CM Storm Sirus S – Gaming Headset with True 5.1 Surround Sound and In-line Remote.
Having been using my Creative HS-1200 wireless USB gaming headset for several years and absolutely loving it beyond words, you can imagine my horrified expression when the left ear stopped working shortly followed by the mic. I was pretty devastated to say the least because getting a comfortable headset with decent sound at a reasonable price isn’t all that easy. So my hunt began with three factors that the new headset needed to have, it had to be surround sound (preferably true as apposed to software surround), comfort (yes, my aging ears need the oh so soft comfy effect) and finally it had to work great with Linux (Ubuntu).
Built for gaming enthusiasts and audiophiles alike, the CM Storm Sirus S 5.1 Surround Sound Headset creates an immersive experience with hi-fidelity soundscapes and intense bass.
After a few days of searching and almost buying a Logitech G430 I settled on the CM Storm Sirus S, mainly because the G430 is software surround and not true surround sound (it does however have great sound, review to follow shortly). I bought the headset from Amazon and got a pretty good deal having got the headset for $70.66, it arrived within two days which I was delighted with. The packaging was solid but not near impossible to open like some products.
The headset has five connectors, four sound jacks (you’ll need a surround sound soundcard) and a USB connector.
You can however get a version of the headset for about $30 more that comes with a USB dongle if you prefer using USB over sound jacks.
With my sound card and the headset jacks being color coded setting up the CM Storm Sirus S couldn’t have been easier, just plug it in and off you go. I’m using Ubuntu 13.10 and I didn’t even have to restart my PC or install drivers, to coin a phrase “It just works!”. As I said earlier, this headset is true 5.1 surround sound as apposed to software surround sound, this means it has four speakers each side of the headset for full effect.
The surround sound is great, especially in game and really adds to the atmosphere of games. You won’t have to setup drivers or any of that messing but you will however need to set your sound to 5.1 under sound settings.
The sound quality is excellent from this headset and I really couldn’t have asked for more for $70. They are also extremely comfortable with nice cushioned micro weave ear pads that cover your ears and don’t sit on top of your ears. And because they are fabric and not leatherette, they allow your ears to breath so they don’t get to hot, this has been a problem for me in the past. The headset is however interchangeable and comes with a spare set of leatherette pads if that is what you prefer. Leatherette pads are better for sound isolation than micro weave fabric.
Sirus is coupled with a uni-directional microphone that minimizes background noise pickup enables crystal clear conversations with teammates and enemy combatants.
From tests that I have run in game the mic works really well, no complaints so far on Skype, Google Hangouts or in World of Warcraft (using WINE/P.O.L.).
The CM Storm Sirus S have a really solid well built feel to them, unlike my old Creative HS-1200 which had great sound but were really flimsy. This headset is also great for people that custom build their own PCs and theme them as they have really nice looking red LED logos on either side of the headset.
The cord is six feet long which should be enough for most user cases and it is made from quality fabric instead of cheap plastic so it’s much more flexible and tends not to get caught up in itself, it’s also very light and not a drag on your neck. One of the best features of the headset is the in line remote. With this you can turn the microphone on and off, adjust the volume for the center speaker, rear and front speakers and the subwoofer, very handy when in game. And last but not least, the headset comes with a micro fiber bag for easy, clean and safe storage.
- Channel: True 5.1
- Frequency Response: 10Hz – 20,000Hz
- Impedance: F/R/C: 32 Ohms Sub: 16 Ohms
- Sensitivity: >105dB
- Driver: F/R/C: 30mm Sub: 40mm
- Transducer principle: Dynamic closed
- Ear coupling: Circumaural
- Distortion: Less than 1%
- Pick-up pattern: uni-directional
- Frequency Response: 100Hz – 10,000 Hz
- Impedance: 2.2k Ohms
- Sensitivity: -44 dB ±3dB
- Ubuntu or Chosen Distro
- Surround Sound Soundcard
- PC with built-in USB port (for the LED lit earcups)
In closing I’d highly recommend the CM Storm Sirus S to any Linux gamers looking for a true surround sound experience at a decent price, for $70 you really can’t go wrong. They are solid, strong and durable with good sound and come at an incredible price for what you’re getting.