Corsair Gaming Void Surround Testing
Testing & Results
While testing the Corsair Gaming Void Surround headset, I wanted to evaluate as much of it’s functionality as possible. Not only from a sound quality standpoint, but to the fit and comfort of the headset.
For testing, I used my PC and mobile phone, and spent many hours gaming in Ark: Survival Evolved, DDO (Dungeons and Dragons Online), Skyrim, and Diablo 3. I also spent hours listening to a variety of music, from classic, to metal, to rap, and many other genres of music. I watched plenty of movie content and TV shows while evaluating the Void Surround headset. The CUE software was turned on and off during my testing of the Void Surround headset.
Testing on my mobile phone, was similar. I listened to FM radio, MP3 music files, watched TV shows, movies, and made phone calls using the Void Surround headset.
The CUE software is fairly straight forward to use. Corsair doesn’t provide a lot of documentation on how it is to be used or the effect it will have on your sound experience. Enabling the 7.1 virtual surround is easy enough. You simply toggle the Dolby icon at the bottom of the volume sliders, and when activated the icon turns blue, and your Dolby 7.1 USB adapters LED turns white, letting you know surround sound has been activated.
On the right side of the CUE software you have various presets for sound, which are basically nothing more than EQ settings. There are 5 presets included with the CUE software: Pure Direct, Movie Theater, Clear Chat, FPS Competition, and Bass Boost. You can set custom EQ profiles to your liking if you do not like the presets that come with the CUE software.
Beyond that, the volume sliders for the mic and sidetone are the only other parts of the CUE software that are functional for the Corsair Void Surround headset.
Motherboard: MSI 870 G45
System Memory: Gskill Ares 1600 8GB (2×4)
Processor: AMD Phenom II 965 BE @ 3.8GHz
Video: XFX Radeon R9 390 Ghost Thermal 3.0 Cooling 8GB Vram
Disk Drive 1: Samsung 850 Evo 500GB
Disk Drive 2: WD Black 750GB
Optical Drive: DVD Writer/Reader
Enclosure: Silverstone PS11-W
PSU: EVGA Supernova 850 Watt Gold
Monitor: Acer X223w 1680×1050
Operating System: Windows 10 Pro
Listening to the Corsair Gaming Void Surround is pleasant. The sound is fairly balanced without EQ settings, with a slight tweak upwards in bass frequencies. The Void Surround required me to turn the volume up to 50 on my system settings since the Void Surround requires a high power USB 2.0 connection. I can tweak the volume from there using the volume slider on the headset to a comfortable level.
The overall sound when using the Dolby 7.1 surround function was more of a broadening of the sound field, rather than directed sound. I listened to various Dolby 7.1 sound tests to see if I could pinpoint sound in a directional manner and it is not much different than listening to the content in stereo. In the end, I preferred to use the Corsair Void Surround with the Dolby function off, since it tends to make everything wider in perspective, and makes listening to someone talk on the headset sound like they are talking to you from down a hallway rather than being centered.
Using the CUE software to tweak the EQ settings was easy. Results were as expected. Volumes of specified frequencies were changed as you moved sliders up and down. I preferred to leave the CUE software on ‘Pure Direct’, which is a flat EQ setting while using the Dolby surround function. I’m confident that anyone can get the EQ settings to their desired level using the CUE software, however. The ‘Sidetone’ slider did not seem to do much of anything that I could hear. I assumed this slider was for the surround effect level when using the Dolby 7.1 surround function of the CUE software. Even Corsair’s guide for the CUE software only mentions the sidetone slider as an on/off function, without clarifying what it actually does for sound.
Clarity of sound is good, not quite audiophile quality, but good enough. While listening to music you can hear everything clearly. Only bass is slightly overpowering, but much of that depends on the type of music being listened to. Bass is deep and can be heard well down to 25Hz. Below 25Hz sound appears to drop off sharply. At the upper range, I was able to hear sound up to 16KHz using a frequency sweep from 20Hz to 20KHz. Mids and highs come through clean and understandable. This is by no means a technically accurate way to measure actual frequency response of the Void Surround headset, but a personal experience of what I can actually hear.
During voice chat while gaming, my friends came in loud and clear over in-game sounds, and the quality of the Corsair Void Surround microphone was clear and precise. I play hands free (open mic) while using voice chat on Curse and Ventrilo, and had no complaints of noise in the background. I was not able to test the Corsair Void Surround in a noisy environment, such as an internet cafe, so the noise canceling mic mileage may vary.
Using the Corsair Gaming Void Surround with my ZTE Warp Elite mobile phone was good as well. I played the Walking Dead game, listened to MP3 music, TV shows, movies, FM radio, and made phone calls while testing the Corsair Void Surround. Sound quality was good, if not a bit muffled at times. I think this has to do with my phone trying to push those big 50mm drivers, as I had to turn my volume up near maximum to get good volume to the headset. I personally would not want to use the Void Surround as an everyday headset for mobile use, as there are plenty of other options which are better suited for mobile phones.
Lastly, I want to talk about the comfort and fit of the Corsair Gaming Void Surround headset. The material used for the ear cups and bridge consists of a micro-fiber cloth and soft foam inserts. I have a fairly large head with large ears, and I was able to wear the Void Surround for hours at a time without any strain or discomfort. The headset is a bit on the heavy side and large, so keep that in mind if you do not like large headsets.
A final note: I was not able to confirm functionality with the Xbox or PS4 gaming consoles.