So I bit the bullet and brought the Sennheiser PC363D. One off of the most wanted bits list… two to go! (http://www.cliveischampion.co.uk/computer-bits/). I thought I would write my thoughts about them so far.
Unpacking the headset it felt pretty heavy, which in my mind means it is well built. The microphone was a lot more solid than I was expecting. My previous headset was the Sennheiser PC 320, the mic on this was a bit slimmer and when moving it up to mute the mic it sometimes felt like it was not going to stick in position. The other thing that got my attention was the cable. It has a mesh like shielding around it and from what I have read this helps preventing tangles in the cable which is a plus straight away. If you are anything like me I constantly role over the head phone cable with my chair and in doing so I always think that one day I am going to damage the cable, this mesh like shielding has lessened that fear slightly.
First thing is getting the drivers installed for the 7.1 3D G4ME1 USB sound card. When I was deciding to get this headset I read that a couple of people had trouble due no driver disk coming with the headset and some people had difficulty finding the drivers to install. This was not the case for me, I was able to find the driver here (http://www.sennheisercommunications.com/comm/home_en.nsf/root/service_download-area). Once you have the drivers you will notice a new icon for the Sennheiser in your notification area, this is a little bit of software that allows you to switch from 2, 4, 5.1 and 7.1 speakers. The color of the icon will also change to notify you if the Dolby feature is turned on or off (a switch on the 3D G4ME1 USB sound card). The one thing I will note is that when I plugged the head set into the USB hub on my keyboard the Microphone would transmit me sounding like a robot, so plugging the headset directly into the PC is a must.
The 7.1 Surround Sound is the reason I bought this headset and it does not disappoint. It has taken my gaming experience to a whole new level and given my love for FPS a new lease of life. When a jet flies over my head in Battlefield 4, I now get the feeling I am in a field with the grass moving beneath my feet and the leafs rustling on trees in my room! I don’t think I could speak more highly of the sound quality.
The noise cancelling on the mic is not really something I have played with yet, simply due to the strict “push to talk” rules we have whilst in Teamspeak. The next time we are playing some causal Dota I shall test to see how good it is.
The volume control on the right headphone is a nice breath of fresh air. Most headsets still have a horrible chunky block midway down the headphone cable. You may think what about a mic mute button that is normally on this block as well, the P363D like other Sennheiser headsets mutes the mic when you move it fully up.
Be it listening to music, watching a movie (not done very much off the PC) or playing games. the word that springs to mind to best describe the P363D is superb. I brought the headset for gaming and it shits over all previous headsets that I have owned (Which is what I was hoping for when purchasing them). Once my ears had caught up and got in tune with the 7.1 sound, it took the Battlefield 4 to another level for me. The sound is so clear the headset has given me a new hunger to play FPS and some RPG games that I have needed to catch up on. The over the ear cup design is very nice and the ear padding is extremely comfortable as well as a padded band along the top, so a long session with the headset is not a problem at all.
If you are looking for a gaming headset and can afford to spend £200 on it, then I would highly recommend the Sennheiser 363D. It has certainly met all of my hopes and expectations, and it has certainly improved my gaming experience. I am sure there are other headsets out there that will be better for music, but it does the job for me in that sense. Ideally I would like to play about with a couple of the competitors in terms of 7.1 gaming headsets to see if it really stands above them but I am happy with purchase and wouldn’t have any hesitation in order these again.