We’ve seen a few products from Tesoro over the last year or so and there is no doubt that they are fast evolving their brand and products in an attempt to capture the gaming peripherals market. The latest of their products to land on our desk is a true 5.1 headset and we look at that today in our Tesoro Kuven Pro Review.
Tesoro Kuven Pro Review – Packaging and Bundle
The Kuven Pro arrives in a box which sticks to the familiar Tesoro branding and the name of the product does too. This time using a word associated with the Helmet of Hades. Inside the box we find the headset attached to a moulded plastic tray with bundled items being the product documentation, USB cable and control pod.
The control pod features a large volume dial, channel selection button, mic mute button and audio mute button. On the back is the micro USB connector for the cable to our system and on the left a HDMI connector which we plug our headset into. The base is rubber so that the pod stays stable on our desk. As far as notifications go, the buttons light up to show their status, the volume dial surround does the same and there are a set of LEDs along the front which show which channel we are tweaking.
Tesoro Kuven Pro Review – The Headset
The Kuven Pro is shown above and overall and it uses a fairly angular design. A metal plate is attached to each side with the eye on the detail lighting up purple when on. Each of the cups rotates to flat and the arms extend via metal arm by around an inch on each side. Padding is protein lined and the headband has the Tesoro brand sewn into it. As far as specifications go we have:
Amplifier Frequency Response:
Sub – 20hz-400Hz
Front/Rear/Centre – 50Hz -20KHz
Amplifier Max Output Power:
Sub – 100mW
Front/Rear/Centre – 30mW
Speaker Frequency Response:
Sub – 20hz-20Hz
Front/Rear/Centre – 50Hz -20KHz
Sub 40mm, 32Ohm, 100mW x2
Centre 30mm, 64Ohm, 50mW x2
Front/Rear 30mm, 32Ohm 50mw x4
Extending from the left ear cup we have the microphone arm with purple LED on the end. This has a flexible section in the end so we can position it. It is a unidirectional model with 2.2Kohm impedance, -44dB sensitivity (+/-3dB at 1KHz) and frequency of 100Hz to 10KHz. The cable which connects to our control pod is braided, like the USB cable, and ends in a gold plated HDMI. Total length is 3.35m (1.35m + 2m).
Tesoro Kuven Pro Review – Software
Tesoro stick with a standard C-Media control panel for this headset and it offers all of the key configuration options we would expect. We can select options such as Stereo, 5.1 and virtual 7.1 along with tweak the EQ settings and control our microphone levels.
A Little Word on Tesoro’s Excalibur Range
Before we continue with the Kuven pro review it is worth noting that Tesoro have recently refreshed their Excalibur range of mechanical keyboards, adding RGB and full spectrum lighting models. They can be seen above and other than the LEDs are essentially identical to the original. You can read our review of that board here.
Tesoro Kuven Pro Review – Conclusion
Starting with the design and build quality of the Kuven we have a headset which does fairly well. It does look cool, that angular design stands out and the metal panels, leds and stitched headband all add a feel of quality. The headset feels sturdy too and we have braided cables which is always a decent addition. So, many of the basics are covered however Testro don’t quite hit the mark on them all… for example the documentation is poor (we still have no idea why the channel selector switch flashes, everything seems to work), the software is functional at best and while the website recently had a redesign it has serious quality check issues (the Kuven Pro page for example is filled with Keyboard specs and images). It was also disappointing to see that Tesoro have not resolved their packaging issues. The “furry” tray used to keep the headset stable in the box sheds hairs all over the product and they are incredibly difficult to clean off.
As far as performance goes things are better. The headset does reasonably well in music and movies, especially bass heavy sources. There is a tinny edge to the higher end though. So for example if you are watching Man of Steel and Russell Crowe is voicing over, no problem… nice deep tones. A kid starts speaking and the sound goes slightly harsh. As for gaming, that very much sits in the decent area for the Kuven Pro, especially action games which feature loads of bass, explosions etc. The 5.1 design of course adds to the overall gaming experience and that is one of the highlights of the Kuven Pro, a nice spacious directional sound which helps us pinpoint sounds in the game world.
Summary: A little more attention to detail and some minor tweaks to hardware will have Tesoro competing well in the audio market… a better software solution would help too.