During my time at E3, it was easy to read that a lot of the headset manufacturers are starting to take a different approach to their designs, incorporating a more modern aesthetic and aiming for budget price points to attract new consumers. Razer is an outlier from this trend, however, doubling down on the enthusiast market by unveiling a new premium headset for both PC and console users. Retailing for $250 USD, the Razer Thresher Ultimate is Razer’s most ambitious Headset yet and packages in a wealth of features including powerful Dolby 7.1 surround sound.

Inside the box, users will uncover the wireless Thresher Ultimate itself, a central hub, the included stand attachment, two micro-USB cables, and an optical cable that plugs into the user’s preferred platform between the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Setting up the headset was simple and hassle free on both PlayStation 4 and PC, only requiring a couple of steps each before the user is able to lose themselves in their favourite game or piece of music.

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When consumers dish out the cash for a premium product like the Razer Thresher Ultimate, they expect the best quality possible and Razer is more than glad to deliver. Beginning with design, the headset is smartly engineered with two headbands—one made of metal for stability and durability, while the other is made of soft cushioning for comfort. While the metal band remains rigid, the cushioning is flexible and conforms to the user’s head with no need for adjustments. The bulky 50mm drivers look as if they would weigh down the set and place unneeded pressure on top of the user’s head, but after wearing the headset for a 4-5 hour gaming session, I can safely say they fit naturally and feel comfortable. Most of that comfort comes from the light and plush leatherette ear cushions, which also accommodate for users who need glasses by providing a small indentation in the cushion where the frames would sit.

Moving onto the technical side of things, the Razer Thresher Ultimate is a wireless headset that works off of a 2.4 GHz radio frequency, delivering a lag-free experience up to 12 metres away from the hub. Users can control all of that crisp audio by using the on-headset dials, which monitor both master volume and chat volume. The headset also guarantees a long battery life of up of 16 hours off a single charge and can replenish all that lost power in less than four. The retractable mic is also a quality inclusion, delivering clear audio to your party of friends in-game and in third-party applications such as Discord. The only nit-pick negative I have is that I wish both the power button and surround sound could be controlled via the headset instead of the hub, that way users wouldn’t have to get up from their seats just to enable one of the key features of the product.

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To test the Razer Thresher Ultimate, I decided to explore a different range of games from my normal offerings. I’ve always wanted to investigate the lore and mythos behind the Metro series, but the games never quite hooked me. After Isolating my ears from everything but this dreary and decrepit world, I found myself fully immersed in the survival/stealth action of Metro: 2033 Redux. The graphics may not have been all that impressive, but the sound was life-like. Every footstep through water or on top of cold concrete was distinctive, the impact of every round fired sent echoes through the deep tunnels and the screams of the creatures made me feel a rush of adrenaline as I ran for safety. Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End was another great game to experience thanks to the Thresher Ultimate’s surround sound, delivering the force and power of a blockbuster cinema experience in the comfort of my own home.

Razer’s Thresher Ultimate headset is a great purchase for a user looking for the benefits and build quality that comes from a premium priced headset. It may not have a huge compatibility range or the accessories that other premium sets have, but I have yet to experience a disconnect issue or a compatibility problem with any of the platforms the Thresher Ultimate advertises. Competition in this bracket isn’t as broad as other ranges, but the players within are some of the best-established headset brands the market has to offer. The Razer Thresher Ultimate fits in comfortably with these fierce competitors as a strong contender for consumers looking to upgrade their gaming headset experience.