I reviewed EasySMX's VIP002S gaming headset several months ago, and while it was quite comfortable, there were a few minor inconveniences. With its latest revision, the EasySMX VIP003S, some of these are fixed while others are not. But comfort and audio quality still remain king when it comes to what makes a good headset in my opinion, so despite not being perfect, the VIP003S remains a good headset.

A welcome revision

EasySMX VIP003S RGB Gaming Headset

Small fixes make a big difference.

EasySMX is a brand that tends to fly under the radar, but it's well worth your money to check them out. The VIP003S headset in particular fixes issues with its previous revision and still provides a high-quality, comfortable audio experience.

The Good

  • Affordable
  • Comfortable
  • Can mute microphone on console
  • Detachable microphone
  • Suspension headband

The Bad

  • Wired
  • A little gaudy
  • RGB lighting won't work unless connected through USB
  • No 7.1 surround sound

EasySMX VIP003S Gaming Headset What I like

After having the opportunity to test out the VIP002S months ago, one of the first things that I did upon receiving the VIP003S was to check to see if any of my complaints were fixed. Though not all of them were — RGB lighting still can't be used on console easily and chat/game audio can't be adjusted separately on the headset itself — a huge inconvenience was solved: the ability to mute your microphone on the console.

The oddly-named VIP003S fixes a lot of its predecessor's smaller annoyances, and at just over $20 is an awesome deal.

On the VIP002S, you could only mute the microphone if it was plugged in through USB. This was difficult to do on console because it still needed to be plugged in on your controller through the 3.5mm jack. On the VIP003S I'm happy to report that muting it is quick and easy on console, and you only need to have it plugged in through the 3.5mm jack to do so. Not only that, but it's easier to now tell when you are muted because it is a toggle on the headset instead of a button press.

It also has a suspension headband that makes it easier to adjust for all head sizes and improves its comfort. The VIP002S had a regular headband that was bendable, and while this was a plus in my book, I think the suspension headband of the VIP003S is much better. As nice as a bendable headband is, it's not like you're purposely trying to bend it as much as possible all of the time. There's little practical use for it. The suspension headband isn't exactly bendable, but it has just enough give to avoid being stiff.

Being able to detach the microphone is also a much welcome change. I can't even begin to tell you how many times I'd like to bring a headset somewhere only to decide not to because of the microphone. It just looks awkward wearing a headset like that out in public when you have a microphone sticking out of it.

And as for the sound quality itself, you're still getting great directional audio. I wouldn't necessarily say it's a step above most other headsets, but it's certainly an improvement over the VIP002S, and it's better than your television's normal speakers.

EasySMX VIP003S Gaming Headset What I don't like

Instead of featuring 7.1 surround sound like its predecessor, this headset only supports stereo surround sound. This isn't a deal-breaker for me since 7.1 was only supported on PC anyway and I mainly play on console, but it's a glaring step down in terms of features. Luckily, the audio quality is still good. Just not as good as it could have been.

Sometimes it's hard to tell where the line between cool ends and gaudy begins.

Sometimes it's hard to tell where the line between cool ends and gaudy begins. The VIP003S tiptoes that line with its earmuffs, and I tend to put it into the "gaudy" category. Not even factoring in the RGB lighting — which I actually consider a nice touch — the earmuffs themselves aren't something you'll want to wear out in public any time soon. Because of the detachable mic, they're the perfect contender to take with you on long trips or on a flight, but you may not want to because of how the design looks.

It doesn't pack any premium features as you'd find on expensive headsets, which is understandable given its price point, but still makes it an inferior product compared to others on the market. There's no customization software, no audio mixing, none of the fancy stuff you'd be paying extra for. It is what it is. This actually may make it more appealing for those who just want a simple plug-and-play experience.

Should you buy the EasySMX VIP003S Gaming Headset? Yes

If you're in the market for a new headset, it's hard to pass one up that's this nice and this cheap. Sure, it lacks the bells and whistles of $100+ headsets, but for what you're paying for it's more than satisfactory. With so many budget-friendly headsets on the market, you'll just need to ask yourself which features are most important to you.

4 out of 5

I'm not sure if I would keep using the VIP003S over my Razer Kraken X — another affordable headset I recently had the chance to review — but it's certainly a step up from the VIP002S. If you can live without 7.1 surround sound, give it a go.

A welcome revision

EasySMX VIP003S Gaming Headset

Small fixes make a big difference.

EasySMX is a brand that tends to fly under the radar, but it's well worth your money to check them out. The VIP003S headset in particular fixes issues with its previous revision and still provides a quality, comfortable audio experience.

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