Roccat announced their new Kave XTD 5.1 analog gaming headset with inspiration and feedback from the original Kave. The new Kave headset comes equipped with two 40mm driver units, a 30mm vibration unit in each ear cup, a dual-mode remote for audio control and a convenient LED light-tipped mouthpiece that ensures you know when you’re on a live mic or muted.
The new Kave headset is said to provide some of the best sound quality possible due to the use of an interference isolator. “The electromagnetic interference most gamers simply accept as a part of gaming audio experiences is a thing of the past. The Kave XTD 5.1 Analog provides nothing but clean, crisp audio in full, high quality surround sound.”
The new headset is 25% lighter than the original Kave with its 335grams and it is available now, at least in Europe. The MSRP is set to €119.99 and it will hit the US shelves mid of April for $199.99.
ASUS is expanding their Strix Gamers series with the Strix 7.1 Gaming Headset. It is a true 7.1 surround headset as it has a total of 10 neodymium magnet drivers (5 per ear). The USB headset comes with an audio station for easy management of your audio profiles and pretty much everything a gamer could want from a headset.
The ASUS Strix has foldable ear cups that are cushioned with ultra-soft, full-size memory foam; 130mm across at its widest point and covered with protein leather. For easy transport or storage, the microphone is detachable.
The audio station features a headphone amplifier, 90% environmental noise cancellation for voice capture, and four game-audio spectrum profiles that enable gamers to tailor their audio experience to the type of game being played. With dedicated volume controls for each surround channel you can tune the balance just right for your taste and current played game. A switch to stereo is also possible at a push of a button. It has four pre-programmed profiles for FPS Gunfire, FPS Footsteps, Action RPG and Racing.
Thanks to Asus for providing us with this information
It is that awesome time of the week again where I get to give out prizes to lucky eTeknix fans who entered our competitions. This last four weeks we’ve been running a competition to win a BitFenix Flo Gaming Headset in the colour of your choice. BitFenix also promised us that if they hit 29,000 likes on their Facebook page, they would give us a second headset to giveaway to a another winner. They blasted past 30,000 likes before the end of the competition, so today we’ll be picking two lucky winners, yay!
Firstly, thank you BitFenix for allowing us to give away these headsets. If you would like to know more about the headset you can check out our full review of it right here.
So without further delay, join hands and cheer to congratulate our lucky winners.
Feeling tired and a bit sluggish? Or simply looking to boost your productivity? Well the future has a lot to offer. tDCS has been about for over 100 years but recently started floating around on the radar after Sally Adee wrote an article on tDCS for New Scientist, Apparently DARPA have been using the technology to reduce the training time of snipers by targeting the area of the brain associated with object recognition.
tDCS stands for transcranial direct current stimulation and is the process of delivering a constant low level current to a specific area of the brain via small electrodes this increases the plasticity of the brain and in turn makes your synapses fire faster giving you reported “incredible focus and mental clarity”.
Wearing the Foc.us headset
Sounds like science fiction huh? Well this year sees a massive leap forward in the technology with Foc.us Labs releasing a commercialy available product in the Foc.us headset allowing anyone with around £150 the ability to have a go.
Marketed as a gaming headset with the tagline “Faster Processor, Faster Graphics, Faster Brain! the Foc.us unit aims to cross boundries between the world of science fiction and reality. It comes complete with the headset, case, sponges (for contact points) and a micro USB cable, it even has a snazzy app available for iOS devices to control the current and duration of each session.
While this technology becoming accessible may pave the way for a brighter future it also raises a whole host of ethical queries. Will it be classed as cheating to use tDCS in exams for instance or on the pro gaming circuit? More importantly is it ethically correct to enhance our minds to what can only be described as superhuman?
Cooler Master have decided to kick things up a notch with their gaming brand CM Storm. Not content with following the trend of high quality mid range peripherals they’ve decided to make an all new, high performance, premium range of products. This new range features customisable aluminium panels and we will be bringing you reviews of the full range over the next couple of weeks.
We start today with the Pulse-R headset, a PC gaming headset that packs plenty of high end features and hopefully plenty of high end performance. The price is set at around £70 and that puts it along side some truly fierce competition from Steelseries, Razer, Sennheiser, Logitech and Turtle Beach to name but a few. All those brands make some amazing product for this kind of money and CM Storm are going to have to not only match their performance, but also offer something extra to make them stand out from the crowd.
We’ve had good fortunes with CM Storm products in the past, with their headsets, mice, keyboards and other products winning many awards from us here at eTeknix, so were expecting a good performance today. So let’s get right into the good stuff and see what the Pulse-R has to offer, then put it all to the test.
The box for the Pulse-R is really nicely designed and the metallic print gives off a nice premium quality vibe. The front of the box details some of the major selling points such as the 42mm drivers, laser-etched aluminium plating and detachable microphone.
Around the back and the side of the box we have a more detailed run down of the major features, this includes the detachable microphone, aluminium plates and in-line controller, all of which we’ll take a closer look at in a moment.
With the outer slip cover removed we see that there is a black presentation box.
The box folds open and you can see that the headset and the microphone are packed in there pretty securely.
In the box I found an easy to follow setup guide / owners manual, although in fairness this headset should be super easy to operate.
Finally we have a long braided cable with a USB connection and 2 x 3.5mm connections on one side and a propitiatory connection on the other for hooking it into the headset.
ASUS’ Republic of Gamers division has just unveiled the newest addition to its headset range. The Orion is a console designed headset bearing all the high quality traits of an ROG product. The ROG Orion uses 50mm neodymium magnet drivers, have 100mm noise isolating ear cups and a light weight design of just 268g. The Orion features a retractable microphone with an inline control to easily adjust the volume or mute the microphone.
The Orion headset comes with the ROG Spitfire II which is a dedicated audio console with ENC and a headphone amplifier all powered by USB. ASUS claim it will block out more than 90% of environmental noise. ASUS provide an RCA-splitter, a 2.5mm jack cable and the appropriate USB cables to allow you to connect with the vast majority of consoles and computers.
50 mm speakers with neodymium magnet drivers
100 mm noise-isolating ear cups
4m cable (2.5m headset, 1.5m Spitfire II audio console box)
Inline volume control and mute switch
More than 90% environmental noise cancellation (Spitfire II)
Cooler Master’s CM Storm division has just unveiled a pair of new gaming headsets – the CM Storm Ceres 300 and 500. Both headsets offer large 40mm drivers. The Ceres 300 comes with thick padded ear cushions and an adjustable headband. The 40mm drivers are complimented by a detachable flexible microphone. The design continues CM Storm’s aluminium themed aesthetics with the aluminium accents cutting through the overall blackness of the design.
CM Storm Ceres 500
Next up is the CM Storm Ceres 500 which uses a similar design but with meshed ear cups that are more effective noise insulators than on the Ceres 300. There is a foldable design to the Ceres 500 thanks to the swivel joints on the ear cups. The Ceres 500 can be used in PC or console mode and has a built in amplifier to compliment the 40mm drivers.
CM Storm’s Ceres 300 and 500 headsets will be released soon and will come competitively priced as Ceres headsets have always done in the past.
Microsoft says that its new voice chat system on the Xbox One will be superior to that used on the Xbox 360 because of the integrated Skype audio codec. Microsoft have put up audio files comparing the sound of the Xbox 360 headset to the Xbox One headset on their soundcloud channel. The comparison is done between the stock Xbox 360 included headset and the stock Xbox One included headset so obviously better headsets would have better quality but the implication is that like-for-like a headset should be better on the Xbox One over the Xbox 360.
Microsoft made a u-turn on its headset policy, when it was planning to not include one. After receiving customer feedback in abundance they decided to bundle one in with the Xbox One. Of course console gamers can decide for themselves if the Xbox One has better audio quality when they get hold of the $500 console some time later this year, believed to be November.
Razer has recently announced the newest addition to its line of gaming headsets. The Razer Kraken is a virtual 7.1 surround sound headset with digital microphone. According to Razer the Kraken comes with a virtual surround sound engine capable of low-latency audio processing to simulate a 360 degree surround sound experience.
As expected with most new Razer products the device is compatible with Razer’s unified Synapse 2.0 software and has a wide variety of customisations allowing gamers to:
“tweak and specifically position each surround sound channel, boost bass levels and even balance incoming voice audio for astounding aural precision”
The included omni-directional microphone uses a digital optimisation to improve voice quality as well as having a mute button and LED indicator.
Price: U.S. $99.99 / EU €99.99
Availability: Razerzone.com – immediate; Worldwide – Available Now
Roccat have just unveiled their latest gaming headset – the Kave XTD 5.1 Digital. The product has been unveiled at the Gamescom event in Cologne, Germany so if you were there you probably would have had a chance to already see and try this new headset. The Kave XTD 5.1 Digital replaces the Original Kave 5.1 and is redesigned based on customer and community feedback.
The Kave XTD 5.1 uses a desktop remote with a built in 5.1 sound card. The remote also features a rather unique piece of technology called Roccat Smart Link. This allows users to pair their smartphone up with the remote using Bluetooth and then can then make or receive calls through the headset while gaming as long as the phone is connected and in range.
The uniqueness of the remote doesn’t end there as it features connectors for 5.1 surround sound meaning users can easily switch between their headset and speaker output, this is in addition to comprehensive headset and audio controls. The Kave XTD 5.1 has true 5.1 surround sound and three driver units per ear cup at a 12 degree angle. The Kave XTD 5.1 has a reworked headband design and the overall product is 25% lighter than its predecessor.
At Gamescom the headset has already snatched a nomination for the Best Hardware award. The headset will be available from November 2013 for €169.99. More details can be found at the product page.
Cooler Master have unveiled their latest headset addition to their CM Storm line of gaming peripherals and products. The CM Storm Pulse-R is an aluminium gaming headset and is “modular” in design which allows gamers to customise parts (such as the aluminium side covers) of the headset in order to represent their particular e-Sports team or gaming clan.
The headset uses 42mm custom drivers and has an in-line remote that is easily detachable. The microphone features noise cancellation.
The Pulse-R uses cushioned cups and an aluminium headband. Finally CM Storm are offered white-LED lighting around the removable laser etched aluminium ear plates, which are customisable, to enable you to represent your particular gaming clan/e-Sports team and then show that off with LED lighting.
CM Storm will be selling the Pulse-R headset for an MSRP of $89.99. It isn’t known how much the “extra” aluminium ear plates will cost and what colours will be available and what colours/designs will be available.
Tt eSPORTS have just come to market with a duo of new gaming peripherals. Firstly they have released the new VOLOS gaming mouse which targets MOBA/MMORPG gamers. This mouse uses three side buttons on the right side, two on the bnack leftr and four on the front left in additional to the top buttons. This gives you 14 keys to program and you can use the provided software to create up to 10 profiles for a total of 140 different macros. Tt eSPORTS have also provided a function lock switch to disable macros against accidental presses. Tt eSPORTS claim the colourful design makes it easier to determine which button you want to press, though to me it just looks like an Xbox controller rip-off. There are customisable weights and LED lighting with the usual 16.8 million colour options for the LEDs. You can customise the LEDs on the left click, scroll wheel, DPI indicator and dragon logo. Expect a price tag of USD$69.99.
Next up is the CRONOSgaming headset which will be made available in black or white and comes with LED lighting on the ear cups. The headset comes with cables that allow it to be used on both PC and on mobile handsets. There is a LYCRA head-pad design for comfort and the microphone is both “bendable” and “pivotable”. A USB connection is provided and the cable is going to be fully braided. The suggested retail price is USD$59.99 and availability is from mid July for the black CRONOS and August for the white CRONOS.#