Look, I totally understand. Building that PC is expensive. Hell, I put a shedload of money into mine when I built it as well. As such it’s totally OK to set your budget brutally low for peripherals. Hell my first PC I didn’t even buy peripherals, just used what was lying around at the time. But with the era of mass industrialisation and Moore’s Law, the low end is always getting better.
So let’s look at that low end once again with the Onikuma K5 Gaming Headset. We originally paid £20.99, but now the headset is down to £19.99 (20.07.2018) from Amazon I’m telling you about this right after Prime Day. Let’s be honest here, this is a Chinese factory headset, sold by two different companies on Amazon. This won’t beat your high-end studio headphones, but punches solidly in its weight category, even if there are just a few errors which should have been dealt with.
Like looking at the Amazon page with this headset photo-shopped into everything.
This ominous Photoshop aside the K5 on paper is a pretty robust headset. 50mm drivers, 16 Ohm impedance, and a solid 20Hz-20KHz range. Rather than list all the features as I usually do, I’ll just link to the Amazon page here so you can read through it yourself, though try to ignore the sales babble.
One of the big-shot features, however, is how universal this headset theoretically is. With a 3.5mm jack, as well as a headphone-microphone splitter provided, you can plug this pretty much into any console or PC. Now I don’t have an Xbox One, but I tested this on my PS4, PC, and Switch. With the 3.5mm Audio Jack, everything worked pretty flawlessly. The USB connection is only to power the lighting on the headset, so do not expect it to work via USB like I first did. From what I know about headsets, the sound is always better through an Audio Jack, so keep to what you know.
In-line controls sit in the middle of the braided cable and work flawlessly though I did find that the cable on the headset side of the controls rubbing against my shirt made noise, though that noise didn’t overpower other sounds playing. The microphone is also split into two with a rigid arm and a flexible inch on the end allowing you to position the arm and microphone correctly.
The microphone is a bit more miss. This is only £19.99 (20.07.2019), and you get exactly what you expect. It’s a bit tinny and thin, though it’ll do the job in a pinch. I’ve been spoiled too much with my current microphone so nothing really hits the mark to replace it, however, If it dies I wouldn’t feel too bad about using this one at least until a replacement arrives. While I could record with it I can’t really emulate the compression and effects a VOIP does, so to sum it up in one word: serviceable.
Now the sound from these are not bad but they are lacking something. While the range is solid, there are a few drops making each end of the spectrum and a little more of the middle-low end and as such general use felt a bit muted. There was never really a point where the sound felt punchy. It works but compared to other headphones I have, it feels a little less full. I ran it through several genres of music and modern pop music covers up the errors, but anything else the deadness comes back through. The 3D sensation works pretty well though, so your games aren’t going to sound mono and bland.
A few things dug at me with this headset. The first being the band padding which actually dug into my head in a noticeable way during use. Beating it down makes it a little better, but it still felt like a lot of pressure on my skull. The earphone cups also felt a little small, though that is likely just to my head. Nothing else really stands out, nothing else really sucks badly.
That’s essentially the sum of K5: It works, it does alright and it’ll do exactly what you expect of it slightly better than the price you paid for it. The cross-compatibility is a welcome bonus. With the plethora of cheap headsets and other peripherals on Amazon, you will likely feel a bit swamped and wary of the options available. But take it from me, this one will do you alright.
Now just look for that cheap keyboard and mouse to go with it.
If you have read this review before the 20.7.2018 09:50BST there has been an update and some lines have been removed or updated to reflect the below statement from Thomas Lashbrook
Reviewer’s Note:- After this review went live, it was discovered the USB is for headset lights only, and not for audio, which I tested and confirmed was the case. As the score was not related to the USB, please disregard all references to the USB not working for audio.