So right now I have a turtle beach PX21 plugged into my computer, and it works okay, but it's only stereo, and it rattles a bit, so I am considering purchasing a 5.1 or 7.1 headset, either virtual or with actual multiple speakers.
Right now, I have a 5.1 home theater speaker setup, and while I have an HDMI cable running to my receiver, this isn't very practical as it requires me to play on my TV and can't use it while others are around. So, I want to be able to recreate the surround effect with headphones.
Now, I've read some Tom's articles that compare a lot of different headsets, and that has helped me narrow it down a little. Some that caught my eye were the Razer Megadolon, Crosair Vengeance 1500, and Cooler Master Storm Sirus. Now, the Razer and Corsair are both virtual, but the Cooler Master actually has multiple speakers. Does this really make a difference? In the Tom's article, it said it was hard to distinguish the difference, and that in a blind test people couldn't differentiate real from virtual. To me, it seems like packing all those different drivers in a small space would result in not as good sound quality or not as good drivers.
I've also read that 5.1 and 7.1 in a headset/headphones is a gimmik, that you can't hear positional audio. Is this true? I don't believe it would be.
Some info about my system is I have an ancient sound card, Turtle Beach Montego DDL, and my motherboard of course has sound. So I don't know if a USB or analog connector headset would be good.
In my own opinion, I rather pay for stereo headphones with a decent soundstage (ex. ATH-M50) and purchase a decent sound card (Xonar DG, Essence STX) than use surround sound headsets since I don't really find them truly that good for the positional audio, and the music sounds terrible.
Surround sound headsets uses terrible drivers for audio, and it's basically impossible to place surround sound in headphones. Soundstage > gimmicky 5.1/7.1 audio.
I won't be listening to music, like at all. They would be used for gaming 99% of the time. I value 3D positional audio over sound quality, and I don't think stereo is good enough for gaming.
I'm not really an audiophile either. I didn't aim for extremely high end speakers with my home theater, just some average ones for a decent price.
And I also feel that surround sound can be done in a headset, whether virtual or with actual multiple drivers. Almost all the reviews I have read, including one written here at Tom's, said the positional audio works great.