Testing & Usage
I’ve been using the Cougar Phontum for the past 3 weeks as my main PC headset. This means it was used for not only gaming but also listening to music, editing video, and watching YouTube and other media. I feel this gave use more than enough time to get used to the headset and for us to properly test out the sound quality.
First lets talk about comfort because no matter how good a headset sounds if it is not comfortable you are not going to wear it, especially during long gaming or video editing sessions. For me the headset was extremely comfortable, it definitely competes with the HyperX Cloud Alpha in comfort aspects. The large memory foam earpads sit completely over your ears and the small headband cushion makes it so there is not a lot of strain on the top of your head. I feel I have a pretty large head and I wore the Phontum on it tightest setting, so if you have a smaller head this headset might not work for you.
I played quite a lot of Fortnite and Overwatch while using the Phontum. In Overwatch the sound of missiles and gun shots were very clear and loud. The 53 mm drivers give this headset quite the punch, but Cougar has tuned the bass to not be too overpowering. In Fortnite I could easily hear enemies getting close to me and looking items in the area I was in. While this is not a surround sound headset by any means it did give me a good idea which direction I was being shot at or where enemies were. Also this is not a noise-cancelling headset, but with it on you do get some noise-cancelling properties, probably because of the larger earpads. This allows you to block out distractions and really immerse yourself in the game that you are playing.
The included microphone is good, but not that best we’ve experienced on a gaming headset. You can check out our unedited MP3 file recorded in Audacity below. It is not the same as having a dedicated studio microphone but it will definitely get the job done for in-game voice chat, Discord voice chat, or Skype calls. In all the games I played my teammates said they could hear me just fine.
I listen to a wide variety of music, you can see that in my 2018 Spotify playlist (basically music I’m enjoying currently). Listening to all types of music is enjoyable on this headset, but if you are listening to music with a lot of bass you are really going to enjoy it. As I said the bass is quite impressive, but not overdone. I did notice that vocals seemed to be a little distant in many songs.