Playing Testing with games is what the Orion Pro is all about! Let’s get to it! The following hardware was used with the Orion Pro:
Mobo: ASRock Z77 Extreme4
CPU: Intel i5-3770K@3.8GHz
GPU: ATI 6950 2GiB
- AKG K701
- Corsair HP1
- Corsair Vengeance 1500
- ASUS ROG Vulcan
- ASUS ROG Orion Pro
- Onboard ALC898
- ROG Spitfire USB Audio
- Audio-gd Sparrow ‘A’
OS: Windows Server 2008 R2
First up is Planetside 2, a free to play game, much like Battlefield 2142, but much, much, much larger in scale and with impressive eye candy. I won’t say that Planetside 2 is a masterpiece for sound, but it does have a lot going on. Battles are massive, environments are varied, and more importantly, it’s fun. It is a very good test for the microphone and team chat.
The ROG Orion Pro are very bright and have a bit of a plastic sound to them. But they aren’t delicate flowers, they also produce adequate thump for cannons and explosions. I will say it is hard to locate enemies by sound, something that perhaps my go-to heaphones, the K701, handle very well. Switching to isolating headphones like the Vulcan don’t improve the situation much, and the Corsair 1500 were comparable, both microphones had similar quality, which teammates had no trouble hearing me.
I did notice the mute button on the Orion Pro doesn’t mute completely, something to take notice if you’re hoping to get away with a negative comment or two. The microphone also picks up a fair amount of ambient noise, and more interestingly, it feeds the sound back into your headphones. Isolating headphones do block the sound of your own voice, and this is a feature, I suppose, that lets you hear yourself talk.
For something a little more sound centric, I turned to Borderlands 2. Borderlands 2 is a masterpiece all the way around in my opinion, and it is very easy to get sucked into the world based on sound alone. Sound is a very important aspect of the game, you hear enemies coming for you and where they’re coming from. Sometimes, you get the urge to run away. That’s good sound!
The Orion Pro did OK here as well. The bright presentation gave a little away, but the bass anchored everything nicely. There’s a lot of dialog in Borderlands 2 and the Orion Pro did well, but not as good as I would hoped for, especially since the Vulcan are very good. The Spitfire has some ‘enhancements’ for FPS games, which I turned on, got confused where stuff was coming from, then turned it off. I would hear an enemy coming from behind, turn around, only to get attacked from the front. Very poor, if you ask me.