At the start of this year I was looking to replace my Blue Snowball USB microphone. The reason I had to replace my Blue Snowball is because it has “fallen on its head” twice and will no longer interface with my PC. I could email Blue Microphones’ support channel with the possibility of getting a new one, but it was my clumsiness that caused the microphone to stop functioning, so, in my mind, it’s not fair to ask for a new microphone when the product failure wasn’t due to a manufacturing fault. This post — getting back on topic — is a complete review of my experiences with the Corsair Vengeance 1500 gaming headset.
I bought this headset from Amazon UK and I have no complaints. The sound quality is rich and full-bodied (sounds like I’m talking about a Merlot or a Shiraz); there is enough bass to keep the sound smooth, but not so much that it takes over. The headband fits my head well and it’s not uncomfortable. This headset is 7.1 surround sound and is certainly worth the £68 I paid for it. The headset’s price ranges from £57-£115, and in the United States the price ranges from around $60-$178 (currently $69.99 at Amazon).
Corsair has designed this headset to have 7.1 surround sound with over-the-ear headphones, which makes gaming and using the headphones for any great length of time extremely comfortable. You can also rest easy in the fact that these headphones are not padded in PU leather. They are covered in — what looks and feels like — a breathable fabric that won’t induce sweating or increase the possibility of sweat rash. The headphones have a nice, rich audio quality to them that you can tweak within the Corsair control panel that you get with the driver download.
The microphone is moulded plastic, and therefore you can’t move it closer or farther away from your mouth like you can with some boom microphones. My first headset did have a fault with the microphone where the right channel would — when I wasn’t talking talking — stay at 0 kHz or thereabouts, but the left channel was always generating +6 kHz. I’d always try and edit this out with Audacity, but I could still hear it. So I reached out to Corsair in April, told a representative about this problem, and after a few troubleshooting questions, they agreed with me that the headset I had was defective.
Corsair then sent me its RMA (Return Merchandise Authorisation) procedure and I sent the headset back to the company two weeks ago. The new headset has only been in my house for around two hours — at time of writing — and I can really hear the difference. The audio no longer has a +6 kHz squeak in my left ear and the first thing I did was check the microphone. My only moan is that I had to pay £15 (around $30) to send the headset to Corsair, but considering it sent me a brand new headset on UPS Express Saver, I honestly don’t have a reason to moan.
Corsair really has put a lot of thought and effort into the details with this headset. The headband has a nice feeling to it and although the headband looks like metal, it is, in fact, plastic made to look like metal. Although it is plastic, it really does feel like there is some substance to it and that it wouldn’t break if you accidentally stood on it — although I really do not recommend that you try that. The wire that connects the headset to the computer via USB has a really nice, high-end shoelace feel and not the typical polyurethane plastic sheathing that you expect. The length of this wire is probably more than you’ll realistically ever need at around two or three meters.
There is a mute/volume button block around a fifth of the way down the wire. This block has two big chunky plus and minus buttons for the volume control and, in the middle, there is a small mute button. It is really simple to tell that you’re muted because the chunky plus and minus buttons that glow blue will glow red. This headset is all about audio performance and quality and, to get the best performance, it really should be chunky and built to last. Yes, the smaller, lighter, and more compact headsets on the market may look better, but I know that I certainly wouldn’t have any trust in them that they wouldn’t suddenly fail and leave me in a compromised situation. This headset certainly does not make me feel like it will suddenly fail it feels like it could cope with being seriously abused and still function as designed.
I am more than pleased with the customer service that I received from Corsair and with the speed at which it followed through with its RMA protocols. The headset itself certainly feels chunky and built to last with the feeling that you could proverbially take on the world and the headset would be with you every step of the way. Corsair really has done — in my opinion — an absolutely awesome job at producing a gaming headset that I’m sure many people (including myself) would be — and are — happy to own. Leave a comment below and let us know what kind of headset you have, what made you choose it, and why you like it. I’ll see you in game.