Gadget review: Plantronics RIG headset

WITH its own mixer included as part of the overall package, adaptability is the signature calling of the RIG, the latest model by veteran headset manufacturers, Plantronics. Compatible with with Playstation 4, Xbox 360, Playstation 3, PC and Mac as well as smartphones and tablets, the device is envisaged as all in one product for the living room for those who like to multitask.

Picture: Planatronics
Picture: Planatronics

Gadget Review: Plantronics RIG headset


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Connecting wires to the mixer is straightforward enough, allowing to hook up the RIG itself, your console of choice, as well as a portable device with a media library. A range of sliders allow you to hone the balance between inputs, allowing you to play a game, chat online with friends and listen to music all at once.

The disc-shaped mixer, like the headset itself, enjoys a design that is attractive without being lavish and playing for extended periods is a comfortable experience thanks to high-grade materials in the cups and headband. It is functional too, living up to the promise of allowing you switch between in-game audio and an incoming call with ease. Interchangeable microphones are also included - one for gaming and one for chatting on the phone while on the move.

Sonically, the RIG is a stereo set, discouraging those in search of a top-grade simulated surround sound experience should look. Its performance is largely excellent, however, with bass and mid-range well represented by the 40mm speaker drivers in both gaming and audio tests, whille the three equaliser presets offer variety. At times the treble at times struggles to make itself heard in the mix, but such a calibration is not uncommon for a headset intended for a gaming audience.

The RIG’s least appealing feature is its abundance of wires. Handsome though the mixer is - with several clips included to prevent tangling - there are times when you wish the headset came with Bluetooth connectivity. For PC or Mac gamers sat at a desk, the cabling issues may not be so much of an issue, but console players will perhaps find the overall setup inelegant.

That said, the RIG achieves its goal of catering to a wide range of devices without compromising on its overall sound quality. It is a good solution for those wishing to listen to music while playing a game where the soundtrack is not vital, such as a sports title. With the headset currently available for around £40 less than its suggested retail price, it is an appealing proposition for those on a budget.