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Thread: Quest for Speaker/Headphones

  1. #1
    Registered: May 2004

    Quest for Speaker/Headphones

    I went and got an SB USB Audigy 2 NX (external) to correct the error that is onboard sound cards; and low and behold, my speakers don't actually support full 5.1 sound (lacks connection for the SubWoofer directly to the sound card)...expecially since I can't find a good place to put the rear speakers.

    What to do?!

    I would like to go for a really good headphone instead of a new set of speakers, mostly since my old one is falling appart. It would be nice if there was a mic on it as well, but it is not necessary.

    Any suggestions?

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    New Member
    Registered: Nov 2003
    Location: Portland, OR, US
    i can recommend some headphones. i use the grado sr80s for my mp3 player and for when i want to play games late at night their price ranges from $80-$95, and that's a very good price for these. the midrange frequencies are very rich and natural, the bass full, and the high frequencies not tinny or hollow at all. however, they don't block outside noise very well, so don't use 'em if you want to listen to music at the library or something, because everyone will hear it o_o

  3. #3
    Registered: Feb 2004
    Location: Waterloo, Ontario, Canada


    But those are just headphones, unlike these Zalman ZM-RS6F 5.1 channel surround-sound headphones which I've been thinking about for a few months now...

    Naturally I can't find any locally to have a listen.

  4. #4
    Registered: Mar 2004
    Sennheisser are usually your best bet for quality headphones. Unfortunately I dont think they make 5.1 headphones yet but its worth looking into. I dont know of any good quality headphones with a mic attached, they're usually just for voice chat and so aren't so clear across all frequencies. If you really cant decide go to a store with alot of magazines and look at the headphone listings in the back of hi-fi and home cinema magazines. See whats best for your budget and needs.

  5. #5
    Registered: Dec 2003
    Location: Immersionland
    Id dare to say dont be stingy regarding headphones if ya can afford it

    Bought some Philips SBC HP1000 a while ago, did cost me a little fortune but really makes a difference to my old crappy ones and even my Speakers. Use them all the time now. Excellent noise damping, you can hear fleas cough and being stalked by a bunch of howling zombies in the boneyard never sounded better. Oh and theyre good for music too

  6. #6
    Registered: May 2004
    One problem,

    The Audigy 2 NX is external which means it only has a 5 volt power supply...presumeably enough to power an ordinary set of stereo headphones in the provided jack. True 5.1 headphones, using the 5.1 output jacks, probably require more power...yes? no? Solutions?

  7. #7
    Registered: Jan 2002
    Location: Germany
    Originally posted by scara
    Sennheisser are usually your best bet for quality headphones.
    I second that. I own the Sennheiser HD 212Pro, and I was quite impressed when I noticed that they could output lower frequencies than my subwoofer...

    As for surround sound, you might want to check out the Sennheiser RS 65-8. Those are cordless stereo headphones, but the transmitting unit contains a SRS-processor to enable "virtual surround sound".

  8. #8
    Registered: Apr 2004
    The Audigy 2 NX comes with the Mediasource package, which means you have access to CMSS 3D.

    Don't worry so much about the headphones, as long as they fit nice and snug...just plug them in, go to the eax console, and click CMSS 3D, and click the first option. It opens up the stereo pan to give the feeling of true surround. And it's just as "virtual" as anything you'd get on the market short of purchasing 5.1 surround speakers.

    It may sound like the poor man's 5.1, but the fidelity is stellar. I tested the soft with The Matrix, and I was blown away.

    Granted, if you've got the cash, spring for better quality headphones (I'm saving for some Senheisser's myself), but the 5.1's really aren't necessary with what you already have.

  9. #9
    Registered: Dec 2001
    Location: Kiwi Transfusion

    Re: ah...

    Originally posted by chrish
    But those are just headphones, unlike these Zalman ZM-RS6F 5.1 channel surround-sound headphones which I've been thinking about for a few months now...

    Naturally I can't find any locally to have a listen.
    I think I know, which headphones I'm going to buy, now.
    I can't listen to them anywhere here, either, before ordering them, but I read half a dozen really good reviews on them, and as the prize tag is only 50Ç..
    Thanks for this piece of info!

  10. #10
    Registered: Feb 2004
    Location: Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
    My pleasure; just remember to come back and tell us how they work and how good they sound.

  11. #11
    Registered: Dec 2001
    Location: Kiwi Transfusion
    Just got those headphones mentioned earlier, and after trying them on couple of movies and 20 minutes of Far Cry, I have to say that they were 50 euros well spent! The sense of 3d is simply amazing, feels like they could run circles around my old 5.1 setup. Can't wait to try them on TDS! They also fit to my head really well and are surprisingly sturdy.
    On a downside they don't sound quite so good while listening to music(not bad, either, mind you): the low frequencies are just ridiculously emphasized and the sound is a bit "hollow" - result of optimizing for games. A bit of tweaking of the equalizer dealt with most of the problems, though, so I have to say I am so far more than happy with this purchase.

  12. #12
    Registered: May 2004

    I bought a pair of Speedlink Medusa 5.1 surround headphones a few months ago, and they're amazing! They cost me just under ú50.

    Very good sound quality, excellent spatial separation and they have a built in microphone for multiplayer gaming too.

    Best of all they're very comfortable to wear and not too big compared to the other surround headphones out there.

    Review here:

    I'm just re-playing Thief Gold with them at the moment, and it's a much more immersive and unnerving experience with the sound coming from all around you.

  13. #13
    Registered: May 2004
    Are you guys saying that you really get surround sound with a set of headphones? I don't see how this is possible, however if it is, how much is that in American money? Thanks.
    Last edited by mgeorge; 25th May 2004 at 13:19.

  14. #14
    Registered: May 2004
    I am still not sure if it is important, but are there any power requirements on the 5.1 headphones you guys have tried? (ie would they likely work well with an external sound card?) Do they cook yer ears? [edit] ah I see the speedlink medUSA has its own powered amplifier! Woot!11 [edit2] and can be worn for 8 hrs with out signs of pain! [bass] Woot!11[/bass] Where to find or order these in the States?

    [update] found another review: > Linky < which says something about a company called meroncourt, but the link is either broken or the site is down. > Meroncourt <

    [update 2] finally> AfterHours < ...'course it isn't in the US. > Ditto < ... expensive here, but it looks like they ship Intl.

    it's not on ebay at all... a good sign of quality.
    Last edited by HecatŠus; 25th May 2004 at 18:11. Reason: updates

  15. #15
    Registered: May 2004
    Firebox will ship them to the US, but the dollar to pound rate at the moment probably makes them a bit expensive at $108 + delivery.

  16. #16
    Registered: Jun 1999
    Location: Sunny place
    If you want headphones, Senheisser is the way to go for what i know. Just don't get anything undet 50$.

    I myself use come creative 5300 surround speakers, which not being the very best, aren't all that bad either. Now you should be able to get the 6100 for real cheap, and having installed them at a friend's place, i came to love them much.

  17. #17
    Registered: Jul 2002
    Location: tampere,finland
    senscheisser :-E
    i got scared off them after i learned several models had the same "feature" mine had; a crackling right speaker at certain frequencies (yes, i tried several)
    it's not a big crackling sound, but enough to annoy the shit out of me
    technically they all were in perfect condition... it's how they made and designed them; crackling crap

  18. #18
    Registered: Jun 2003
    another vote for Sennheisser. And personally I don't care too much about surround 5.1 headphones. surround 5.1 systems are meant to be used to watch movies or listen to orchestra. When it's playing games, nothing beats a nice pair of Sennheisser headphones.

    Also I'd say for headphones, comfort factor is much more important. You are gonna wear those for long hours.

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