Razer has finally introduced a sequel to its Leviathan PC soundbar: The Leviathan V2. As one of the few alternatives out there, the Leviathan V2 provides a streamlined design, two extra passive radiators, customizable RGB lighting, and the inclusion of THX Spatial Audio.
Is that enough to bring PC soundbars into the mainstream? Probably not. But at $250, it’s now not a bad way to equip your PC gaming setup with some better audio.
What About Design
The Razer Leviathan V2 is a 2.1 audio solution, meaning you’ve acquired a pair of speakers squished into one with a stand-alone subwoofer to put under your desk. It’s all intended to take a seat below your monitor, and as lengthy as your monitor has height adjustment, that shouldn’t be too hard.
It’s an attractive little soundbar, too. The drivers are enclosed in the back of an aluminum speaker grille, which is housed in a matte black end with a Razer brand in the center. Compared to the original, Razer has straightened some lines and reduced the accents, making for a cleaner and greater modern look.
That’s especially proper compared to a speaker like the LG Ultragear GP9, which absolutely emphasizes its gaming pedigree with its design. You don’t want to be all-in on Razer gear to appreciate this speaker’s styling.
Along the bottom of the soundbar’s edge, you’ll locate a strip of LED lights, which add a splash of RGB goodness to your desk, in case you didn’t already have enough. It’s pretty restrained, though, presenting just a glow around the base of the speaker, with 16 zones of customizable color, all of which can be customized in Razer Synapse. It’s a pleasant touch. Strange to suppose that the original Leviathan didn’t include lighting like this of some kind.
The soundbar maintains a fairly small profile, too, at simply 19.7 inches wide. Depending on the size and shape of your monitor’s base, though, it might also be difficult to discover a flawlessly flat spot for it to sit. I didn’t have that hassle of plopping it underneath the ultrawide Alienware 34 QD-OLED. In fact, an extra-large or ultrawide monitor is an excellent example of why a soundbar may make extra sense than a pair of computer speakers.
Behind the speaker grille, you’ll find the same speaker setup as before: Two full-range drivers and two tweeters. The drivers themselves are higher this time around 33% bigger full-range cones and tweeters that are one millimeter larger, too.
The Leviathan V2 also benefits from adding a pair of rubber passive radiators in the back, each measuring 135 mm wide.
Lastly, you’ll find two replaceable feet along the bottom, which prop the Leviathan V2 up off the desktop surface. The default ones are flat, but the angled feet are significantly better because they point the audio up at your face instead of at your shoulders.
The stand-alone subwoofer has gotten a similar redesign to the soundbar itself. It’s nonetheless a decent-sized down-firing speaker, however, has grown to 5 and a half inches. The end is now a textured matte black, matching the soundbar. It’s appealing as a lot as a black cube can be.
The rubber feet on the bottom are sturdy too. If your office is without carpet, this thing won’t slip around or easily tip over.
Ports and controls
One of the advantages soundbars have over traditional speakers has always been ease of setup. Even a simple 2.1 system involves more wires hanging across your desk. Setting up the Razer Leviathan V2 is a breeze, much like other PC soundbars.
The soundbar has just three ports on the back. One cable runs down to the subwoofer, the other is for power, and the USB-C port is for connection to your PC. That’s it. The subwoofer doesn’t need its own power, and Razer includes all the cables in the box, including the USB-C to USB-A cord.
the Leviathan V2. The previous model included an optical port, as nicely as a 3.5mm headphone jack. Other competitors, such as the Creative Sound Blaster Katana V2, additionally consist of HDMI ARC, which makes it possible to connect to different systems.
The lack of a headphone jack, in particular, is a shame. While connecting over Bluetooth 5.2 is fast, it’s an overlooked opportunity to provide an excellent DAC (digital audio converter) to enhance the ride for headphone wearers.
The Leviathan V2 takes a similar method to controls, inclusive of simply 5 buttons throughout the front: Power, Bluetooth pairing, quantity up, quantity down, and enter switching. All of that does exactly what you’d expect. The enter switcher is mainly handy if you want to quickly throw audio between your wireless headset and the soundbar.
EQ controls on the soundbar itself, though. The Razer Nommo speakers included an available bass knob that would have been a correct addition to the Leviathan V2. Other selections like the Panasonic SoundSlayer Speaker and Katana V2 even consist of a remote, which the Leviathan lacks.
Razer sidesteps the want for a far-off by way of providing a mobile app, available on iOS and Android. The app approves you to
The minimalist method taken through the Leviathan V2 emphasizes the simplicity of the design. But it’s tough now not to be jealous of the Katana V2, which consists of a forward-facing headphone jack, built-in microphone, digital read-out, HDMI ARC, optional wall mount brackets, and six customizable buttons, and remote control. If you prefer the highest quality customization and control of your audio, the Razer Leviathan V2 is no longer for you.
3D Sound in Fortnite and found myself absorbed by sounds that seemed to come from all around me: Gunfire from the enemy to my right, the shimmering sound of a chest hiding nearby, and a shark splashing in the water up ahead. None of that will feel new if you’re used to playing games with a decent gaming headset, but it feels much more natural and immersive using the Leviathan V2.
when linked over USB, now supporting 45Hz up to 20kHz, ensures you’re now not missing something in the mix. Meanwhile, the stand-alone subwoofer provides the punchy bass that systems like the LG GP9 simply can’t. There are lots of volumes here, too – extra than enough to fill a massive room, and then some.
With music, though, the results are much less impressive. The mix feels messy, possibly because each unit of speakers is pushed properly up in opposition to one another. The stereo image just isn’t as clear and separated as I wanted it to be, especially when you compare it to a set of preferred 2.1 speakers like the Logitech G560. It’s excellent what simply a few inches of space on both sides can do to widen the soundstage.
THX Spatial Audio, which the soundbar proudly promotes, is Razer’s solution to this problem. The feature makes use of beamforming to trick your ears into wondering if you’re listening to greater channels than you really are. Some of this is subjective, however, I observed that it helped in a lot of the songs I tested it on. The wall of sound in George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord” sounds intricate and pronounced, whilst the delicate bass grooves and percussion of Thundercat’s “Uh Uh” actually come to life.
In nearly all cases, I preferred to have THX Spatial Audio grow to become on. Just the same, though, I simply assume a decent pair of 2.1 pc speakers will have provided a better song listening experience.
But if you want a pair of notable gaming speakers, you won’t be disappointed via Leviathan V2. It’s simply now not a product for audiophiles. That’s especially genuine when you dig into some of Razer’s EQ presets available in the Synapse app. They have been all a long way too strong for my tastes. The Music setting, for example, removed to go of the bass and lower mids, whilst the Game putting left in-game music sounding pitiful.
Fortunately, you can set up a customized setting available to set up an extra nuanced EQ that fits your preferences. Either way, there’s no way to switch between presets without pulling up the Synapse app, so you’re possibly great off leaving it on the flat “THX” preset.