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Horrifying audio quality

A Review On: Razer Tiamat 7.1

Razer Tiamat 7.1

Rated # 15 in Gaming Headsets
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Audio Quality
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Pros: Auto-adjusting headband, earcups very comfortable, stylish control module, speaker pass-through, microphone completely retracts

Cons: Terrible audio quality, extremely heavy

I picked these up knowing that they wouldn't come close to the quality level of my Sennheiser Momentum headphones, but needing a headset, I figured Razer's flagship would be up to the task. The packaging and control box were very nice, and the speaker pass-through dongle was a great touch. It's also rather comfortable, and the auto-adjusting headband is a pleasure to wear. The microphone stays out of the way, and slides up inside the headphones when not in use That said, though, the good ends there.

In 2.1 stereo mode, the sound is very muffled, with almost no treble to speak of. The bass is muddy, and it really reminds me of the sound you get from PC headsets that cost a quarter of the asking price of the Tiamat. In 7.1 mode, however, this reverses almost completely. Bass is virtually nonexistent even after maxing the "subwoofer" volume, and it turns into a shrill, tinny mess. I did manage to get some bass out of it by using the bass redirection function of my sound card (50Hz seems to be the sweet spot), but even then it was still rather muddy. I tried to use it in a game to see how the positional audio was, but I found myself cringing every time an explosion or some other loud noise happened simply because it was so shrill, and the positional effect was drowned out as a result.

In the end, turning on my sound card's CMSS-3D in headphone mode offered far superior positional audio performance than the Tiamat's 7.1 mode. Lesson learned - You have two ears, and two speakers are far better equipped to handle both quality and surround sound than the multiple drivers inside the Tiamat. With Dolby Headphone or CMSS-3D, a stereo headset offers far better performance.


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