Sound BlasterX H5 Tournament Edition Headset Review
Professional Analog Gaming Headset
Sound BlasterX H5 Tournament Edition Headset Review. Taking an existing product and creating a new version, can be a risky move from any brand. From experience, the success rate is 50/50, it’s either a pointless rehash, or a worthy upgrade. Which is the H5? Well… we expect the latter here with a visual overhaul, new drivers, and a tweaked microphone
[Sound BlasterX H5 Features and Specs]
The BlasterX H5 Tournament Edition is an upgrade from the BlasterX H5 with improved drivers for better sensitivity and more accurate sound reproduction. This gaming headset also features an upgraded microphone to help you ace your games with better voice pick up and noise cancellation in loud gaming environments.
Looking sleeker than ever, the BlasterX H5 comes with new brushed metal earcup plates and gun metal finishing.
- Drivers: 50mm Neomydium
- Operating principle: Closed back
- Frequency response: 20Hz–20,000 Hz
- Nominal impedance: 32 Ω
- Mic Sensitivity: 118dB/mW at 1kHz
- Weight: 10.6 ounces / .66lb
- Cable length and type: 2.4m total length, Braided cable
- Connection: Dual 3.5mm 3-pole jacks / Single 4-pole
Close Your Eyes, Take a Deep Breath and be Immersed in Total Audio Bliss
- BlasterX Acoustic Engine Lite (Preset Profiles)
- 50mm FullSpectrum
Headset Frequency Response
- 20Hz ~ 20kHz
- 3.5mm Stereo Input
Supported Operating Systems
- for Windows
Supported Gaming Consoles
- PlayStation® 4 via 3.5mm 4-pole audio cable, Xbox One™ via 3.5mm 4-pole audio cable (With Xbox One Stereo Headset Adapter)
- Microphone Type: Unidirectional Noise-reduction Condenser
Frequency Response: 100Hz ~ 15kHz
Courtesy of Creative, See more detail
The product arrived in an elegant red/black box. Detail is kept to the minimum and jargon-free, with clear and concise facts. The back side outlines the key features and assets that the H5 have to offer.
Around the box edges, Creative outlines further key features of the H5 TE. Namely, the upgraded drivers, improved microphone, revised finish and software enhancements.
Internal packing is very impressive, with a high-end vibe. Aside from the headset, Creative include ample documentation and warranty information.
Creative provide cabling to suit PC, Console and smartphone users. You’ll find both
- Detachable 3.5mm 4-pole to 4-pole Jack Braided Cable with Controls (1.2m)
- Extension Audio/Microphone Splitter Cable (1.2m)
The 4-pole to 4-pole cable includes an in-line control for volume, mute and a play/pause button. When used on a smartphone, these double up for call functions too.
The first impression is fantastic, the blend of black, red and a brushed finish is a winning combination. The set is very professional and elegant.
The headband padding is exceptional. With a mass amount of internal padding. While the bar inside is tried and tested to ensure longevity, its very willing to bend and mold around your head. The amount of cushion inside is way above average.
If you find the need to expand and adjust the overall size, then fear not as it is an easy feat. Each small change is handled with small locking clips, and when you find the right setting for you, it locks down in place and won’t slip. The H5 TE has a total of 12 points of adjustment.
The brushed finish reacts well to lighting, and produces fantastic visuals.
The padding on the cups isn’t the thickest we’ve seen but for me, that’s a plus. Sets with too much can cause excessive sweating and a pinching effect.
Lurking inside is memory foam to mold around your ears and offer comfort during extended gaming sessions.
Cabling has been well thought about, both the microphone and 3.5mm cable lock in place and blend seamlessly
Notice the lack of a mic cover? Fear not as the refresh microphone now has a built in filter. Redesigned and improved, the detachable noise-reduction mic picks up voices and cancels noise better in a loud gaming environment.
The new drivers are further tuned for clearer, louder and more accurate sound reproduction to give you an edge over your enemies, so you can be sure to experience a full-bodied impact of every bone-shattering explosion and rattle of gunfire in your gameplay.
Performance & Final Thoughts
So then it’s time to wrap up our findings and deliver a verdict.
Audio quality is highly subjective and does make my life as a reviewer tricky, when it comes to speakers, and headsets. I share what I feel and hear, and I always rope in the opinion of friends and family members, in the hope to deliver an unbiased and varied opinion.
Regarding audio quality, out of the box, the Sound BlasterX H5 Tournament Edition provides incredible performance with no single weak area to mention. Tones, treble, and bass are well balanced. For console/Mobiles users this is a big deal. However, PC users can reap the rewards of having control. The Sound Blaster X application unleashes the real potential. Granted, we don’t have access to a million and one settings, but the options and profiles really bring the set to life for different applications/games
The 50mm drivers are very capable, and if you’re coming from a basic headset to this, you’ll notice a massive improvement. Lots of small details in gunshots, footsteps, and explosions. Again the PC users will be the ones reaping the rewards of control, as it has many settings to further enhance the experience. The H5TE is still a solid choice for console gaming, though!
The microphone did initially concern me, with the lack of any cover (windscreen) in actual fact, the new microphone has a shield built inside, to eliminate exterior noise/breathing. In reality yes it does work, but I’m not convinced it works as well, as it could have. From an aesthetic point of view, sure this looks better. In a real world scenario, the H5TE still picked up random background noise.
Aimed at gamers, we still put the set through a series of rigorous testing with music, dialogue, and movies. Again no worrying areas, a pass across the board. The design and price point is very similar the Kingston HyperX Cloud II and many users will ask “well…which one?” Having played around with both, I really can’t separate them in performance, That said the H5 just edged ahead. In the visual department, the H5 is a nicer and more refined product.
We would like to thank Creative for sending out the test sample