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Panasonic SoundSlayer review – wearable speaker puts you in the middle of the game

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  • VERDICT

The Panasonic SoundSlayer offer a new way to enjoy the sound while playing a game and brings a surround sound experience that headphones can’t match.

Sound quality in gaming has become as good if not better than what we hear in movies and one way to get right in the centre of it is with the Panasonic SoundSlayer wearable gaming speaker.

No, that’s not a typo – it’s a wearable speaker.

It sits around your neck which is smart because it places the speakers right below your ears, so you are literally surrounded by sound.

The SoundSlayer goes around the back of your neck and rests on your shoulders.

It fits snugly on your neck and it’s not heavy (244g) so you can comfortably wear the SoundSlayer for hours at a time.

The other advantage of the SoundSlayer is you can still be aware of your surroundings – unlike a pair of headphones which cut you off from the rest of the world.

With SoundSlayer you can hear the ambient sound so not a good set up if you’re in a noisy environment.

And other people can hear everything in the same way as if you’re playing through the TV’s speakers or through computer speakers.

But the real benefit here is hearing the surround sound through onboard 4CH speakers that are placed at the front and back on the left and right.

And because each channel is right below your ears you can easily hear the separation and appreciate the directional sound in your game.

The SoundSlayer will work through the USB cable with a PC, Mac, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5 and Nintendo Switch (when in TV mode).

It has a 3m USB cable so you can still sit on the couch if you’re playing through your TV.

And there’s a microphone onboard as well with built-in echo noise cancellation so you can be clearly heard.

So how does it sound?

Answer: Amazing. That’s because everything is happening right next to your ears.

We were pleasantly surprised by the quality as well as the effect of spreading the sounds around us like we had speakers placed around the room.

The top volume has been set conservatively – you don’t want a speaker near your – it’s different to headphones.

There are different game sound modes – including a first-person shooter mode (that was our favourite), a role-playing game mode and voice mode so you can hear clearer dialogue.

The first-person shooter mode lets you clearly hear footsteps and other ambient sounds in the game so you can place your enemies and other obstacles.

The role-playing mode has more of a surround sound feel to place you right at the centre of the fantasy world.

You can also use the SoundSlayer to hear your music and watch your movies – there are modes for that as well.

Are these better than regular gaming headphones?

Yes and no.

Yes, because you get a better surround effect with the SoundSlayer.

And no because it has slightly inferior audio quality than you would with the headphones you can buy for the same price and because everyone can hear your game or movie.

The Panasonic SoundSlayer is available now and is priced at $329.

VERDICT

The Panasonic SoundSlayer offer a new way to enjoy the sound while playing a game and brings a surround sound experience that headphones can’t match.