SHARKOON X-Tatic Digital Headphones Review

Share |

I’ve reviewed a couple of pairs of headphones now for 2404 and I was recently given the opportunity to test out the X-Tatic Digital headphones by a fairly new company called Sharkoon. What’s really interesting about this set of headphones is the fact that they support Dolby Digital 5.1 and actually have four speakers built into each earpiece. This is something that I had never heard about before but I really liked the idea. The headphones are targeted directly at gamers – a detachable microphone is included and the box highlights that the product is compatible with the PC, Xbox, Xbox 360, PS2 and PS3 (including voice chat on PS3 and Xboxes).

Sharkoon Xtatic Digital

After opening the box for the first time I found the amount of attachments to be surprising. Isn’t it aggravating when you buy a new monitor and the package doesn’t include a DVI cable? That’s certainly not the case here. Sharkoon includes every cord you could need along with multiple electrical plug attachments for different countries. The only downside I found to this was that it was slightly difficult to set everything up. I chose to use the optical cord and just used the S/PDIF on the back of my ASUS motherboard. You also have the option of using the included 9-pin analog plug (4 x 3.5mm) for 5.1. The main thing that had me a bit confused when hooking everything up was that I was missing the power connection coming off the main cord. It didn’t take long to figure out what was missing, but there a few different cords that are needed. The earpieces will actually light up green when power gets to them. So, a huge plus on all the extras but you might find the installation to be just a bit confusing. No software is required in order to get the X-Tatic Digital headphones working. You may have to make some sound card configuration changes to get the 5.1 but other than that it’s just plug and play.

Here’s a full list of the package contents and specs along with an image of what's included:

Headphone specs:

  • Center speaker: 2 x 27 mm
  • Front speaker: 2 x 30 mm
  • Rear speaker: 2 x 30 mm
  • Subwoofer: 2 x 40 mm
  • Impedance: 32 Ohm
  • Microphone: 6 x 5 mm (L x W) / unidirectional
  • Cable Length: 360 cm
  • Connection: 1 x 9-pin analogue plug

Sound control unit (decoder) specs:

  • Digital optical input (S/PDIF)
  • 2 analogue audio outputs for the X-Tatic headset
  • 3 analogue 3.5 mm audio outputs (front, rear, center / subwoofer)
  • 1 microphone connector for PS3 (USB A -> USB B)
  • 1 power connector
  • Dimensions: 15 x 122 x 56 mm (H x L x W)
  • Weight: 110 g

Package Contents:

  • X-Tatic Digital 5.1 headset
  • Microphone
  • Cable adapter (9-pin analogue plug > 3 x 3.5 mm)
  • X-Tatic Sound Control Unit
  • USB microphone cable for PS3 and PC
  • Power adapter
  • Microphone connection cable for Xbox 360 (2.5 mm jack > 2.5 mm jack)
  • Optical connection cable (S/PDIF)
  • Manual (8 languages)

Immediately after removing the headphones from the box and trying them on, I could tell that they were high quality. They seemed very sturdy and well designed with quite a bit of quality padding. I hadn’t even looked at the price before receiving the unit but when I did see that the X-Tatic Digital headphones retail for $159, it didn’t surprise me at all. As far as comfort goes, I didn’t feel any discomfort after wearing them for hours at a time. They occasionally feel a touch heavy, and maybe a slight tug on the side with the cord, but it was pretty minor. Cord lengths seem absolutely appropriate but it should be noted that once you hook them up to your gaming device they’ll probably sit there for good; it’s not a portable product.

To test the headphones I wore them while playing several different games for long periods of time (Bad Company 2 multiplayer, DoD: Source, Counter-Strike: Source, The Settlers 7 and Dawn of Discovery) and also used them for listening to plenty of music – including some high quality FLAC albums When I heard new things in songs I listen to on a regular basis it proved to me that not only were the headphones physically superior but technically as well. Every gamer, especially fans of shooters, knows that headphones give you an advantage. Now just think of stepping that up to 5.1.

 If you’re looking for a high quality set of gaming headphones look no further than the X-Tatic Digital set. The price may bit a little high for some people and the initial setup might be a bit confusing but I’m not going to make any reservations about recommending this unit – it's fantastic! Sharkoon may be a newer company but they’ve certainly entered the market on a strong note. They have a variety of computer, A/V, and gaming related hardware products and you’ll definitely want to add them to your radar.

Pros:

  • High quality design and technology
  • Every cord you could need
  • Comfortable
  • Compatible with many gaming systems


Cons:

  • Price may be high for some
  • Setup might be slightly confusing with all the cords


Score: 9/10

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *