I was tired of replacing my headset every other month, so I decided to actually invest in a headset this time, opposed to my apathetic attitude when shopping in the past. After a couple days of browsing and research, I decided the Plantronics GameCon 720 just might be the headset for me. Then after just a couple hours with the headset, I found myself torn between the decision to keep or return it.
The sound quality of the Plantronics GameCon 720 is impeccable. The 40mm speakers transform the sound into an impressive audio display with 7.1 surround sound and deep bass. The microphone picks up a lot of background noise, despite claiming to be noise canceling. I tried using it over Skype and the person I was talking to could barely make out what I was saying over the amount of noise the microphone was picking up. After getting frustrated, I switched to a Rock Band microphone and the clarity of my voice call cleared right up.
The comfort level of the GameCon 780 is astonishing. The headrest and ear cushions are lined with velvet, which feels like clouds from the heavens are fondling your noggin. I can’t say that I have ever been impressed by the comfort of a headset before. If the GameCon 780 does anything right, it is comfort.
The overall construction of the headset feels solid, but when you start toying with some of the features you’ll notice how cheaply tacked on they feel. The GameCon 780 features spin-joints that are supposed to allow the headset to lay flat for easy storage. In reality, twisting the cups into storage mode gives the headset an awkward “bowl-like” shape that takes up more room than they are worth. It makes wearing them around your neck considerably less bulky, but taking the time to twist them around often feels like time wasted. After just a few hours, I noticed that the headphones stopped snapping into place once I turned the cups. The spin-joins were still tight, but a degrade in quality that quickly is unforgettable.
The microphone loosely flops down, were I found it lining up closer to my Adam’s apple than my mouth. It’s rubberized, which allows it to be bent if you need to adjust it closer or further from your mouth. Of course, when the microphone will not stand up straight by itself, I don’t see anyone benefiting from bending it closer to your throat. There’s a notch on the microphone, which gives the illusion that it could be tightened or loosened to the owner’s preference. Upon closer inspection I found out it was purely for cosmetic reasons, leaving no way to hold up the microphone that seems to be suffering from erectile dysfunction.
The volume rocker also felt loose and flimsy, with it noticeably rocking side by side within its notch. A few times it even failed to register when I pressed it because my large sausage-sized fingers somehow managed to press it too close to the edge. How that happened is beyond me, but changing the volume in the middle of a World of Warcraft raid is certainly unreliable and a pain.
While the Plantronics GameCon 720 manages to get the sound and comfort right, it unfortunately manages to get everything else wrong. The quality is quite poor and the amount of features that work as intended are so slim, I cannot recommend this headset to anyone.
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