Legit Mods and Ends Reviews
Sharkoon X-Tactic 5.1 Dolby Digital Headset Review
|Product:||Sharkoon X-Tactic 5.1 Digital Headset|
|Date:||Fri, Jan 14, 2011 - 12:00 AM|
|Written By:||Brian Giacoletti -|
Sharkoon X-Tactic 5.1 Digital Headset: Lookie Here
So lets give this some thought. What exactly is it that we need in a headset to frag nerds? well... we need 5.1 surround sound. We need a mic, I mean come on trash talk is essential to gaming. If you can't make fun of the people you are beating whats the point? OK so it's good for communicating with your team too. We also need the sound to be top notch, we need to hear every footstep that crosses in front of us. Comfort is also a huge factor for most gamers. No one likes to be uncomfortable while they are showing n00b's that they need to get get their floaties on, yep it's about to get deep. So I know you are going to ask me "Brian what does that have to do with the Sharkoon X-Tactic 5.1 Headset". Well my friends, it has everything to do with it because this headset has most of this and more.
When I first pulled the headset out of the packaging I could tell right away that it was built to last as it is very sturdy and has a bit of weight to it. Another thing I liked right away was the fact that the microphone could be attached and removed because when I am playing single player games I would rather not have a mic sticking out into my face. Another thing that I haven't quite decided if I like it or not is the length of the cord that attaches the headset to the amplifier. It is around 12" long and it does seem like a bit if overkill since the amplifier sits right on your desk. You would have to have an awfully big desk to need to span 12" with your headset.
That brings up the other half of this dynamic duo, and that is the amplifier. Take a look at these pictures, this thing has so many different connection points and buttons you need a degree just to get it hooked up and running correctly... OK, not really. It's actually really easy to setup. Configuration of the sound is totally up to you. This is one of the most customizable headsets as far as sound goes that I have ever had the pleasure of reviewing. Not only can you set the volume on either the amp itself or on the inline control that is connected into the headset cord. You can also adjust the volume level of each channel of the 5.1 system. You can individually set the front speakers, the center channel, the rear channel as well as the sub. But hey the configuration fun doesn't stop there you can also control the individual delay for each of these channels as well. So what I am trying to say is, if this headset sounds bad to you it's your fault
Each ear cup holds four separate speakers that makes up the 5.1 surround. I will admit that because the speakers are placed in the ear cups the surround effect can be a bit flat unless you set the delay to your liking. Once I got the delay and volume settings for each channel just how I liked it I was blown away at just how good this headset sounded. I played a ton of Borderlands, Left 4 Dead 2, Batman:Arkham Asylum, Unreal Tournament 3, and Bad Company 2. The Sharkoon X-Tactic Headset made my immersion into the game seamless. When I was surrounded in game I felt like I was surrounded in real life. It was killer to be so involved in a game, it has been a long time since I felt like that.
Movies is another area where this headset really shined. No matter what type of movie I wanted to watch it sounded like it was booming out of the walls of the room I was in. One of my favorite movies is The Fifth Element, I mean come on lets be real here who here can say that they don't like watching Milla Jovovich run around in skimpy costumes? Thats what I thought. It gave even an older movie such as The Fifth Element a booming sound stage. It was similar to sitting at the movies.
Now as with all good things we have to discuss the not so good. And for the Sharkoon X-Tactic 5.1 Digital Headset it's downfall was music. I am a huge fan of listening to music while I game and the music that came out of the X-Tactic was muddy and just kind of seemed to be muffled. Almost like someone was sitting on top of the speakers with a pile of pillows. No matter how much I messed with the settings I could not get the music to sound good on this headset. I can't really knock the headset for this because this is a gaming headset and not a set of audiophile type headphones. But I thought it was important to include in the review because I know there are a lot of you out there that like to listen to music while you frag too.
So no matter whether you game on a PC, and XBOX 360 or a Playstation 3 Sharkoon has your back, and they have gone as far as including all of the cords and cables you will need to hook the headset and the mic up to any of these devices. Again I am going to give Sharkoon props for having the innovative idea of including everything you need to make this headset work whether it be analog or digital. Do you have a company trip to Europe coming up? Sharkoon has you covered there too with the included power receptacle adapters that let you plug you headset power in anywhere in the world.
Now lets talk about another subject that is a bit lacking on the X-Tactic Headset, comfort. When you first put the headset on it feels all cushy and soft. After a while it starts to get a bit uncomfortable. I don't know if this is because the padding on the ear cups is thin or if it is because of the weight of the headset when it sits on you head for long periods of time, of maybe it is just a little bit of both. anyhow I found myself only being able to wear the X-Tactic Headset for about an hour or two at a time. This is not a big deal but it can be if you are on a winning streak and showing all of the lowly newb's your mad skills and don't want to stop to come up for air. But as for me, i usually game in short spurts so the discomfort thing over long periods didn't really bother me that much.