Wow, Zalman is on an audio blitz right now, eh? Just last week we got a chance to look at the revised version of the Zalman USB surround sound headphones and now here we are again – back with another pair of new Zalman headphones.
It’s a little odd too and when somebody says the word ‘Zalman’ to me my first honest thought isn’t “Oh yes, those headphone people.” Instead, my first thought is usually something along the lines of “Zalman? Those are the heatsink people, right?”
It was only out of habit then that when another package from Zalman landed on my desk that my first action was to tut in annoyance and start shifting it over to Bindi’s desk. “He does heatsinks,” I mumbled as I grabbed the parcel, “I do games and stuff. Why does nobody ever remember that?”
Naturally then, I looked quite the fool when I opened the parcel and found out that there was a pair of gaming headphones inside. I quickly donned the headphones, binned the packaging and shuffled back to my desk awkwardly – trailing a headphone cord that wasn’t attached to anything and wearing an embarrassed face.
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So, now that we’ve established what the headphones are and who’s going to review them, it’s only natural that we move on to trying them out and ensuring that we never speak of the above ever again. Not ever.
Headphones with a purpose
My first reaction to the ZM-DS4F’s, to give them their full name, was admittedly a bit mixed. I took them off my head when I had been successfully chained back to my desk and I turned them over in my hands a few times. I gave them a bit of a shake, tried them on, mock-moshed when nobody was looking and then looked at them again.
I thought back and compared them to other sets of gaming headphones which I had reviewed – the ZM-RS6Fs, the Sennheiser PC161s and the Creative Fatal1ty Headset. All of those past headphones, not to mention sets which I had used but hadn’t reviewed , had been a lot bigger and sturdier than the Zalman DS4Fs I was holding in my hand and by comparison the new DS4Fs felt a bit weak and flimsy.
I wondered; were these new headphones honestly expected to successfully survive being thrown across the room after a bad LAN match?
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Well, looking into the matter a bit more I discovered that no, they weren’t. The DS4F headphones have a very specific focus in the market and that is for portable gaming and MP3 players. In short – if you want a pair of new headphones for playing mammoth sessions of the upcoming Quake Wars: enemy Territory then you’d be better off looking elsewhere. One of the reviews linked above will help you out quite well, actually.
If, on the other hand, you’re after some light and compact headphones to plug into your DS, PSP or iPod then you may be in luck. So, with that in mind, let’s move on to testing and see just how the DS4Fs hold up, shall we?