For virtual reality to be truly immersive, your PlayStation headset needs quality sounds to match such that even when things aren’t in your view field, there is a map in your brain. Sounds that are consistent with geometry, lets you know automatically about things around you. The concept of VR is to create an alternate reality. Without the right audio cues to match the vision, the brain would submerge into illusion. With PSVR headphones, the scenario is quite different – an immersive graphics requires equally matching 3D audio that provides the ultimate listening experience.
VR headphones specifically for the PlayStation is the newest product that allows users to enjoy hassle-free integrated audio listening while gaming. Mantis, the new range of 3D headphones from the California-based innovative gaming peripherals and accessories manufacturer Bionik has been stealing the show since its launch. Another player that has been delivering great performance in a sleek, streamlined and comfortable design is Sony’s PlayStation Gold Wireless headphone. Here’s a comparison between these premium gaming headsets.
Designed to be lightweight
Similar to the integrated headphones of Oculus Rift, Mantis attaches to the PSVR headset with spring loaded clips. It takes inspiration from Rift’s seamless audio integration. PSVR users can avoid unnecessary audio cable tangles and enjoy a great 3D sound experience. Mantis headphone is exclusively designed for PSVR and is detachable. It comes in two separate pieces – one for the left and one on the right connected with a Y-shaped plug that feed directly into the PSVR headset control. The headphone isn’t that bulky and you won’t feel the extra weight when using with the VR headset.
Sony’s PlayStation Gold integrates a number of features with a more clean and attractive build. The headphone is light and fits comfortably on the head for extended periods without any issue. The rubberized plastic feel of the product might be a little clunky, but buttons molded for the volume and balance give it a more elegant look.
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Although PlayStation VR headset is the most comfortable high-end gaming accessory, it lacks the integration of a headphone which basically holds it back. The Mantis headphone sound completes the PSVR. It is easy to attach and holds securely without the need to do further assembling as they slip between the headset and your ear without requiring much of an effort. Also, you can adjust the position of the headphone to aim the sound directly at your ears. A pair of grooves ensures that the headphone stays in position without falling off. The detachable option blends into the hardware really well. The comfortable sit of the foam is rather impressive.
The PlayStation Gold Wireless not just works with your PlayStation, but the wireless USB dongle is compatible with PC or Mac. As a result, the headphone takes up quite a bit of space. Since PlayStation has just two USB ports with one port occupied for charging your PlayStation headset over longer gaming sessions and the other dedicated to the gold headset, it’s hard not to wish that the headphone pairs wirelessly with your headset.
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Sound that surrounds
Mantis Headphones come with pretty clean highs and decent bass, which is more or less similar to the Oculus Rift’s built-in headphone. These are not over-the-ear headphones, neither they have the noise-cancelling feature. When wearing the headphone, you can very much hear what’s happening outside the product’s periphery. The design isn’t meant to cover your ears and doesn’t push you close enough to feel immersed. But, it is still a better buy in terms of the general audio quality. The sound coming from various directions can be heard easily. Also, you will not hear much of the outside sound due to the serviceable bass levels. Hence, users have been benefited with the overall experience as they were less likely to get distracted. The audio quality is comfortable and complaints about ear fatigue is very rare.
Given its build and especially the sound quality, PlayStation Gold Wireless Headphone costs much more than it ought to be. The product comes with stunning 7.1 surround sound, but feel entry level due to the lack of the largeness of sound. With a Blue-ray flick, you can expect more audio detailing and subtlety in signal. The headphone wasn’t designed for privacy’s sake, as anyone in an earshot will be able to pick up sounds. The VSS (virtual surround sound) is okay, but it doesn’t come close to the Dolby Headphone processing. Gamers can obtain a decent 360-degree sound in open-world games such as Killzone Shadow Fall, Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition and Assasin’s Creed IV. Even the wireless microphone is far less than amazing.
Designed as an in-line solution to provide PSVR gamers with the chance to lighten the load of PlayStation gaming headsets on their head, the clip-on clasp eliminates any additional pressure that over-the-ear headphones might cause.
The Wireless Gold headphone’s primary selling point is its versatility. Getting your PSVR gaming console up and running with the PlayStation Wireless Gold couldn’t get much easier. A small USB adapter fits into the front of your PlayStation. Some additional setup is needed for the headphone to work properly on each operating system – handheld, laptop or even Xbox One. The PlayStation headphone provides a battery life of eight hours during downtime from charging via its micro USB port. This is more than enough for an average user. In fact, multiplatform gamers that don’t own multiple headsets can benefit from its flexible connectivity.
Mantis has established a new standard of VR accessory with a lower price point than most of its competitors. The product is comfortable and stylish, most importantly, it syncs and works well with the PSVR. Storage is easy and there is no reason why you shouldn’t own them.
Gamers can find more headphone options at the higher end of the pricing chart, but for those looking for clearer and crisper sound quality without a lot of chaos, the PlayStation Wireless Gold is a much better bet. Functionality wise, it’s still the same as Sony’s previous entry-level headphone release. The new streamlined build has a much attractive and comfortable design. The product can be easily folded and stores, which makes it ideal for travelling. A headphone cable is available to be used for connecting other peripherals during game play. However, we wish that the headphone was wireless instead of the cables that come down and can be a hassle while connected to other USB ports. But, that would mean an increase in the price as well. Clearly, considering accessibility and value, you get a nicely refined peripheral at $100.
Bionik Mantis Headphone for PlayStation VR
Buy Bionik Mantis Headphone from Amazon – Price: $49.97
PlayStation Gold Wireless Stereo Headset – Jet Black
Buy PlayStation Gold Headset from Amazon – Price: $79.99
PlayStation VR Launch Bundle
Buy PlayStation VR Launch Bundle from Amazon – Price: $449.99