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On a chilly Wednesday evening, Razer hosted fans and gaming enthusiasts at its "Flagship//Gaming" event in Hollywood, California, and debuted the new Razer Phone 2 alongside two new entries in the Razer Blade gaming laptop lineup. New mobile peripherals were also announced, including active noise-cancelling earbuds and a gaming controller for smartphones.
Since the Slickdeals offices are just down the street, I was lucky enough to partake in this gamer-ific gathering, nerding-out as Razer co-founder and CEO Min-Liang Tan shared insights on the company's new devices and accomplishments. But more importantly, working units of the Razer Phone 2 were available for hands-on first impressions and gaming demos.
Let's take a closer look at some of the upcoming products available from Razer.
Razer Phone 2
Building on the success of the first-ever Razer smartphone, the second iteration boasts specs that read more like a desktop gaming PC than a mobile device.
Here are the main hardware highlights for Razer Phone 2:
- 12 MP dual lens camera with Sony IMX sensors; 8 MP front camera
- 5.72-inch 120Hz display with 120Hz touch sensing (1440 x 2560 pixels)
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 processor w/ vapor chamber cooling system
- 64 GB storage + 8 GB RAM (128 GB version available later)
- Dual front-facing speakers with individual drivers; Dolby Atmos
- 4000 mAh battery w/ Qualcomm QuickCharge 4.0+ and wireless charging
- Razer Chroma RGB logo
- Mirrored or satin finish
- Water resistant up to one meter (IP67)
Positioned to go head-to-head with other flagship devices, the Razer Phone 2 feels very luxurious and refined thanks to its glass/metal casing and rounded edges. It's more comfortable to hold than the previous phone, and the notch-free screen design with front-facing speakers makes it a viable mobile gaming device.
At first glance, things look largely unchanged, but Razer has implemented many new features based on customer feedback, like wireless charging, waterproofing, and more screen brightness. In fact, Phone 2 is 50% brighter (580 nits), louder (103.3 decibels), and roughly 30% more powerful than its predecessor.
And of course, many would say that Phone 2 is finally a complete Razer product now that the rear logo features Chroma RGB lighting effects. This backlit serpent logo replaces the front notification light, and can flash different colors based on app-specific or user-defined conditions.
I had a chance to play a few games on the Razer Phone 2, and the smoothness of the graphics along with sound quality are unmatched by any other smartphone. This isn't achieved by sheer power alone, though — Razer aims to stay ahead of the pack in terms of gaming performance by partnering directly with game studios to ensure Phone 2 runs with optimum efficiency.
The Razer Phone 2 (64GB) is available for pre-order right now with a retail price of $799.99. A 128GB version featuring a satin finish will be available at a later date.
Razer Blade 15 Gaming Laptop Base Model + Limited Edition
To answer the demands of serious gamers who want an ethernet port, the Razer Blade 15 gaming laptop now comes in a new "base model." This version is 3 mm thicker so it can accommodate — you guessed it — an ethernet cable. And with all this extra space, the designers were able to outfit a dual storage configuration (M.2 SSD + 2.5-inch HDD) as well as a custom thermal management system. Offered with only one screen and GPU configuration (Full HD 60Hz + GeForce GTX 1060), the Razer Blade 15 base model starts at $1,599.
Those looking to complete their Mercury White collection can finally do so with the limited edition Mercury White Razer Blade 15. Sold exclusively at Razer.com and Razer retail stores, this laptop features the same internals you know and love, but is offered in a matte white finish with black USB ports and a non-illuminated, tone-on-tone Razer logo. The Razer Blade 15 Mercury White Limited Edition will be available for purchase in late 2018.
Razer Hammerhead USB-C ANC
The USB-C variant of the Razer Hammerhead earbuds receives a visual update as well as active noise cancellation. Audio quality has been enhanced using Dual Driver technology along with a built-in digital to audio converter (DAC) for crisp, uncompressed sound.
And to further aid the active noise cancellation, every pair of the new Hammerhead will ship with Comply Foam Tips that effectively block any unwanted noises from your environment. Returning features include an inline volume control and mic, solid aluminum frame, and braided cable.
Razer Hammerhead USB-C ANC will be available at Razer.com on October 22nd, 2018 for $99.99
Razer Raiju Mobile
If you're really serious about getting that chicken dinner in Fortnite, the new Raiju Mobile is a full-size, Bluetooth-enabled gamepad that's designed to fit almost any smartphone. Set your phone on the tilting mount, and play with the same comfort and accuracy you'd find with a console controller. The battery lasts up to 23 hours on a single charge.
The Razer Raiju Mobile releases later this year with a retail price of $149.99.
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