- USB Connector
- 2.7m / 9ft. Cord Length
Decent Headset 12/05/2013
This review is from: Corsair Raptor HS40 USB Connector Circumaural 7.1 Gaming Headset
- 9 ft. Cord: Very long; good length for routing to the back of the computer, or have ample distance between you and your computer if plugged into the front of your case. I also like that the USB plug is colored similar to the burgundy on the outer ear cup as well as the headband cushioning. So even if you plug it in at the back of your PC you can definitely tell which plug is the HS40's.
- On Cord Controls: I prefer Corsair's decision to have the volume/mic controls on the cord. It's positioned low enough a distance that it will rest very close to where your hands would be when gaming. There are also two LED lights to signify when the mic is live (blue) and when it's off (red).
- Construction: This headset feels very light. The ear cups are made of what seems like authentic leather (even smells like it), and the headband as well. The cushioning feels similar to memory foam, but I can't confirm this without ripping them open. You can easily adjust the position of where the headband lies thanks to the ear cups being able to rotate. The seal around your ears are well enough to isolate your music/movies/games to only yourself, and also from you hearing the noises going on a couple feet from you.
- Microphone: Works well. Output quality is good, very clear on the receiving end. There was no noticeable interference picked up from people I called/chatted with online. The physical mic is flexible enough to move it close to the corner of your mouth (best position to avoid having the mic accidentally picking up noise from your breathing).
- Aside from the headset being lightweight, I find the ball and socket implantation for the ear cups to feel a little flimsy. I prefer a more solid connection between the ear cups and the headband. The ear cups also cannot be folded or turned to angle them flat.
- Disclaimer: Each individual will have their own opinion of sound quality: some people think more bass sounds better, others like toned down bass and stronger mids and highs, or a balance across all frequencies. Personally, I like clean, crisp sound, with no overpowering bass, and to be able to hear what sound the composer was intending. So saying this: straight out of the box this headset sounds bad (see "Other Thoughts"); audio quality is drowned out and muddy, and don't sound like the drivers are tuned very well. Over time, after a little breaking in, they did get a little better, but I've experienced better audio from some other non-gaming oriented headphones at a cheaper price.
- You don't get to experience this headset's capabilities until you download the (not included) Corsair Raptor HS40 companion software from Corsair's website (it's called Corsair Headset Control Panel). With the program, you can tune the headset to your liking, including volume for the headset itself, as well as the mic. You can choose preset EQ's (Profiles), such as Audiophile, FPS Gaming, MMO Gaming, a reference EQ, and their unique Movies Mod-X. These settings adjust the frequencies (30, 60, 120, 250, 500, 1K, 2K, 4K, 8K, and 16K) to a threshold of -/+20 dB. One downside of some of the presets is you can't even tell the difference between them. For example, you have two Audiophile 1 profiles (1 and 1+). The only difference is a slight increase in the 16K frequency. But if you like to mess with these settings the option is there. You can also add more profiles with your own naming scheme, as well as delete unwanted ones. There's also a Bypass button, that when enabled, you can bypass the 7.1 Xear Surround and just use the on-board audio.
- Xear Surround: With the surround sound on, you have three options to which you want to simulate the surround sound; Studio, Cinema, and Hall. Studio is for tighter sound, less echo and reverb. Cinema, to simulate a home theater. And Hall, to replicate the sound of audio as if you were filling up a music hall or large theater.
- Music: I personally bypass the 7.1 audio when listening to music for clear audio. Bass response is good for any range of music. I have noticed thought that on some songs, when using the 7.1 audio, I was able to hear instruments I wasn't able to when not using the 7.1 audio, but again, audio quality with the surround just wasn't crisp enough for me.
- Gaming: (with 7.1 on, Studio mode, played Battlefield 3/4 and Call of Duty: Black Ops 2) If you're really into the game, you won't notice that the headset is mediocre, in my opinion. Large explosions sound convincing, close range gun shots sound good, but other things like water droplets falling in puddles, or glass shards hitting the ground, as well as voice work, sound muffled. I also had problems with directional sounds. Some distant sniper fire was difficult to track accurately, for example.
- Movies: In movies, the preset Movies Mod-X setting just didn't cut it. I changed it to the Audiophile 1+ to get better audio. But overall the surround sound was very good when compared to bypassing it. Outdoor scenes, with all the ambient noise, sounded very good. Hallway scenes sounded natural, like you were actually in a large hall. But again, my main gripe is the audio is jumbled and unclear.
- By default, the ear cups are positioned just right for my head. For comparison, my head is somewhat large; I wear a Large motorcycle helmet. People with smaller heads or lower crowns may have difficulty using this headset.
Overall, this headset is just good, but far from the best. If manually adjusted though, you can get better audio.
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