During our testing of the Psyko Audio Labs headset, we found overall surround effects to be of a very high standard with very precise positioning of particular sounds within the environment.
Overall volume was more than enough for all applications and we found bass to be very pronounced and quite loud at times. Treble had moments when it could have been better, though.
The Psyko headset uses two large subwoofers angled towards the user's ears in a vented enclosure around them. Going by that criteria, we had high expectations which were met for the most part.
Turning the bass dial beyond 4 o'clock was the point where we began to find distortion noticeable. Though this point is only reached after a considerable amount of bass is flowing forth. It would be fair to say that keeping the dial around midday would be recommended.
This dial also acts as a dual feature wherein a lower setting exploits the systems surround capabilities fully and increasing it acts to minimize them.
An area where this system probably is tuned to sound the best and does. At all times the Psyko headset had a warm and smooth tonality to the mid range, which is all important, particularly when taking into consideration that many in game effects contain a lot of the mid frequencies.
Tuning has been done to allow higher frequencies to be rolled off a little bit to save on ear damage over long periods and it is quite noticeable. Although not in the worst way, it does save on ear strain under all conditions. It's just a little bit of a concern if users want to multitask and listen to music with this headset, which might be a factor considering its cost.
During testing we found positional audio effects to sound very impressive and allowed for a good environmental awareness level to be achieved. Placement of various effects was accurate to the rest of the audio as well as onscreen action. Specific character driven audio in game created a convincing surround environment under all conditions.
The environment created did indeed sound very much like one from a small surround speaker system. We thought it was very open and venting the side windows also had a positive effect. Transitional effects also sound very progressive and accurate from front to rear. Timing of effects was also accurate with on screen action and allowed for precise control in game.
This is the backbone of the Psyko headset and a really cool idea in its own right. The delivery of sound to the ear is very well done using these proprietary 'sound channels' and sounded very convincing to our ears.
Also interesting were the vents built into the sides of the headset. Opening these gave the sound a very similar sound to what might be produced by a room speaker system; it definitely made it sound more open and airy.
The bottom line is that this is a great positional audio headset for gamers who want the best of the best when it comes to positional audio. We found game audio sounded fantastic with some of the most defined positional effects heard to date.
Music listening tests were really good also with the slight issue of the 'rounded treble', making listening a little bit restricted in the high end.
Movies sounded very open and warm during our testing with really positive all round results. During some testing of the latest movie trailers we thought that the overall tonality and enveloping nature of the audio to be very much like being in a cinema with that feeling of immense depth of sound that builds upon itself to create a very immersive experience.