I really appreciate the convenience that Bluetooth tries to add to our lives. After all, it’s a unified wireless standard that supports almost every device, making it really easy to find an accessory, like a headset or earbuds, that works with whatever you have. But for all the convenience it brings, Bluetooth devices can sometimes be a hassle, so I was looking for a better solution last year.
Enter the Razer Barracuda X, a wireless headset that connects to a USB-C dongle. It has become one of my favorite tech purchases ever, even after a year of use. And now thanks Black Fridayyou can get them for just $50, instead of $100.
Razer Barracuda X
The Razer Barracuda X is a headset that uses a custom wireless connection and a USB-C dongle to connect to all your devices. It also has a sleek and comfortable design, and now it’s 50% off.
My problems with Bluetooth
As much as I love Bluetooth, after using wireless Bluetooth earbuds and headphones for a while, I got tired of switching between devices with them. Many Bluetooth earbuds support multiple devices and supposedly make it easier to switch between them, but I found it was always more complicated than their respective companies let on.
My two primary Bluetooth devices (my laptop and my phone) are almost always on and close to each other, and it was just easier to turn off Bluetooth on one device when I wanted to use the other. This is a hassle to do every time, and it can sometimes take a while for Bluetooth devices to connect. Since I regularly test out PC review units, I always have to pair the earbuds with a new machine when I want to use them.
The Razer Barracuda X connects to a small USB Type-C dongle that you can plug into any device that supports USB audio.
Then there’s the fact that Bluetooth and Windows don’t get along very well. For a long time, Windows was terrible at managing Bluetooth audio devices, so you’d have two output devices: one that was used when you listened exclusively to something, and another that could be used for tasks that required a microphone. There was also a huge gap in audio quality when switching between these “two” devices, which made it really jarring to use a Bluetooth headset.
Windows 11 has improved the handling of Bluetooth audio devices, but the available bandwidth for Bluetooth audio is still pretty poor, especially when making calls. I had to have a wired headset for my PC and a Bluetooth headset or earbuds for my phone. I usually had both, with the earbuds being better for hot weather and the headset being better when it gets colder. So I basically had to juggle three audio devices depending on my needs.
The Razer Barracuda X was the perfect solution
When I heard about the Razer Barracuda X, they immediately seemed like the perfect solution, and when I finally snagged it on sale (still at a higher price than they cost now), they really were.
The Razer Barracuda X connects to a small USB Type-C dongle that you can plug into any device that supports USB audio, including PCs, phones, and the Nintendo Switch. It also uses a custom Razer HyperSpeed connection to connect the dongle to the headset and deliver wireless audio. This has solved almost all the problems I had with Bluetooth.
First, the audio quality is consistent and reliable. I’m not an audiophile, but the Razer Barracuda X sounds great for video calls on my PC, and the mic works well too. The Razer Barracuda X is also better than my wired headset because I can move freely. My house has a lot of thick walls, but the Razer Barracuda X still works reliably when I’m in another room.
I can also easily switch between devices. I just plug the USB-C dongle into the device I want to use and I’m good to go. While I mostly use it with my PC, it’s great to have the freedom to use them with any device, even a Nintendo Switch. I still have Bluetooth earbuds and I only use them with my phone when I’m at the gym or cycling. I use the Razer Barracuda X with everything else, and it’s such a relief not to feel like I’m missing out on convenience.
In addition to the dongle, you get a charging cable and a USB Type-A to Type-C adapter in the box, so you can use it with older PCs without USB-C ports, or consoles like the PlayStation 5. There’s also a cable with a 3.5 mm headphone jack on both ends, so perfect to use if your phone doesn’t have USB-C yet. All of these cables have a high quality feel to them and they all come with rubber bands so you can store and store them easily. I really feel that Razer has tried to provide a complete and premium experience, so I appreciate the attention to detail.
A great headset for $50
I really love having the Razer Barracuda X, and I’d definitely buy them again if I could. Aside from fixing my Bluetooth issues, it’s just a really good headset. The sound quality is good for most people, it has a sleek and understated design and is actually comfortable to wear thanks to Razer’s FlowKnit fabric earcups that provide comfort and breathability. The cups also have a good amount of swivel.
I really love having the Razer Barracuda X, and I’d definitely buy them again if I could.
I also like the removable mic, which makes it a little less inconvenient to walk around outside with the headset on, but retains the benefits of a boom mic when needed. Beamforming mics are fine, but I always feel like you need to speak a little louder when using them, so I like having a mic next to my mouth when I speak.
This wireless dongle approach is clearly working for Razer, as the company has since expanded it to more devices, including an all-new line of Barracuda headsets (where the Barracuda X is the budget model), and even the Razer Hammerhead earbuds. But all those options are much more expensive. At $50 this Black Friday, I truly believe the original Razer Barracuda X is a deal not to be missed. There are also more offers PC gaming accessories for Black Friday if you want to continue your installation.
Razer Barracuda X
The Razer Barracuda X is a headset with a removable microphone and a sleek design that uses a USB-C wireless dongle to work with virtually any modern device.