Basics for how to pick a headset for gaming.

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Sep 12, 2006
Headsets used for gaming are a great idea for lots of people, not just you but also anyone around you who hates all the noise your computer/game makes. This is not a review of headsets, its things to consider before you buy:

Here is what I recommend you do to help you choose.
1. Make a quick spreadsheet using Excel, or OpenOffice or Google Docs
2. Write down the things listed below that are important to you.

3. Read the information provided here and it will hopefully help you make an informed decision!

OS Compatible: This is an important thing to find out before you make any other choices since none of it will matter at all if it flat out doesn't work on your computer. This is also important if your considering trying to use your headset on your PC and XBOX or PS3/4. Sometimes it works on one but not the other.

Connection Type: There are two basic options, USB or Analog. There could be a complete review just on this option but lets be realistic we are buying a gaming headset, not a headset to listen to the other team in BF4 perform Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata. If you choose Analog its usually better if you have your own high end sound card to use. USB has its own soundcard built in so you just have to install that device's drivers to get everything out of it.

Wired/Wireless: Wireless is good, but there is always that slim chance you forget to recharge and the battery goes dead while in the middle of the game. Its also possible there may be interference from other devices using wireless like phones, routers, or speakers. It might be something to think about if your in an apartment building with a bunch of other computer people. That doesn't happen with wired but you do have a long cord to think about that might get in the way. Make sure people don't trip on the cord or your pet doesn't get itself tangled up and yank it out.

Microphone: Voice chat in games doesn't need much in the way of quality for people to hear you. This is really only a choice if your using your own higher end microphone.

Noise Cancelling: This is good if your in a loud environment like others talking or watching tv and you don't need to hear them. It was originally made for flying airplanes or helicopters because of the noise they made but most of us here won't be gaming while flying our helicopters around.

Sound Format: If you are just buying for voice chat or can only hear through one ear then a mono/stereo will be fine. If your gaming and need directional audio like hearing something behind you then 5.1 will be better.

Number of Speakers: This ties into sound format above since some headsets do actually have several speakers in each ear and some use virtual surround to make it sound like 5.1/7.1

Can you Handle It: A lot of times wearing headphones for several hours at a time can cause aches or pains on your head/ears so make sure your ready for that possibility.

Reviews of the device: It is always a good idea to check out what other people have said about the device. Check out official review sites and also go to several different online stores and see what people have said about it there in the comments sections.

Price Range: Higher is NOT always better. Some headsets are sold based on name not on performance. Don't be the guy that pays $300 for a headset that performs same as the $100 pair.

Thanks a lot to " jpishgar " and " inzone " for telling me about stuff I needed to make this better!
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