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Gaming/Gaming Headset Speeds

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Question
Hello, I am currently considering purchasing a new headset for computer gaming. I currently have a wired headset and am looking at a wireless with a latency of less than 16ms. My question is, what is the latency difference between a wired and that wireless? And how noticeable is 16ms? I am using a Razer Kraken atm.

Answer
I'd be interested to see where you're getting this specification from, or otherwise where the value of 16ms is coming from. With wireless audio systems, there may be a very slight delay between the signal reaching the transmitter and the output reaching the transducers, but with modern (and even some not-so-modern) systems this will be generally unnoticeable. 16ms is a very small fraction of a second (around 1/63rd), and will very easily go unnoticed. The bigger potential issue with a wireless system (apart from the need to continuously recharge or replace batteries), is a loss of audio fidelity due to whatever compression techniques are used to send the signal out wirelessly. In some cases this is a dramatic quality loss, and can be compounded by the limited voltage available to battery-powered devices (especially if this headset also needs to include a microphone and is designed to light up when in use). As a result, I'm generally a fan of wired connectivity where possible, as it eliminates the battery discussion, and ensures a better quality connection between the source and the earpieces. Of course, the quality of the earpieces themselves is also another discussion, but for most gaming-related audio absolute fidelity is usually not of as much importance as it would be for say, studio work.

If you have further questions, feel free to ask.

-bob

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Bobbert

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I have nearly two decades of experience in IT, computer repair, and related fields and will attempt to provide the most solid, brand-agnostic advice when it comes time to purchase a new computer, or upgrade an existing machine. I can answer anything from the seemingly basic to the downright complicated - and will do my best to provide this information in a clear and concise manner. I have a personal interest in PC gaming, and can apply my experience to such an end. Questions related to 3D games on OS X or other platforms are less likely to get answered.

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Nearly two decades of experience in and around IT.

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15+ years of experience and education.

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