I’ve still got my 2 original wireless pads for the Playstation 3, possibly through more luck than anything they still work to an acceptable standard even though my raging years of Fifa & Call of Duty have left them war scarred. Although they are pretty much used as a wired setup now, due to the battery life and secondly due to being one of the only devices that uses the outdated Mini USB and I’d likely lose the cable if I split them apart. In contrast in 3 years of owning a PS4, 3 pads have already bitten the dust in one way or another and the rest the thumb sticks look like they have been chewed on by a rat.
I’ve been given the opportunity to test out a new wired Officially licensed Ps3 pad from Venom, they’ve had my custom previously with a vibration headset that I’ve had a few years now which has served me well. First point to note is the controller is endowed with 3 metres of cable, so gone are the sessions of sitting uncomfortably close to HD visuals, I can sit back on the sofa as relaxed as I can be and not have to worry about any health and safety trip hazards or developing wall eyed vision.
The size shape and weight of the controller is beefed up from the official PS3 pad, If anything it looks very much in the style of an Xbox One controller which if you are a fan of this will gain your appreciation, the thumb sticks are slightly larger than on the Bone and the D pad is placed the same but has 4 separate buttons as opposed to the single cross.
The weight of the pad makes it comfortable and all the buttons are responsive and easily reached even with my child sized hands, there is a subtle contour line that fits the palm nicely and allows you to maintain a solid grip which is welcome on those heavy gaming sessions.
The pad has the vibration which is noticeable but no too overbearing and on the bottom of the controller there is a sensitivity button which can be increased or decreased on the fly, which I thought was an unusual yet original feature, but not something I would get much use out of.
Testing the controller through my favourite games including Battlefield 4, Need For Speed and Payday 2 the controller felt receptive and accurate, unfortunately it didn’t help me fair any better than usual so it’s unlikely to see me falsify my way onto the Pro Gaming scene any time soon.
It’s obviously too early to tell if it has the lifespan of my ageing PS3 pads, the unit feels robust so barring any freak accidents I’m confident I’ll be using it for the remainder of my PS3’s lifetime as my main controller. This Venom controller will set you back £14.99 which I feel is reasonable for a licensed product and personally I would avoid trying to save a small amount of coins by buying some other unheard of brand that’s unlikely to last a round of Conquest.
All in all if you are after a second pad, maybe convinced your partner to get involved in some Co-Op gaming or be fortunate enough to be introducing a youngster into your favourite pastime then I can completely recommend this Venom pad, ultimately so that you can use it and hand down your old pad with all it’s gaming history as part of their inheritance.
I have reviewed pretty much every PS4 headset available on the market and until a few days ago, I was pretty certain I had found the perfect set in the official Sony PS4 Wireless Headset 2.0. Then I received the Gioteck HC4 to review and was curious to see if it would even come close in terms or performance.
I had previously reviewed the Gioteck EX-06 Wireless Headset and was pretty critical of it due to the poor quality of the mic and the issues it had with wireless connectivity. I have always liked Gioteck products as they tend to be well made and offer great value for money, so I was hoping for the best.
If I’m honest, I had pretty much written off the HC4’s as I really didn’t think they would compare to the Sony headset, plus these are wired which is a real no no for me. To say I was surprised by how good the HC4 headset is an understatement. As soon as I got them out of the box I was impressed, but most of all I was relieved on how minimal the wire is. Long gone are those annoying 27 foot long wires that lead all the way back to the console, the wire on this headset is an anti-tangle, flat lead that is roughly 2 feet long and plugs directly in to the controller.
Thankfully, the HC4’s have retained all the features I liked about the previous Gioteck EX-06 headset, whilst eliminating all the things I disliked about them. They look great and feel robust and well made, they are also one of the best fitting, most comfortable headsets I have ever worn. They have an over ear design which shuts out external noise very effectively and the sound leek is minimal. However, they did make my ears pretty hot on longer gaming sessions due to the snugness of the ear-cups.
The thing I usually hate about gaming headsets is all the fannying around required to connect them to console itself. No such worries with this set as they just plug straight in to the PS4 controller, just like you’d plug your earphones in to your mobile phone, it really couldn’t be easier. They are amplified, but unlike most wired headsets, they don’t need to be plugged in to the console to be powered as the headset has an inbuilt rechargeable battery that deals with all the amplification wizardry.
Ok, so that’s enough gushing about this headset, we all know that the most important thing about a good gaming headset is the sound quality and that’s where I expected things to go down hill. How wrong was I?? Very, as this was the part I was most impressed with. The sound of this headset is very impressive and sounds just as good as the Sony PS4 Wireless Headset 2.0. The audio is great across all ranges of sound, but most impressive is the quality of the bass. Gunfire, grenades, explosions and crashes all provide a very satisfying, punchy bass tone, which really helps you immerse yourself in the game.
As well as good bass, they provide very clear voice audio, which is brilliant as many headsets I have tested tend to drown out the characters voice due to overbearing bass or in game music. This set deals with that balance very well and seems to get it right whether you’re playing a shooter, racer or platformer. The only thing I really miss is the digital surround sound offered by other headsets, that is pretty much the only negative thing I found with the HC4’s.
The quality of the microphone for in-game chat is another thing that usually lets gaming headsets down, but again Gioteck has addressed this issue and the mic provides very clear chat, a feature that I have tested on gaming consoles as well as using the headset to make calls on my iPhone. The chat is very clear and will only be degraded by the quality of the network that you use them on, I often have problems with the sound of in-game chat on the Playstation Network for some reason.
This headset can be used with any device that has a 3.5mm audio input. I have used them on my iPhone, Vita, 3DS and they always worked perfectly. You can even use them on the Xbox One controller, but requires the Microsoft adapter for this to work. You can expect to get about 8 hours usage from a single charge, which is done via the the micro USB cable included in the box.
Overall I am very, very impressed with the Gioteck HC4’s and would recommend it to anyone that is looking for a decent gaming headset without wanting to spend crazy amounts of money.
You can pick up this headset for £28.95 here
Headset supplied by Gioteck for review