Plantronics have been a favourite among PC gamers for a while, thanks to their low-cost GameCom series that have gained a lot of traction at hardware retailers across the country. After all, it's much easier to convince someone to part with around $50 than it is $200 or more.
Their latest headset, the RIG 500, is still fairly reasonable at $100. But it's hoping that you'll overlook the added price thanks to one major feature: the ability to truly make it your own.
It's a fully modular headset, complete with a fold-out boom mic, that's only 200 grams heavy. If you've ever owned a massive pair of cans in the past -- I still have a deep affection for my broken Philips HP890's and their gorgeous, blue velour pads -- the weight is a huge bonus, although it's not as cool as being able to take it apart.
Here's what the package looks like out of the box:
The headband is removable; at the launch event, Plantronics and their local PR arranged for some artists to spray paint a range of designs onto the headbands. You don't have to go that far, but given that there's no electronics in the headband, you could probably just dunk it in fluro paint if you really wanted to be noticed at LANs.
The cans are removable too. They're circumaural, meaning they'll surround your ear. For what it's worth, I'm finding them a little more comfortable than my Audio Technica ATH-M50x go-to headphones. Here you can see the notch on the back of the cans which hooks into the headband.
If you get the standard kit, don't customise it all, and hang it slightly over a laptop stand, this is roughly what it looks like.
For those interested, the RIG 500 has a frequency response between 100Hz and 10khz for the microhpone and 20Hz to 20khz for the headphones themselves. It plugs into any console, handheld, mobile and PC through the standard headphone analog jack.
Plantronics is also launching the RIG 500HD and RIG 500E headsets later this year and next, but only the baseline 500 RIG will be available from retailers next month.