900$ Gaming Headphones! Are They Worth Buying? Review - Tech Tips - Tech can be complex; we make it easy

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Monday, July 6, 2020

900$ Gaming Headphones! Are They Worth Buying? Review

- The first time I got my hands on some planar magnetic headphones from Odyssey was when I treated myself toa pair of secondhand LCD twos. Now, I never made a video about those because my reason for buying them was so that I would have something to use as a reference for what truly high end sounded like. Giving me the context that I needed for the consumer headphones and the gaming headsets that I was evaluating. Fast forward a few years and Odyssey has brought a lot of that same technology into a gaming headset.

This is the LCD GX. Does it have built in vibration motors? No. RGB? Also no. Dolby Digital dongle? No. But is it ludicrous overkill in its own way? Absolutely. Origin PC just introduced multiple courser case options for their desktops and new laptops powered by the latest Intel and in video technology. Check them out at originpc.comor at the link below. (tecno music) You know I thought the fancy case was because this is a reviewers kit but as it turns out it's only slightly modified from the retail one. Look at this thing, it's ridiculous. User guide and driver downloads and then a certificate of authenticity inspect about wow, that actually is signed by something yeah I think it is. Like what this is just a brochure this is all their other products you already got me for the LCD GX, I don't need all this other stuff.


Look at how cushy your cups are, Brandon. - [Brandon] They haven't changed their design language, really. - No, they really haven't, have they? They look just about identical other than the red gamery accents on the air cups to the LCD twos. Instead of wood though, it's all metal. So you don't have that that woodgrain finish on the outsides here. About the same size adjustment mechanism that I've never honestly been a huge fan of kind of rudimentary feeling. That's the funny thing about these high end headphone brands, though, right? Is that on the one hand, they are mass producing these things, but on the other, some of their manufacturing techniques seem to be carryovers from when they were hand making dozens of them at a time.


That is a gigantic ear cup. That is already such a large ear cutout that I don't touch it on any side. Curiously, unlike a lot of the headphones, they don't have a non-leather vegan option for the gaming skew. But this feels so nice. You can really tell when an audio product is designed to be disposable versus when it's designed to be used for many, many years. So these ear cups are wait a minute. Yeah, I don't think these are removable, strictly speaking, you could definitely replace them by taking these off and gluing new ones on there. But yep, curiously,even though they've got a leather strap up here that kind of looks like a suspension style headphone strap, it comes up right against the metal headband, so you can feel it through the top. Do I look ridiculous?


Do they look too big for my head? - [Brandon] Yes. - Oh, well, I thought you were gonna be nice about it. Let's have a look at the cables. - [Brandon] They look nice. - Okay well, that's nice. So I look ridiculously nice then? Is that what you mean to say? - [Brandon] Yes. - Thanks, Brandon show up at the LAN party with one of these. Like sup, serious gamer now. - [Brandon] Aw, You have AirPods? (laughs) - Oh, that's adorable. Now, let's sort through hour cable situation. You don't actually need all of these. So on the bottom of each ear cup is a mini XLR. In that way you can replace the cables that come with it, with whatever cables you want or you can swap out between the two that it does include. So this one right here,uses a quarter inch jack and is meant to plug into whatever your PiFi equipment is. We're not gonna need that'cause we're gamers today folks.


We're gonna be gaming. The right ear cup plugs in it as normal, and the left ear cup has actually got a little attached microphone on it. Again, no fancy features no mute when you lift it or indication LED on itor anything like that it's not retractable or anything like that. It's just a pretty basic boom mic wanna get that right by the corner of your mouth there. Then we've got a simple four pole three and 1/2 millimeter jack on the other end, which most people, if they're not plugging into a laptop are probably going to wanna plug into this splitter right here and this is the extra piece that came with the reviewers kit. So this is a shit hell. I know I don't make the rules, that's what the product is called. It's a shit audio hell and you plug in your two micro USBs and this is a USB Amp and DAC that also has an input which is kind of nice that you can hook up to your gaming laptop,or desktop, or whatever. And then you plug in your brand new fancy pants headphones at the front like that and you are ready for some gaming.


All right, so you think you're a gamer but here's the thing. I lied to you guys a little bit this isn't my first time opening these up I took them for a test drive the other night. And the problem is that immediately after throwing them on, I was like, okay, well, I gotta set up OBS for my new audio device. But why don't I throw on a playlist and I'll listen to some music on them, before I go live. 25, 35 minutes later, I'm kind of sitting there going yeah, I'm not that much of a gamer. Do I really need to go live right now? Or should I just jam out to some tunes? Can you hear this through the microphone right now? - [Brandon] Yes. - Oh, okay, sorry about that. Also, I guess I've probably been yelling.


Thing is the benefits of planar magnetic drivers are several they are enormous, which means that they can move a lot of air which is what generates sound. And additionally, they're extremely light, like nano-layer light. So what that means is that they're incredibly responsive so whether it's deep, thunderous bass, I mean the kind of thing thatyou feel rather than just hear or whether it's very high end details that you need. And whether it's when you're listening to music or as a gamer like listening for footsteps, the reproduction is incredible. They do have some drawbacks. They are open back which as you can see, even listening to music at what I would consider to be a high but still reasonable level anyone around you can hear exactly what you've got going on. It also means that (snaps fingers) you can hear things going on around you. Now, I daily drive Sennheiser HD six hundreds for gaming, personally, which are also open back headphones and I'm happy with that but I would still hesitate to recommend a gaming headset that isn't closed back. Obviously from a stereo imagingand accuracy standpoint, there's no drawback the ears are designed to hear bleed over in your left ear from what is playing to your right ear. That's how sound works in the world around you.


And a set of planar magnetic drivers right next to your earholes is about as close to great quality speakers in the room as you can get. Odyssey rightly has a spectacular reputation in the audiophile community for their wide sound stage, and their lifelike audio. The issue is that it does make a big difference to immersion to hear things around you unless you happen to beone of those lucky souls who doesn't have to deal with any ambient noise. Let's fire up a game. You know what? Sure, let's go completely tasteless and play some Duke Nukem Forever. The next thing I gotta talk about is comfort. The LCD Gxs I mean, there's really no way to describe them other than pretty heavy and they don't have a lot of clamping pressure. It's funny because you can see they kind of snap right together like this. And it seems like they would have a lot of force but, they don't. They're kind of loose and they're actually very reminiscent of the LCD twos that even though I treated myself to them, I never ended up switching to for daily use because of comfort issues. They're fine for a bit If I was just sitting here doing this video off the cuff, I would say these are very comfortable, like those super cushiony ear cups, great.


But my problem with them is that they're clearly designed to be worn while sitting,upright or reclined backwards, maybe while listening to music for a little while. And I don't see what if anything, they've adapted about these to make the design for gamers of the vendor put a red accent girl on the side and microphone on here. So something that happens I find just sitting here gaming on a laptop, and oh look at that. And when I was using them the other night, and I went to grab something on my floor, is that they will just fall right off of my head. And it's always a balance between clamping pressure and strap weight. You can make up for that with a great strap. But unfortunately, thetheory of a hammock-like strap up here, just doesn't hold up in the real world and it feels more straplike and less hammock like and that's 'cause I can really feel the metal through it.


Wearing them for two hoursin a row on the first night, the pressure points were a little bit from the foam in the earcups being almost too stiff, but mostly from the flat strap right across the top of my head. Flat surface, round object, never a great idea and I don't know why headphone ergonomics are so hard. You need a combination of the two to really make it feel like it's floating on your head like some gaming headsets do so well. Man when you got great headphones, the bad voice acting sounds even worse. All right, time to punch some dudes. The audio sounds so clean though, you start to hear the characters talking a little bit less, and the voice actors in the booth talking a little bit like it's almost too much. I don't mean it as a criticism. It's just something to be aware of something it does get right is the temperature even though it's a leather type ear cup, I never really felt any excessive warmth.


I guess it does help a little bit to be open back. A bigger issue is that I actually got a lot of complaints about mic quality using the included Amp and DAC on my (murmurs) stream the other night. Now, I don't think that's the end of the world, I have a separate mic and USB XLR interface for it. And honestly, so would anybody spending this kind of money on their gaming audio. But I guess the issue isthat that kind of raises the question of if this microphone isn't designed to be good enough for the customer who would buy this product, why bother including it in the first place? Why not just say, "Hey,if you like our products, "just buy a pair of headphones "and get a separate microphone." I don't wanna come across to complainy though. I don't hate this product.


The LCD GXs sound amazing, as I expected. But rather than making me want to switch to them, these ended up making me more curious about Odysseys lower tier Mobius, which seemed to compromise on their classic hangs off your head ergonomics in order to cater better to gamers. Someone from the team,may be James maybe me, I'm not sure yet is planning to take those for a test drive, At $400 my expectations are still really high, but hopefully a lot of the cost savings is the more plastic construction rather than the sound quality. 'Cause man once you hear something like this, it's like gaming headsets, eh. You know what's not eh. My (murmurs) to our sponsor, Vessi Footwear. Vessi footwear is made of100% waterproof material using a knit material that's got like this coating on it that helps it repel water, snow, mud and slash and all kinds of great stuff.


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