The Rig 800 is still the most comfortable wireless gaming headset I've tried

The Rig 800 is still the most comfortable wireless gaming headset I’ve tried

In 2018, out of curiosity, I decided to review every wireless gaming headset on the market: 32 pairs to be exact. None of them were anywhere near Comfortable as the Plantronics Rig 800. “The sole is so lightweight and so comfortable, I sometimes forgot I was wearing it,” she wrote in cnet.

Four years later, I’m happy to say the feeling hasn’t changed.

Plantronics ceased to exist after merging with Polycom to become “Poly” and then selling itself to HP. But the Rig 800 is still alive and well at French gaming company Nacon. I’ve been trying a 2022 “Pro” model for the past couple of weeks, and it’s hard for me to imagine a more comfortable headset.

It still uses the same precise design with an internal spring-loaded head strap that automatically adjusts tension according to the size of your skull, rather than pressing the sides of your head by a fixed amount. That, combined with a unique modular headband that allows you to position the earcups in three distinct positions for small, medium and large heads, makes them more comfortable than the Arctis headphones that SteelSeries has earned, at least in my book. (The weight is 10.9 ounces and the super soft earmuffs don’t hurt either.)

I wouldn’t call the Rig 800 particularly good looking, but it does.

Plus, it looks like the $150 headphone might eliminate one of my biggest frustrations with headphones like this: the battery. Not only does the new Rig 800 seem to have more battery life than the original — I measured 38 hours at 50 percent volume this weekend, which is 14 hours more than Nacon prices! – But it also now comes with a magnetic docking station so you can charge it as soon as it’s set. Although it sometimes requires firm pressure to get the contacts seated, it works just fine, and I like having less charging to worry about.

In some ways, I wish the Nacon went beyond the original 2016-era design because some of the rig’s shortcomings remain unchanged. Although the game’s sound is pure and instant, the identical 40mm headphone drivers still sound a bit flat and compact without too much depth or compression for music and movies. (The Rig has bass tubes that work if there’s a real and big drop, and I’m enjoying those drops.)

And in a way, the Rig 800 is actually worse: the wireless range. While the original Rig 800 had an ugly pigtail of USB antenna box, I wrote it had an epic range — enough to let me walk through the house and grab a snack. Today’s Rig 800 has a nifty charging base, but its wireless antenna is limited to a removable thumb-sized USB stick. This might come in handy, for example, if you’re planning to switch between console and PC, but I’ve only been getting pops and static and a room and a half disconnection.

Jack Reynolds launched the Rig brand again at Plantronics, too.

Jack Reynolds, Nacon USA president (and Rig brand manager), told me that because the Rig 800 was one of the company’s best-reviewed, and most-liked, headphones, the company didn’t want to change much about its “core” design. The team just wanted to address some of the biggest complaints, like a stiff microphone arm and an uncomfortable USB charging cable connection. I like that Nacon got rid of the old two-position power switch, which was easy to accidentally leave out. Now, you press and hold the button.

But I think they should have tested the bigger changes a little more. In addition to the low wireless range, I’ve found that the new microphone tends to pick up a lot of wind noise when I simply breathe in, and Reynolds says future Rig 800 shipments will come with an acoustic cloth for their microphones as a result.

But Reynolds also hints that a premium Rig headphone is coming. The current design already exists Much more comfortable and has a better battery solution than my favorite, the SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless, for less than half the price. Maybe the next Rig will give it a run for the money in sound quality, too.

If you decide to try the Rig 800 (instead of one of our top picks for other wireless gaming headsets), know that there are still three versions: one for PlayStation and PC, another for Xbox and PC that includes Dolby Atmos, and an upcoming version for PC only. On the Xbox there is a game / chat connection connection; On PlayStation, this command controls microphone monitoring. Unfortunately, none of them offer dual audio outputs on PC.

Photo by Sean Hollister/The Verge

2022-05-10 12:00:00

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