For longer gaming sessions on both PC and consoles
Prolonged gaming sessions demand a comfortable headset, an important aspect taken care of by the padding in the headrest and earcups. The Roccat Cross follows a circumaural, oval and closed-back design, the earcups lined with memory foam padding. The padding was comfortable enough to last us for extended gaming sessions of five to six hours. The same goes for the padding on the headband, although, it could have been better. It manages to prevent any audio from leaking while offering passive noise cancellation to an extent. The headband has a stainless steel frame but the sliders on top of both the earcups are weak. Apart from the loose sliders, the rest of the headset is sturdy. The earcups swivel to a tiny extent and not 90-degrees, which would have been more convenient when you’re keeping the headphone around your neck.
Two detachable cables are included in the package – the PC cable comes with a boom mic with separate jacks for line in and line out while the other cable comes with an inline mic for mobile devices and consoles. The cables connect to the headphones through a standard 3.5mm jack and the connector fits into a tab, preventing swivel. The boom mic is flexible but doesn’t flex after a certain point hence, returning to a position away from the intended one. The headphone is fairly lightweight which is a good thing because you can go through long gaming sessions without feeling the weight of the headphone. The cables are braided and quite flexible but they do tend to tangle over time.
Audio performance: gaming
The soundstage is narrower on the Cross compared to the HyperX Stinger that we had tested previously. Our best real world test for the audio performance on gaming headsets is carried out in a few CS: GO matches. On the Cross, we were able to distinguish between the gunshots and footsteps simultaneously, and the heavy bass weapon noises didn’t overpower the vocals. We were still able to listen to voice messages from our teammates while spraying down bullets at opponents, something we appreciate and need in a gaming headset. The headphone had clarity to give away our enemy’s location in the map while spawning and through footsteps.
AUDIO PERFORMANCE: Music
Apart from gaming, we also tested out the Cross with some music. Although gaming headsets hardly offer good quality in music, the Cross performed well with bass-heavy music. Tracks such as Faded by Alan Walker and Starboy by The Weeknd and Daft Punk sounded normal and didn’t seem to suppress the notes on the lower-spectrum. The performance on the highs are average as heard on Hotel California by Eagles, and when it comes to multiple instruments playing simultaneously, we weren’t able to tell each apart at the end of Do I Wanna Know by Arctic Monkeys. When it comes to its performance in the mid spectrum, we had no qualms listening to Ted Nugent’s Stranglehold and Ugly Kid Joe’s Cat In The Cradle. In conclusion, you’ll be better off listening to EDM and Pop music rather than acoustic rich music.
The mic didn’t pick up the ambient noise which is a good thing in case you have unwanted noise around your room or if you happen to carry this headset to a gaming cafe. We recorded a test audio using Audacity to check the mic levels and quality, while using it in-game as well. The mic performance was satisfactory without any noise audible in-game. Using the mic for gaming commentary will also be fine but if you plan on doing voiceovers, then we’ll have to stop you right there. In comparison with the HyperX Stinger, the mic on the Cross sounded heavier whereas the Stinger’s recorded audio had more clarity. Do note, that this difference was clearly noticeable while recording but in-game it was hardly distinguishable. Out of the two mics, the PC boom mic sounded better than the in-line mic for mobile and consoles.
The Roccat Cross performs well as a gaming headset but falls behind the Stinger and VOID Wireless in terms of design, comfort and audio performance. It does include a better mic than the VOID, but doesn’t match its comfort. The build quality on the Cross could have been way better and considering the quality of their own Kave, this headset is a step back from that direction. The feature of having a detachable cable is picking on where Kingston’s HyperX Cloud series does the best job of providing modularity. For this particular headset, it would have been better if the audio cable and mic input to the headphone were different so that one could use the headphone without attaching the mic.
Audio performance is impressive in gaming, average for music but that’s not what the headset is meant for anyway. For its price, it’s a little expensive since we already have a better performing Stinger cost lower than the Cross.
Roccat Cross Specifications
Driver: 50mm with neodymium magnets,
Cup design: Circumaural, closed back,
Frequency response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz,
Impedance: 32 ohms,
Cable length: 2.35 m (PC), 1.2 m (mobile/console)
Connector: dual-plug 3.5 mm 3-pin (PC), single-plug 3.5 mm 4-pin TRRS,
SPL: 98 dB @ 1 kHz,
Weight: 185 g,
Mic sensitivity at 1 kHz: -42 dB,
Mic Impedance: 2.2 kΩ,
Signal-to-noise ratio: 58 dB
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