Sunday, May 10, 2009

SteelSeries headsets

We at TechtalkRadio have had the great pleasure of reviewing headphones from SteelSeries, and I do mean "pleasure"...

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The first set I tried was the SteelSeries 3H.



This is an entry-level product for gamers that is a foldable/collapsible, lightweight gaming headset designed for easy transport.

Headphones:
10 - 27.000 Hz frequency response
7.1 virtual surround sound
The "closed" headphones are optimized for specific gaming sounds like: gunfire, weapon reloads, footsteps, and other crucial sounds...

Microphone:
Retractable, non-directional microphone system
50 - 18.000 Hz frequency response
6.5 foot cable

The cord comes out of the right headphone. On the cord there is an "On/Off" switch for the headset, a mute switch, and "volume up" and "volume down" switches.

http://www.steelseries.com/us/products/audio/3h/information

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The SteelSeries 5H v2 USB headset is designed for gamers with onboard soundcards, and/or gamers who regularly find themselves playing at third party computers.

The "open", full-size, ear cushions fit around ears and are very comfortable. The headphones can be dismantled into three separate parts (so they can fit into a bag or a carrying case).



"...This headset was developed and optimized specifically for in-game sound frequencies found in the most popular shooters - making in-game sounds like footsteps, alerts and gunfire especially clear. You will be able to hear and pinpoint the location of your opponents...you can boost and lower frequencies of your own choosing, allowing optimization..."

Headphones
- Frequency response: 16 - 28.000 Hz
- Cable length: 10 feet
- Connectors: 1/8"

"...Our...soundcard...was designed for gamers who either use systems with (often crappy) on-board soundcards or players who travel a lot."

"The soundcard features a processor which frees up CPU power...More free CPU power equals more CPU power for your game application..."
- USB soundcard with 7.1 virtual surround
- Equalizer: 12 channels
- Operating systems: Win XP/Vista/Win 2000/Win 98/Win ME/Mac OS

Microphone
- Pull-out microphone system (it is much easier to grab and extend than the 3H...)
- Frequency response: 75 - 16.000 Hz
- Pick up pattern: Uni-directional

There is a seven foot extension cord for both the headphones and the microphone.



The SteelSeries USB Soundcard software provides options for:
7.1 virtual surround sound...
microphone boost...
environments (padded cell, auditorium, cave, arena, hanger, hallway, drugged, dizzy, psychotic, and more)...
an equalizer...
and karaoke functionality (with vocal cancellation).

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The SteelSeries Siberia USB Headset was designed and...

"...developed in cooperation with professional gamers to ensure that the soundscape, specifications and comfort is suitable for long gaming sessions. But the SteelSeries Siberia USB full-size headset is also designed for multi-functionality.

"This headset is bundled with a USB soundcard featuring virtual 7.1 surround, extremely suitable for gaming, music and movies...The 12 channel equalizer allows for tweaking to personal preferences, while the built-in effects processor can provide ambiance and other effects.





"...this product has been designed so gamers can use it with their favorite MP3-player, handheld gaming device or practically any other kind of portable digital device.

"...the headset features a separate microphone (and a separate soundcard)...and comes with an additional extra long cord for use with stationary computers."




The choice of colors are black and white.



Headphone
- Frequency response: 18 - 28.000 Hz
- Impedance: 40 Ohm
- SPL@1kHz, 1V rms: 99 - 104 dB
- Jack: 1/8" (a 1/4" converter is included)
- Cable length: 9 feet (with extension cord)

I measured the cable coming from the headphones to be 3 feet long. (The extension cord is 6 feet long.)

The headphones use a suspension design to sit on your head. Because I have an obscenely large afro...unless I restrain my hair by tying it in a ponytail...I put the headphones on, and then take my hair out of the headphones.

Microphone
- Frequency response: 80 - 15.000 Hz
- Impedance: 2K Ohm
- Pick-up pattern: Uni-directional
- Sensitivity (1V/P@1 kHz): -38 dB

The microphone cord is 9.5 feet long (115 inches), and can be connected alongside of the headphone extension cord with the clips that are on the extension cord. There is an "on/off" switch on the microphone. It has a clip so you can attach it to clothing, or the supplied "screen hanger" (which can be attached to a surface/monitor with Velcro...which is also supplied).
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