Thursday, June 21st 2012

More People Use Desktop Speakers than Headsets for Gaming: TechPowerUp Poll Trend

Last week, we came up with our latest front-page poll question, asking our readers which is their preferred audio output when gaming (playing their favorite PC games). Choices included desktop speakers, headsets, and external home audio solutions (such as HT amps, HiFi systems, etc.) Over the course of the week that followed, we accumulated over 1,800 votes to build our sample, which consists of our readers (both registered members of our Forums, and unregistered readers). The interim results come as a bit of a surprise to us.

According to numbers recorded at the time of writing this article, from 1,820 respondents, 808 (44.18%) prefer desktop speakers, a close 719 (39.31%) prefer headsets, with external home audio system being a distant yet significant third option, with 302 (16.51%) of the respondents preferring it.

Desktop speakers' performance in this poll is a bit of a revelation, as is the take-away that headset isn't the most preferred audio solution for gaming, which should come as a wake-up call to the countless gaming peripherals designers who are literally mushrooming in the industry. Keyboards, mice, and headsets seem to be some of their first product lines, however they aren't addressing a sizable chunk of the market without desktop speakers in their lineups. Mature players in the desktop speakers scene include Logitech, Creative, Altec-Lansing, and Edifier.
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46 Comments on More People Use Desktop Speakers than Headsets for Gaming: TechPowerUp Poll Trend

#1
BazookaJoe


Well I voted for "External" but only because I don't really have an option - I have desktop speakers on the desktop as my "Front" Channel" and my rear feed goes to an external system.

I know many people who do similar things, so technically - this is really more of a Speakers vs Headphones poll, and when you look at it that way, speakers are in the win 61/39 :)
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#2
Protagonist
The best prices for the Logitech Z906, i have wanted this speakers for a while now,...
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#3
Dj-ElectriC
I just like to listen to music come out of my Solo7C while im workingcookinggaming or whatever. A headset will block any noises around me and i like to be aware of the noises that are coming from outside my house sometimes.
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#4
pantherx12
by: BazookaJoe
http://img.techpowerup.org/120621/Capture471.jpg

Well I voted for "External" but only because I don't really have an option - I have desktop speakers on the desktop as my "Front" Channel" and my rear feed goes to an external system.

I know many people who do similar things, so technically - this is really more of a Speakers vs Headphones poll, and when you look at it that way, speakers are in the win 61/39 :)
I'm thinking of adding a small 2.1 set as the centre/sub to my Floorstanding set up, does it make a noticeable difference and what's the best way to set up ( software wise, I'#d have to choose 5.1 then deselect speakers right?)

Also


Bargain basement speakers but I love them <3
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#5
Akrian
Def. Speakers for RPG's, Shooters, RTS, TBS.
Headsets only for MMORPGs during raids, Racing, pretty much for teamplay.
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#6
Tannhäuser
Eeek! I don't understand why so many hardware-geeks haven't a clue about how important a good, well planned and placed, external Hifi-setup really is. To put it short: Most of the bundled desktop-solutions for computers are just crap. The results of the voting hurt so much.

@[USER=64156]pantherx12[/USER] SRSLY?!

Give some good speakers a chance, like Dynaudio DM 2/7. Take care of vibration absorbing on your desk, the position to the walls, etc.. The differences are huge.
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#7
zargana
Using my Z5500 for all... Headphones only late night...
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#8
pantherx12
by: Tannhäuser
Eeek! I don't understand why so many hardware-geeks haven't a clue about how important a good, well planned and placed, external Hifi-setup really is. To put it short: Most of the bundled desktop-solutions for computers are just crap. The results of the voting hurt so much.

@pantherx12 SRSLY?!

Give some good speakers a chance, like Dynaudio DM 2/7. Take care of vibration absorbing on your desk, the position to the walls, etc.. The differences are huge.
I've silicone vibration dampening feet installed : ] and the speakers are on separate stands now.

And I would do if I had money to burn but these speakers for the cost are great.

A lot better than any of the PC speaker sets I've used ( Creative/logitech etc etc)

At some point down the line I'll just change the drivers to some higher quality ones.
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#9
AphexDreamer
I used to use speakers all the time, but slowly and ever since I got my PX5's I have stopped bothering with them.
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#11
claylomax
For me it's surprising that desktop wins by only that much and I'm surprised so many use headphones; I mean the thought of being gaming with your headphones and someone tapping on your shoulder: "Dinner's ready" or "Your friend's downstairs", that would give me a heart attack :eek:
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#12
BazookaJoe
by: pantherx12
I'm thinking of adding a small 2.1 set as the centre/sub to my Floorstanding set up, does it make a noticeable difference and what's the best way to set up ( software wise, I'#d have to choose 5.1 then deselect speakers right?)

Also
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v311/mopatop/2011-12-29_12-00-34_HDR.jpg

Bargain basement speakers but I love them <3
Well that's a very tricky topic - it really depends more on your sound card - but basically yeah - in the case of mine I actually don't have "FRONT" and "REAR" sound - I use the FRONT and REAR jacks but I have them both just outputting the same thing.

Many sound cards you can select in the software exactly what each jack does - and I find straight stereo sounds the best over the widest range of applications such as music / movies / games - as all of the speakers work together and yes it sounds awesome.

A rear only speaker may be a fun gimmick in a movie that HAS a rear soundtrack - but the other 99% of your life the speaker sits dead and I just don't care enough about "SURROUND" sound to cater to it specifically - I only have 2 ears, ONE left and ONE right - and straight stereo audio is good enough for me.

If your card will automatically process straight stereo signals and "create" a center track to keep your center speaker busy all the time however, by all means, use it :) - In my experience, not all do.

I play a lot of FPShooters - and somehow your brain STILL knows if a sound is in front or behind you, just like in real life - with nothing more than 2 audio channels (your ears) to rely on.

Also Don't knock bargain basement speakers - they very often sound FAR better than the cheap plastic crap you get at a computer store for many many dollars.
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#13
acerace
by: claylomax
For me it's surprising that desktop wins by only that much and I'm surprised so many use headphones; I mean the thought of being gaming with your headphones and someone tapping on your shoulder: "Dinner's ready" or "Your friend's downstairs", that would give me a heart attack :eek:
Well, different people prefer different ways. :toast:
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#14
Vancha
No headphones option... :p
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#15
NC37
Don't like my volume controls via windows. Only reason I still use my ancient Yamahas. Plug headphones into them easy enough. But I am planning to get the CM Storm Sirus headset soon to go with my Xonar DG. Old headset's mic is dying, figure I might as well go all out for once.
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#16
THE_EGG
I have noticed one slightly bad thing when I'm using my external setup (see system specs for more info) is that to get the CM5's to get their full potential and to sound the way they are meant to, means turning up the volume quite a bit which disturbs other people in my house sometimes. Same with my subwoofer, to get some nice sounding explosions that rumble, means turning that up which REALLY disturbs other people in the house. So usually my sub is turned off most of the time. Still though, imo anyway, the external setup will always kick-ass over any desktop speaker or gaming headset.
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#17
treehouse
i would use headphones if i was allowed too, unfortunately i would not be able to hear my wife shouting commands at me if i used headphones so i am restricted to speakers only.
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#18
AnnCore
Staff
by: treehouse
i would use headphones if i was allowed too, unfortunately i would not be able to hear my wife shouting commands at me if i used headphones so i am restricted to speakers only.
That is exactly why I DO use headphones....
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#19
INSTG8R
5.1 for life! :rockout:

Tho I really should get a better set. I run a rather old set of Creatives. But I have a nicely tuned EQ on my Fatality and they are set up image perfect so I can't complain.
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#20
babash*t
I'm also surprised that many people use desktop speakers...
I only use headphones when gaming online just for the mic.the rest of the time a self assembled sound system... I mean my neighbors HAVE to know when I'm blasting heads off with my .50 Cal in BF3
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#21
pantherx12
by: babash*t
I'm also surprised that many people use desktop speakers...
I only use headphones when gaming online just for the mic.the rest of the time a self assembled sound system... I mean my neighbors HAVE to know when I'm blasting heads off with my .50 Cal in BF3
Aye I know what you mean, with all the enthusiasts on this site would of thought there of been more people using studio speakers and amps and such.
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#22
INSTG8R
by: babash*t
I'm also surprised that many people use desktop speakers...
I only use headphones when gaming online just for the mic.the rest of the time a self assembled sound system... I mean my neighbors HAVE to know when I'm blasting heads off with my .50 Cal in BF3
I use a very old desktop mic that came with my Mothers old PIII 666 Dell. It is actually really good. I am also a STERN believer in a PTT key I swear it should be mandatory...
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#23
Capitan Harlock
well , in the thread i have tell to use 3 things , headphones ,external stereo system and 5.1 ,i have prefer to see in the poll the all of them option xd
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#24
treehouse
by: AnnCore
That is exactly why I DO use headphones....
you lucky sod, if i tried that then she would not talk to me for a week, she is what you call 'extremely high maintenance'. but i would not change a thing about her, love her to bits :)
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#25
babash*t
by: treehouse
you lucky sod, if i tried that then she would not talk to me for a week, she is what you call 'extremely high maintenance'. but i would not change a thing about her, love her to bits :)
Keep her in the kitchen. Problem solved
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