Sure, many gamers will choose between the likes of Turtle Beach, Astro and Tritton for their headset needs, but let's not forget about Sennheiser. While the German headphone-maker hasn't announced anything too exciting for audiophile gamers in last few years, that's changed here at CES 2013. The ever-popular, and impressive sounding, PC350 and PC360 have finally been refreshed with features for times as the P350 Special Edition and the PC363D -- keep reading for the juicy details.
Aside from some aesthetic tweaks, the two headsets continue to sport the look found on its HD500 series audiophile headphones. As such, both units are still wired, stereo headsets at their cores, loaded with swiveling boom microphones -- although non-removeable, placing the booms in the up position serves to mute the mics. The PC350 Special Edition features a closed back design with folding earcups for travel like the original, but with improved sound. Sennheiser claims it's enhanced the audio using "Eargonomic Acoustic Refinement," which aims the drivers more precisely at your ear canals.
"What about the PC363D," you ask? The headset has the same velour pads as the PC360, but the back of the earcups have vents instead of grills. The big news, however, is that the headset comes bundled with a Dolby decoder box for virtual 7.1 surround sound that hooks in through your USB port.
Essentially, this spares you the need to pick up the likes of a pricey Astro MixAmp or Turtle Beach DSS. (Correction: looks like this is going to be computer-only, folks.) The headsets will be available this month, with no word on pricing as of this writing. Check out the press release after the break for more in the meantime.
Update: Despite Sennheiser claiming that these headsets officially launched at CES, some of our readers pointed out that both have been quietly available for at least some weeks now. Currently, Amazon US has the PC350 SE priced at $350, while its UK site has the PC363D set at £209.99 (roughly $337). We've pinged the company for clarification.
Update 2: A rep from the company confirmed that Amazon has had a quiet exclusive on the headsets for about the past two months, noting they'll now be released to retailers in general.
Legends reborn: Sennheiser's PC 350 and PC 360 headsets reengineered for today's players
Las Vegas, 6 January 2013 – HYPERLINK "http://www.sennheiser.com" Sennheiser announces the rebirth of two truly legendary gaming headsets. The sought after PC 350 and PC 360 have been reengineered to feature optimized comfort, design and virtual 7.1 surround sound. Both will be officially launching this week at CES, the World's Largest Consumer Electronics Show.
The new Sennheiser PC 350 Special Edition and the PC 363D surround sound gaming headsets were designed for quality-conscious gamers who seek nothing but the best. Their closed design ensures hat sound is not transferred to your partner you become fully immersed in your games.
Sennheiser has developed the PC 350 Special Edition and the PC 363D for two specific types of players:
The 'Pro' Player
The PC 350 Special Edition, which is a professional noise-blocking headset, will keep you gaming in private. Even at full volume, more than 95% of the audio remains inside the headset, you can immerse yourself in the game while those around you don't hear a thing. This is optimal for professional gamers at LAN events, or for home players who don't want interruptions.
The Special Edition also features the most accurate sound reproduction in a gaming headset today. Utilizing Sennheiser's "Eargonomic Acoustic Refinement" technology, the headset channels audio signals directly into your ears, rather than onto them.
Creating a Deeper Audio Experience for Gamers
The PC 363D Surround Sound, which delivers full virtual 7.1 Surround Sound with Dolby® Pro Logic® IIx, creates a much deeper audio experience allowing you to accurately pinpoint the direction of engine roars, shots or explosions. Designed for long hours of gaming, the PC 363D also features an open acoustic design, which lets air flow through to keep you extra comfortable at all times.
Engineered for quality and comfort
Both headsets feature German-engineered technology with speakers manufactured at Sennheiser's own facility in Ireland. In addition to having a pro noise-cancelling microphone, each headset features dedicated controls on the specially designed metal ear cups and microphone boom, making volume control and mute functions easy and intuitive.
"Our earlier headset models from 2008 and 2010 are among the most sought after headsets by gamers. We revisited these designs to see how we could make our gaming headsets even better, using what we know today," says Product Manager Christian Ern of Sennheiser Communications.
The PC 350 Special Edition and PC 363D Surround Sound are available as of this month and carry a Sennheiser two-year worldwide warranty.
1. The Sennheiser PC 350 Special Edition headset
2. The Sennheiser PC 363D Surround Sound headset