The Sound Blaster World of Warcraft Wireless Headset from Creative aims to provide hardcore World of Warcraft fans with the tools they need to communicate effectively while playing the game. It boasts a range of features that seek to make gaming more immersive and teamwork more effective, but, with a hefty price tag of around £150, does this headset do enough to justify its cost?
Break free from wires
The headset communicates wirelessly with your PC via a 2.4GHz transmitter, which connects to a USB socket. You'll find an on/off switch, microphone-mute button and volume keys built into the left earcup, cunningly hidden amongst the decorative glyphs.
Charging is handled via a USB cable that plugs into the headset. You can expect to get around 8 hours of battery life out of the headset, with a full charge taking roughly 4 hours.
Pretty pair of cans
Visually, the headset's most arresting feature is the pair of glowing orbs that adorn each earcup. You can customise these by switching between the two sets of lenses that come packaged with the headset, representing either the mighty Horde or the noble Alliance, depending on where your in-game allegiances lie.
Once you've downloaded and installed the accompanying software, you can tinker with the colours on display, choosing your own from a palette or setting the headset to cycle though a preset range of hues. You can even set the lights to pulsate, and alter the pulsation intensity. We can't deny that we had an unseemly amount of fun playing with the various options, and the lights themselves are of a high quality -- colours are intense and the interchangeable lenses deliver a crisp, moody glow.
Sadly, the build quality of the rest of the headset fails to measure up. Although we appreciate the angular, armour-esque World of Warcraft touches, the headset feels plastic and cheap, and not at all durable. The earcups, however, are comfortable enough, and are unlikely to slip or become irritating during prolonged gaming sessions.
The headset's sound quality is decent, and a frequency response of 20Hz-20kHz (generally accepted as the human hearing range) means you're unlikely to miss audio cues when playing the game. Taking the price tag into account, however, we'd have expected far superior sound quality. Still, the THX TruStudio technology creates a good sense of surround sound, and you'll be able to hear sounds coming from both above and below -- something that's bound to come in handy while fending off hordes of enemies.