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Creative Fatal1ty HS-1000 USB Gaming Headset review



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If there's one thing I've learned over the years, it's that as much as I may enjoy playing games and watching films well into the small hours of the morning it's that fellow residents, and sometimes nearby neighbours, aren't always so appreciative. As great, then, as having a decent surround sound speaker setup cranked up to the max is, it's a fact of every PC (or, indeed console) gamer's life that a decent headset is one of those must haves.

There are, as common sense might suggest, two options. The former, and most obvious, is a simple stereo headset, such as the SteelSeries Siberia which as our review testifies was pretty nifty. The second category comprises devices such as the Saitek Cyborg that offer a virtual 5.1 surround sound from the two available speakers. As the Cyborg headset proved though, this can have mixed results.

If there was a company positioned to make and pair of virtual surround sound headphones and get it right, Creative is probably it. Creative has some real badge cache in the audio arena, with excellent products like the X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty Pro sound card and Auvana X-Fi headphones backing up that reputation. To that end, the Fatal1ty HS-1000 gaming headset should be pretty good. Especially as Creative claims to reserve Jonathan "Fatal1ty" Wendel's branding for the crème de la crème of its products.

Superficially the Fatal1ty gaming headset sets off on the right foot. The Fatal1ty branding is kept pretty low key, and there's no Razer Piranha-esque glowing LEDs, for instance. One trait the Fatal1ty headset does share with the Piranha, though, is the overabundance of pressure. I wouldn't consider my head to be particularly large, but wearing the headset for too long caused enough discomfort that I simply had to remove it for 15 minutes or so before being able to use it again - and too long equated to about an hour of use. Some might argue that such enforced breaks are a good idea, but I'd rather not try playing Left4Dead with throbbing ears. It's an intense enough game as it is without adding pain to the mix!

On the plus side, design-wise, the removable microphone plugs in as securely as could be asked and is nicely flexible, without feeling flimsy. The USB cable for attaching the headset to a PC is of a decent length, too and sports an in-line remote offering volume buttons and a microphone mute switch. This also has a clip on the back, so it can be attached to, say, a belt ensuring it can be easily located while also reducing cable tug on the head.

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December 16, 2008, 5:57 am

This is 㿉.85 on Amazon.co.uk after VAT right now guys.


December 16, 2008, 1:33 pm

I see that you mention many other headsets in your review, but how do these compare to the Sennheiser PC 350's you reviewed previously ?

I'm in the market for a good headset for prolonged use during gaming and quality / comfort is of far greater concern than price.


December 16, 2008, 2:16 pm


The Sennheiser's don't have the inbuilt surround sound support that these do so it's something of a non-comparison.

Personally I wasn't a huge fan of the PC350s. They seriously lack bass, which limits their appeal for listening to music and their astronomical price is one I'd never consider paying for purely gaming headphones. That said, they are very comfortable and are pretty much without equal in terms of gaming headsets - I'd personally just by better headphones and a desktop mic, though.

These look like a great buy if you don't have a decent sound card are on a limited budget, which doesn't sound like you.


December 16, 2008, 3:27 pm

Robovski, no it isn't, that isn't the USB one. The USB one is 㿖.41. Remember to search for the 'HS-1000', not just the 'HS'.


December 16, 2008, 4:00 pm

Thanks. That's interesting, I listened to some 350's at a friends a week / two ago and I have to admit I didn't notice the lack of bass at all. Perhaps I just don't listen to things loud enough :0)

I've never really been convinced by this surround sound in a headset idea previously, and I've also had trouble with USB (logitech) type devices, so the S350's seemed a good bet. At 㿼 the 350's are a very small investment. You'd think nothing of paying that for 2 games.

As both these headsets are meant for playing games and speaking to friends whilst doing so - surely they are directly comparable.

I do find the TR comments regarding the 350's confusing. On one hand they are the cream of such headsets, on the other they lack x,y,z and you'd be better off with a decent pair of headphones.

What to buy...

Andy Vandervell

December 16, 2008, 4:17 pm

It depends on what you're looking for. For listening to music the 350s are merely okay, but for gaming they're just about as good as you can get. I believe what Ed was trying to say, he can confirm or deny this, was that if wanted an all-round headset for both then you might want to look as something else - a more neutral set if you like. If all you want is the best for gaming, though, the PC 350s remain an excellent option.


December 16, 2008, 4:52 pm

Thanks, that makes sense.

For me these are for gaming. Although conceivably I would be listening to music at the same time it's going to be mixed with the dulcit tones of explosions, carnage, general chao and someone potential giving strategy updates. So I suspect I won't be listening too carefully for the odd lost detail.

I do agree that it's poor that the MIC on the 350 doesn't remove. Therefore making them useless for general use outside of the home with an MP3 player. Unless ofc you like looking a complete pillock :-)

I've always like Sennheiser's, so think my choice is made. Thanks guys and sorry for derailing this thread.


December 17, 2008, 3:36 pm

i have the non usb version of this headset coupled with a creative extreme gamer sound card,for the price about 㿅 you wont get better headphones for gamming especially with the gamer card,i don't know how they do it but you have eight virtual speakers in a stereo pair of headphones and it really works you can detect enemies position a lot easier and if they above you or below,the headphones compliment the card well.


December 19, 2008, 10:11 pm

So with a Kick-A** sound card (such as a X-Fi Platinum Fatal1ty)the cheaper 3.5mm non-usb version should be better...shouldn't it?

How about throwing a comparsion between those two in ya review Hugo? With Company of Heroes for good measure!


December 23, 2008, 11:18 am

YG i dont know how good the usb soundcsard is compared with the gamer sound card but as you say a good card must be better,even when i had onboard sound these headphones were the best ive used,you could pick up more in game sounds crisper sound with good bass,as i said for the money i cant see anything as good in that 㿅-30 price range,there is lot lot of online reviews on the 3.5mm jack version nearly all positive.


January 21, 2009, 10:26 pm

Thanks Hugo for this review. I was considering the 3.5mm version a year ago, now the USB version interests me for another reason - I wonder if it would work with the Playstation 3? Obviously the PS3 has no standard 3.5mm input for a mic; any idea if a USB headset like this would be compatible, or is Bluetooth the only option?

In any case I'm disappointed to hear about the headset applying too much pressure - I have a relatively small head and still consider this a problem with most headphones; particularly uncomfortable when wearing specs.


January 22, 2011, 6:33 am

I just bought a hs-1000 yesterday from pc-world for £19.99 and I think it is one of the best headsets I have owned yet!

Gaming Headsets FTW

July 13, 2011, 12:40 am

I've had the non usb version for well over 2 years and they have served me well - for the price that these are going for they are perfect for the gamer on a budget. Really cant go wrong with these if you look after them well. Extremely comfortable with the velvet lining you wont even notice them on tbh.

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