The PC builder bluffer's guide - all the info you need to convince the world of your tech cred | PCGamesN - Page 11

The PC builder bluffer's guide - all the info you need to convince the world of your tech cred: Page 11

Audio

Creative Sound Blaster AE-5 reverse

Want to gain the advantage in gaming with a full surround sound setup? Maybe you just bought the best headphones on the market and they are too quiet? 

Whatever the case, understanding the terms and phrases is the first step towards getting your own ideal audio setup.

  • Drivers: The component within headphones that converts the electrical signal into sound. The larger the driver, the more powerful the output, but that doesn’t necessarily equate to higher quality. Driver quality is key in creating the best sound quality.

Gaming headset drivers

  • Amp: Power amplifier used to push a louder and better sound experience.
  • DAC: Digital-to-analogue converter, this hardware converts the digital signal to analogue and utilise higher bitrate and sound quality.
  • Impedance: Reducing impedance reduces the electrical resistance, therefore allowing higher volumes and lower power draw.
  • Frequency response: A wider frequency range can make a difference in how the audio feels - lower frequencies will feel far more bass - higher frequencies will mean the sharper sounds are more audible.
  • Operating principle: The two options are closed-back and open-back. The closed back is the more common principle used in gaming headsets, where the earcup is sealed to stop sound leaking out. This affects the audio, making it feel closer in to the ears, while open-back sets offer a more natural soundscape but the sound leaks out. These are more widely used in sound studios for audio monitoring.

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