Razer steps confidently into the next-gen arena with its Kaira wireless headset range, ditching the rather in-your-face deep sea predator-esque naming conventions of the Kraken, Thresher and Hammerhead console offerings in favour of a much more relaxed branding that marries well with a sleek, light and almost subtle design that, thankfully, gives off less of a straight-up gamer vibe than what we've perhaps come to expect from the company in the past.
Right off the bat, the Razer Kaira Pro impresses with a flexible, comfortable feel that's snug and unobtrusive during extended play sessions. In fact, of all the headsets we've tested on Series X recently, this is absolutely our favourite in terms of how it fits and sits, with those FlowKnit memory foam ear cushions and a surprisingly light frame providing long-lasting comfort that remains breathable and cool, even during our longest and most stressful Warzone sessions. There's well placed padding on the metal reinforced headband here, a headband which also clicks satisfyingly through its various positional settings as you adjust it, and the ear cups are rotatable through 180 degrees giving you plenty of flexibility and allowing them to lie comfortably flat on your chest when you take them off for a breather.
Out of the box, the first thing you'll need to do before pairing your Kaira Pro with your console - in exactly the same simple way you'd pair a controller - is download the headset's user-friendly Xbox app and get yourself hooked up to a mac or PC in order to grab the latest firmware to make sure you're fully up to date and ready to roll. Having the app on console here, rather than having to switch to your phone or some other screen is a great idea, with the Series X's ability to jump instantaneously between games and apps enabling you to play with settings and adjust sound levels to your liking with minimal fuss as you play.
In terms of those settings, things aren't too in-depth, but you can toggle between a handful of decent pre-programmed EQ modes - default, bass and FPS - as well as set up your own custom levels across low, low-mid, mid, mid-high and high frequencies in order to get things sounding just how you like. There are also various mic options, allowing you to switch between conference, broadcast, boost and default modes, and the headset's RGB snake logos, located on the outside of the ear cups, can be lit up in various colours and rhythms - or switched off entirely - from here.
Physical controls are spread across both left and right ear cups on the Razer Kaira Pro - making for a slightly less confusing and crowded mass of buttons than that found on the likes of the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 - and give you access to chat/game volume mixing, master volume control, a pairing button which also toggles your EQ presets, Bluetooth 5.0 switch, mic mute and a nice little built-in mic that enables you to dispose of the included supercardioid boom if you're using the headset with your phone or other portable device.
Indeed, one of the two functions that sets this Pro version apart from its cheaper vanilla version - the other being that funky programmable RGB lighting - is the ability to connect to Bluetooth devices at the same time as being hooked up to your console, enabling you to make a call or listen to music as you play your games. It's a really nice feature and one that meshes well with this headset's sleek and light design as these are absolutely something we'd happily wear out of the house to use with our phone or a portable gaming device. They still have a touch of the Razer gamer style about them, most notably in those splashes of green trim, but they're so much less bulky than the norm and really do feel light and comfortable enough that we don't feel like we're wearing gaming specific gear outside.
Of course, none of this means much if the actual performance isn't up to snuff and, in this regard, the Razer Kaira Pro equips itself well, especially for what is positioned as a mid-range headset. You'll get a solid twenty hours of battery life on a single charge here and the 50mm Triforce Titanium drivers hidden under those super comfy FlowKnit earpads provide impressively well-rounded sound with clear separation between audio frequencies, resulting in a crisp and clean performance across all the games we played for testing. The preset FPS mode does a fantastic job of picking out nearby enemy footsteps, distant fire and airstrikes flying overhead in Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War, and switching to bass boost gives Forza Horizon 4's great big beasting engines and pumping soundtrack plenty of meaty depth. As we already mentioned, all of these settings are fully adjustable in the app and, overall, there's great performance here with plenty in the way of customisation to get things sounding just how you like.
The detachable supercardioid mic also provides a robust and clear level of vocal audio with no discernible muffling or distortion, although it does have a slight tendency to pick up on unwanted background noise from time to time, and the built in mic - although a little more on the tinny side of things - does a stand-up job should you prefer not to have the boom connected or are using your headset for calls or on-the-go.
One thing we should note at this point is that the Razer Kaira Pro does have a mic-monitoring function, something that many gamers desire in a headset, however, it's a little bit finnicky to access out of the box and could do with a clearer guide or an update as to how it functions. You'll need to jump into the Razer Xbox app, head to mic settings and click "listen" in order to enable this function but remember not to click done when you're finished as this will toggle it off again. It's a small problem, and one's that's easily remedied, but we thought we should clear up any confusion as official documentation states the function exists and as things stand it's pretty hard to figure out just how it operates.
Overall, though, the Razer Kaira Pro is a sleek, stylish and very comfortable headset with excellent functionality and an impressive level of sound performance all packed in for a highly reasonable price tag. This is a headset we'll continue to choose over others whilst playing on Series X for the simple fact it's just so light and comfortable, that app is so easy to access for fine-tuning, and being able to simultaneously listen to music or make a call while we decimate our foes in team deathmatch is really just the icing on the cake. This one comes highly recommended.
For more info on our current recommended headsets for Xbox Series X, check out our list of the best available right now! Have you bought the Razer Kaira Pro? Let us know your thoughts on it down below.
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