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Old 10-15-2012, 02:39 PM   #1
moonbogg
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Default Wising up to "gaming" headphones

So,

I have always been a sucker for the cool looking, gaming brand headphones but I am starting to think about what to do when the time comes to replace my current Logitech G35 headset. From what I have gathered, it is better to get a pair of real headphones without the inflated cost of all the "gaming" marketing crap and useless features and then pair those up with a sound card and use the sound card's Dolby Headphone feature if I feel like using fake positional audio since all the gaming headsets use this fake positional stuff as a big selling point. Am I on track here?
What would make a good upgrade from a logitech G35 (I figure just about anything, right?)
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Old 10-15-2012, 04:44 PM   #2
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gaming headphones pretty much all have mics
due to this, you might find it more difficult to move away from gaming oriented headsets
you need your replacement to have one right? does it need to be on a swivelly arm?
are you ok with purchasing a seperate mic, or do you want one built into the headphones?

do you want headphones that are on-ear? in-ear? or around ear (like your current ones)?
this is mostly a comfort and portability thing, though it's usually easier to get higher quality earbuds for a given budget, many people find the stock earbud tips to be uncomfortable

if you want over/on ear headphones, do you want open air or closed air?
open air has the advantage of not warming up your ears, but leak sound to the surroundings and typically don't have noise insulation
closed air will warm up your ears, but don't leak sound, and provide some noise insulation (your logitechs are closed air)
as such, given a budget, open air typically has an advantage in sound quality maybe due to being able to move air more freely

what type of music do you typically listen to?
some headphones are designed to be bass heavy or more balanced in sound reproduction

sennheiser, grados, audio-technica, and several other brands are pretty good places to start looking

a previous thread on headphones for gaming (they tend to like the SR850 open-air)
http://forums.anandtech.com/showthre...ing+headphones

Last edited by fralexandr; 10-15-2012 at 05:11 PM.
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Old 10-15-2012, 05:00 PM   #3
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I'm sure the folks around here are sick of me saying the same thing over and over again, but I'm a huge fan of the headphones + desktop mic.

Specifically: http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Deskt...ch+desktop+mic

with any headphones you like. I personally use Sennheiser HD650s, but you can use whatever you like. Me personally, I like this option because not only do headphones get a lot higher quality than gaming headsets when it comes to the audio quality (and durability in some cases), but I can also use them when not gaming and just listening to music (including listening on the go) and not look like a total dope with a big old mic . Not to mention some gaming headsets are USB only (I think? I know some also come with 1/8" jacks), which would make it hard to use while portable.

The above mic sounds excellent and doesn't have the "you sound far away like you're in a hole" problem. The non-USB version from logitech, on the other hand, sounds like garbage IMO.
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Old 10-15-2012, 05:07 PM   #4
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I don't remember who but a member here ghetto engineered a microphone attachment to his headset. Me think Keith Talent. Or was it YoYo?
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Old 10-15-2012, 05:29 PM   #5
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After buying the G35, I gave away my Logitech USB desktop mic (exact one shown in above posts, lol). Oh well. I can get another one as I recall that mic working really well.
Regarding the phones themselves, I live in an apartment with a wife who loves to blast the TV right next to me, so closed around ear is probably the way to stay for me in order to isolate my gaming audio and not have to hear her TV sounds. The G35 is good for this I have found.
If I get a set of real phones, I will need a sound card right? I'm not sure if the onboard audio on my Asus P9X79 Pro would do a decent pair of phones justice or not.
A final concern is bass. I like firm, punchy bass when I shoot my sniper rifle, lol. Again, the G35 is capable of delivering a good shot of bass to my dome. I don't always like the bass turned up, but I like the option. I have read some comments about the AD900's being more bassy than the AD700's, but even then people mention that the bass is not at all heavy and some people who are used to cheap bassy phones might find them lacking in that department.
So, I'll read reviews on the phones you guys suggested and regarding the sound card, would you suggest something like an upper end Xonar?
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Old 10-15-2012, 08:28 PM   #6
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i'd actually suggest the low end xonar, the Xonar DG.
it has a headphone amp, which is great for headphone users, and is usually really cheap
http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-Channel-S...words=xonar+dg

if you like Bass, you might want to look at the V-Moda Crossfades
http://www.amazon.com/V-MODA-Crossfa...moda+crossfade
they're not a balanced set, and are typically heavy on the bass making them bad for many kinds of music, but they have good build quality, look pretty (imo) and have replaceable cables
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Old 10-15-2012, 10:11 PM   #7
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no isolation at all and plenty of leak with the ad700/900
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Old 10-15-2012, 10:23 PM   #8
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Check out the BeyerDynamic DT770's
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Old 10-16-2012, 03:12 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdifox View Post
I don't remember who but a member here ghetto engineered a microphone attachment to his headset. Me think Keith Talent. Or was it YoYo?
I didnt do that exactly but I got a clip on mic and put it on the cord to my headphones, sen 595 at the time and it was probably the best thing I coulda done. I always break those cheapo headsets in a month from slamming them (this was in WoW days) so I ended up trying this and it worked so much better and if I got pissed I could still smash the old set lol
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Old 10-16-2012, 07:15 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soccerman06 View Post
I didnt do that exactly but I got a clip on mic and put it on the cord to my headphones, sen 595 at the time and it was probably the best thing I coulda done. I always break those cheapo headsets in a month from slamming them (this was in WoW days) so I ended up trying this and it worked so much better and if I got pissed I could still smash the old set lol
You need one of these


http://www.musiciansfriend.com/pro-a...ser-microphone
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Old 10-16-2012, 12:44 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdifox View Post
lol that seems a little excessive.
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Old 10-16-2012, 01:42 PM   #12
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These are what I use:
http://www.amazon.com/AKG-Signature-...&keywords=q701

I've used a ton of headphones including the AD700's and these are the best gaming headphones you can get.

Better seperation, detail, and soudstage than the AD700's. They also have much better bass, and really punchy midbass. Toms sound amazing in music.

Mind you I'm using them with a FiiO e9 and HRT Music Streamer II+. Not a retardedly expensive Head-fi set up, but still far better than onboard sound/PCIe soundcards can provide you.
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Old 10-16-2012, 02:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VulgarDisplay View Post
These are what I use:
http://www.amazon.com/AKG-Signature-...&keywords=q701

I've used a ton of headphones including the AD700's and these are the best gaming headphones you can get.

Better seperation, detail, and soudstage than the AD700's. They also have much better bass, and really punchy midbass. Toms sound amazing in music.

Mind you I'm using them with a FiiO e9 and HRT Music Streamer II+. Not a retardedly expensive Head-fi set up, but still far better than onboard sound/PCIe soundcards can provide you.
Those look nice. They need to be amped? What is the audiophile's opinion of the Astro A40/A50 gaming headsets? Are they just another pile over overpriced plastic?
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Old 10-16-2012, 03:08 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moonbogg View Post
Those look nice. They need to be amped? What is the audiophile's opinion of the Astro A40/A50 gaming headsets? Are they just another pile over overpriced plastic?
Astro is a yogurt brand.
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:36 PM   #15
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701/2's need to be decently amped.
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Old 10-18-2012, 11:25 AM   #16
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Its astounding to me how guys like Creative to Logitech can market something as "gaming" specific and sell 10x more than those who don't resort to this marketing gimmickry, yet have superior products.

Also, if you're considering higher end sound cards, you want the HT Omega Claro.. or if you can find a used Auzentech X-Meridian (rarer, but can be found used for like $60-70).. they have the same audio chip, the glorious CMI8788.

The Asus XONARs are great for entry level sound cards, but not the best option when you go higher end. But then again, its useless to go for a higher end sound card (which in reality, is just the higher end DAC that you're after!) unless the headphones are worth at least a few hundred bucks.
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Old 10-18-2012, 04:19 PM   #17
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check out head-fi.org for more complete information, just watch out for the more... eccentric... advice
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Old 10-20-2012, 08:14 PM   #18
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You can find some good reviews here
http://bestgaminglaptopreviews.net/b...eadset-for-pc/

I don't know if these really helps you but some extra information is always welcome. Good luck
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Old 10-20-2012, 08:24 PM   #19
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always seems so "subjective". last time i took an audiophiles advice, i thought they sounded "airy" with little distinctiveness in the bass region. basically i hated them.
I'm not even sure i'd prefer that "audiophile" way of how something is "intended" to sound, i seem to like oomph...some actual fun in audio, i don't care if its not as intended, i like punchy bass and soft highs with some attenuated mids
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Old 10-22-2012, 12:11 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HeXen View Post
always seems so "subjective". last time i took an audiophiles advice, i thought they sounded "airy" with little distinctiveness in the bass region. basically i hated them.
I'm not even sure i'd prefer that "audiophile" way of how something is "intended" to sound, i seem to like oomph...some actual fun in audio, i don't care if its not as intended, i like punchy bass and soft highs with some attenuated mids
This could easily come down to music genre preference.

Something tells me most "audiophiles" listen mostly to stuff like jazz, classical, vocal oriented pop, and classic rock.. where its mostly all about actual musical instruments and vocals, so accuracy is a top concern.

I'd guess and say you're probably mostly into electronic music, hip hop, or newer pop rock, where there are only a few samples of actual instruments, computer enhanced vocals, and its mostly all about the bass line being played as loud and "oomphy" as you can.
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Old 10-23-2012, 08:39 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lechugas View Post
yes a lot of good reviews are seen here. Thanks. Just read them. [IMG]http://ilovemygirlfriend.************/sig.jpg[/IMG]
Las lechugas son muy frescas.
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Old 11-02-2012, 04:46 AM   #22
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Astro A40 Headset is the best gaming headset you can get, but it'll cost you $200. I have it and it's great, but you should do your research if you decide to get it. To help you out, here are some good Astro A40 reviews I've found:Astro A40 Review From Cnet and Best Gaming Headsets

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Old 11-13-2012, 04:53 PM   #23
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just got Monster Ntune headphones today. they fvckin' suck...

default-jacked up volume with distortion. crappy "blown-punchy" bass. overly increased treble. uncomfortable after fifteen minutes.

my Fatal1ty gaming headset sounds/feels way better.

i'm never getting monster stuff again.
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Old 11-13-2012, 05:11 PM   #24
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lol, some of the turbine models are decent but overpriced. everything else is head jewelry.
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Old 11-16-2012, 12:12 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chapbass View Post
I'm sure the folks around here are sick of me saying the same thing over and over again, but I'm a huge fan of the headphones + desktop mic.

Specifically: http://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Deskt...ch+desktop+mic

with any headphones you like. I personally use Sennheiser HD650s, but you can use whatever you like. Me personally, I like this option because not only do headphones get a lot higher quality than gaming headsets when it comes to the audio quality (and durability in some cases), but I can also use them when not gaming and just listening to music (including listening on the go) and not look like a total dope with a big old mic . Not to mention some gaming headsets are USB only (I think? I know some also come with 1/8" jacks), which would make it hard to use while portable.

The above mic sounds excellent and doesn't have the "you sound far away like you're in a hole" problem. The non-USB version from logitech, on the other hand, sounds like garbage IMO.
This right here. I had a pair of SteelSound 5H's that broke due to the crappy connectors on the headband. Now I have a ghetto setup of the 5H microphone set up as a desk mic with my Sennheiser HD555's. So much better than any of those "gaming headphones"
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