Because there are no mixing buttons on the control pod our entire configuration happens in the headset control panel which looks much nicer than the version available with the HS1 last year. The new skin fits in much better with the Corsair brand and the functionality is intuitive. We simply move sliders as required and can choose pre-sets from the left panel, such as Music + Bass to get stronger bass than the default setting allows. The buttons on the right enable/disable the headset's Dolby Headphone and 7.1 virtual speaker shifter.
Looking next to the hardware itself we found the Vengeance 1500 to be a solid feeling, nicely designed unit which has a better appearance than the HS1. As with the HS1 we feel that Corsair should supply leatherette ear pads for those who prefer them but this is a minor aspect in an otherwise quality design which offers great comfort during long gaming sessions.
In terms of performance the majority of the time this headset has been used for has been in Battlefield 3 and the overall experience here has been very positive. The virtual surround sound effect works well with a very spacious directional sound and the various effects are all recreated well, whether it is the shouts of our team-mates, explosions or gunfire. As an added bonus the microphone worked well during team communication where our voice could be heard easily with no background noise present.
Moving to some different gameplay we tested F1 2011 and StarCraft 2 and found the former to perform very well on the Vengeance headset with the engine noise never muddying the communications from our pit crew. StarCraft 2 audio was also recreated very well with great explosions and plenty of clarity in the environmental effects and voice acting.
So that brings us to value where the Vengeance 1500 scores well at a price of $99.99. That's significantly less than the equivalent Sennheiser, Razer or Logitech which makes the Vengeance with its two year warranty an attractive purchase.
A quality gaming headset which offers better value than its competitors. A good start to Corsairs Vengeance gaming range.