The ROG Delta White Edition headset doesn't just look fantastic, it performs like a dream as well. As much as the headset is visually appealing, the quality it delivers rivals that. Sturdily built, aesthetically pleasing, superb audio quality, and RGB lighting makes for a fantastic product. The price might be a bit steep for some, but in general, the general quality of the device is worth the price of admission.
Upon opening the box, and subsequently being welcomed into the Republic of Gamers, you can finally ogle the headset properly. As mentioned, I was provided the White Edition for this review, and it looks gorgeous. Although the headset is almost entirely made from plastic, the design and construction of it all feels premium and manufactured with durability in mind. The choice of plastic over other material keeps the cost relatively low and the weight of the product reasonable. In general, I'm not overly fond of devices with a white paint job, but the ROG Delta somehow pulls it off. In the box, you will find a detachable microphone, user guide, 2 additional ROG Hybrid ear cushions (mesh covered), and a USB-C to USB 2.0 adapter cable.
The ROG Delta, once properly admired and connected to your PC, utilizes the Armoury Crate app. The application provides the user with full control over audio features, sound optimization profiles, VSS settings, and more. Through the app, the RBG colors and effects can also be modified. Crisp and clean RGBs can be changed to either Static, Breathing, Strobe, Cycle, and Music Defined effects. Needless to say, listening to Trivium's latest album with Music Defined effects active makes for a visual spectacle. One "feature" to note is the simplicity of the application. Here you will find no non-sense settings to confuse you. Everything is simply labeled and exactly where you'll expect to find them. It's a small victory, but one I always look for when doodling around with device-accompanying apps.
With that out of the way, let's take a deep dive into the specifications the Audiophiles came here for. The sizable 50 mm neodymium magnets which make up the drivers, couple this with an impedance of 32 Ohms and a frequency range between 20 and 40000 Hz, and you have yourself a decent pair of speakers to wedge your head in between. Sporting an ESS 9218 Quad-DAC (Digital to Analog Converter), which is something that is not unnecessary for gaming headphones in anyway, makes the ROG Delta stand out in the saturated market of gaming headsets. The way ASUS incorporated the Quad-DACs is rather interesting. They incorporating 4 converters, and managed to give each frequency range its own DAC. It's a smart implementation that bolsters the already great headset even further. The standard range for Sound to Noise Ration in gaming headphones hovers between 90 to 100 dB, while the Delta upped the ante with its 127 dB.
As I do with all new headsets I receive, I steadily worked my way through the checklist to test the general sound quality of the device. The checklist comes with a few sure-fire ways of testing, which also spreads across multiple devices. Listing them in no particular order, the list contains a few online matches with friends to test the sound quality of the microphone, a few quick runs through Bloodborne's Chalice Dungeons to test all the gory sound effects, the obligatory Pippin's Song (Edge of Night), and lastly, a few hours with DOOM (2016), which blends thumping music, visceral sound effects, and some plainly fantastic audio design. (Let's be honest, you could listen to Edge of Night through a styrofoam cup connected with a string and it would still be magnificent). Thankfully, the ROG Delta performed admirably throughout the list. Even though the headset is labeled as "gaming headset," it deliverers some of the best sound quality in recent memory.
Next up is the comfort test results. Spending prolonged periods of time with the ROG Delta fixed over my head proved more comfortable as I initially anticipated. The ear cushions are breathable and soft, making them a delight to wear for those longer-than-usual sessions. As an added bonus, the cushions provide a nice warmth to one's ears during these pesky winter nights, but never enough to over-stimulate the apocrine sweat glands. Engaging in some light banter with mates on the other side of the globe over both TeamSpeak and Discord showed little to no sign of poor voice quality. On occasion, some friends did notify me of a "fuzzy" sound coming from my channel. After testing it a few more times, it became apparent that the fuzzing did indeed come from the microphone. The testing methodology was simple: use the same channel (and application) but with different headsets. My old Logitec G35 headphones, as well as my PlayStation 4 Wireless Gold headset, had no such issues. Although the microphones have been certified by both TeamSpeak and Discord, it does not exempt the part of any flaws or shortcomings.
With all that said, ASUS's ROG Delta is an outstanding headset. It fits the bill of "normal gaming headset" but contracts enough unique design choices to set it apart from the label. Being a headset that can be connected to virtually any modern device, sporting some Hi-Fi DACs, a striking design, and crisp RBG lights, it demands a moment of any audio-quality enthusiast's time. The price point, although not extremely high, might be a bit over most gamers' budget (although the quality of the device does justify the price). The ROG Delta performs well on the console and PC. With a minor hiccup in the voice quality department, the overall features and quality still warrant consideration of purchase. If you are in the market for a proper headset with a striking design, this might just be your next purchase.
Kingdom Hearts devotee, From Software fanboy and aspiring Audiophile (the good kind that believes in FLAC files). Vincent enjoys writing about games almost as much as playing them.
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4 February 2020
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