I needed a new headset and since Don was very happy with his SteelSeries Diablo III Headset I just had to get me one from the same company. So, when I was offered the SteelSeries 5Hv3 Headset to review I just had to say YES. The problem is, I can comment on comfort and how much I like them but I’m not a gamer so I had to go to the experts. Don said he’d do the review for me but my stepdaughter and her husband stepped up and said they’d love to give it a whirl. Since they’re avid gamers and with Chris (son-in-law’s) brother living in another country I figured this would be the ultimate test. Without further ado, here’s the combined review of Lisa and Chris. Don’t worry though, I’ll be coming up the rear and giving my final say at the end.
Ask any true and blue gamer and you’ll be told, gaming is a lifestyle. We nit pick over the simplest of things when it comes to PC gaming, from the internal specs down to what grade of keyboard, mouse and audio we use.
My husband and I are avid gamers, we both share a love of good RPGs (role-playing games), fast paced and action packed FPS (first pirson shooters), and a love-hate relationship with many MMO games (massively multiplayer-online). With the latter genre, we find ourselves using a variety of voice programs such as Skype, Ventrilo and Mumble. Most social gamers these days even make it a requirement. A good headset is a must.
When were asked by Dee to review the Steel Series 5HV3, I couldn’t pass it up. I’ve owned numerous Steel Series headsets before and this surpassed my expectations. To be honest, I’ve had a bad history with Steel Series headsets, each one I have purchased in one way or another broke. I truthfully didn’t go into the review expecting to be given the sturdy headset I received.
Many headsets these days are bulky, over priced but cheaply made. Steel Series brings us a moderately priced model made with sturdy materials. The ear cups are lined with soft leather and padded for comfort and offer a soft pad of foam to line the head band. The frame is made of a light weight but thick, textured plastic. We’ve found with headset models that are not made with wire suspension ( Like the Siberia V2 ) tend to weigh heavy on the head after fifteen to thirty minutes of use. We were surprised with how light the 5HV3 was. After thirty minutes of use, the weight was noticeable but not uncomfortable.
The sound quality is what you would expect from Steel Series. The bass booms at the right places and doesn’t crackle when the volume is cranked. The microphone feed was crystal clear with no cracking. The quality the microphone put out was actually better than that of his current orange Siberia V3.
We only found a few details we disliked about the headset. I have a rather large head and while the headset is quite large, I still felt some strain while putting it on my head. I’ve had a few headsets snap right above the ear cup and was afraid with prolonged use this might be a problem with the 5HV3. The headset held up well to our reviewing, but it was still a detail I took into consideration for myself. We also found the ear cups to be slightly narrow. Our current headsets comfortably sit around our ears without pressing the sides of our ears down. The 5HV3 came to rest directly on our ears and as a person with multiple piercings, this can become uncomfortable after prolonged usage.
Overall we feel this is a great headset. It has its cons, but most headsets do. And, for a price of only $79.99? You’ll be lucky to find a better headset with as good of quality that Steel Series can provide.
Hi, Dee again. For my take on this headset, I love it. I love that it hugs my head and doesn’t slide off when I move. I love the extra long, no tangle cord and I especially love the fact that I don’t hear anything when I’ve got them on. Well, maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration but I can’t hear Don talking to me when he’s sitting right next to me.
Now to touch on some of the negatives Lisa and Chris found. As I said, the headset hugs my head but I don’t feel any strain when putting it on. The ear cups are perfect for my ears and they don’t press down. I also find that I have it slid to the smallest size and in the time I’ve used it the headset hasn’t slipped from that position. I should point out though, I’m not a gamer and I only wear the headset for short periods at a time.
Now for the specs on these babies.
Powerful, detailed audio experience via tournament grade, next generation SteelSeries audio drivers that feature a wide dynamic range that allows you to hear all levels of your audio: lows, mids, and highs.
The 5Hv3 features a retractable microphone system. Pull it out when you need it. Hide it in the left earcup when you don’t.
The double braided cable gives the 5Hv3 increased durability and also features an integrated volume controller on the cord also offers a microphone mute switch, all for instant control without having to navigate through software settings.
Swappable Cable System
The ends of the 5Hv3 are swappable so that you can use your headset with your PC, Mac®, phones and tablets. A mobile end with a single 3-pole 3.5mm jack and a PC cable with a 3.5mm headphone jack and a 3.5mm microphone jack have both been included
Extra-padded, soft all-leather design provides extended comfort and passive noise reduction.
Easy to Carry
The SteelSeries 5Hv3 is especially popular and loved at LAN-events and internet cafés around the world. With the ability to dismantle the headset into 3 pieces for easy carrying and transportation makes it the first choice headset for many gamers.
And finally The Numbers
- Frequency response: 16 – 28000 Hz
- Impedance: 40 Ohm
- SPL@ 1kHz, 1 Vrms: 110 dB
- Cable length: 1.2 + 2 = 3.2m
- Jacks: 2 x 3.5mm for PC
- + 4-pole 3.5mm Mac®, Mobile and Tablets
- Frequency response: 75 – 16000 Hz
- Pick up pattern: Uni-directional
- Sensitivity: -38 dB
- Impedance: 2K Ohm
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