G.Skill Ripjaws SV710 and Ripjaws SR910 Reviews

January 6, 2016 | 10:27

Tags: #gaming-headset #surround-sound #virtual-surround

Companies: #gskill

G.Skill Ripjaws SR910 Review

Manufacturer: G.Skill
UK price (as reviewed):
Approx. £85-£90
US price (as reviewed): $99.99 (ex Tax)

The SR910 is considerably more expensive than the SV710; currently doubly so, in fact. The reason for this is predominantly a fivefold increase in the number of drivers. Each earcup now offers five drivers of varying sizes in order to support true 7.1 surround sound, similar to the Asus Strix 7.1, and this obviously adds cost and complexity.

The largest driver is the 40mm sub one, while the front and centre channels are managed by 30mm drivers. There are also 27mm ones for the side channel and the rear drivers are the smallest at 23mm.

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Otherwise, however, the SR910 has a largely similar design to the SV710, although the red highlights and stitching do make it look a little more jazzy. We also really like the see-through earcups on this headset, as along with the red LEDs inside they give you a good view of the separate drivers, which is pretty neat.

On the downside, the similar design means that our experience wearing that SR910 was largely the same as the SV710, if not worse. After all, the extra drivers add about 40g of weight to the headset, further accentuating its tendency to drop down our head over time thanks to the weak suspended headband and lack of clamping force beneath the ears. It's a shame because the build quality is decent and the copious amounts of padding would make it pretty comfortable to wear were these issues dealt with.

G.Skill Ripjaws SV710 and Ripjaws SR910 Reviews G.Skill Ripjaws SR910 Review G.Skill Ripjaws SV710 and Ripjaws SR910 Reviews G.Skill Ripjaws SR910 Review
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The SR910 also has the same retractable microphone as the SV710, with similar levels of recording quality – just don't enable ENC. Likewise, the cable is non-detachable and rubberised.

The bulky, plastic in-line remote has a glossy finish which isn't ideal for something designed to have hands all over it. Still, quality is pretty high otherwise and the volume wheel, used to control the levels of all five channels either together or independently, has a really nice action. There's also a microphone mute button with a red LED indicator.

G.Skill Ripjaws SV710 and Ripjaws SR910 Reviews G.Skill Ripjaws SR910 Review G.Skill Ripjaws SV710 and Ripjaws SR910 Reviews G.Skill Ripjaws SR910 Review
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Stereo sources like music are simply fed through the front and sub channels. However, sound quality is again disappointing, with bass response being especially weak and maybe even worse than the SV710. You can turn the sub channel up a little to compensate, but this just serves to further highlight the poor quality, especially at the lowest frequencies where it sounds very flabby. The SR910 is capable of going very loud, but you're unlikely to want to as it gets pretty tinny and distorted. As for the mid-range, there's an acceptable level of detail here but it's nothing special.

When you have a surround sound source, the positioning of the drivers definitely feels accurate enough, but it's not a saving grace – the extra drivers are of similar quality to the front and sub ones. It definitely isn't enough to make up for the sloppy bass output, and this is especially apparent in high octane games and action scenes.

The software is of similar ilk to the SV710 suite, offering the same environmental effects, EQ and levels tweaks.

G.Skill Ripjaws SV710 and Ripjaws SR910 Reviews G.Skill Ripjaws SR910 Review
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Conclusion

To be honest, we'd have a hard time recommending the SR910 even if the sound quality and surround sound drivers blew us away, as we're simply not sold on the design when it comes to wearing the thing. However, the sound quality really is underwhelming, especially in the bass department. There are also no extra accessories to sweeten the deal compared to the SV710, so it really is the surround sound that all your extra cash is funding, and it's just not a worthwhile investment.

G.Skill now has mice, keyboards and headsets to its name but none of its initial products have been clear successes, despite certain strengths in each of them. If it's going to stay in this increasingly competitive market, it will need some fresh ideas and more refined products.
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