Not for this Dumbo-eared reviewer.
We’ve had a steady stream of headsets coming through the office of late; today, we take a closer look at EPOS’ new H3 closed acoustic headset.
Priced at $179.95 AUD, the wired headset comes in one of two colours: black (as reviewed) or white. A standard 3mm jack means it will connect with your platform of choice, be that Xbox One, Xbox Series S & X, PS4, PS4, Switch, PC, Mac or even mobile (if you have an adapter depending on your handset).
The black unit features a simple matte design with some darker highlights over its earcups and microphone and a pair of silver EPOS logos emblazoned on each side of its headband. When extended, the headband reveals a silver inner insert with numbered marks that show how large or small you’ve made it. A small volume control dial is inset on the outside of the right-side earcup. The wired headset features no power or muting buttons of any kind; its left-side boom mic can be placed in extended or retracted positions, with the latter muting your voice in-game or in-call.
The lack of bells and whistles means the H3 is phenomenally light as a result, weighing in at a mere 270 grams. That makes it very comfortable to wear for extended durations (for the most part, but we’ll get to that). While I’m a fan of the thick, plush padding that comes on the earcups, I found them a bit too small for me and my gigantic ears; I actually had to fold the tops of my ears into themselves to get them to fit inside each cup. While I realise I’m an exception when it comes to earcup design and certainly not the norm, other consumers with similarly sized appendages should take note. While the earcup paddings are replaceable, it doesn’t look like you can get your hands on a larger option.
In terms of actual audio quality, the H3s are competent all-rounders with a decent range, with crisp and clear audio that ever so slightly bested my trusted Astro A10s. Bass is a little lacking on consoles, through a PC equaliser can help to balance that out (or get a sound more to your own liking) if you’re more the type to play on a rig. The same level of quality goes for the H3’s mic; while it’s certainly acceptable, it’s nothing to overly praise or complain about. There’s a little adjustable section upon it that means it can be moved towards or away from your mouth to your liking; the mic itself, and the entire headset for that matter, has a two-year warranty in case something goes wrong.
While I’m all for a volume control feature that works separately from your device of choice, I found the H3’s on-ear volume control a bit fiddly. The dial itself is small and you have to slightly press into the earcup before you can shift sound up or down; that extra pressure on my bended ears wasn’t great. I could get around this by using two fingers — making a peace sign of sorts, and then rotating them in tandem — but I felt rather silly while doing it. Going back to my Astros — or even to the Xbox Wireless Headset — I think I would have preferred either a larger, easier to manage earcup dial or simply a control on its audio cord.
The H3s have provided me with some consistent audio as part of my recent bout of Resident Evil Village guide writing, helping me to isolate the telltale sounds the game’s Goats of Warding make. The H3s have also provided me with a reliable headset for my daily 9.30 am Google Hangouts work in progress meeting and my weekly Zoom staff catch up. The wired nature of the headset means I don’t have to worry about charging them or running out of battery, though on the flipside I’ve found that I can’t actually use the headset on my desktop PC as its 2m audio cable isn’t long enough to make the distance between my keyboard and my tower. My ol’ Astros? Not a problem.
The H3s are a decent option for those of you looking for a new headset, though you really need to consider what you’ll be using them for, and on which platform. While they’ve got decent audio going for them — better on PC — design flaws like earcup sizing, volume control and audio cable length might take them out of the running in your own search for new cans. I know I keep banging on about my Astros, but the slight drop in sound is easily made up for by a lower pricepoint, larger earcups and a longer audio cable — and one with volume control too.
The EPOS H3 Closed Acoustic Headset was reviewed using a promotional unit (provided by the manufactured) on a Windows PC desktop and laptop, Xbox Series X and iOS. Click here to learn more about Stevivor’s scoring scale.
- Dimensions: 88 mm. + 189 mm. + 167 mm.
- Product height: 167 mm.
- Cable length: 2000 mm.
- Headset Weight: 270 gr.
- Transducer principle: Dynamic closed
- Total harmonic distortion: 2%
- Contact pressure: 380
- Warranty: 2 years
- Accessories included: Audio cable
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