ASUS Strix Fusion 500 Headset review

Soundcards and Speakers 106 Page 6 of 8 Published by


Music Playback

Audio (The Music)

For the audio tests, I'm going to roll out my standard list. We will start with the re-record of 'The Sound of Silence,' by American heavy metal band 'Disturbed.' As before, all audio tests were conducted using Spotify's Premium service, which meant tracks downloaded to my computer at a 320KB/s bitrate.

This first track is vocally dominated, backed with instruments that are only there to give Draiman (the lead vocalist) a platform to perform against. If you would like a specific point at which to sample the track at its crescendo, then I would go for 3:00 to 3:45, where the backing instrumentation kicks in a little more to match the vocals.

As I said before, this unit has zero issues in getting plenty loud, allowing the thumping base to take over and dominate where it needed to. That said, the more subtle parts of the track were not lost, and all remained perfectly clear for the duration of the song. Listening to this was a treat on the Fusion 500's, naturally without the use of the surround feature. As a general rule, this had the effect of dulling key parts of songs (i.e. the ones on this review), and it was therefore left off for all music listening and movie watching.

The final track is purely instrumental and is likely going to be recognized by most as the music for Battlefield 1's single-player trailer, released back in late 2016. I'd imagine their Youtube video (linked below) got a fair increase in hit-rate after the trailer dropped.

Not only do I genuinely enjoy listening to this piece of music, but it has the potential to get quite unbelievably loud. Nothing - thus far - has tripped up the 500 in this department, with me having detected no distortion induced by excessive volume. Unlike the Phontum's, this unit didn't trip up here at all. Even with volume at 100%, there was nothing. This is impressive, as this track has unearthed this weakness in every single pair of headphones and earbuds I've ever owned. For £150, though, I should hope so. The rest of the track was entirely pleasant to listen to, and the more muted strings toward the end of the song were easily discernable, which is another point I liked.

All in all, listening to music on the 500's was perfectly 'fine.' If this doesn't tell you that almost everything about this headset has been tailored toward gaming, then I don't know what will. There is nothing inherently wrong with the experience, however, and the non-gaming audio experience is acceptable given that this is not what this unit is meant for. As I said previously, this unit does what it is meant for very well indeed.

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