Razer Announces The Leviathan Sound Barby Brett Howse on October 28, 2014 11:00 AM EST
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Razer has traditionally been a gaming peripheral company, which started with the Boomslang mouse in 1998. Over the years, they have expanded their portfolio to cover more of a gamer’s needs, adding keyboards, keypads, mouse mats, and headphones as well as complete systems. Today, Razer has expanded their product family again with the launch of the Razer Leviathan sound bar.
The Leviathan is able to produce 5.1 virtual surround sound using Dolby Virtual Speakers and accepts Dolby Digital and Pro Logic II multichannel audio. The bar itself contains four tuned drivers, with two 2.5” full range and two 0.74” tweeters, which are powered by a 30 watt RMS amplifier. Frequency response is quoted as 180 Hz to 20 KHz on the sound bar itself. Complementing the bar and filling in the remainder of the audio range is a 5.25” 30 watt RMS subwoofer with a downward firing driver, which has a quoted response of 20 Hz to 180 Hz.
The sound bar supports analog, optical, or Bluetooth inputs, with the Leviathan supporting any Bluetooth 4.0 device streaming over A2DP, and Razer has also made sure to include aptX audio codec support for higher quality A2DP streaming. To make the connection to the sound bar as easy as possible the Leviathan also includes NFC to configure the Bluetooth pairing. The bar also supports several tilt angles (0°, 15°, and 18°) to ensure it works well in a variety of situations.
If the idea of virtual surround sound through the use of a sound bar seems like something you might be interested in, the Razer Leviathan will be available for pre-order on razerzone.com with worldwide availability starting in November. Prices are USA: $199/EUR: €199.
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EzioAs - Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - linkVirtual surround sound...nice try...
dishayu - Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - linkI've read up about this quite extensively. I science behind is solid but I don't know how good the actual implementation is : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQmQD27uCt0
RazrLeaf - Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - linkThe science is solid, but the implementation is a lot harder with a sound bar. I have yet to use a sound bar that has sufficient stereo separation.
Impulses - Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - linkAnd this looks smaller than the average TV soundbar, since I imagine it's at least partially intended for desktop use. Soundbars are all about aesthetics, almost always a terrible value if you care about the actual sound first.
Kutark - Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - linkYep. The reality of sound is you can't combat physics. Simple fact of the matter is to produce certain frequencies, primarily low frequencies, you simply have to be able to move enough air, and the only way to make a small speaker do that is to increase cone excursion, which has plenty of its own problems. I kind of chuckled when i read the 20hz supposed response on the 5.25" "subwoofer". yeah, 20hz at what 60db? Anyways, enough audio snobbery.
SkyBill40 - Friday, October 31, 2014 - linkA $200 sound bar isn't going to get you the kind of sound separation and high fidelity audio quality you're looking for. If you want that kind of sound from a bar, expect to pay for it from a high end manufacturer like Definitive Technology or someone else. While Razer's aim is clearly for the gamer who's short on space but still looking for good sound in a small footprint, it's clearly not going to be as well rounded as an audiophile grade manufacturer.
spacebarbarian - Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - linkNo one wants to run audio cables for surround, nor deal with setting up drivers and output configurations for 5+ channel audio. I can't even count on 1 hand how many console gamers I know that are running surround speakers with stereo output...
Bottom line is if it's easy to set up and even remotely simulates surround sound, it's a good product.
That said, sound bars are usually not very accurate when sitting close up, so this will probably not work well for PC settings.
JeffFlanagan - Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - link>No one wants to run audio cables for surround
> nor deal with setting up drivers and output configurations for 5+ channel audio
This is not complicated. Install the audio driver, then install k-lite codec pack. This will generally take less than 5 minutes.
You seem to be projecting your limits onto other people, but you won't find many people who can't handle a simple 5.1 or 7.1 setup at Anandtech.
HanzNFranzen - Tuesday, October 28, 2014 - linkoh wow... I just found out I'm the only person in the entire world that uses a 5.1 surround speaker setup... I just thought I was ordinary, but I guess I'm a unique snowflake.
More than likely though your sample pool is just smaller than your 1 hand.
meacupla - Wednesday, October 29, 2014 - linkUh, no, the main problem with console surround sound, is that you'd need a digital receiver, so that you can actually split out the sounds to 6ch. Otherwise you get to only use stereo with a console, because they lack analogue, be it RCA or 3.5mm jacks for a proper 6ch setup.
For PC, that's not a huge issue, since any modern desktop PC will have the appropriate 3x3.5mm outputs for 6ch and it's VERY EASY to set this up.
The main downside to 6ch PC speakers is that they usually lack digital input or multiple surround inputs for anything other than PC.
Now, what this $200 thing does, is fill in a niche between digital/HDMI reciever + 6ch speaker setup (costly), and analogue stereo speakers or integrated speakers on the TV/monitor.
I wouldn't pay $200 for it, however. $100 yes, $150 maybe, but definitely not $200.