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This time around, Massdrop has sent us the Sennheiser G4ME Zero headset for review. In all honesty, I was a bit skeptical of the product considering it was a gaming headset. I typically find audiophile-grade headphones to offer a better bang for your buck. Sennheiser makes great headphones, but do their gaming headsets hold the same value?
Before even listening to the headset, I was really impressed with the G4ME Zero’s build-quality. The most notable feature is the oval ear pads that are made from a soft leatherette material. The shape and material of the pads allow them to easily fit around any ear and create a nice seal. Unfortunately, the leather can make your ears a bit warm, but it’s certainly bearable. The headband also has a leather padding that makes it sit comfortably on top of your head. Due to the comfiness and high build-quality of the headset, you can wear it for long gaming sessions and not get irritated by it. The headset is also built from a strong plastic and feels very sturdy. The cable is braided which certainly looks nice, but it sometimes causes annoying rubbing sounds to travel up the wire.
What makes this headset really stand out is all the small features it has. The first of which is its unique boom microphone. The mic boom is fairly stiff but it does have some flex to enable repositioning of the mic. When the mic is folded up, it is automatically muted. This allows you to easily talk with people in real life without worrying about conversations being heard by other gamers. It’s also nice to be able to get the mic out of sight when it’s not in use. On the right earcup, there is a volume adjustment knob. Since you can’t see the knob, it’s a bit hard to tell where it is at first. After getting used to it it becomes a lot easier to use, but I honestly find myself using software to control the volume more often than not. A less appreciated, but certainly just as useful feature is the headband adjustment. The way it works is very similar to most other retraction-type headbands. What makes it a lot better than other implementations I’ve seen is that it stays in place. Despite extended periods of use and droppage, the adjustments never moved on me. While this seems like a trivial feature, it is actually very convenient.
One of the most important parts of any piece of audio equipment is the sound quality. The sound quality actually surprised me, in both good and bad ways. Since I’m coming from the audiophile-grade K7XX headphones, I was a bit skeptical of how a gaming headset could sound. Luckily, music sounded much better than I expected. The drivers seem to be based off the drivers in the Sennheiser HD 598 headphones. The highs sound really great, but they're not too bright so they don’t induce fatigue. The mids are fairly clear and don’t fall below the rest of the frequencies. The last frequency is the bass response, and this is actually where I had my expectations the highest. While the bass has some punch to it and is definitely not muddy, it’s not as boomy as I expected. Most gaming headsets have a really deep and emphasized bass for gunshots and explosions, but that isn’t found here. Because of this, I decided to look into the specs of the headset and discovered that they have a rather high impedance of 150 ohms. This means that in order to reach the full potential of these drivers, an amplifier is needed. Considering I don’t have an amplifier myself, I will not be able to assess the performance with an amp. It is, however, something I will investigate in the future and update this review with. Regardless, I assume most people interested in a gaming headset won’t have an amplifier already.
The headset’s microphone is pretty good for what it is. It is a higher quality mic than most gaming headsets, but falls a bit behind the standalone solutions like the ModMic. It’s an ideal microphone for gaming and talking with friends, but you may want a bit more if you’re a content creator. It also picks up a good amount of background noise, so be wary of that if you game in a loud environment.
If you’re in the market for a new headset, the G4ME Zero should definitely be on your radar. While its sound quality isn’t mind-blowing, it is much better than solutions that come from gaming companies. You also always have the option of picking up an amplifier to even further improve your experience. In addition the quality, the small and convenient features really make this headset worth the money.
If you’re interested in buying the G4ME Zero you can check out its deal on Massdrop at http://dro.ps/Se7enSins. The drop also includes an adapter for Xbox One and PlayStation 4.