Audio/Peripherals Headphones Headsets Reviews

[UPDATE]Audio Roundup: The best gaming headsets in comparison test

Introduction and scope of delivery

From around 64 euros street price you can really feel "Penta", even if there is the same black bodysuit under the intentionally feisty gamer presentation as "Racing" already from about 50 euros and the headsets do not differ except for the look.

As always, we are fair, so we will place the tonal verdict on the 50-euro class. Since the remaining almost 15 Euro surcharge is due to the revamped design, everyone has to decide for themselves whether it is worth it.

So that the article is considered a kind of unisex test for all models of the P533 series – because at the latest when you have the part on, all are the same again.

After all, you get a stable case for stowage and a kind of extension cable with Y splitter from the universal jack of the headset connector to the two individual 3.5 mm jack plugs for headphones and microphone. Inconsistently, this cable is almost always needed raven black, while the headphone cable is bright orange. Looks strange – and is.

Optics and haptics

Why Penta? Only the optics are now available for this purpose. Take the raven-black P533 Racing and produce the Penta gaming look with foils, imprints and nice orange quilted sewing, as well as various matching accents. Schwupps becomes a bright orange supernova from an optically black hole like racing – not quite, of course, but it is at least colorful enough.

The entire headset case is made of petroleum products, whether plastic shells, imitation seames or upholstery. This is still quite reasonable in the 50-euro price range, if we hide the surcharge for the gaming look.


The headset is surprisingly comfortable and sits like one, you have to attest to it without envy. Even after hours, you won't suddenly have to put your head in ecstasy to shake off an annoying appendage annoyed. This fits everything and helps a little later on with the final score, but we don't want to prejudge.

The simple articulated solution works alone on the horizontal axis, for the vertical axis the easy to twist, because very thin strip steel has to be used. This makes a saving even more of an elegant feature, because the seat is really first class. The rest of the sizing can be compensated by pulling the handle out of the headband. This is long enough and also leaves large thought cases from hat size 64 still enough air to survive.

The inner padding in the headband is useful and completely sufficient, but the two ear plsters could be a little easier to replace. Unfortunately, the counterpart does not have any "threading aid", so you should act here with patience and a calm mind. Due to the thin PU material, the whole thing is probably not particularly tear-resistant.

The large ear pads make the headset real over-ears. The contact pressure is sufficient to leave the environment out of the way, and at the same time really bearable for a long time, and you hardly get into a sweat. In summary: The seat is suitable for long-term use.

Functionality and connection

The volume control is located on the side and is unfortunately very inexpensive. The built-in potentiometer scratches and also has various synchronisation problems. In addition, any random or necessary touches of the body immediately pass on acoustic feedback to the ear. We will see why this is the case.

If you remove the ear pads, you will be able to look at the slightly obliquely employed drivers. But only the OEM knows why dampening material has been glued to the top and not to the inside.

Once you have removed the ear pad, four screws are open in front of the hobbyist's gaze, with which you can completely separate the earcup. Now the view falls inside and thus also into a yawning, completely uninsulated cavity, the board with the somewhat too cheap potantiometer and the flat 40mm neodymium driver.

The small 40 mm drivers could be removed by the skilled craftsman quite quickly (only slightly glued) and replaced by better ones if you have access to suitable Asian spare parts. For the rather inexperienced hobbyist, of course, this is nothing at first, but here too we have a tip that is really worth it: A small insulating mat or some insulating wool in the factory yawning empty shells eliminates ugly resonances and leaves the headset overall much crispand interestingly also play deeper.

Of course, you play with the warranty and may even risk damage due to improper handling. But at least the insulation is a significant improvement against the roar and undifferentiated rumblings in the delivery state and quite easy to accomplish. The quite high resonance frequency leads to the dreaded cardboard sound, which is also known all too well from parental party cellars.


The microphone with ball characteristics sits in a fold-out microphone arm and switches itself off when folding in. The significantly too low sensitivity with the resulting low output level makes Teamspeak & Co. not exactly for a joyful experience, especially since you can hear a very clear noise when it is raised by electric level. The sound is actually not even unbellyable, but it is simply too insensitive and we would like to doubt the information in the specs.

Measurements and sound check

The measurement curve looks better at first than it sounds subjectively felt at the end. The bathtub as such is not the problem, but the frequency ranges of the peaks, which significantly disturb the acoustic bathing pleasure. The resonances at about 260 Hz lead to a very uncoordinated rumbling and roaring in the upper bass area and the lower middle. This disturbs the voice reproduction enormously, especially since the basic tone range is really lubricated here.

One of the consequences is the non-perception of the real low bass, which does exist, but is constantly and constantly littered. Low bass, on the other hand, is not possible, not even with Equalizer & Co. The contraoctave becomes more audible, at least in parts, if you significantly lower the level at 250 Hz.

The headset has its second peak exactly where the human ear is already most sensitive anyway – namely in the range between three and four kilohertz. What is that supposed to be? You hear steps, whispers, clicks and similar quiet sounds really very concise – maybe that's what you want to sell us as a gaming vote. But as soon as higher levels start to rise below, the location is already over. Loud ly, level-proof no and filigree certainly not at all.

The rather "(w)poor" sound results from the permanent high-frequency weakness, which sends the presence from about eight KHz on a permanent descent. Silbilants are not pointed or spraty; which in turn fits quite well. Nevertheless, vocals with this headset are more likely to be trapped in a kind of torture chamber. The same applies to all music playback when listening across genres.

You don't even have to get the big audio stick out of it: there are simply cheaper or equally expensive headsets that perform much better. Gaming goes when you drive back the basses and lower mids from about 500 Hz. Then it is even just the right thing for Schleicher. But there's not much more to it than that.

If you have stuffed the headset a bit, it sounds much more grown-up and more balanced. Instead of the drone, there are usable lower middles and a tolerable bass. However, the high-frequency weakness cannot be corrected in this way, which is simply systemic. On the whole, however, one should still not be completely satisfied.


As mentioned above, the headset saves itself with hangings and strangles to the Approved-Award. But only because it sits really well and doesn't crush your brain even after hours. It's also well-received for eyewear wearers, but with the finish you probably didn't take it very seriously at the OEM.

Soundfully, the Arctic P533 Penta is not a revelation, but almost an admission of guilt for having saved in the wrong place. The few cents for some foam would have been in it in any case – and the vote is downright absurd if you think about the freuquenz range below 500 Hz. But where should this headset be put in and, above all, what does an honest conclusion have to look like?

It is definitely usable; In the true sense of the word, however, it is not cheap. It doesn't rip you off the stool, but it doesn't let you run away. In the end, it is a product that you will probably buy in the first place, because firstly penta is on it and you have not read this test. Or you have completely different listening habits and are looking for just such a vote. Then it's not "Bauer is looking for a woman" but "Gamer is looking for headset" and in the end everyone is happy and eat egg cake. How long the feeling lasts is a completely different question.

Technical data and availability

Finally, let us summarize the technical data in a table. The headset has been on the market for quite some time, so the price is also at a much lower level compared to the previous EIA of 80 euros.


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About the author

Igor Wallossek

Editor-in-chief and name-giver of igor'sLAB as the content successor of Tom's Hardware Germany, whose license was returned in June 2019 in order to better meet the qualitative demands of web content and challenges of new media such as YouTube with its own channel.

Computer nerd since 1983, audio freak since 1979 and pretty much open to anything with a plug or battery for over 50 years.

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