Another New Toy

I mentioned on the Twitter feed the other day that I bought a new headset to go along with the new mouse that I’ve already blogged about. My old gaming headset danced its last jig a while back when it literally snapped in half; I’d paid somewhere in the $40-50 range for it and it’d seen close to five years of use; the sound quality on it was… fairly good, I’d thought. Since it busted I’ve been using an old cheapie Sony headset that I had laying about, but that thing was literally disintegrating around my ears.

The new model is a Plantronics Gamecom 777. It has full 7.1 surround with an inline sound card and open-ear cups. It was plug-and-play in fact as well as on the box; because the sound processing happens inline, Windows just sees it as a regular USB audio device, and all I have to do is set the audio in whatever application.

I logged into LotRO this afternoon just to check sound settings, and was literally floored by the difference before I even got to the audio menu. It sounds like an entirely different game. It was stunning. Even trivial Windows system sounds are rich and vibrant. I can’t wait to try out some other stuff.

The only reservation is that the open-ear design results in significant sound leakage. There’s an upside to this; I can hear almost perfectly normally while wearing them but with the sound turned off. But it’ll be an issue when I’m up at night trying to be quiet so Mrs. Ardwulf can sleep.

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