3.5mm vs USB headsets

Discussion in 'Audio' started by Katana, Feb 6, 2017.

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  1. Katana_x_II7

    Katana_x_II7 Well-Known Member

    I'm thinking of getting a new headset for gaming. Ive never owned a USB headset before, so I was wondering a few things.

    How is the sound quality between the two?

    Does the USB headset have better surround sound? I want to be able to hear people footsteps pretty well and know exactly what direction they are in relation to where I am, especially for shooters.

    Are they easy to deal with through synapse/driver wise? 3.5mm have always just been plug and play, but USB stuff works different.

    Any other comments or information would be helpful. Thanks!
  2. TheGurgeMan7

    TheGurgeMan7 Well-Known Member

    I have both the razer krakens and the razer kraken usb chroma. I have to say, after getting the usb ones, my 3.5mm ones didnt find any use other than just on my phone. The usb ones have much better base, and It seems to have a lot better virtual surround sound, one you can even tune in synapse. And they are plug and play, just give synapse like 5 seconds to recgonize it, and you are ready to go. Also did I mention the mute button built in on the usb pair (the best part imo) and the 6 foot cord?

    The one greif I have abouy the usb pair is that when the cord rubs against your dhirt, you can very audibly hear it because it is a nylon like material, and it just transfers the scratching sounds up to the headset.
    Shavano likes this.
  3. Katana_x_II7

    Katana_x_II7 Well-Known Member

    Thats good to know, that they have a lot better virtual surround sound. I have an old pair of the Krakens, and the virtual surround sound wasnt very good imo, which is why i was considering a USB pair this time. Thanks for the response!
  4. chic4

    chic4 Member

    If you buy 3.5mm headset you can plug it in on all devices (smartphones/tablets/pc) but USB headset has his sound card and if your PC hasn't very good sound card the sound will be better!
  5. PT.Singer

    PT.Singer Jedi Master

    Why don't you go for the best of both worlds: get a set with a 3.5mm connection (or dual 3.5mm connections) and a USB adapter?
  6. chic4

    chic4 Member

    USB adapter is an external sound card.I think if you buy 3.5mm headset connect dirrectly to PC and do not use USB to 3.5mm adapter.
  7. PT.Singer

    PT.Singer Jedi Master


    If 3.5mm headset is bought, it can be used on other devices, too (phone, tablet, etc.). But many times you'll get better sound via a USB port, especially as time goes on and the connections inside the 3.5mm port get worn down. I run into this a lot doing professional audio. I ended up buying my own USB DIs because they're more reliable than regular DIs with PC audio cables connected to headphone jacks on a laptop.

    So I say buy a headset with a 3.5mm jack that can be used everywhere, and get a USB adapter (DAC). Then use whichever one sounds better to you, and know that if your 3.5mm port starts messing up, then you can still fall back on the USB option.
  8. gaykob7

    gaykob7 Well-Known Member

    if you got a good soundcard on your pc, than the 3.5mm aux will be better
    however for virtual surround i would chose the usb version since i think it is better than the razer surround pro software you would need for the 3.5
    Huz likes this.
  9. FearLezZ1990

    FearLezZ1990 Active Member

    I thought the usb ones are the only one to support surround sound?
  10. gaykob7

    gaykob7 Well-Known Member

    there is this software from razer called surround pro which also gives you 7.1 surround sound on you 3.5 aux headphones
    PT.Singer likes this.
  11. ETitus

    ETitus Active Member

    And it works pretty damn good I might add(Blackshark owner). Having said that, I never tried an USB headset with surround pro, or an actual 7.1 headset for that matter.
  12. USB is always worth it. It will be a much better purchase for gaming as all computers come with USB ports, but 3.5mm headphone jacks are not as common.
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2017
  13. Katana_x_II7

    Katana_x_II7 Well-Known Member

    Yeah I havnt bought one yet, I've been using my old setup, but in the end I think I'll go with a USB headset. Not sure which one yet though. I'm not buying a new setup for a couple more months.
  14. HypocriticalIdiot

    HypocriticalIdiot Active Member

    I assume that USB ones probably have better surround sound, bass etc
  15. kajira

    kajira Mother of Gaming

    Completely depends on the headset hardware and your software ... the true 7.1 surround sound audio that comes with the Tiamat 7.1 uses 3.5mm jacks (all 5 of them, actually) on a sound card, and it's definitely some of the best sound.

    However, I think you're talking about simulated surround sound, like by utilizing Razer Surround software, then the USB devices do definitely tend to produce a better sound.
    Katana likes this.
  16. WIHMDB

    WIHMDB New Member

    I don't really know the difference but USB is usually better
  17. chesterpatrick

    chesterpatrick New Member

    If you want surround sound, get a usb one. I got the ManO War 7.1 which is a 3.5mm with a usb adapter for surround sound. Cause I wanted something I can use on any device and have surround sound for games.
  18. Katana_x_II7

    Katana_x_II7 Well-Known Member

    Since when do any computers not come with a 3.5mm headphone jack?
  19. SnakeGuy123

    SnakeGuy123 Active Member

    I have a Kraken 7.1 Chroma v2, and the sound quality is amazing. The driver software (synapse) is easy to use and has tons of useful settings, but it updated annoyingly often. I love the Chroma lighting, though.

    I'd think more come without a USB port than a headphone jack. Even smartphones have a 3.5 mm jack.

    Heck, even my 2006 dumb phone has one.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 15, 2017
  20. Katana_x_II7

    Katana_x_II7 Well-Known Member

    Yeah I was gonna say, I think it would be the other way around haha. I've never seen a computer without a headphone jack, but I've seen a bunch of computers without a USB port (at least USB-A, new ones without a USB-A these days usually still have a USB-C)
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