GamesterGear Cruiser Xbox 360 Headphones Review: Some assembly required

og-aud63077Speaking as someone who doesn’t normally play console games with a headset, I feel like I’m missing out on something in regards to the Xbox Live community. I don’t take part in the trash talks because most of them are all instigated by idiots that haven’t even graduated from high school, and I prefer having the audio played through the speakers in the TV anyway, or even the surround sound in the case of Rock Band jam sessions.

So, using a set of tech like the Gamester Gear Cruiser headphones is a bit of a new experience, however, not exactly a welcoming one. The main problem I’ve encountered is the setup.

For starters, it requires being plugged in two different ways: the standard USB plug-in that goes in the console that actually powers the silly thing, and a dual RCA cord that plugs elsewhere for the game audio. Now, you CAN plug it into your TV if you’re using a HD TV setup with a HDMI cord from the console. However, this method didn’t work for me, no matter where I plugged the RCA inputs at. So, I had to invest five bucks in an audio adapter off of Amazon and wait a week for it to get to my house.

So, audio adapter acquired, I was finally able to actually get the headphones to function. And it did what I needed it to do; provide clear, great quality audio injected straight into my ear canal. This allows me to either keep the tunes to myself whilst jamming on Rock Band, or keep the noise from when I’m playing Injustice limited to my button presses on the arcade stick late at night. It’s just annoying that I had to invest extra money just to get it to work properly.

Then I tried using voice chat with the headphones. A good plus side is that the mic itself is detachable from the headphones, which not only makes them easier to store when not in use, but also keeps it out of your face when you’re not using it. The dongle also has separate volume controls for both the voice chat and the game audio itself, so you can mute one if you need to hear more of the other, which is pretty ingenious in itself.

However, getting the voice chat to actually work proved to be another obstacle while I was testing it in a voice message. No matter which way I plugged the cords in, what settings I switched, or which controller I plugged the unnecessary extra cord into, it just would not be able to record my voice at all. Which leads me to believe that I either got a faulty piece of hardware, or I’m completely missing something that the included instructions failed to instruct me on. At this point, I had had enough of finagling with everything and practically gave up on the whole thing.

So, while the Gamester Gear Cruiser headset does provide high quality audio to be planted squarely on top of your ear drums, the completely unnecessary setup and extra cords just make the whole thing more of a hassle than it should be. Although I’m now content with having something to work with when I’m doing those solo Rock Band practice sessions, probably the biggest offender is that it cannot be used with the PC at all, compared to the PS3 version of the same headphones, which supports both PS3 and PC.

Still, if you’re willing to put the time, the effort, and the required 60 bucks down to mess with a wonky piece of tech for results that you can likely get elsewhere for a better value and less of a hassle, the Gamester Gear Cruise can possibly fill that need, provided you have the patience to mess with it.

Final Grade: C

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Michael Revis
Michael Revis 219 posts

Michael is a man of many things. Journalist, writer, gamer, professional procrastinator, cosplayer, super hero, whale wrestler, evil mastermind, and robot master. And that's just on the weekends.