Sennheiser G4ME ONE, Disapointing Sound Quality and lack of Positional Audio with my Onboard Audio

mikemefistous

Commendable
Jun 3, 2016
6
0
1,510
0
Hi, my (220 Euro) Sennheiser G4ME ONE's just arrived.

This is the 3rd headset i own.

I went from having bought a gimmicky roccat kave 5.1 (real 5.1) headset that cost about 100 euro 5 years ago, to then a usb 7.1(fake/virtual 7.1 through Logitech's software) logitech g35 (120 euro 3 years ago) .

Past few days, i was looking to buy a headphone and separate boom mic(but they didn't sell that in my country and the import taxes + transport were not worth it to buy it from abroad)

So i looked and i looked and i found Hardware Cunnuck's review on the G4ME ONE Headset over here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TOsbSzhKbL4


This was my first introduction to high quality Sennheiser products.

So my logitech g35 on stereo mode, sounded horrible and worse than my 15$ panasonic earbuds, so i was always using it at virtual 7.1 no matter what i did and it was pretty neat and lasted me for 3 years for movies/music and especially surround sound in games, till i've had enough of it's discomfort and i lack of loudness and some crackling noises when i tried to artificially increase it and in general bad sound quality, that i didn't care much till now.

As far as in-game sounds go, it was worse than my roccat Kave in quality and loudness, but it was much better on positional audio and games like Rainbow Six Siege and Battlefield 1 and i always felt like i had an edge over my enemies because of it.

However now that i tried my Sennheiser G4ME ONE, i am completely disapointed and i find it's quality to be worse and weirder in some cases than my Logitech G35 USB headset.

As far as surround goes, it seems to be completely lacking any of it and when i try to use my MOBO's software SOUND BLASTER X-FI MB3, it becomes even worse.

I've also tried Razer surround trial, but it also sounds horrible as well and my Stereo just ain't cutting it for surround audio.

I can't tell where the sounds are coming from, compared to my Logitech G35, i was always aware, the momment i heared a sound ,where it came from and i coud pin poin it with accuracy and even shoot people through walls.

This is not the case at all with my Sennheiser G4ME ONE.

The youtube videos quality/movies/series is kind of meh and sometimes it's much more crisp and clearer compared to my G35, but not 220 EURO crisp.

That said, my biggest disapointment is gaming. It's so disapointing, that i have my G35 hooked up whenever i want to play a competive game, because the G4ME ONE is just useless in gaming for me.

From all the reviews i read and saw in videos, most people were praising it for it's awsome sound quality and directional audio with that huge open sound stage and they were also praising it's great mic quality.

At first when i plugged my G4ME ONE's i had that electrical static hissing noise and i was like "You've got to be shitting me... This is why i spent 220 for?" Then i reinstalled my Realtek Drivers and unplugged em and plugged em back in again and i tested em out for a few hours and it feels as if their quality got better, but not significantly better and hardly compares to my 3 year old 120 euro Logitech G35s.

I also tried them out with my laptop and my PS4's controller and they were having trouble powering them into sounding loud, but the quality was pretty much the same disapointing one.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

So, to bring this post to a conclusion, is it normal for my Z170X Gaming 3 MOBO's onboard [Realtek ALC1150 115dB SNR HD Audio](http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=5497#ov), to be causing such poor sound quality and lack of surround sound?

Also another thing i got disapointed at, is that when i tried using my MOBO's amp and set it to x2.5 or x6 for some reason, my right earcup sounds louder than my left one, rendering my onboard audio's amps useless.

As far as comfort and mic quality goes, it's just as advertised, but the sound is pretty disapointing for it's 220 EURO Price and the fact that i can't pinpoint anything other than left and right in-game and pretty much have no surround sound in FPS games, makes this headset useless for me and what it was advertised for, which is competitive gaming with high quality sound and open back design for large soundstage and audio positional accuracy.

Now i am no Audiophile, which is why i'd rather get a headset with a mutable mic and a volume controller on it, but for 220 EURO, are you kidding me? What is this thing that i got?

Is it normal for this to be happening?

Will getting a sound card improve as far as positional audio is concerned?

Am i doing something wrong or is my onboard audio that bad in driving them? ( i noticed they are only 50 Ohm, which means pretty much anything can power em and i also noticed that they are at 116db, my oboard audio can go at 115db, but i never have them so loud anyways so i don't care about it)
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
1 cranking volume to max and hearing static? could be that its background static and you're pushing the amp too hard then. or, could be that you never heard the static before on poorer quality headphones. i know when i upgraded to headphones i could no longer use certain quality audio files for the same reason.. i heard too much so low quality was no longer an option

2 could also be a piss poor amp not outputting equal voltage across the l/r inputs. could be a fluke that someone else has the same issue. honestly without trying across multiple devices you cant say one or the other.

3. no guarantees which is why i suggested testing it on another pc or device. if it works fine on a friends pc which has a soundcard, then its your pc. if it still sounds like crap then it may be the headset is defective or something. as much as a company may state onboard is great, even the very best on $300+ boards is still only equal to or less than low level soundcards like a xonar dg. some is pretty decent, some isnt bad, some sucks. i've even seen the same chipset be good on one board and sound bad on another.

4. thats not exactly how those numbers are meant to be used..

again, the game one is basically a hd518 from their headphone lineup. its a fairly neutral sounding headphone (well its a little more bassy than the 558/598 but just a little) with an average soundstage though still more than good enough for gaming. its commonly used for gaming or general use. it gets recommended all the time and is well known for being a decent headphone for just about anything.

you say that you liked the sound in that video - perhaps you are so used to virtual surround that anything else sounds bad. perhaps get a soundcard with that particular virtual surround option.

since it seems like you're happy at some moments with the headset i'm not going to say it was not your ideal sound signature but i think something is definitely amiss. if i had to guess, probably a mix of bad audio coding or settings in the game and poor quality onboard or poor quality virtual surround. something along those lines.

to truly know for sure you need to do more testing.



 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
1. sounds like your onboard audio is bad quality. static, buzzing, distortion, etc are a sign of this. by bad quality this does not always mean the electronics are poor but you may be picking up interference from poorly shielded parts, etc. a soundcard is generally a fix for this.

2. the game one is basically a hd518/558 headphone which is well respected. while it may not be the best thing since sliced bread and it might not appeal to everyones taste (it is a neutral headphone with somewhat laid back sound) its not bad by any sense of the word. i'm highly doubtful the game one you have is bad unless of course it was defective though you would need to do more testing.

3. it could be that you are so used to virtual surround that stereo sound just sounds bad to you. this is no fault of the headset.

4. the hd518/game one is easy to drive by most devices but there are certainly some which are not very strong and may struggle.

sennheiser products are high priced in europe. it is what it is. beyerdynamic has some nice headphones which are cheaper in europe than they are here. sennheiser is at least 1/4 more expensive there then here.
 

mikemefistous

Commendable
Jun 3, 2016
6
0
1,510
0


Thanks for the quick reply ssddx. I see that you help out most people with headphone issues in other posts.

1. The static/buzzing was happening at the first 1-3 hours. I would not have anything play, i'd crank up the volume to max and i'd hear the static noise. But that went away. (My onboard audio has this nice feuture of shielding it's audio from electrical interferance, but for some reason, the first time i was trying them out, that interferance was there, but now it's gone.)

2. 1 thing that i've noticed and has me feeling it's defective, is that when i turn on my onboard amp, by flipping a switch on my MOBO and setting the boost at x2.5 , the right earcup sounds louder than my left one, by a large margin. It feels as if the amplification only goes to the right earcup. Rendering my amps useless. Could that mean it is defective?

EDIT: I also read a review on the german amazon, that some guy had given them 2 stars and had send them back, because his right driver sounded louder than the other one, but he didn't mention anything about amps. I am only having this issue when i am enabling on my MOBO the x2.5 or x6 boost.(which from my understanding, has something to do with my MOBO's onboard AMP)

3. Could i possibly solve this issue, by getting an internal sound card, like the Creative Soundblaster Z and setting it up to use it's virtual surround sound?

It's kind of hard to shell out more money and not have it guaranteed to work as i'd please and this is what scares me: I've tried using Razer's Surround and it sounds horrible and i've also tried using Sound Blaster X-Fi MB3 , which comes for free with my MOBO and it sounds even worse than Razer's software. It sounds echoy and completely distorted in games and in no way, is it helping me out with any positional audio accuracy, it's making it even worse. Am i doing something wrong in setting it up? Or is my onboard audio too bad to hnadle it? (from the specs of my mobo, it seems to be focusing a lot on it's audio feutures, which lead me to believe that it would be more than enough to power my Sennheiser G4me ONE and bring it close it's full potential)

4. Somehow i can't find the Ohm impedance my MOBO can provide to my headphones, but with that said, i did see in it's specs, i believe it has something to do with loudness, and basically my mobo has 115db while the headset has 116db. I didn't think that 1 would make any difference in sound quality. Which is pretty meh.

I am no audiophile, i just wanted to get something a bit better than my logitech g35 as those were by no means good sounding and as an average audio consumer, i could tell that they had some issues, that a better quality headphone would most likely solve, thus me getting this one and it's disapointing to see that at twice the price , it sounds so bad compared to a usb logitech g35 virtual surround headset..


With that out of the way, i watched this youtube video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1_20T8x_OI

And i could tell the difference with my current setup (not sure how that works) And it did give me the surround sound feel that my Logitech G35 has been giving me.

In that video, my headset sounded awsome, but when i am using it in game, i can tell apart all the sounds, but i can't locate their source and positional audio is terrible with this headset.

It sounds so bizzare to me, how can a headset like that be advertised as a high quality gaming headset with open back design for good positional audio and be sold at such a high price, yet perform so poorly...

And the brand, behind it, it's Fricking Sennheiser, when i first listened to it i was like "You've got to be shitting me.. Please tell me i am doing something wrong and i didn't just shell out 220 Euro to listen to something that sounds like something that a 30Euro headset would sound like.."
 

ssddx

Glorious
Moderator
1 cranking volume to max and hearing static? could be that its background static and you're pushing the amp too hard then. or, could be that you never heard the static before on poorer quality headphones. i know when i upgraded to headphones i could no longer use certain quality audio files for the same reason.. i heard too much so low quality was no longer an option

2 could also be a piss poor amp not outputting equal voltage across the l/r inputs. could be a fluke that someone else has the same issue. honestly without trying across multiple devices you cant say one or the other.

3. no guarantees which is why i suggested testing it on another pc or device. if it works fine on a friends pc which has a soundcard, then its your pc. if it still sounds like crap then it may be the headset is defective or something. as much as a company may state onboard is great, even the very best on $300+ boards is still only equal to or less than low level soundcards like a xonar dg. some is pretty decent, some isnt bad, some sucks. i've even seen the same chipset be good on one board and sound bad on another.

4. thats not exactly how those numbers are meant to be used..

again, the game one is basically a hd518 from their headphone lineup. its a fairly neutral sounding headphone (well its a little more bassy than the 558/598 but just a little) with an average soundstage though still more than good enough for gaming. its commonly used for gaming or general use. it gets recommended all the time and is well known for being a decent headphone for just about anything.

you say that you liked the sound in that video - perhaps you are so used to virtual surround that anything else sounds bad. perhaps get a soundcard with that particular virtual surround option.

since it seems like you're happy at some moments with the headset i'm not going to say it was not your ideal sound signature but i think something is definitely amiss. if i had to guess, probably a mix of bad audio coding or settings in the game and poor quality onboard or poor quality virtual surround. something along those lines.

to truly know for sure you need to do more testing.



 
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