The Hammerhead True Wireless earbuds are an update to the 2019 product of the same name. They’re $30 more expensive than the original pair with a few big upgrades that make the price increase reasonable. But while the updated specs and aesthetics are an improvement, overall, it’s the little shortcomings that hold these earbuds back.
For everyday use, the Hammerheads sound alright, especially if you mess with the EQ. The default, amplified, and enhanced bass options are too muddy for my taste, but I found the vocal and clarity presets did more to separate instruments and provide a better soundstage. The earbuds support the SBC and AAC codecs, but since I paired them to an Android phone, I’m sure the earbuds were using SBC. It’s the most basic Bluetooth codec and doesn’t do much in terms of sound quality.
“Gaming Mode” is a feature that kicks the earbuds into 60ms low latency mode for snappier sound. I tested this by playing PUBG on my phone. Though I don’t think turning on Gaming Mode made much of an impact, the sound difference is noticeable if you’re listening for it, with shots coming through much faster than in normal mode. It’s neat but as not as game-changing as the marketing would lead you to believe.
For one, having RGB on eats up the battery at a faster rate, and you can’t even see it. You also need a separate app to make any changes to the lighting. That’s not the worst problem to have, especially if don’t plan on frequently changing your lighting pattern. The problem, however, is that you have to first open the Razer Audio app to then open the Chroma app. Launching the Chroma app directly just shows a bunch of settings.
The touch controls on the Hammerhead True Wireless earbuds did not impress me and felt very unresponsive at times. The surface area is too small, which makes it really easy to miss or only touch the edge. The lack of haptics or sound cues makes it hard to know when functions are activated. And too many functions are offloaded to the touch feature, which makes remembering the exact order of presses and when to hold a nightmare.
The Hammerhead True Wireless are not all bad. They can sound decent with the right EQ, the ANC works, and the low-latency Gaming Mode does offer the slightest edge. However, the cheap build quality, limited and sluggish app, unreliable touch controls, and the gimmicky RGB are all red flags. Unless you really need to impress your friends with RGB, you can find better ANC earbuds such as the OnePlus Buds Pro, for around the same price.