Ever since the Gamescom 2018, earlier this year, we’ve been on the lookout for great new gamer headsets. Of course, there are some of the “usual suspects” that you could check into, but maybe there is something new to discover too?
When checking into this space we were giving a lot of focus into the following aspects. We were looking for a gaming headset that is comfortable to wear, has a great sound quality, can be used with multiple platforms, and does not cost you a fortune to buy. Surprisingly enough, there were not that many products left to report about, when taking all that into account, but in the end, we did manage to find a nice headset.
Testing the Plantronics RIG 500 PRO
So, what did we pick in the end? We received a RIG 500 PRO gaming headset from Plantronics and were really surprised by how nice it was, but we want to tell you all about it in more detail.
Plantronics is rather new in the gaming and eSports scene. We do, however, know them very well from the unified communications and enterprise space. They even acquired Polycom, one of the larger players in the industry, as we reported not long ago. That means that we are not talking about a newcomer, we are talking about a company with many years of experience in providing high-quality communication gear that can be worn throughout a whole work day without feeling uncomfortable wearing the headsets.
Proper looks and comfy
What do you get if you buy the RIG 500 PRO headset from Plantronics? On a first look, you can directly see that they put a lot of effort into the design of the gaming headsets. They look bulky, futuristic, edgy, modern, fresh, and like made for gaming, and nothing like what you’d use in a call center.
When wearing this headset, all noises outside your game are blocked out and you can easily immerse into your game. You really feel like you’re really there and I actually did look around me one or two times, because I actually thought something was behind me IRL. This is very likely due to the Dolby Atmos feature which provides a feeling of a 360° sensation. This also helps when you’re playing competitive games and can hear someone sneaking up on you. The audio quality is full range and quite rich. If you’d like to adjust the volume, you can also easily do that via hardware knob. No need to check around in the software configuration.
Flip the mic to mute
Of course the Plantronics RIG 500 PRO also comes with a microphone, so you can communicate with your team and agree on a tactic to win a match in multiplayer mode. The microphone is automatically muted when you move it up and away from your mouth, so you don’t have to worry about annoying the others with background noises coming from you. This is also helpful in case you’re a privacy-concerned person and simply want a mechanical means of making sure that your mic is on mute.
Using a headset like this one can also help streamers to do a great show, by making sure the game audio is separated and cannot be picked up by the gamer’s mic. If that setup isn’t done properly, the streamer’s audience would hear the game audio twice, once normally from the direct signal and one more time in a low-fidelity way through the microphone. Using a headset can help streamers to avoid such issues.
Adjusts itself for a good wearing experience
I also found that the RIG 500 PRO was very comfortable to wear. More comfortable than I know from many other headsets. You only have to set the headset up in case you have a large hairdo, but other than that, it automatically adjusts to the wearer head’s dimensions. I found that to be quite a nice feature and keeps things together without adding pressure on your skin. As the headset is not active (without amps that need to be separately powered) it is not as heavy as a headset with amps and battery built-in too.
It’s also not very heavy so in case you want to, you can use it just to listen to music and chill on the couch, while reading a book or while you’re doing something else. You can simply use the 3.5 mm jack that is meant to be connected to a PC for that and connect your smartphone or another media source that provides this standard jack. You can also use a different jack though, if you want to play on consoles, you just use a different adapter to connect to your PS4 or Xbox One controller. I’m a fan of buying one quality product that you can then use with several platforms.
In case you want to know the technical specifications and details, we also found that for you on the product sheet by Plantronics. Check it out:
- Mic frequency response: 100 Hz–10 kHz
- Mic sensitivity: -45 dBV/Pa
- Mic signal-to-noise ratio: >42 dB
- Mic pickup pattern: Uni-directional
- Headphone weight: 281 g/9.9 oz
- Headphone frequency response: 20 Hz–20 kHz
- Headphone impedance: 32 ohms
- Headphone sensitivity: 111 dBSPL/V
- Headphone maximum input power: 40 mW
- Headphone drivers: Dynamic 50 mm
- Compatibility: Laptop, PC, and Consoles
- Cable length 1.3 m
Grab yours now
You can purchase the RIG 500 PRO directly from Plantronics, currently for $89.99, or you could also grab it on Amazon if you prefer that. We also did a quick unboxing video just for you, so you know what’s in the box. Enjoy! 😉
YouTube: Plantronics RIG 500 PRO [Review + Unboxing]
Photo credit: All images used are owned by Plantronics.
Editorial notice: We have received a test unit from Plantronics in order to prepare this review. Some of the links in this article are affiliate links. Without additional cost to you, we might earn a commission, if you decide to purchase something.