The Razer Seiren Emote is a streaming microphone that's completely ridiculous, and I love it. I mean, a microphone that emotes? Totally bananas, it's a silly idea. And yet, it works. Even more surprisingly, it works great! The Seiren Emote is a solid piece of hardware, and it's become a permanent part of my gaming arsenal.
I'd like to preface this review by saying I'm not a streamer, ergo, I'm not the target market of the Seiren Emote. In the rare times I'm using it, it's for online gaming or recording brief snippets of audio. Most of the time, I'm just using it as a fancy and very extra emoji-themed ornament.
My favourite feature of this ridiculous mic is that you can set a default, animated emoji that the mic shows on idle. Currently, my favourite emoji to have sitting at my desk while I game is this evil-looking bad boy:
He's one of the nicer looking ones, and he jiggles up and down as if he's laughing. I know it's a bit of a waste of the mic's talents to use it mainly as an emoji display, but I'm having a lot of fun with it anyway.
If you do plan on using the mic for streaming, there's a couple of things you'll need to know. First, it's designed to display the emoji from the front, so all your viewers can enjoy it. That means you won't be able to see what emoji is displayed when you're using it. It also means you'll need a good camera that can focus on multiple light sources without losing clarity. For the purposes of this review, I was using a 720p Logitech webcam, and it was not pleased to see an overly bright light source in the picture. Here was the result:
I think this emoji was supposed to be the rainbow-spewing face, but I actually can't tell from the image. Similarly, it was hard to capture the emojis with my phone camera because the constant flickering meant that the image was dipping in and out of focus. Taking a webcam video of the mic replicated this effect, so if you're looking at it for streaming, you'll need to have the camera tech to match.
As for the sound, it's satisfyingly crisp and clear. The sound was about on par with the $190 Blue Yeti I was previously using. It was a little less tinny, if anything, and positioning the Seiren Emote correctly meant little to no breathiness or sharp hisses on "s" sounds. It didn't pick up any background noises, either, although I was using it in a quiet-ish study environment. While it is a bit more expensive than the Blue Yeti (one of the more reliable streaming mics), a Blue Yeti doesn't have a laughing demon emoji or a pulsating love heart, does it?
Streamers can also take advantage of Razer's Streamer Companion App to customise their emoji set-up. Subs, donations, follows and even keywords in Twitch chat can be set to trigger particular emojis on the mic. It's a little silly, but why not? How experience gaming has changed, and it's nice to see some fun, dumb innovations happening in the space to accomodate it.
If you're looking to get a little bit creative here, the Seiren Emote has the goods for you, too. Integration with the Streamer Companion App means that you can actually program your own emojis into the mic. They're pretty basic, and operate on a limited 8-bit grid, but if you've got an eye for art, there's loads you can do. As for my own artistic ability, well, let's just say it was lacking on the day I tried:
Still, the emoji creator is a great little wrinkle in a nifty device. While the interface and emoji design might be basic, the Seiren Emote pulls off some great effects, and the crackling fire emoji is particularly neat:
i don't know why anyone would ever need a mic that emotes but the new razer seiren is still..... lit pic.twitter.com/Bji2JaqY5E
— Leah Williams (@legenette) October 8, 2019
Do you need a mic that emotes? Absolutely not, and the $299.95 price is a little bit high compared to similar microphones on the market, but the Razer Seiren Emote is just plain fun. There should always be room in your life for a bit more fun.