SteelSeries Guild Wars 2 Flux Gaming Headset Review



To test the performance of the Flux headset over the past month, we've gamed, listened to music at home and when running errands/doing chores, and generally putting them through the paces we'd want these to stand up to.  First, we'll talk sound quality.  We generally start out our listening with a wide variety of musical genres, and this was no different.  We were pleasantly surprised, as the small earcups, which still manage to pack a beefy 40mm driver, created a very full sound.  The sound actually compares very well to the musical quality we've come to love from SteelSeries' Siberia v2, albeit with a little less bass capability because of the smaller drivers.  However, the mid range was very full and crisp, although the highs feel a little forced, again a downfall simply because the drivers are large.  For most mainstream music, which tend to be bass-heavy, the Flux headset sounds very good and leads to a very enjoyable listening experience.  Even though the very high end can sound a bit harsh at times, even classical genres sounded pretty good.


In games, the Flux also doesn't shy away from sounding alot like it's bigger brother, the Siberia v2, and to be honest, there isn't a huge difference between them.  The fact that they are on-ears meant the directional fidelity was a bit lower, but I could still get a pretty good idea of where my enemies were scampering around.  The bass is definitely less than the many larger headsets, but there's still plenty to get a satisfying boom when your tank shell is fired away or to let you know you got lucky when a grenade goes off just around the corner.  In-game sound perfromance is probably best described as having minimal compromise.  They sound great, probably even good enough for serious gamers, and for their size, far surpassed our initial expectations.


Sounds isolation was actually quite good, and espeically good given its on-ear form factor.  The in-line microphone was another area I had my doubts about, but again, I found myself surprised.  The recipients on the other end of my game chats and Skype calls reported that I came over loud and clear, although it wasn't quite as clear as a dedicated boom microphone, which is to be expected.  Nonetheless, one of the best in-line microphones I've used, hands down.  The large, simple rocker mute switch snaps cleanly into each position.  I was again surprised that ambient noise was rarely transmitted, and when it did, it was noise that was unavoidable to transmit.


The best sounding headset in the world is rendered nearly useless if they can't be worn comfortably for any considerable period of time.  The earpads are very soft and provide a comfortable cushion over your ears, although they are, in my opinion, just not as comfortable as over-ear headsets.  The headband rests softly on the crown of your head, and the sides adjust smoothly to get a snug fit.  This segues us into our lone complaint of the Flux, which is that they have a tendency to want to creep off your head if you look down at the floor or look straight up.  While the latter is an uncommon posture, the former is something I do frequently, by looking down at the keyboard or to tie my shoes if I'm wearing them casually around.  The problem is caused by a combination of things.  First, I mentioned that the earcups are hefty, with a rather large 40mm driver packed into a small earcup.  The weight, when coupled with the swivelling earcups means that when you look down, the earcups will swivel from the weight, and the whole headset lurches forward, and is prone to actually falling off.


The only other small gripe is that the headband, while being able to fit very snugly overall, comes off as a bit square on my head, so the headband itself actually protrudes a bit from the sides of my head.  It's more of an aesthetic complaint, which is very subjective, so your mileage may vary in that regard.

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