narration of the Strange Brigade commentator was crisp and cut above the in-game noise while I puzzled along with friends on the PS5. What also stood out were the environmental noises in Red Dead Redemption 2 which were wonderfully subtle, but still penetratad across the soundscape. From those high-end lilts to rumbly basses and crunchy mid-tones, it's all a joy and the same Razer audio excellence. You also get the option to tinker through Synapse and further opportunities with THX Spatial Sound on PC that all Razer headsets offer you.
One short fall in performance is the mic: built-in mics just don't cut it compared to boom mics. And we all know it. However, while it doesn't stop the headset performing as one of the best wireless gaming headsets I've tested, it is worth bearing in mind if you are going to rely on it a lot. However, given this is really pushing hard to be a do-it-all, multi-platform gaming headset and pair of headphones for mobile and travel use, the concept of going for the built-in mics is one that is sound and makes sense.
Elsewhere, the fit is comfortable for long periods of time, and the weight of the headset (340g / 0.75lbs) also means it feels stable and present, but not a pain to wear. However, I do think I prefer the material cups and comfort of the BlackShark V2 and V2 Pro (my previous PC gaming headsets), but that's a personal preference and these memory foam ones are supremely comfortable. Throw in a good battery life too - I have only had to charge the set once since getting it out of the box weeks ago - and the performance is starting to get fully excellent.
Caveats are small-ish but notable. First, the ANC is just OK. I wouldn't recommend relying on it when gaming either - after getting put off by the function early on in my testing, I barely used it ever again; definitely not when gaming inside, and rarely when out and about listening to music etc. Secondly, that mic performance is a bit weak. Fully functional;? Yes. Absolutely belting or as good as a boom? Very much no.
Should you buy the Razer Barracuda Pro?
This is a great do-it-all headset that could be some people's singular solution to gaming and media audio across all their devices. I just wish it wasn't so expensive in order to offer that. At $250/£250, anyone looking for a wireless gaming headset for PC that can still offer PlayStation functionality should absolutely look at the BlackShark V2 Pro for a comfortably smaller price tag ($180/£150).
Nonetheless, the Baracuda Pro headset has replaced my BlackShark V2 Pro - at least for the time being - and has established itself as my go-to headset on PC and mobile, as well as one that can stand in on any (almost) of my platforms.
If you've been after something to welcome in the new generation of PlayStation console, and use it on a PC and Switch, and also use it as your mobile headphones, then the Barracuda Pro can genuinely offer a quality one-and-done headset solution for multi-platform use and set to meet all those needs.
How we tested the Razer Barracuda Pro
The Razer Barracuda Pro became my go-to headset for all my platforms, and for work as well as play for weeks on need with multiple hours of use every day. I used it for work meetings, zoom calls, and socialising online, as well as in many hours of gaming on PC across games like Red Dead Redemption 2, Dawn of War 3, and Total War: Troy. Elsewhere I played many hours of Watch Dogs Legion and Strange Brigade on PS5, and also took the headset out and about on walks and travel, and used it for music every day.