Jeff [email protected] December 3, 2020 7:00 PMGames
The new Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro earbuds. Image Credit: Razer
The holiday tech-product refresh season continues with Razer updating its take on the wireless earbuds. The Razer Hammerhead True Wireless Pro Earbuds are available now for $200. For that price, you get the familiar dual buds and charging case that is standard for this trendy style of personal-audio equipment. Razer is also including active noise cancellation and what it claims is low-latency wireless sound. That latter feature is a welcome addition — especially when it comes to video and gaming.
“The Hammerhead True Wireless Pro earbuds are a superior mobile accessory for everyday users and mobile gamers who demand quality audio and customizable fit,” Razer peripherals-marketing boss John Moore said. “Users will enjoy incredible fit, premium audio, and undisturbed low latency sound for movies, music, games, as well as voice and video calls — all in a tiny package that fits in your pocket.”
Other features include THX Certified tuning and improved touch-enabled controls. But it’s really the latency I’m curious about.
Razer is a gaming brand, but laggy Bluetooth audio can create a poor experience during gameplay. And standard Bluetooth using the SBC and AAC codecs is traditionally laggy. There are newer codecs like Qualcomm’s Apt-X, but Razer isn’t using Apt-X. Instead, the company says that it created a “customized Bluetooth 5.1 connection.” You can activate that protocol by engaging the Game Mode option. This reduces the latency to a very acceptable 60ms. Razer notes this is 50% faster than other wireless earbuds that rely on SBC or AAC.
Bluetooth 5.1 does offer improved caching specifically to reduce latency, so this could work. And it might even be preferable on Apple devices that don’t support Apt-X.