Testing & Results
Now, let’s get to the nuts and bolts of the review. Please keep in mind that the below findings are based on my opinion of the Corsair H2100 Wireless Dolby 7.1 Gaming Headset’s performance. In other words, the results are subjective, yet they are based on several hours of utilizing a number of different applications. Much of this testing phase was conducted while gaming, but both listening to audio and judging the audio quality while watching video was also part of the process.
Most of the gaming results are based on playing Battlefield 4, yet other games, such as Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Blacklist, Company of Heroes, and Sleeping Dogs were played as well so that an overall judgement could be made in terms of the quality of audio delivered under gaming conditions. In addition, I listened to plenty of music from a number of different genres. A similar process was used in order to determine the quality of audio rendered while watching video files.
- Motherboard: Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD3
- System Memory: 16GB (2 x 8GB) DDR3 1333 G.Skill Ripjaws X Series
- Processor: AMD FX-6100 Zambezi 3.3 GHz Six-Core Processor
- Audio: ASUS XONAR DG PCI 5.1 Audio Card
- Video: HIS Radeon HD 7950 IceQ Boost Clock 3GB GDDR5 PCI-E Graphics Card
- PSU: Corsair HX Series HX750 750W GOLD Certified Modular Active PFC Power Supply
- Monitor: AOC e2752Vh (27?) & Samsung SyncMaster PX2370 (24?)
- Operating System: Windows 7 Ultimate
Corsair claims that the H2100 “delivers lethally accurate positional audio.” Is that true? Let’s cut to the chase; yes, it does. During Battlefield 4 gaming sessions, I have been able to avoid being knifed from behind on a number of separate occasions due to the fact that I could hear footsteps approaching. Also, being able to identify from where the faint, yet distinct sound of a little bird approaching from off in the distance allowed me to find cover so that I could prevent being cut down by the time it was on top of me. In other words, the positional audio is as effective as Corsair claims.
As we now know, the Corsair H2100 Wireless Dolby 7.1 Gaming Headset has been outfitted with 50mm neodymium drivers which are said to “greatly reduce the overloading and distortion that can occur with gaming headsets that use smaller drivers.” During gaming sessions, while listening to music, and while watching videos, these drivers more than delivered. Overloading and distortion is not something that will surface, regardless of the medium.
Out of the box, it was apparent that this headset was designed for gaming in terms of the audio quality. In order to make the Corsair H2100 Wireless Dolby 7.1 Gaming Headset capable of delivering an enjoyable experience while listening to music and watching movies, some tweaking of the equalizer was necessary. As good as it performed while gaming, it sounded flat when listening to other audio. However, providing the GUI was a smart decision. It only takes a few minutes to customize the audio to suit the listener. All you have to do at that point is save that profile. Once I found the ideal setting for me, I had highs and mids that sounded fantastic, and the bass, while not overpowering, was deep and rich without a hint of distortion.
Corsair also claims that, in terms of comfort, the H2100 will allow you to “embark on marathon gaming sessions.” While it is comfortable, it did leave the top of my head feeling a little tender after an hour or so of use. I would recommend more padding on the business-end of the headband. On the other hand, the ear pads, while a bit stiff, are pretty comfortable and it is likely that they will soften up over time. Overall, the Corsair H2100 Wireless Dolby 7.1 Gaming Headset is a comfortable headset, but not the most comfortable I have had.
The noise-cancelling microphone was another item that Corsair considered an asset on this headset. Clearly, we want to ensure that our squad mates can hear us loud and clear without ambient noise showing up at the party uninvited. This microphone performed as stated, making you “loud and clear, and screen[ing] out extraneous noise from outside your game.” While gaming, I intentionally had some ambient noise going on around me, and the only feedback I received from my squad mates was, and I paraphrase, I came in loud and crystal clear.