Corsair are well known for their Memory products and have recently extended their range into the peripherals, with the Vengeance K60 and K90 keyboards, both excellent, and the M60 and M90 mice, with stupendous build quality.
It makes sense then that they have added to their suite of gaming peripherals with the Vengeance headset range. Today we're taking a look at the premium model in the range, the lengthily-titled Corsair Vengeance 2000 Wireless 7.1 Headset.
We're lovers of a good headset here at OC3D. With the array of media applications available on home computers a headset has to be a true all-rounder. Capable of being as good in Call of Duty as it is with Skype or Youtube. The times when something resembling the headphones you'd get with an eighties Walkman are far behind us. So have Corsair managed to bring us a cracker right out of the gate?
Although it's billed as a 7.1 headset, naturally it's a stereo headset with some clever driver manipulation. We've seen a few genuine surround headsets and only the Roccat Kave has ever delivered the full monty. However, with good speaker drivers and software you really would struggle to tell the difference so hopes are high.
The big starring part of the Vengeance is the wireless technology. Not only does this free you up from the very irritating "cable across your chest" problem, but allows you more freedom especially with the non-gaming uses. Corsair are proud of their wireless channel solution, so fingers crossed the cutting out/neighbours WiFi problems than can plague some wireless headsets are eradicated.
Frequency Response: 20Hz to 20kHz
Impedance: 32 Ohms @ 1kHz
Sensitivity: 105dB (+/-3dB)
USB power consumption: 500mA
Connector: USB Type A
Wireless range: up to 40 feet (12m)
Battery life: Up to 10 hours
Type: Unidirectional noise-cancelling condenser with adjustable, rotating boom
Impedance: 2.2k Ohms
Frequency Response: 100Hz to 10kHz
Sensitivity: -37dB (+/-3dB)
The packaging on the other Vengeance products is crisp and clean, and the 2000 Headset keeps up this trend. All the information you can desire, with no frippery or extraneous details. Excellent. The Headset itself is well protected, with non-tacky plastic strips covering the areas likely to rub against the packaging in transit, ensuring it arrives in mint condition.
Despite being a headset and therefore simple enough to use, the documentation is detailed and easy to follow. The Wireless auto-syncs, without any bizarre order needing to be followed. Just plug in, turn on, play. We have three cables in the box, a lengthy USB extension for the wireless receiver, should you have your tower below the desk or similar, a mini-USB charging cable, and the wireless receiver itself. This comes complete with a delicate blue LED to let you know all is working as it should be.
The first thing you notice is the lightness. Despite being a fullsize setup, heavy use of plastics has kept the weight to a minimum. But don't think that plastic means a creaky build-quality. Everything feels very solidly put together, with nice soft ear cups and a lot of adjustability, helping the Vengeance 2000 sit nicely on your head without pushing into the sides and making long usage uncomfortable.
All the controls you need are on the left earpiece. A simple power button dominates, with a blue LED to let you know it's on, or off. Below that is a very high quality volume roller, which reminds us exactly of the excellent volume control on the Vengeance keyboards.
The software is a small download, and whilst not vital has a few nice features. The one we like a lot is the bypass button. So often companies apply spatial effects which work perfectly in gaming but make it sound like Joey Ramone is singing in a cathedral when you move to your music. Otherwise there are the standard selection of volume and EQ options, as well as three options for how spacious you like your echo to be.
Rather than tease you with some hints towards which way we're leaning here, let's cut to the chase. The Corsair Vengeance 2000 Wireless 7.1 Headset is, barring two small things, fantastic. We've tested a lot of headsets, and without fail we always returned to the Roccat Kave as our 'daily driver'. The Vengeance 2000 blows them away.
Despite being an all plastic build, they're surprisingly robust. In the same way that the plastics you get with an Aston Martin are a league ahead of those in a Hyundai, so the Vengeance 2000 oozes quality. The biggest benefit is how this also keeps the weight down which allows you to wear them until the battery runs out without feeling like you've got an anvil strapped to your head. The headband is soft, the ear pieces are even softer, and it sits perfectly on your ears. Not so tight than you feel like you have accidentally brought a vice, but not so loose that your audio spills out and loses definition.
Speaking of the audio it's really good. If you like heavy bass, you'll be delighted. If you like sheer 'but these go up to eleven' volume then Corsair have you covered. But if you just want crystal clear sound throughout the audio spectrum then you'll be in heaven. Even with a flat EQ selected the Vengeance 2000 replicates everything we could throw at it with alarming clarity. The presets are well selected too, veering away from the tendency towards only having a Metallica-esque scooped style that is so popular with some other presets. The microphone is clear too, neatly focussing upon your voice rather than the hums and whirs surrounding you, without having the Peter Piper Sells Seashells problem that can occur with other mics.
It's not only the audio quality that is a delight, but the actual wireless part works phenomenally well. Corsair make a big play about how the Vengeance 2000 Wireless 7.1 Headset doesn't just randomly cycle between wireless frequencies, but instead takes a note of those currently in use and avoids them entirely, so you never have to put up with even minor breaks in your signal. We can't verify that this will work flawlessly in every possible scenario, but even with dozens of wireless devices near to our testing area, we never once lost signal or heard something we weren't meant to. Astounding.
Of course there are a couple of tiny gripes. The first is the battery life which, at a robust 10 hours, is good enough to allow for overnight charging similar to our smartphones. It still went flat on us a couple of times, but you get a warning that it will do so allowing you to plug the charging cable in and carry on playing. The other little niggle is the price, at around £110 these are at the higher end of the spectrum, but the quality of the whole item makes it a worthy price to pay, so it's only a tiny problem for those a bit tighter in the financial department.
In all the Corsair Vengeance 2000 Wireless 7.1 Headset is excellent and we really cannot rate it highly enough. The audio reproduction is first rate, and the wireless element is done as well as we've ever seen it. A Gold Award winner.
Thanks to Corsair for the Vengeance 2000 Wireless 7.1 Headset you can discuss your thoughts in the OC3D forums.