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Headset issues/discussion/etc


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I'd say this is technical issue with XBox Live so I'm going to put it in here....


Last night I installed a 5.1 system in my gaming rig and the problem I'm having is that music/sound effects are carrying over the headset even at normal to low volume levels.


I didn't like the wraparound headset that came with XBL so I quickly replaced it with an over the head style. My main headset at the moment is a $10 Bellsouth one from Wal Mart. I eventually bought a splitter and a second headset (not name brand). Never had any complaints with either of them when playing and just using the TV speakers..


One thing to keep in mind when buying this type of headset you typically have to trim down the connector so it will fit in the communicator. Also if you don't trim it quite right the other people you are playing with will hear themselves in a feedback loop.


Anyway I did some "scientific" experiments last night starting with playing Crimson Skies with Kain Rising and Quickenator - repeatedly asking "Can you hear it now?" while switching headsets and lowering volume etc, etc. After they became completely annoyed with this I switched to a lobby solo and hooked up the headsets and tried snapping and making tones from different distances and watching the speaker icon.


The results - man those cheap headsets have waaay too sensitive microphones. If you have two people in the room don't worry about a splitter just turn on the voice through speakers and use one of these - it will probably pick up everything. The headset that came with Live did do best in all of the tests so I'm assuming that it has some noise cancelling technology built in.


Searching the net for a better alternative I found the Plantronics M110. I am going to try to find it over lunch. It has both noise cancelling and a microphone volume switch so I think that should help a good bit and I can listen to things at a decent level and not annoy people (well more than my normal amount :) ).


Hopefully I won't have to upgrade to one of these:


Very nice but very expensive. They have audio samples comparing this to a normal headset recorded inside a flying blackhawk helicopter :shock:



So what headsets do you use and have you had any similar issues (or anything else for that matter)?



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ok my initial tests with the Plantronics headset were promising. The plug looked like it just about fit but not quite - instead of trimming the jack I decided to finally trim down the plastic around the communicator box itself some. Initial blue speaker icon tests were great - nothing being broadcast except when I spoke on the medium and low mic settings. I switched to my normal headset and it was constantly blue.


No guinea pigs uh I mean friends were online that I would feel right to subjecting to tests so I loaded up RS3 to the initial teach you to use your team level where there is talking through the headset. It was a little quiet at first but a little more trimming on the communicator and that corrected it.



So far so good.



Finally get ahold of Kain and he confirms that on medium and low setting he can't hear the stereo unless I say something or activate the mike directly in some way but he declared that the "voice quality sucked."


Once again I went through all my headsets with him and even dug out the original xbox swoop from the closet.... and the minute I tried that he said that one sounded the best (without knowing which one it was) and it was better than noise cancelling than the Plantronics.


So now I was back to square one with the hated behind the head swoop. The reason I don't like it is because the behind the ear pieces just mess with my glasses and the whole thing pinches my big head :)


So in a new project I decided that I would have to figure out a way to fix it. The freebie headset that came with a phone actually had a detachable over the head part that matched up in size pretty well with the live one. So after several attaching attempts (although I drew the line at duct tape) I was able to bind the two successfully - sturdily enough and removable (a well looped rubber band) and invented a frankenheadset (a little too late for Halloween).


If anyone has had any luck with other brands of headsets please let me know - I may compile a list or something.

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mike picks up garbage and sends it to all players


Mine was doing this last night during RS3. I hadn't noticed it before, but I usually play GR where you have to push the button to talk. Anyway, now I'm looking for a new one. Either that or back to the duct-taped Xbox Live one. :(

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Yeah, that's exactly what happened. Actually, when I put the thing together I had a vision of it happening and sure enough...


I put a small diameter machine screw through both pieces and secured it with a nut.

That's a good idea, I'll give it a shot (yes the duct tape sucks, but we Canadians are forced by law to try to repair everything with it :) ).

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And after playing for several hours tonight (co-op rainbow six) it worked well but the earpiece was hurting my ear much more than normal. Looking at all of the other headsets they all have the donut type padding (mmmmmm padded donut).


So I went back to the remains of the de-banded headset and low and behold it had a removeable pad. I had to fight with it to get it inserted over the earpiece but I finally got it on -



Franken-headset 2.0



so testing will proceed this weekend :)

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