SteelSeries Diablo III Gaming Headset Review

Performance


performance

Being that the Diablo III Headset is an edgier cousin of the Siberia v2 Frost Headset, we can expect identical performance between the two, and that performance is excellent. The lack of 3.5mm output limits these headphones to USB 2.0 devices, but the integrated USB sound card makes this loss in flexibility more than worth it if you don't plan on using these with your phone or music player. The retractable microphone is a joy to use between chatting, gaming, and casual listening sessions. It's low profile and high flexibility makes it easy to correctly position in front of your face, while the combination of plastic and metal sleeving feels like it can stand up to a lifetime of bending.  Despite it being low-profile, the microphone still has noise-cancelling capabilities, and transmits very clearly, be it Skype or your favorite game chat client.

We have praised the Siberia v2 on multiple occasions for being very well-balanced.  We've used plenty of gaming headsets that are for gaming alone, and sound very poor in anything but games.  The Siberia v2 delivers great sound for music, with the ability to deliver punchy low bass with little distortion.  This then translates to satisfying explosions in-game and while watching movies.  Additionally, the mids are well-produced and are very smooth, which makes voice chats sound great.  The highs are maybe the weakest part, partly due to the large drivers, but the EQ may be used to compensate for that if you've got some floaty classical tunes on your mind.  Overall, these are some of the better-sounding headsets we've tested, not only in-game, but with music and movies as well, which does help set these apart. What they are lacking, however, is immersion. You don't get some of the advantages of pin-point sound for FPS games.  They do a good job at differentiating sounds such as footsteps from others in the environment, but the same directional awareness isn't there when compared to the true 5.1 and the virtual 7.1 sets we've used.  After having used these for many, many hours of FPS gaming, we can't knock them too hard for this shortcoming, and we haven't felt any real loss in "acoustic advantage."

It would be hard to imagine a Diablo III themed product without some red hot lighting, and SteelSeries implementation doesn't disappoint. The earcups house 18 LEDs to power the "Demon Red" lighting with impressive results. Whether or not the strong lighting makes these headphones more fashionable to wear is up to personal opinion, but the ability to change their pulsation, illumination intensity, and the ability to turn it off completely gives you options to wear them how you want. Unlike the overly intense, un-diffused LEDs on other gaming products, the illumination of the Diablo III Headset is easy on the eyes, even at full brightness in a dark room. Perhaps best of all is the sound reactive lighting mode, which dynamically responds to your tunes.

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