SteelSeries Siberia Elite Gaming Headset Final Thoughts
The Siberia Elite Gaming Headset is SteelSeries’ most expensive headset available at the moment, and are in the price range of competitors’ wireless and surround sound headsets. For $199.99 (Amazon | Newegg), you would be right to expect high quality sound and construction, and you will not be disappointed with the Siberia Elite Gaming Headset.
The SteelSeries Siberia Elite Gaming Headset works great right of the box and didn’t require much tweaking to get a great experience across a range of devices. The supplied USB sound card was not as good as my on-board sound in terms of volume and depth but was acceptable all the same. Should you choose to not use the USB sound card you will not get the novelty LED effects on the ear cups or the microphone.
Siberia Elite Gaming Headset Conclusion
The performance of the Siberia Elite Gaming Headset is well above average and will not disappoint. Frequency response is advertised at 16Hz~28kHz.. To my ears the frequency response comes in somewhere around 30Hz~16KHz, the upper limit may just be my ears but I’m confident the lower limit is fairly accurate. I found that the supplied USB sound card didn’t perform as well as I had expected and that the Siberia Elite Gaming Headset performed much better through my Realtek on-board sound.
As far as appearances go, the SteelSeries Siberia Elite Gaming Headset is just a bit too big for my liking. At a LAN event you won’t look out of place, but you certainly wouldn’t see me wearing these walking down the street or on the bus – they are freakishly huge. Of course that is just my own personal opinion, your mileage will vary and that is just the way it is when it comes to aesthetics. You are free to make up your own opinion. They look great but could do with just a little shrinkage.
The Steel Series Siberia Elite Gaming Headset is extremely well constructed and uses fine quality materials too. I really can’t find any flaws and don’t have any complaints about the build quality of the headset, but I felt that the USB sound card was a lower build quality. The ear pads and headband made for a pleasant and comfortable experience even though the clamping force was a little on the strong side. The faux leather material around the ear pads will ensure that you don’t get too hot during extended periods of use.
Most of the functionality of the Siberia Elite Gaming Headset is only available if you connect it through the USB sound card. Dolby headphone technologies, 10-band EQ and advanced microphone controls, LED illumination and controls are all lost if you use the headset without the USB sound card. On the other hand; the retractable microphone, suspension headband and ear cup rotary controls are all great innovations that make the Siberia Elite a great headset and the cable attachments allow for use on a wide range of devices right out of the box.
The SteelSeries Siberia Elite Gaming Headset (model# 51151) will set you back $199.99 (Amazon). This is a high price to pay for a headset but I think the Siberia Elite might just be worth the asking price. At this price range you will be looking at top PC brands and wireless/surround headsets. I would suggest using it with a dedicated sound card or if you are confident in your on-board sound then use it like that, as the USB sound card is a little underwhelming.
+ Works great straight out of the box
+ Excellent build quality
+ Impressive sound quality
+ Suspension headband for perfect fit
+ Very comfortable ear pads and headband
+ Retractable microphone
+ Rotary controls for volume control and microphone mute
+ LED illumination on ear cups and microphone
+ Low sound leakage
+ Cable attachments for a wide range of devices
- USB sound card could be better
- Functionality lost when not connected via USB
- Expensive enthusiast product
- No noise cancellation
- Large size even for a gaming headset
Final Score: 8.65 out of 10.
Recommended: Benchmark Reviews Seal of Approval.
COMMENT QUESTION: Where do you draw the line between quality and price with audio products?