1More is a relative newcomer to the gaming headset scene having originally found its mission in delivering top-quality audio for music lovers for a price point that doesn't have you selling a kidney. I once went to an audio showroom where they had a record player with a £5000 turntable cartridge. Yeah, it can get expensive. 1More looks to hit for top-quality audio with a premium yet not ostentatious price point. Which brings us here to the 1More Spearhead VRX 7.1 surround sound headphones.
Like all premium headsets, these things don’t exactly come cheap. The 1MORE Spearhead VRX headphones have an MSRP of about £150 here in the UK. That’s understandably a lot more than what some people are willing to spend on some gaming headphones, although it all comes down to what you actually get for your money.
First of all, the Spearhead VRX headphones are wired and can connect via both 3.5mm headphone jack or through USB. You’ll need to plug it in through USB in order to benefit from most of the advanced features of these headphones. That can be an annoyance when your USB connection is as fiddly as mine and I occasionally had some disconnects if I was ever moving my head around too much.
They’re equipped with 7.1 stereo surround sound, bass and vibration boosters, environmental noise cancellation and dual-mic system with a 90% reduction in background noise.
All the controls and doodads are found on the left side of the headset. You’ve got the usual mute toggle, volume control, and bass control. And that’s basically it, nice and simple. Volume and bass are handled on the same control. Just click it in to change the boss or slide it for volume. Both features only work through USB connection though, so the buttons are useless while using a 3.mm headphone jack.
In terms of design, these headphones have a real premium look. It’s always going to down to personal tastes but I think the Spearheard VRX headphones look pretty damn fantastic. At first, I thought they may be a little flimsy due to the thin pivot pole at the top of the ear cup but it’s once it was in my hands it felt sturdy and durable. The ear cups themselves are very soft and never felt as if they were compressing my ears, even during lengthier gaming sessions. They’re probably some of the comfiest headphones I’ve ever used, in fact, which is impressive considering the extremely lightweight design.
At the top of the ear cup are a couple of microphones with noise-canceling ambient noise filters, while it also an absolutely tiny microphone for voice comms. It ends up being a potent combination despite the innocuous nature of it. The vast majority of background noise is trimmed out and voice chat is crisp and clear.
The single odd choice with the headset is the extendable RGB lightbar that comes out of the left earphone. It lights up to let you know whether the microphone is muted but, and I don’t know if this is just a ‘me’ problem, it’s actually out of my field of vision, making it fundamentally useless. It’s also comfortably the flimsiest looking piece of the headset; a jarring choice among otherwise premium design. That aside, everything else about the design of the 1More Spearhead VRX gaming headset is fantastic.
The big selling point of the Spearhead headphones though is the head tracking. They utilise Waves NX Head Tracking to track the players head movements in a 3D space. To the best of my knowledge, I think these are the first headphones to actually do this. Turn your head physically sideways and the audio that was directly ahead of you will now come from your left. The head-tracking tech works fantastically and sounds exactly how you’d expect it to. Now, the actual usefulness of this is a matter of some debate. How often are you not looking straight at your monitor? The answer is probably never. However, in practice, this tech is actually much more revelatory than it sounds on paper. I’m hoping there wasn’t a healthy dose of the placebo effect during my testing but in Battlefield it would really help me turn towards and spot an incoming rocket, for example, or allow me to be acutely aware of where the other drivers are in Rocket League. It’s quite difficult to explain how it sounds different from surround sound but it delivers a more natural, all-around experience. For VR gamers, VR HMD’s already make use of head-tracking and therefore have 3D audio so it becomes a moot point. The Spearhead VRX does have excellent surround sound though, which still make them a great fit for VR gaming. I’d definitely recommend you turn 3D audio off if you’re planning to listen to music though as it does provide an unnecessary distraction.
As for the audio quality itself, the Spearhead VRX sounds great. It sounds as good as other premium-priced headsets, and some cheaper ones too, but it’s not exactly a headset that’s elevating audio to an entirely new level outside of head tracking. It’s certainly good enough though with nice and crisp, detailed audio, and deep, low-end reverberating bass with plenty of discernible detail.
One big bugbear I do have with the 1More Spearhead VRX is with the software. It works. Sometimes. I’ve had a number of issues with it losing headphone detection, sometimes the software doesn’t even run, and it crashes when I try to change the colours of the RGB lighting. In theory, there are millions of colour combinations to just from for both the ear cups and the frame, provided it actually worked. I’ve even had to reinstall it a couple of times on Windows 10 just to get it magically working again. A ton of the features, including the 3D Head Tracking, rely on this software so it can be a bit of a pain. Hopefully, this is something 1More can easily enough fix with a driver update though.
A big of my recommendation of the 1More Spearhead VRX comes down to the price. At £150, these things aren’t cheap. For your money you do get one of the most comfortable headsets I’ve ever used, top-tier 7.1 channel surround sound audio, a crisp mic and the awesome gimmick that is Waves NX head tracking. Although £150 is a lot to chew, however you put it. But you can rest assured this is premium quality for the price. Which all makes it a little bit sad the driver support is so flakey. Windows 10 compatibility seems iffy on the two systems I’ve tried it on and it’s a blot on an otherwise fantastic headset.
That aside, the 1More Spearhead VRX is a premium gaming headset with fantastic build quality, lightweight components and the comfortable ear cups which are so vital for gaming.