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Difference between Virtual and True surround sound gaming headsets

Playing PC games with a good surround system is a bliss. It can help in boosting your performance and can prove to be surprisingly effective in fast-paced competitive games by helping you notice every sound of your opponent. When we shop for a headset, we can see many headphones highlighting the surround sound feature, but not every surround sound headphone is the same.

The two most common options you’ll find when searching for headphones are true surround sound and virtual surround sound headphones. How are these two different from each other? Read this article to find it out.

Virtual Surround Sound

Virtual Surround Sound headphones tend to play with the listener’s mind. Researchers have worked for years and finally found a way to enhance the software to such an extent that the user can experience surround sound even without the aid of hardware.

For example, assume that someone is speaking to you from your left. The sound will not only be perceived in your left ear but also in your right ear in a lesser magnitude and with a slight, unnoticeable delay. When you turn your head towards the person, both your ears will receive the sound at the same time and with the same intensity. Normal stereo headphones implement the variation in sound magnitude. But the virtual stereo headphones take it even further by implementing a delay in sound perseverance by a fraction of seconds in order to fool the brain and give you an experience of hearing the sound from more than one directions at once.

Also read: USB vs Analog headsets: Which one should you buy?

True Surround Sound

Playing PC games with a good surround system is a bliss. It can help in boosting your performance and can prove to be surprisingly effective in fast-paced competitive games by helping you notice every sound of your opponent. When we shop for a headset, we can see many headphones highlighting the surround sound feature, but not every surround sound headphone is the same.  The two most common options you'll find when searching for headphones are true surround sound and virtual surround sound headphones. How are these two different from each other? Read this article to find it out.  Virtual Surround Sound  Virtual Surround Sound headphones tend to play with the listener's mind. Researchers have worked for years and finally found a way to enhance the software to such an extent that the user can experience surround sound even without the aid of hardware.  For example, assume that someone is speaking to you from your left. The sound will not only be perceived in your left ear but also in your right ear in a lesser magnitude and with a slight, unnoticeable delay. When you turn your head towards the person, both your ears will receive the sound at the same time and with the same intensity. Normal stereo headphones implement the variation in sound magnitude. But the virtual stereo headphones take it even further by implementing a delay in sound perseverance by a fraction of seconds in order to fool the brain and give you an experience of hearing the sound from more than one directions at once.  Also read: USB vs Analog headsets: Which one should you buy?  True Surround Sound  True Surround Sound, unlike Virtual Surround Sound, uses hardware in order to implement surround sound technique in headphones. It is of two types:  True 5.1 Surround Sound  As the name suggests, 5.1 surround sound headphones have five drivers which are distributed across both ears. There is also a sixth driver for low-frequency bass. The drivers are positioned in a manner such that they help implement surround sounds effectively from all directions.  True 7.1 Surround Sound  Operation of 7.1 surround sound headphones is similar to 5.1 surround sound headphones just the difference is that they have more drivers. In addition to that, they also have left and right surround channels for the sounds coming from left and right in a game or a movie.  True Surround Sound headphones vibrate the drivers in different intensities corresponding to the sounds in the game or the movie so as to create a more realistic experience. For example, when an enemy will sneak up behind the player, the player will be able to hear the noise from the footsteps equally in both the ears. When the enemy will approach the player from the right, the player will be able to hear a slightly more intense sound from the right and vice versa in the other case.  Also read: 10 best wireless headphones under INR 10,000  So, will you pay the 'extra' cost for an amazing gaming or movie experience? Let us know in the comments section below.  Also read: Budget Gaming Setup 2019True Surround Sound, unlike Virtual Surround Sound, uses hardware in order to implement surround sound technique in headphones. It is of two types:

True 5.1 Surround Sound

As the name suggests, 5.1 surround sound headphones have five drivers which are distributed across both ears. There is also a sixth driver for low-frequency bass. The drivers are positioned in a manner such that they help implement surround sounds effectively from all directions.

True 7.1 Surround Sound

Operation of 7.1 surround sound headphones is similar to 5.1 surround sound headphones just the difference is that they have more drivers. In addition to that, they also have left and right surround channels for the sounds coming from left and right in a game or a movie.

True Surround Sound headphones vibrate the drivers in different intensities corresponding to the sounds in the game or the movie so as to create a more realistic experience. For example, when an enemy will sneak up behind the player, the player will be able to hear the noise from the footsteps equally in both the ears. When the enemy will approach the player from the right, the player will be able to hear a slightly more intense sound from the right and vice versa in the other case.

Also read: 10 best wireless headphones under INR 10,000

Category

True surround headphone Virtual surround headphone

Speakers

Multiple speakers

The virtual headphone has 2 speakers

Configuration

5.1 to 7.1 configuration 2.0 or 2.1 configurations with a subwoofer

Speaker Size

Small speakers

Larger speakers

Amplifiers

Bass drivers

Uses external and internal amps

Sound Delay

No delay of sound It delays sound in off ear

Popularity

Uncommon

More common

Pricing Very Costly Affordable

So, will you pay the ‘extra’ cost for an amazing gaming or movie experience? Let us know in the comments section below.

Also read: Budget Gaming Setup 2019

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