The Siberia 350 is an interesting game headset with a focus on affordability: It tries to mix a few high-end features, like virtual surround sound, into a low-end package that is within reach of gamers on a budget. It just might be one of the best PS4 headsets. If you’ve seen or used the Siberia V3 Prism, this headset may seem familiar. However, SteelSeries has upgraded and re-engineered the design, so now you can expect a very different experience with the Siberia 350. What kind of experience? Well that depends on your gaming goals. But I will say that the 350 is a far more customizable and well-rounded headset than I expected.
Find out more by continuing to read my SteelSeries Siberia 350 review!
Price: $120 on Amazon
Available: March 8, 2016
Model: Siberia 350/51204
WHY IT’S A TOP PICK: Great casual sound at a manageable price.
What We Liked
- Great sound features and customization
- Affordable and simple to use
- Surround sound at a lower price
What We Didn’t
- Limited compatibility
- Some uncomfortable design aspects
- Sound could be better
SteelSeries Siberia 350 Specs
|7.1 Surround Sound|
Hardware and Design
The most striking feature of this headset is just how lightweight it is. Despite those 50mm drivers in the ear cups, this headset is seriously lightweight, far more so that they are the better gaming headsets in the Siberia line and by far the lightest surround sound headset that I have tried so far. If you have found that gaming headsets tend to give you headaches or weigh a little too heavy, then this may be the solution you are looking for.
It’s also a good reason to accept the odd-looking headband, a set of separate elastic/framework that helps make the gaming headset rest easy. Trust me, it really works.
The ear cups themselves are a bit more hit or miss. These things are circular and quite large – they have to be for those 50mm drivers and LED panels – so they should fit most ears very easily. At a glance, these memory foam earcups seem pretty luxurious and comfy. However, the cushioning fabric is so thick and broad that the actual space for your ears, on the inside, is limited. My ears aren’t enormous by any stretch, but they were large enough to make for discomfort after a couple hours of use, as the edges of my ears were pressed flat. If you’ve found other gaming headsets too constricting on your ears in the past, approach these warily.
Speaking of LED panels, the memory foam ear cups each contain a large ring that glows as long as the headphones are plugged in via the USB connection. Thanks to the customization, these lights can change color, and they’re brighter than the average glowing headset if you really want to show off a bit.
As for on-set controls, the Siberia 350 is all about keeping things light and inexpensive, so this isn’t really a feature here. Plug the headset in, and you’re ready to go: The USB cord is simple and effective (if you’re looking for wireless, try the Siberia 800), and includes a basic on-cord volume control switch. There’s another simple on/off switch on the headset for muting the mic, and that’s it.
The mic itself has the Siberia design that I really appreciate: It’s fully retractable and fully flexible, so placement and volume were never really an issue. It did seem to be a bit shorter than other SteelSeries mics that I’ve tried, possibly due to the differing design.
Here’s where the Siberia 350 gets more interesting: When it comes to performance (especially mixed with the lightweight design), this headset becomes a suitable option for a versatile desktop headset that you can use for work or play.
The frequency response and sound fidelity is good, but it’s what you would expect for paying around $100 for a headset. There’s a bit of fuzziness at the edges that high-end headsets simply don’t emit. With a very high frequency range and 50mm drivers, I hoped for a bit more but was not actually let down. The 28 kHz frequency response coupled with those large drivers do manage bass sound very well. There’s not as much direction to the sound as you find with high end surround sound headsets, but fidelity stays strong at multiple volumes and frequencies. “Dependable” is the word that comes to mind here. If you want affordable surround sound, you’ve got it, even if it could be higher quality.
Note for the sake of your consoles and PC that this is DTS surround sound, not Dolby. As long as you have DTS compatibility there shouldn’t be a problem – on the contrary, DTS has its own advantages – but it’s something to be aware of.
Now that I mentioned consoles, I should also switch to talking about compatibility limitations: Technically, this headset wasn’t made for consoles at all. For one thing, the cord is too short to use on many console configurations. That being said, it will work for the PS4 if you want it to, but it works best on either a PC or a Mac desktop where you can just plug it and get to working/playing. It’s a pity, because when connectivity extends to consoles and other devices, as it does with the Siberia 800, you can move the headset for console to console, or gaming rig to gaming rig as you need. However, with the USB tether the options here are limited.
SteelSeries manages to impress here by offering advanced Siberia customization features on a lightweight model. I honestly wasn’t expecting a full customization suite for this headset, and it was a pleasant surprise. You’ll want to download and use the Engine 3 software that SteelSeries offers for this headset and others like it. It’s a good, sensible interface and allows you to tweak a lot of audio settings. With the SteelSeries Engine, you can actually use different preset profiles for gaming, music, voice, immersion, performance, or create and save your own profiles.
Also Read: Best PS4 Headsets
Not only does this allow you to mitigate any issues with sound fidelity or distortion, it also lets you customize those LED rings to change color based on specific in-game events, a feature that’s always fun to play with over the long term. Turn red if you need health, turn green if you pick up money, turn blue when your super is charged – that sort of thing. It’s these features that help make up for some of the Siberia 350’s issues and push it into highly worthwhile territory.
SteelSeries Siberia 350 Review: Wrap-Up
If you are looking for a desktop headset that can function as a work music machine, and switch to gaming without even needing to flick a switch, this may be the headset for you. Even better, the low price makes great features like surround sound and LED lighting available to gamers who can’t afford the extra-fancy stuff.
However, the Siberia 350 pays a price of its own for this availability. The headset would be better with greater compatibility with gaming consoles, and more audio customization buttons. The absence of features makes this pair of headphones feel a little bare-bones.
That said, if you can afford it, I suggest spending a bit more and getting a higher end Siberia model instead, as you won’t regret it. We recommend the Siberia 800, which offers wireless compatibility across many platforms and better sound. But, if your spending limit is lower than that, don’t feel bad about getting this headset instead: It offers a whole lot for the money, especially for busy gamers…just make sure they fit your ears first.
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