Logitech's new headset brings cinematic sound to your games

All of the bass and treble of a movie theater with none of the popcorn munching.

Gaming headsets have gotten a lot more stylish in the past year, with companies like SteelSeries and LucidSound packing cinema-quality sound into catwalk-ready cans. Now, peripheral giant Logitech is taking them on with its newest release, the G533. This $150 headset boasts 7.1 surround sound, a simple-but-classy design and, most important to gamers, wireless capability without lag or interruption.

The G533 deviates from the standard design seen in Logitech's older models like the G930 while also moving the gaming line forward with features like 15 hours of battery life and DTS Headphone:X audio. But the biggest change is one already seen in the company's current Artemis Spectrum headsets: Logitech's Pro-G audio drivers. The Pro-G drivers use a hybrid mesh material that gives them more flexibility than traditional materials like mylar. That means smoother transitioning between frequencies, with less distortion and clearer sound.

In practice, the G533 produces sound that's a lot like being in a theater. As promised, there's no distortion or popping, but the positional audio is also excellent, granting a sense of location as if sitting in the center of a cavernous hall with perfectly balanced sound. As I closed my eyes during a scene from Interstellar, I could hear the voices of the crew and rumble of the ship's engine as if I were sitting in the IMAX theater where I saw the film originally. In shooters like Battlefield 1 the surround sound becomes doubly important, and I definitely felt immersed by the gunfire and explosions unfolding around me.

The illusion created by a good audio setup can easily be broken by a set of heavy, sweaty cans, but the Logitech G533 avoids discomfort thanks to sport mesh earcups that are light, breathable and can be removed for washing. The G533 also maintains the plastic build of its siblings but tries a glossy look on the outside of the cups instead for a touch of class, with textured buttons on the left cup to make one-handed control easier. The mic has been slimmed down into a half-inch-diameter tube that flips up into the left cup when not in use.

While the G533 may be a wireless headset, players are still stuck plugging a 2-inch-long USB dongle into their machine. However, the connection is strong and clear with no delay -- even in environments with a lot of electromagnetic interference. The headset's range is 15 meters, which meant I could move about our office with rarely a break in the audio, and when I did move in and out of range the G533 reacquired its signal within a few seconds.

If you'd like to take the G533 on your next Overwatch round or Final Fantasy XV road trip, the headset goes on sale later this month for $150.

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