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-   -   Recommendation for gaming headset + MICROPHONE, the damned MICROPHONE :) (http://forums.animesuki.com/showthread.php?t=116425)

Vexx 2012-11-25 21:26

Recommendation for gaming headset + MICROPHONE, the damned MICROPHONE :)
 
I will spend an absurd amount of money on a gaming headset and no matter how wondrous the audio is --- the microphone is crap. Doesn't seem to matter what sound card, what audio software, whatever is involved. I'll waste substantial amounts of game time trying to get a microphone to work properly.

Never had this problem with professional music or aviation gear.

Anyone have a microphone and/or tips they have had good results with?

synaesthetic 2012-11-26 04:23

The Zalman clip-on USB mics are very decent for their cheap price. You can use any headphones with them, too, and they tend to be better than cheap gaming headsets.

NorthernFallout 2012-11-26 05:25

I recently bought the http://steelseries.com/products/audi...ies-siberia-v2 a few months ago. Mic can be pulled in, good quality on the mic and general audio, specifically for gaming and comms, not so much for music. Not very expensive either.

If you're looking for a separate mic, however, I'm afraid I have nothing to offer on that part.

Vexx 2012-11-26 05:46

I shall take a look-see at both (though the clip-on may be more the ticket so I can just use my "good headphones" :)

Thanks to both.

TheFluff 2012-11-26 15:25

The problem is that the cheap electret microphones that are mounted in absolutely everything these days are complete shit. They're popular because they're really cheap, they can be made really tiny, they can work without an external power source, and because most people don't really notice or care about the terrible sound quality. Unpowered mics are a hack, though.

If you want actual good quality mic input, buy a relatively big condenser microphone with an external power source. It doesn't matter if it's battery, USB or phantom power (although if you want a phantom powered mic you also need an actual serious business amplifier, and I doubt you take your gaming voice communications that seriously), but don't buy an unpowered mic if you care about quality. Blue Micropones and Samson both have a few different options that are decent but not outrageously expensive (although by that I mean at least 50-ish USD, which most people would probably consider pretty steep for a mic). You could try the Samson Go-Mic or the Blue Microphones Snowball or Snowflake. You don't generally find these things in computer stores though; take a look in a music shop instead.

Desktop mics are usually sorta problematic ergonomically though because you really need to speak pretty close to the mic for it to pick you up properly, but this can usually be fixed with clever mounting or by buying a mic intended for a speaker's podium or something.

Vexx 2012-11-26 16:51

Yeah, I was starting to consider a trip to the music store for a used mike. Hopefully there's something between "absolute shit nano-mikes" and "700 quatloo professional studio" :) Those items (Samson, etc) look quite interesting.

Jaden 2012-11-26 17:49

Steelseries only gives 1 year of warranty on their products in North America, where most of the world gets 2 years. My Siberia v2 went mute in the right ear after a year or so, and I had to get a replacement. Just something to keep in mind with this run-of-the-mill equipment...

Wandering_Youth 2012-11-28 04:51

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vexx (Post 4451556)
I will spend an absurd amount of money on a gaming headset and no matter how wondrous the audio is --- the microphone is crap. Doesn't seem to matter what sound card, what audio software, whatever is involved. I'll waste substantial amounts of game time trying to get a microphone to work properly.

Never had this problem with professional music or aviation gear.

Anyone have a microphone and/or tips they have had good results with?

What exactly are you using this headset for?

I'm currently using Sennheiser PC 151 and I'm loving it so far. The sound quality of the headset is average, but the microphone is good.

I mainly use the headset for gaming and skype calls. It feels very comfortable for long hours of gaming and the mic is picks up my voice very well. I wear glasses and I can tell you that finding a good headset that is to be used for long hours of gaming is a pain. My friends in-game and on Skype hear me clearly and my voice sounds pretty clear when recording with FRAPS.

I know the pain of finding a good headset, I had to go through 3 different brand of headsets before I settled on my current one.

Vexx 2012-11-28 15:06

I like many of Sennheiser's products (haven't tried that particular model) but I was finding after almost a decade of trying to use gaming headset/mike products was that no matter how good the headphones were, the associated mike was a piece of shit (to be nice about it :) ). I just decided I would separate the two functions and "shop separately".

Sometimes I wonder if its the frequency of my voice ;)

Hiroi Sekai 2012-11-28 17:36

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vexx (Post 4454596)
I like many of Sennheiser's products (haven't tried that particular model) but I was finding after almost a decade of trying to use gaming headset/mike products was that no matter how good the headphones were, the associated mike was a piece of shit (to be nice about it :) ). I just decided I would separate the two functions and "shop separately".

Sometimes I wonder if its the frequency of my voice ;)

Didn't even know Senns attached microphones to their headphones; I've only gone for their stereo headphones for music.:heh:

It's surprising how much better you can get everything once you separate the mic from your head. :p I always run Sennheiser HD598s with a Fiio E10 DAC, then use a Shure SM57 condenser microphone with a cheap pop filter.

Vexx 2012-11-30 16:31

After some research and coin-flips, I brought home a Samson Go Mic. It worked beautifully right out of the box. Seriously ... its sitting two feet from my mouth and it both picks up my voice easily but ignores ambient noises. I actually had to dial back the gain in the software.

Now I can get out some some decent headphones (== comfort and sound) instead of the earache inducing "gaming headsets". Thanks to everyone who commented.

Hiroi Sekai 2012-11-30 18:09

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vexx (Post 4457203)
After some research and coin-flips, I brought home a Samson Go Mic. It worked beautifully right out of the box. Seriously ... its sitting two feet from my mouth and it both picks up my voice easily but ignores ambient noises. I actually had to dial back the gain in the software.

Now I can get out some some decent headphones (== comfort and sound) instead of the earache inducing "gaming headsets". Thanks to everyone who commented.

A portable condenser microphone?! Good research done, good sir. Nice and affordable too, it seems. :3

Vexx 2012-11-30 18:28

I have to point at TheFluff, it was one of his suggestions.

Hiroi Sekai 2012-11-30 18:40

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vexx (Post 4457269)
I have to point at TheFluff, it was one of his suggestions.

A heck of a good one too. I'm assuming you're set in the headset realm as well?

TheFluff 2012-11-30 19:35

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vexx (Post 4457203)
After some research and coin-flips, I brought home a Samson Go Mic. It worked beautifully right out of the box. Seriously ... its sitting two feet from my mouth and it both picks up my voice easily but ignores ambient noises. I actually had to dial back the gain in the software.

Nice. :]
I'm glad it worked out for you.

synaesthetic 2012-12-01 07:16

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vexx (Post 4457203)
After some research and coin-flips, I brought home a Samson Go Mic. It worked beautifully right out of the box. Seriously ... its sitting two feet from my mouth and it both picks up my voice easily but ignores ambient noises. I actually had to dial back the gain in the software.

Now I can get out some some decent headphones (== comfort and sound) instead of the earache inducing "gaming headsets". Thanks to everyone who commented.

I've been using a pair of JVC HA-RX700 full-size semi-open circumaural headphones for over a year now (still going strong, too!) and these things are unbelievable for the price (about $35).

I've heard them likened to "the poor man's Audio-Technica ATH-A900s" and it's completely true--though I actually think I prefer the RX700s against the A900s, which is saying something considering how the A900s are highly regarded $200 premium cans. JVC managed to very affordably replicate the Audio-Technica signature sound and these headphones work well with all sorts of music. Bass is a bit light though, especially without a dedicated headphone amp, so don't expect subwoofer strapped to your skull levels of boom.

They're quite comfortable, even for those really long gaming sessions. They do have the fakey-leather pads like most pro gear, but they don't clamp nearly as hard as pro headphones and they don't isolate much sound. Being semi-open, though, they don't leak too much either.

They're quite efficient and don't need much in the way of gain to get good and loud, but like most low-impedance, high-sensitivity headphones they're a bit current-hungry. A good headphone amp intended for low-voltage, high-current headphones (preferably with an output impedance of 2 ohms or less) would help them sound their best, with fuller sound and better bass and mids, but I honestly don't have any problems with them straight out of my PC's headphone jack. Especially not for gaming, which isn't going to be high-fidelity even on the best of days.

Seriously, the price is such that you really can't lose (and Amazon's return policies are great, anyway). The only comfort issues I have with them are the same ones I have with all circum-aural headphones--I wear glasses, and the pressure of any full-size cans squishing my ear against my eyeglass frame can get a bit sore after a while.

http://www.amazon.com/JVC-HARX700-Pr...words=ha-rx700

TheFluff 2012-12-01 10:51

Quote:

Originally Posted by synaesthetic (Post 4457881)
I've been using a pair of JVC HA-RX700 full-size semi-open circumaural headphones for over a year now (still going strong, too!) and these things are unbelievable for the price (about $35).

I have a pair of those too and I can second the recommendation. They're awesome and also really cheap.


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