Full disclosure: All winter I’ve attempted to stay in the house as much as possible and do as much gaming as I possibly could. Over the Christmas holiday I ended up receiving an Xbox One bundle set with Madden 2016 included, and the only thing Microsoft did not include in the package was a headset. Luckily for me, Creative sent me over their Sound BlasterX H5 Gaming Headset to review, and over the course of a few months, I’ve yet to find a single flaw in them.
At only $129 at the time I received them, it seems as if Creative decided to have a sale for the premier headset, dropping them to $99, which is honestly a steal, let me explain why. But first here are the specs for the SoundBlasterX H5’s:
50mm Full Spectrum drivers
Headset Frequency Response: 20Hz ~ 20kHz
3.5mm Stereo Input
Detachable, flexible microphone
Inline remote with mute, volume, and mobile answer/play/pause
Y-adapter for mic/stereo connector
Rated the highest sounding quality in their class, the Sound BlasterX H5’s straight out of the box are hands down the loudest pair of headsets I’ve ever used. I have friends who have some of the competitions versions of headsets for gaming consoles, and I’m proud to say theirs do not even compare.
Using the Sound Blasterx H5’s on my Xbox One, plugged into the controller itself is everything you could ask for from a headset. If you’ve had an XBox One since it’s inception and happen to have one of the controllers that do not have the new 3.5mm jack included at the bottom, don’t fret because even though Creative doesn’t supply you with an adapter for that purpose, you can purchase one in places like Amazon easily. For those of you who do have the updated version, the H5 headphones sound awesome.
Playing Madden 2016 online, I could easily hear my competition loud and clear over Xbox Live, all the while keeping up with the gameplay audio courtesy of fine-tuning the Xbox One’s internal settings themselves. If you rather leave those as is, you’ll be happy to know that the H5’s do come with an inline volume option on the cable of the headset themselves, ideal for those moments you can’t bother pausing the game and going into the settings to change them.
Being as the Xbox One is my first Microsoft product in years since my Xbox 360 received the “red ring of death” six years ago, I was amazed at how compatible it would be with Creative’s headset. The audio quality is above average, but honestly if you’re going to be gaming online, you want the headset to be comfortable for extended periods of time, and you get that with these H5’s.
The Sound BlasterX H5’s come with an aluminum construction which is not only durable but somehow extremely flexible. The headband and the ear cups are equally comfortable with the cups themselves offering up memory foam-like comfort that will easily let you game for hours without having to feel like your ears are aching from overuse.
As far as audio quality, Creative gets this right as well. Using Creative’s BlasterX Acoustic Engine, you get a range of different sound presets that depend on which games you play the most, courtesy of a separate download. Me being a sports gamer, I traditionally stuck with the sports settings. I’m attempting to get more into driving and shooting games again, but I did manage to play Halo over at a friends house using my H5’s and honestly, they sounded great. You could hear all of the in-game sounds crisp and clear, without the compromise of background noise (although there is no true noise cancellation in this headset itself).
Overall I think the Sound BlasterX H5’s are the best headphones on the market, not because I enjoy all of Creative’s products, but the fact that you can now buy them for $99, that makes them easily worth adding to your arsenal with Spring Break coming up this month.
For more information, you can head over to Creative Labs today!
Source: Manufacturer supplied review unit
What I Like: The overall build quality of the headset are not only durable, but super comfortable.
What Needs Improvement: Nothing