Wednesday, 18 March 2015

SteelSeries Siberia V3 Review

Back in January and during my review of the SteelSeries Sensei Wireless, I questioned and applauded SteelSeries' audacity to try and reinvent one of their favorite products on the market. The product I'll be reviewing today is no different, for the last ten years, the Siberia brand has been synonym with some of the most competent and relatively affordable headsets on the market. Unlike the Sensei Wireless, this new addition to the Siberia line-up is a lot more subtle when it comes drastic changes. It retains the same basic formula, changing only a few things here and there. But has SteelSeries done enough to justify the investment over the V2? Let's find out.

In terms of packaging it's SteelSeries standard, black and orange cardboard box, with lots of pictures and features listed on all sides in order to properly enlighten and inform the consumer before purchase.
Inside you won't find a ton of things, just the essentials, like the manual, sticker and an adapter/extension used to connect the V3 to your PC.
It's definitely not the greatest bundle ever, some might even argue that it is somewhat lacking in terms of accessories and extras. I would have to agree, this type of bundle feels lackluster in comparison to some competitors.

It's hard to talk about the V3 in terms of visual design since it looks almost exactly like its older brothers. Aside from a few changes in terms of size and slightly different ear-cups, the original Siberia design is still alive (and well).
The classic suspension system is still present and has been improved thanks to the reduced weight of this new model.
Probably the biggest change in terms of visual design and functionality would be the removal of the in-line volume controller, it's actually something that baffles me, with the Siberia V3 there's simply no easy way to adjust your audio on the fly. Why SteelSeries though this was a good idea is beyond me but it's a definite no-no in my book.

I would say that comfort is the V3's biggest strength, the lightweight structure combined with the always amazing suspension system and the new ear-cups allows the V3 to be used for hours on end without much distress to your head or neck. I would say that this is the first headset from SteelSeries that competes with the 9H in this department.

Unfortunately, and outside of games, the sound quality of the V3 is probably lower than the one from the V2 or the aforementioned 9H. In-game though, the V3 performs admirably well, with footsteps, explosions and that sort of thing coming to life and allowing you to improve your game.
The retractable microphone sounds ok but feels very quiet in my opinion, almost demanding a boost.

Final Thoughts

It's hard, maybe even impossible, to talk about the V3 without mentioning or comparing it to the famous and popular V2. Unfortunately for SteelSeries and gamers around the world, this new revision feels weaker in almost every aspect, I'm not saying that the V3 is bad, I'm saying that the V2 edition was one of the best headsets to ever be produced and its successor, the V3, falls short by comparison.
With that said, if you can't find the V2 on shops anymore, the V3 is still a very decent gaming headset. If you can spare the extra cash though, I would opt for the superior 9H.

The Good
+Familiar territory
+Visual design
+Great sound for games

The Bad
-Microphone sounds very quiet
-No volume controller
-Lack of extras
-V2 is still a better choice

Thanks to SteelSeries for providing the review copy