Relative newcomer to the gaming gear market Evo-G (Evolution Gaming Gear) sets out to offer desirable gamer-centric styling in all of their product lines. Very nice – Considering this is a crowded market full of junk. The Evo-G HS1 headset is billed as a lightweight, comfortable, great stereo sound and a solid bass headset product. Yes, they do deliver on this pitch. Even though I am not used to this low price-point audio gear, I still found myself liking the HS1 overall. This headset is not widely available yet, but the Evo-G HS1 headset is $29.99 at Performance-PCs.com.
Before I continue to introduce the Evo-G HS1 headset. I would like to start out by giving a brief introduction for the company behind the headset. Thank you Evo-G for the opportunity to check out the HS1 headset. Evo-G is short for Evolution Gaming Gear. Granted, they do not have a lot of products right now. They are a young company and center on a few products (for now). If you do happen to run across their products, you’re going to find a good deal and durable products in their respective price point. Overall, it seems Evo-G is shooting for affordable, cool looking and very usable gamer products.
Without further adieu the sample product.
- Speaker Dimension: Ф50mm
- Impedance: 32Ω
- Sensitivity: 108dB S.P.L.at 1 KHz
- Frequency Response: 20Hz-20,000Hz
- Rated Power: 15mW
- Power Capability: 150mW
- Cable Length: 2.4±0.15M
- Plug Type: Ф3.5 Stereo
- Microphone Unit: Ф6*5mm
- Microphone Directivity: Omnidirectional
- Sensitivity: -58±3dB
- Impedance: LOW
- Frequency Response: 30Hz-16,000Hz
- Standard Operating voltage: 3V
Not audiophile specifications, they did do rather well on the intended sources I plugged the headset into, which is a sound card. 15mW is not overly loud, but I find this is a sweet spot for most uses. It can go much louder plugged into a higher capacity source. I did however feel compelled to try out other sources, which I will get to later on in the review. For now we shall take a look at some of what makes this headset a pretty good choice for it’s demographic target – Gamers!
The Cable and controls
The first thing I usually do with headphones or a headset is take a look at the cable and plug setup. So I am going to start out with this aspect of the HS1.
As I first noticed, the cords are all well attached and a good length. It is nice to see some reinforcing against wire breakage, at the points where I normally find breakages. Both sides of the control bulb are well reinforced. As for the single cord design on the headset itself. This makes for less annoying tangles around your neck. Plus, less cord to hang up on things. The cord was not fat, or too thin. Considering it contained right/left and the microphone wires. Not to bad at all overall. One issue I run into with a lot of headphones and headsets I own is wire tangle. I didn’t get to much of that on the HS1 headset. Long as there are no actual knots, it falls out and untangles itself easily. Sometimes it needed a little help opening up. I do not see the wire connections breaking easy, or having to untie knots in the cord every use. I have a set of $200.00 headphones. I had to custom re-cable to get this. Having a cord that does not annoy you is a huge plus for the HS1.
I noticed it did not have a USB connector, but uses a 3.5mm dual plug instead. Many gamer headsets are being shipped with USB standard now a days. I find this is a double edged sword. Ship it with USB and a user will be limited to only a USB connection. Ship it with 3.5mm plugs and the end user can use it for more than one purpose. Though not every computer has front 3.5 headphone/microphone jacks. As I mentioned earlier. I did use the review sample on a variety of sources. These are not the kind of headphones I would take on a trip with me. (I will get into the size of the headset later on.) It is nice to have the option to move them around the home and be compatible with just about every audio device a user may want to jack into. Overall, I find the Evo-G HS1 cord and connectors very usable and portable. The non-USB can be an issue for some, but many computer cases have a front headphone/microphone jack. It would have been nice if Evo-G took more effort to distinguish each plug. The ability to use it on other devices, past a computer alone, to me is more of a plus than having the ease of a single USB connector.
Cords and connectors are pretty mundane reading, so I am not going to keep boring you on all of that. So let’s move onto something I really liked about the HS1. It was the inline control bulb. At first I thought the control bulb upside down. When I used it, I used my WASD key hand. I found the bulb very naturally, with my index finger lifting the cord. My thumb was in just the right spot to make the adjustments or use the on/off switch. It worked rather nicely in that orientation. I simply did a scoop with my finger and the control was right where it needed to be. The controls were not upside down after all. To make it even nicer. They seemed to be in just the right spot to grab. Not to low, or to high from where my hand sits on the WASD keys. I didn’t even have to lift my elbow off the arm of my chair. If I was Goldilocks, you would be hearing me say it was just right. Kudos to Evo-G for getting this right.
I did mention about using the HS1 on a variety of devices, so I think how they sound and work is in order. Under the conditions they are geared for – Gaming. I am not one to get into the fancy audiophile terms. Simply put, you’re going to get a good value with this headset. I found the headphones delivered what the packaging suggests. The stereo sound stage is good enough to notice where you’re orientated in the game. These are not a hyped 5.1 headset. This is stereo and does good at that. I found the bass was right were it should have been in terms of how much there was.
I am going to take a little side step here before I get too far into how things sound. What I find OK about what is too much or not enough. May not be in your taste range. I did take the time to let others listen to music with them and then ask for an opinion. Overall, I heard “They sounded distant and plastic”. Then I changed to an EQ profile that contoured out that blemish. Most found the headset to be nice and sounded good, with the new EQ profile.
Being used to high end audio gear. I normally do not use any EQ contouring. I normally let it stay flat. These do well if you’re listening to music. Take the time and adjust the EQ, to fit what you like. The five sets of ears I asked to listen, agree that they do need some help with setting up the EQ. After messing around finding where the best contour was. It was around the 1k – or the middle EQ slider usually, that needed the most adjustment .
The Evo-G HS1 did rather well while using the headset for gaming, conferencing, movies and talking. I found myself enjoying them for long stretches of time. They are not out of the box ready to play music, without tinkering an EQ setting or two. They are handily able to do anything you may need to plug them into and do a fine job. I just would like to get that out of the way and not let someone buy this nice headset and go: “Man! These sound bad.” These shine for games, chatting and the like. For some reason that distant plastic sound is not there with this. I do admit, I was using high end amps(custom built), MP3 players and home equipment listening to music, and it may have tainted the outcome. I did put in some fast bass orientated music. The bass did not bleed into the next bass beat. I think these are pretty fast drivers. If I was going to compare them to a common sound most readers may have ran across. They reminded me overall of Sony and how they sound. If you get past that plastic sound, you will have a nice rounded sound headset. Just do not expect these to be high-end headphones.
Overall, this sample headset did rather well, and goes pretty loud. They are clear and the bass is there if needed. I took them to rather piercing volume levels and pulled the set off my ears before they distorted. So your should be OK just plugging them into just about any source and be fine. The low nominal wattage and high end wattage cutoff end. Lends well to many uses and needs of a unique user.
Now for the microphone. This is the last part on sound quality. My methodology was simple. Use it as a microphone as I have over the many years talking to people online. No fancy science or numbers. Does the microphone pick up and sound good? I have to say yes. I can put the microphone in an upright position and it still will pick up me talking. I can sit the headset down and walk across a moderately sized room and still others hear me. Due to the boom being movable and adjustable, I can move it to the role of a desk microphone. Just do not expect them to be like a full on studio microphone. The microphone is sensitive enough to pick up if you use them on your desk. If you need to, the switch on the inline control allows you privacy, which is much nicer than unplugging from the jack. When you set the bulb switch to off, the microphone is off.
The microphone boom goes upward and out of the way nicely. I never found it hanging on anything or giving me trouble. The boom has a the plastic piece which makes it easy to adjust it into position or out of the way. The slight clicking I noticed is a nice stay put feature. Over time, the boom is not going to creep downwards and get in the way.
From my old Marantz to a modern complex Home Theater. Then on to four portable MP3 players all un-amped and then amped. Onwards to what these things are made to do, Gaming and chatting on a computer. I find overall they are not bad and in some cases give a rather good value. Skype and Teamspeak watch out! You have a new friend.
Which leads me to some of the last points. How comfortable and light are these? Do they fit well? I have to say, this is another point I loved about the phones. Everyone I asked to wear the HS1, liked how they fit. I watched a few full-length movies and played a round or two on some games. I did not get ear pain or squeeze rot of any kind. They are loose enough to not skull-crush you. The plush ear cups are a nice touch.
Yet no matter how much frenzied and frothy you may get. These will be like glue to your head. I was actually surprised how well they fit and stayed put. If you are a wild child during skoot and shoot sessions, these will stay put. Taking them off and putting them back on is a breeze. They auto-adjust themselves. The overhead wires,which make them look funny, allow for a very balanced easy to adjust headset. Again the cord should not give you any issues. Everyone who tried them, liked how they sat on their heads and fit. Also making mention how light and comfortable they were. At first I was expecting some heft to them, considering the size of the headset itself which is on the large size compared to most headsets. The ear cups are a little bit smaller than a DVD disc.
Normal headphone usage for me is about two to three hours. Then I have to take them off from fatigue. I was able to use the HS1 longer than that, while not thinking about it or experiencing discomfort. No pressure on my head or ears. Overall, the headset does a great job for long-term use. During the whole time I used them. The Evo-G HS1 were just plain comfortable.
Overall for the price, I think you will be getting a pretty good gaming headset. They will work great for voice chatting, plus allowing you to use them on other devices besides your computer, while Gaming, watching movies and surfing the web. The closed design allows for higher volume levels than an open design. In turn you will be able to not disturb those you live with as much, using nominal volume levels. When you use the microphone, you’re going to be heard loud and clear. A good microphone overall. The headset works well on many sources, as you are not limited by a USB plug. Myself, I would not go out wearing such a large headphone setup, but you can do it. They do not sound like a high-end headphone, but they are not sold as audiophile-grade gear. I would of liked them to sound a bit better for music, but you may be able to adjust your EQ to get around this. When I was watching movies and gaming, they sounded acceptable to me. I got clear stereo into my ears and the sound stage on them was better than I expected.
To sum everything up as a package: A good lightweight comfortable headset. The Evo-G HS1 gaming headset is available at Performance-PCs.com for $29.99 and should be available in other stores soon.