Finding a decent set of PC headphones used to be like searching for the
holy grail, everyone had their own idea of what exactly it was, but
finding it was an elusive chase. Nowadays there are plenty of options
when it comes to headphones. This is largely due to the increase in home
computing, and the relocation of many PC's from the study or bedroom
into the main living space where they have become more mainstream
entertainment than geeky hobby. Whether it is in the same room as the
television, or the room next door, fighting for the airwaves does not a
happy home make. Enter the headset, fully enclosed to prevent sound
leakage and high performance so you'd think it was 5.1 surround, not
There are a number of headphones that match those two basic criteria
available on the market today, but the set we have for review here bring
something new to the table, or should I say, new to your ears. The
Edimensional Audio FX Force Feedback Gaming headphones bring a new
meaning to the phrase "vibrant sound", because the really do vibrate! At
first I figured this sounded like a pretty pointless gadget, who needs
headphones that could vibrate themselves off your head, right? But in
true "don't knock 'em until you've tried 'em" spirit, I plugged these
babies in and gave them a whirl with various games to see how they
sounded, how they felt, and if they really added to the gaming
experience. So, read on to find out why this headset is the one I use
all the time, for gaming, music, and internet comms.
Before we delve into how they sound and feel in game, let me quickly
run through the specifications. As anyone who has shopped around for
headphones will know there are a couple of very important factors to
consider. The first thing you should look out
for is the length of the cable. Manufacturers are forever guilty of
skimping on cable, probably the cheapest component in the whole setup
and yet they usually skimp on it. This is usually a nightmare for anyone
whos tower unit is not right next to the seating position, or a
hindrance if you have to swivel away from the PC for a moment.
Thankfully this set comes up pretty good, the audio cable is a generous length, so no problems
there. There are 3 plugs at the
end, a USB, a mic and the speaker plug.
I mentioned the USB cable there. Previous incarnations of rumble
headphones actually required batteries to make them work, thanks to the
clever inclusion of a USB connection here though, there is no need to
keep replacing batteries, this set works right off your PC's power.
On the sound lead is an inline controller that allows easy adjustment of the
volume, and an on/off switch for the vibration.
The microphone comes with noise canceling foam and works very well,
your teammates will hear you loud and clear during online games.
Apparently the mic is certified for superior voice recognition, and some
testing did indeed prove the mic produced clear and crisp comms. The
stalk is very sturdy and of course is fully adjustable in all
directions. The mic sits just to the side of your mouth (depending on
how big a gob you have of course), which is a good thing as it should
help stop heavy breather syndrome. You know the gamer I'm talking about,
he has his mic on voice activation, right in front of his mouth, geez I
swear some guys are running a marathon while they play games, it sure
sounds like it with all that heavy breathing. Anyway, back to the point,
the mic sits just to the side of the mouth, perfectmondo.
If you are not using voice comms you can simply swivel it up out of the
way. Anyone who has had a cheap set of headphones with a mic before will
probably have suffered the same fate as my last set, droopy mic. It
always seems to be the flakiest part of the whole construction, the bit
you actually have to move every time you wear it. Thankfully there is no
problem here, the attachment to the ear piece is extremely robust, and the
adjustments all feel solid and I've no doubt they will perform as such
for many many teamspeak yelling sessions.
The cups themselves are of the fully enclosed type to prevent sound
leakage and are comfortable thanks to a healthy amount of soft padding.
They are also adjustable as the bands can be pulled out of the headband
on both sides by a set of incremental notches. This means you can
position the cups exactly over your ears, and I found they gave a very
close fit with no gaps at all around the ear. This is probably due to
the hinging on top of each cup which allows it to swing inwards around
the ear. The headband itself is also padded, so you really are not aware
of it all during use.
Okay enough chit chat, down to business - the vibration. The first game
I tried these with was of course Ghost Recon. Now Ghost Recon won awards
for its sound so I was extremely interested to see how these headphones
performed, and I wasn't disappointed. Once I had played around with the
adjustments on the inline controller for a moment, I was all set. The
inline volume control will largely determine at what point the vibration
kicks in, and the vibration dial will determine the strength of the
vibrations, form a mild tickle to "phone the dentist my filling just
What I found was that while I crept through the foliage on recon, the
headset acted like a normal set of headphones. The ambient sounds like
birds chirping and wind noise came though nice and crisp, just like
always. Once things started hotting up though, things took on a whole
new dimension. When that first airstrike came in it you could really
imagine the whole ground was shaking, because your headphones vibrated
in perfect time and amplification of the explosion. And it wasn't just
during the large explosions that the effect kicked in. What actually
impressed me most was how they even give a reaction to your gun fire.
Every time you let loose another round it doesn't just sound great, it
really feels great too. It is actually quite hard to explain because I
can imagine it reads kind of funny, but it really does add a new layer
of realism to the ever more realistic gaming experience.
I also play Joint Operations and Battlefield 2 with these headphones, and again they
deliver, adding real depth to the mayhem to any virtual
What I have not mentioned so far is the lights on each cup. There are
3 coloured lights that flash, depending on how strong the vibration is
kicking in. I can imagine two uses for this. At LAN parties you can be
the guy "with those cool headphones", and at home you can be Mr "don't
talk to me now can't you see my headset is flashing!!!" You know how it
is, your wife or girlfriend is usually half way through a most
interesting story taken from her most interesting day before you even
realise she is speaking out loud. Now with a simple point to the
flashing headset, a wink and a thumbs up, she understands you are busy
getting your ears cleaned out and to save the story for some other time.
Which they invariably do. Anyway, I digress...
You've probably figured out by now that I like these headphones a lot.
If you haven't deduced that then stop speed reading my reviews and go
read it properly (if you really can't be bothered at least read the
previous paragraph, I kinda like that one). The Audio FX headphones from
Edimensional do everything a good headset should and more: they produce
quality sound, it has a good microphone on a sturdy stalk and it has
long cables. Additionally, it has this great vibrating feature
that on paper sounds gimmicky, but on your head, feels great and takes
gaming immersion to a new level. Couple this with a surprisingly low
price point, these headphones really are to be recommended. Try them out
- immersive yourself in your games!
Eight month update
I'm pleased to report that 8 months down the line these are still the same headphones I use on a daily basis. Even though I have more expensive heaphones lying around, these Audio FX headphones are my preferred choice. During this 8 months of daily use there has been no wear and tear at all, and the microphone is still producing crisp comms, and the stalk is still as tight as the day it came out of the box, with no slackening of the rotary hinge.
"I purchased those headphones you reviewed on your site and am glad I made the purchase. They work great." Low Profile