US – Approx. US$189 – Sennheiser Game One PH – Approx. PHP11990
Its a big market out there for gaming peripherals. We’ve already noted many times that a lot of brands have been riding the whole ‘gaming’ hype to market their products. This may work for gaming mice and keyboards but for audio its a really sensitive matter. And even moreso for audiophiles and discerning audio enthusiasts who use their rig for far more than gaming. While the rest of the gaming market may settle with heavily marketed bloat, there are still many out there who want the best in audio and will invest in a gaming audio experience that only the best can deliver. Sennheiser is one of the premier audio brand in the world and there is no denying they have a solid line-up of audio solutions for any audiophile.
We’ve taken a look at the Sennheiser PC360 G4ME gaming headset a couple of years back and we remarked how impressed we are with the product. Fast-forward almost 4 years and we have one of the new offerings from the company for gamers: the Sennheiser GAME ONE. This along with the Sennheiser GAME ZERO are the company’s frontliners for gamers and we take a closer look at the GAME ONE in this review.
Open-back design keeps head cool while delivering extreme sonic clarity and accuracy courtesy of Sennheiser’s model specific transducer technology (50-ohm)
Sennheiser surprisingly goes different with their new GAME series of headsets, now packaged in white versus the traditional black packaging that majority of Sennheiser products come in. A glamor shot of the product is displayed upfront with small prints of the model name. At the back are specifications and features of the GAME ONE headset. Opening up the Sennheiser GAME ONE packaging, we see the headset secured within another box. Inside the package are the Sennheiser GAME ONE headset and a pair of cables: one for stereo+mic and one for mobile and consoles.
One of the newest features we’ve seen in the Sennheiser GAME ONE is the detachable cables. With this, you can use the included sets of cables for both PC and console gaming. What we do miss though is the non-tangle cables of the older PC360 which despite their looks, really feel premium and seriously never tangle or kink. The Sennheiser GAME ONE uses braided-sleeve cabling, 3 meters for PC and 1.2 meters for console.
The Sennheiser GAME ONE is available in two colors: Black and White. Both of which have red trims to accentuate the headset, subtle yet stylish enough to exude a bit of that aggressive gamer steeze we’re known for. The sample we have is the white version and the color of choice is really bold despite its rather clean looks.
The earcups of the Sennheiser GAME ONE has not changed much and similar to many of the HD5xx series of audiophile cans, still retains the signature oval shape of the cups with distinct vents adorning the other side of the ear cup. Sennheiser’s GAME ONE feature intuitive controls for its volume adjustment and mice mute: a discrete volume knob is located at the low-center of the right earcup for quick and easy access while the mic boom when lifted upwards, automatically mutes the microphone. Moving over to the headband, Sennheiser uses a contrasting black band for the white version (retains black for black version) extends to fit even the largest noggins.
Plush velvet line the cushions on both headband and earcups.
Using the other connector, the Sennheiser GAME ONE can be connector to console and mobile devices.
User Experience & Conclusion
We used a Creative SoundBlaster Audigy 5 RX and Playstation 4 for our tests. The Sennheiser GAME ONE headset was burned-in for 100 hours before we formed our conclusion.
The Sennheiser GAME ONE sans the microphone boom is practically the HD558. That said, its a great listening headset. Do note that we used a rather mainstream soundcard and despite the fact that you can drive them with your onboard audio solution, it just falls flat and really deserve a better audio source unless you’re rocking tweaked onboard audio like those found on high-end motherboards. Going back, overall listening is excellent; the Sennheiser GAME ONE has excellent clarity and really appealing to those that prefer a “flat” characteristic to their audio. This is perfect for music and listening but for games that let users have some form of tactical advantage via positional audio, the Sennheiser GAME ONE is best paired with an audio card capable of surround reproduction. Still, the mids and highs on the GAME ONE are detailed enough to let those who are very adept pick-out distinct audio differences for games that support it; enemies behind walls, enemies from afar or coming towards you, you can pick them out with the GAME ONE. The soundstage is excellent and isn’t drowned out by the bass intensity often prioritized by other gaming headsets.
There’s a lot complexities when it comes to gaming audio solutions and its easy to see Seenheiser decided to focus on high-quality audio than features or extras with the Sennheiser GAME ONE. For those that have a dedicated street headphone and want something on-par with their gaming setup but demand an equally superior microphone, the Sennheiser GAME ONE is an excellent choice. Make sure to pair it up with an equally decent sound card or high-end motherboard (GIGABYTE Z170X GAMING G1 matches colors and has integrated Creative Sound Blaster hardware) is a good choice.
Comfort-wise, the GAME ONE is light and very comfortable. While the earcup may not be to everyone’s taste (no leather cushions available), its easy to get used to them and even in tropical weather the cushions don’t really heat-up as much as they may first seem to be. Testing on a long 7-hour session of Heroes of the Storm, we felt the GAME ONE doesn’t strain as much as our other larger headsets like the HyperX Cloud. The open-back also makes it highly-breathable and lets you hear the environment around you, so you technically just toggle the volume and not remove the headset when you need to listen.
Build quality is excellent even with the majority of the body being made of plastic. The mold is sharp and highly polished with every inch of the Sennheiser GAME ONE exuding high quality. We do feel that the switch from non-tangle cable to removable sleeved cabling is a downgrade but having the ability to remove the cables reduces the need for non-tangle cables.
Initially priced at around $250, the Sennheiser GAME ONE can now be spotted at around $189 and while at that range it will already be out of range with any gaming headset to compete with except for true-surround 5.1 models, there’s no denying many audiophile have spent much more than that for a decent pair of cans. Again, we’d like to note that the Sennheiser GAME ONE focuses on audio quality and excellent reproduction, something only dedicated audio brands have no problem pulling off and with the GAME ONE’s pedigree, that’s easily a no-brainer.
Price / Where to Buy:
US – Approx. US$189 – Sennheiser Game One PH – Approx. PHP11990
Overall, the Sennheiser GAME ONE gaming headset is aimed at discerning gamers who value audio quality more than features. Those looking for a high-end open-back gaming headset that features superior audio quality and have a complimenting audio card need only the Sennheiser GAME ONE.
Sennheiser backs the GAME ONE headset with a 2-year warranty. We give it our B2G Gold Award and Editor’s Choice Award!