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Razer Megalodon 7.1 Surround Sound Gaming Headset - Technical Overview

By: James Vozar | Headsets in Audio, Sound & Speakers | Posted: Sep 18, 2009 4:18 am
TweakTown Rating: 85%Manufacturer: Razer

Technical Overview


Speaking technically, let's start by looking at some specifications.


Frequency response:20 - 20.000 Hz
Impedance:32 Ohm
SPL@1kHz, 1V RMS:102 +/- 104 dB
Cable length:3.3
Jack: USB


Frequency response:50 - 16.000 Hz
Impedance: N.A.
Pick-up pattern: Uni-directional
Sensitivity (1V/P@1 kHz)-37 dB +/-4db


Okay, on closer examination we can see that the Razer Megalodon have been provided with a frequency response figure of 20 Hz - 20,000 Hz, which is very good indeed - perhaps though, a little too good. 20 Hz, as I have said before, is very difficult for something as small as a headphone driver to handle. Overall though, these headphones should pack some good acoustic punch judging by the specs we can see above.


Sound pressure levels generated are given at a healthy 102db at 1 kHz, which will be ample for generating more than enough gain to satisfy most users, I would say.




Now given that these are USB headphones, I'll make a quick mention that there can be some conflicts with certain versions of Windows. Without getting too involved here, I'll say that there is a good chance that if you're using Windows XP or below, you will find your Windows volume level muted while these are running. Not a huge concern more of a little bug, if anything. So be warned here. If, however, you are using a newer version of Windows like Vista or Win7, it should be smooth sailing.




Talking about the Maelstrom audio engine, aside from not really giving anything away by the name, it is much like a slim version of EAX found on Creative products in the role that it fulfills.


In short this allows the user plug into just about anything that will play a game these days and provide that user with portable surround sound - seems like a good idea to me. The following two technologies are the force behind Maelstrom.




Interaural time difference is the use of spatial distancing to send sounds to the user's ears at varying rates of speed to create a phantom surround experience.


Simulated ear refraction is a pretty way of referring to the onboard reverb FX that is part of Maelstrom. It adds the first and second order reverb when and where it's needed to again create an artificial 7.1 environment.


Theoretically because this technology relies on software rather than hardware, you could have an unlimited amount of simulated 'channels', 10.1 15.3 and so on. It's just an algorithm that handles data in a certain way - the number of channels is incidental because they are not being individually reproduced by actual speakers. It's just software playing a trick on our ears.




Overall though the specs look good, they feel very rugged and strong to touch and the packaging is a great 'lure-in' for the product, so I expect them to perform in keeping with some of the other top notch headsets that I've tested.


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