With the release of a new console, it’s not only the tempting array of next gen games on offer that are exciting – it’s also the accessories that appeal too. This month Sony release their latest headset, which is compatible on all PlayStation platforms. The Wireless Stereo Headset 2.0 is hitting retail this month and already is a well sought-after product. The headset offers virtual 7.1 surround sound and is compatible with PS4, PS3 and PC in wireless form, but while compatible with the PS Vita, you’ll need to connect the 3.5mm stereo mini jack that is included to hear your favourite Vita games.
Let’s start off with the Headset itself. Upon first sight, the beautifully crafted design certainly does look next gen and definitely fits in line with the ‘For the Players’ theme. These could not be mistaken for your Sennheiser’s DJ set as they are very in line with PS4 in terms of style. The frame is made of a thin plastic which looks extremely stylish and makes the headset very light and comfortable to wear. The negative aspect of this is that with all the plastic I wouldn’t like to drop a pair of these onto a hard floor.
The PlayStation logo and face button designs are all proudly displayed, again giving a unified PlayStation gaming look. The moveable ear cups hug each ear perfectly, with a fitting that muffles the outside world you were planning on ignoring. Volume, On/Off and the custom sound switch are all within easy reach once you feel your way around the correct ear cup. There is also a VSS button that switches off the Virtual Surround Sound, as well as a Sound/Chat button to adjust voice chat to game sound. One thing that could be a bit of an issue is the durability when moving the cups to accommodate other head sizes. The movement does feel a bit on the flimsy side. This is definitely not the type of headset you can throw over to your gaming buddy across the other side of the room.
A drawstring carrying bag is included, and the cups fold inwards in order to take up less space if you’re wanting to travel with them. The mic is hidden in each cup, so there is nothing to chomp on by mistake! A cardboard box (complete with handle) houses everything you need to take your headset away with you.
Setting up the Wireless Headset is incredibly easy. Simply insert the USB into the front of the PS4, turn the headset on and you’re away. Remember to set the correct headphone setting via the menu on the PS4 or you’ll be sat there saying loudly in other wise total silence: ‘There’s no sound…” (like I was). The USB is tiny and you’ll hardly notice the black stick poking out of your PS4. Both USB and headset have a blue LED too. Charging is really easy as a standard cable from the headset plugs directly into the PS4, so a good 3-4 hour charge is all it needs.
The main feature with a new headset (especially when you have not had the opportunity to test and compare with others on the market) is the audio. Straight off they sound like a decent £80 headset – really crisp and bright. On the PS4, when both game and headset are cranked on full volume, the headset is definitely loud enough, and testing the headset is certainly the fun part. Trying the headphones out on Need For Speed Rivals in particular is great – the audio throws growling aggressive sounds at you, and hearing the police sirens closing in on you from the front, side and rear (thanks to the surround sound) is perfect. Battlefield 4 is another that sounds excellent and fully immerses you into battle.
Switching over to the Vita, and playing Zen Studio’s KickBeat with Southpaw Swagger’s ‘It’s Showtime‘ blasting out delivers a fat sound (and a loud one at that). FuturLab’s Velocity Ultra sounds as bright and pumping as you would expect with that soundtrack. I have to say that some games on the PS Vita were not quite as loud in my opinion, but still – all were totally adequate. The headset on the PSP works just as well as the PS Vita and PS4 too. The main question you might have is: Does the headset distort at full volume? Fortunately, the answer is no. My only concern, if any, is the slight lack of bass and bottom end the headset delivers. That being said, these retail for under £90 and the sound quality is great. The Wireless Stereo Headset 2.0 really does gives you a reason to return to older games you may not have played recently and rediscover them with fresh ears.
The accompanying Headset Companion App is now available from the PlayStation store. It’s a free downloadable app which brings more content to your purchase. For example, here you can select different sound profiles which can be downloaded. The first sound profile on offer is by Sucker Punch for their PS4 exclusive, inFAMOUS Second Son. The headset delivers more bass and defiantly the way to go to scrape that last morsel of pleasure out of this game.
The Wireless Stereo Headset 2.0 is an impressive, stylish and affordable headset. Maybe not as durable as you would expect, but a uniquely designed ‘must own’ accessory for PlayStation 4. Highly recommendable.
Lizard rating: 9/10