Most gaming headphones are crap – and everyone knows it. It’s a niche where a lot of players know they can a free pass for mediocre results if they can come up with even a half-decent design and an appropriately fearsome name.
Sennheiser are setting out to change that perception with their PC 373D and, truth be told, it does set a high bar for quality. After all, you don’t have to be an audiophile to want good sound – and there are plenty of reasons for gamers to sit up and pay attention to this pair of headphones.
The PC 373D sports a black-and-red look that’s sure not just immediately attractive but one that oozes style the longer you wear it.The company are taking aim at discerning players looking for gear that’s in-line with the rest of their gaming setup.
While they aren’t packing the same high-end adaptive NoiseGard tech as Sennheiser’s PXC 550 Wireless, they’re still certainly a step up from most. The idea here is that there’s just enough isolation to enable you to enjoy your game of choice but not so much that you completely lose track of the world around you. In practice, this approach to audio quality here definitely impressed us.The PC373D strikes a nice balance, delivering both diegetic and non-diegetic noise in-game with incredible clarity – especially during sprawling and cinematic titles like Batman: Arkham Knight.
The same bar of quality extends to the noise-cancelling microphone built-into the PC373D. It’s one of the most visually striking elements of the design, it’s as flexible as it is high-quality. An arc of flexible rubber with a tip ringed by a crimson mesh. It brought with it definite and noticeable improvements when it came to team communication in games like Overwatch and Heroes of the Storm.
The PC373D strikes a great balance between everything you want out of a good set of over-ear headphones – and that aesthetic balance holds up whether your play-session lasts minutes or hours. The 373D’s plush velvet ear pads do a great job of keeping things comfortable and the headset is adjustable enough to ensure a snug fit for most.
The headset features an ultra-accessible volume wheel located on the right earcup that, in practice, proves itself a fast and effective way of configuring volume at a master level without having to take them off or mess with cabling. It’s the kind of dead-simple-but-time-saving inclusion you hope to see out of more gaming headphones.
The last design feature on the docket here is the sleek Dolby Surround dongle. Along with giving you more cable-length to play with, the dongle allows you to optimize 7.1 Dolby Surround Sound at the push of a button – at least for titles that support it.
In reality, the contributions it made to my time with the PC373D wasn’t that much of a game-changer. Your mileage may vary here. I personally found that gaming experiences using the sound tech were more cinematic than truly immersive. Still, it’s a nice inclusion to feature-list as a whole and one that cements the PC373D as a headset that’s offering much more than just looks.
As far as gaming headsets go, it feels like the perfect combination of strengths and a worthy flagship product for Sennheiser. They’re done playing around. The PC373D brings both serious specs and great aesthetics to the table – and the big names of the gaming accessory space should consider themselves on notice.