What We Think
The Siberia v3 Prism is an impressive gaming headset, with good sound and great customisable RGB LED lights. Very good for serious gamers, but not the best buy if all you want is a pair of every day headphones.
The design of the v3 Prism is my favourite aspect of the headset. A lot of thought has obviously gone into making a headset specifically for gamers which is functional, comfortable, and downright cool. Similar to the Apex M800 gaming keyboard, also produced by Steelseries, the headset has customisable lighting, and really looks the part.
- Customisable lighting
- Suspension headband
- Incorporated microphone
- Comfy padding
- Leaks sound
- Short cable
- USB rather than aux
Using the Steelseries Engine 3 software (the same program which customises the Apex M800 lights, as well as a plethora of other Steelseries products), the v3 Prism headset can be programmed to light up in a solid, repeating, or ‘breathing’ pattern of any colour from a RGB colour spectrum palette. This allows for very, very specific colouring, and so everyone will be able to find a colour (or colours) that they love.
The lights themselves are situated on the outside of each earphone, and the LEDs shine through a grill of circular holes. The customisation to this display is extensive, but it is limited compared to the Apex M800, simply because the keyboard has many more buttons, keys, and uses. As the lights are on the outside of the headset, you can’t actually see them while wearing it.
This means that the main use of the customisation comes into play when used during two relatively new streams of the gaming industry; live streaming and in Esports/gaming tournaments, for the benefit of the audience. Furthering this, the lights can be set to flash certain colours when in-game events happen, such as suffering a headshot or dying, helping immerse the audience with the clearer information.
The full-suspension band headphones is a has been created to automatically adjust to your head. A double arch of plastic connects the two speakers, wiring them together and providing structure, but a partway retractable leather strap is what supports the set on your head. The weight of the phones unwinds the strap from the earpieces until it rests comfortably on your head.
The padding around the ears is thick, and helps settle the headphones throughout long gaming sessions. This unfortunately leads to one minor issue I have with the v3 Prism, which won’t apply to a lot of people. The pressure of the padding on the headphones makes my glasses sit ever so slightly askew on my face, which is slightly annoying, but not a game-breaker.
One of the sleeker aspects of the headset is the built in microphone, which, like the headband, retracts into the earpiece. This means the wire is not only flexible, but also mouldable, and will remain static in whatever position you bend it into.
Unfortunately, one of the major bug-bears I have with the headset is that the connector is not a 3.5mm jack, but a USB. I’m not surprised, considering the sheer amount of tech packed into the headphones, but it means that they are not very versatile, and is incompatible with phones and a lot of tablets. It also takes up a valuable USB port on a computer (unless, of course, you also buy the Apex M800, which comes with extra USB slots in the back, a helpful pair up between the devices).
The cord is also annoyingly short, measuring just 5 ft. If you want to plug it into a PS4, you’re going to have to sit very close to your screen, or using a desktop may limit your sitting positions. The problem won’t be so bad if you use a laptop, or, again, if you have a keyboard like the M800 which comes with extra USB ports.
Despite being comfy and with a lot of effort having gone into the style, the headset hasn’t compromised sound quality. The sound is spot on, with every sound effect sounding sharp and exact. The bass is deep and impactful, and I would go as far as to say it is more enjoyable than the bass of the Ultimate Ears 6000, which seems to have focused on producing those low tones.
The midrange, on the other hand, is a little bit lacking overall, but for a gaming headset, it is definitely higher quality than many other options out there.
When using the set, whether fighting on a battlefield or digging in a mine listening out for creepers, the clear binaural effect means you can place the direction of sounds very accurately, be it gunfire, or a menacing hiss coming from behind.
The v3 Prism is perfectly capable of cranking the volume beyond a sensible level, so there is no fear that your game will be too quiet. However, when the volume is up, even just to medium levels, the amount of sound leakage that gets out to the people nearby is surprisingly high. With the thick, padded cushions, I expected the sound to be trapped and for my ears only, but this isn’t the case. It is only a minor thing, but if you are planning on playing or listening to things late at night, or in a quiet place like the office or a library, these headphones may get you some angry glares.
The v3 Prism headphones are on sale for quite a wide range of prices. The cheapest is about £89.00, and the highest is roughly £160.00. If you want to get your hands on a Steelseries Siberia v3 Prism, you should definitely shop around and see where you can get it for the cheapest.
It is an impressive well built, and well-designed headset, so it is bound to have a high price. At the cheaper prices it is a bargain for what you get, and the more expensive prices are still fairly good value. You have to pay more for higher quality, and the top end gaming accessories are pricey, but tend to come with the quality and tech to match.
The v3 Prism gaming headset is a great bit of tech. The sound quality is perfect, they are comfortable to wear for long periods of time, and the lighting effects on them help to take gaming to the next level. While more expensive than other headsets, they are also a better quality. It is a shame that the cord is so aggravatingly short, as it is an issue that could have been easily rectified at the manufacturing stage.