Should I buy a good pair of gaming headphones if I already have a pair of headphones for music?

BlitzkriegOPS

Commendable
May 8, 2016
5
0
1,510
0
EDIT:
Apologies for the late responses. I've had a bunch of schoolwork due this past week so I've been focusing on that. The sale on these headphones has come and gone, but the topic remains open for discussion, as I'm still interested in these headphones and others like them in the future.

It should also be worth noting that if anyone has any better alternatives to the Arctis 3 or 5 gaming headphones, then I would be interested to hear those suggestions. Those alternatives may also be music headphones such as Sennheisers or even a better pair of Sonys, but the inclusion of an inline mic would be nice. No Beats please, everyone knows that they aren't worth what is charged for them. I enjoyed listening to a pair of the more expensive BOSE headphones, but again, too expensive, only good for music, and I've also heard you can get similar sounding headphones for cheaper anyway.

Please keep in mind that I would prefer to keep the price below $120 CAD (that's Canadian dollars) if possible, as I'm also a full-time university student in addition to playing video games. I am willing to make an investment in better headphones at some point, just maybe not right now.

Original Post:
I've had a pair of Sony noise-cancelling headphones for about a year now, and they've served me well for music. However my local computer shop has a slight discount on Steelseries Arctis 5 headphones right now and I wasn't sure whether it would be worth it or not to buy a pair of those in addition to my current headphones.

I've read and watched reviews about Arctis 5 that had very few bad things to say about them. The big thing about these headphones for me though is the fit. I've had other pairs of over-ear headphones that have left my head aching after a while because of lack of padding, so the strap idea looks like it could help alleviate that. I've also had issues of headphones painfully digging my glasses into the sides of my head, and I've heard that the clamping force on these isn't too bad either.

I don't play games online with friends very often, so the mic itself isn't a huge concern of mine, though it would be useful for the times when I do since I'm usually forced to use my phone or tablet when chatting over Skype or Discord. I occasionally play Call of Duty, and while I'm not that serious about it, if there is a decent benefit to using headphones like the Arctis, then I'd more seriously consider them. Most of the games I play are RPGs like The Witcher, and other single-player games in general, and if there is any significant benefit to hearing a game with a great soundtrack through this kind of a headset, I would also more heavily consider it.

At the end of the day, I'd mainly want to know if there's actually a tangible benefit to the audio abilities of a gaming headset vs. the headphones that I have now with regards to their performance in games.

Thoughts are appreciated.
 

audie-tron25

Estimable
Mar 23, 2015
71
0
4,660
29
Although I haven't had much experience with Sony's high end music headphones (except in-store demo's, have no idea what model they were though), stay away from the Arctis line. I've tried a Arctis 3 (they're all the same except for the audio dongle), it was very uncomfortable and because they don't have much clamping pressure, the bass is severely lacking. The problem is that the earpads are very thin so my ears were pressed against the unpadded inside of the earcup.

I understand where you are getting at with the clamping pressure, but you will probably find the lack of room in the earcups much more annoying. That being said, if you really like that they don't clamp onto your head, consider getting a pair of HM5 pads from Brainwavz to put more space in the earcups. They make it much more comfortable and don't affect the clamping pressure. I personally felt that they weren't as good as my Hyperx Cloud Core's because of the poor fit but that's just me. Audio quality was pretty comparable, if not slightly worse.

I would probably assume that there wouldn't be much of a difference between a high-end music headphone and a very good gaming headphone in regards to gaming performance.
 

BlitzkriegOPS

Commendable
May 8, 2016
5
0
1,510
0


Interesting. I'm not much of an audiophile, but how does clamping pressure affect bass? I'm not terribly into bass anyways, and I was expecting it to be lacking compared to other headphones because of the 40mm drivers inside. As a side note, I should probably have mentioned that my Sony headphones are by no means top of the line. They're $80 CAD, and they're pretty much the lowest-priced pair of noise-cancelling on-ear headphones that Sony offers to the best of my knowledge.

I was looking at HyperX's lineup, and I recall hearing that they cancelled production of the Core model in favour of the Stinger and Cloud lineup. I was looking at the Stinger too, but my understanding was that the Arctis models had better sound and build quality, and they were only about $20 more expensive than the Stinger, though I could be entirely wrong about this. At least one video (by HardwareCanucks) compared the Arctis 5, the Cloud II, and the Sennheiser GSP 300 and the Arctis faired pretty well, beating the Cloud II (according to the reviewer) on many fronts except for build quality, though the reviewer did mention a lack of space between the drivers and the earcups, so I think you might be on to something there.

Thanks for the feedback, I'll keep this in mind.
 

canadianvice

Honorable
Jul 25, 2012
234
0
10,910
47
Hi! Arctis owner here. I don't trust my judgement for sound (but they sound great!), but I do for comfort. The suspension band is the final evolution of comfort in head-borne audio devices.

I had siberias b4 this, and I will never go back to the hard band.

My only complaint is even on a big head, the lateral force on the arctis is sort of lacking. They will move if you move your head back, for instance.

However, all in all a solid yes from me.
 

BlitzkriegOPS

Commendable
May 8, 2016
5
0
1,510
0


I'm glad to hear that what I've heard about the suspension band being quite comfortable was correct.

You aren't alone about the lack of clamping force apparently. If there's a way for me to try a sample pair on then I'll be able to see for myself whether it's too lacking in that department, but too much clamping force is a bit of an issue for me because of my glasses, so that might be tolerable, we'll see.

Glad to hear that you're satisfied with them. Thanks for the feedback.
 

nobspls

Proper
Mar 14, 2018
48
0
110
10
Gaming headsets do not magically sound better, nor are they guaranteed to have better mics. What is guaranteed is really horrid garish styling. If you like the gamer style, then more power to you. Otherwise I'd stick with good ones that work great for music.
 

canadianvice

Honorable
Jul 25, 2012
234
0
10,910
47
Re: glasses:

Admittedly I don't wear them full time, but I do make use of yellow-tinted (they do actually seem to help with eyestrain) non-presc ones, and it's not an issue at all.

Also, at the people saying gaming hs are bad... sure, the audio isn't as good as high end headphones, but there's a lot to be said for the convenience of an inline mic.

Also, @ op, have you considered something like that earbud based headset cougar makes? I got a cheap chinese knockoff (so the mic audio is total scheisser) but the principle is valid.

The cougar ones have a better mic though, so may be worth considering.
 

BlitzkriegOPS

Commendable
May 8, 2016
5
0
1,510
0


I wasn't really asking if they sounded better in general, I wanted to know if they sounded better for games. Like I said before, I don't play competitive games all that often, but I would like to know a bit about my surroundings as if I was actually there. These headphones may not do that, but that wasn't the point. Do you know for sure that these headphones wouldn't sound better than my cheap Sony noise-cancelling headphones?

I recognize that they don't have better mics compared to studio-quality mics, but again, that wasn't what I was asking. I was asking if the mic on those headphones would be better than using the one that is built into my tablet or phone.

As for the style, that's pretty subjective, though I mostly agree with you there. One of the reasons I like these headphones is because they don't look outlandishly ridiculous to me. I also don't plan on wearing them outside my room anyway, so that doesn't matter that much.

For your last point.. Could you recommend me a better pair of music headphones at this price-range that you know would work as well as or better than this particular set of gaming headphones for use in RPG games like The Witcher or Skyrim, and that perhaps also help with doing well in competitive games like Battlefield or even Call of Duty?

Keep in mind that Canadian prices are nearly double the prices of most US products.

Thank you for your feedback!
 

BlitzkriegOPS

Commendable
May 8, 2016
5
0
1,510
0


Honestly, as long as they don't hurt my head while I'm playing games, that's a good sign.

Your second point; I agree, my hope was that when I'm chatting with friends online that this mic will sound better than just using the one built into my tablet or phone.

Your third point: I've used earbuds before, but I've found that they don't fit my ear canal very well. The buds are either too big and hurt after being in my ears for a while, or they're too small and I have to readjust them every few minutes to keep them in, hence why I'm looking at over-ear or on-ear style headphones. Since most gaming headsets are over-ear though, this narrows the field by a decent margin.

Thanks again for your feedback!
 
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
T Audio 0
F Audio 0
Killerwavvle Audio 1
F Audio 1
N Audio 1
R Audio 0
Marshall Honorof Audio 0
Marshall Honorof Audio 0
Marshall Honorof Audio 0
Marshall Honorof Audio 0
DionL Audio 1
G Audio 2
B Audio 3
AuGZA Audio 12
Dizahsin (Dion) Audio 3
C Audio 2
K Audio 1
M Audio 4
H Audio 2
K Audio 3

ASK THE COMMUNITY