Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB surround sound headset review — lots of features at an affordable price
+ Gamdias Hera software looks pretty decent and works well, feature rich too
+ Good sound, customizable via Gamdias Hera software
+ Vibrating earcups are actually pretty fun to have
+ Virtual 7.1 sound enhances the sound stage
+ Decent microphone with a few modes to play around with
- Non-detachable cables, no love for audio over 3.5mm
- Excessive clamping force, uncomfortable for long sessions of use
- Microphone boom raises questions regarding its durability
What do you need from a gaming headset? Good positional audio, a clear microphone and RGB, of course. What’s a “gaming” peripheral nowadays without RGB illumination? Well, the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB surround sound headset we have here today features RGB, a microphone, and virtual 7.1 surround sound, which it will deliver through some pretty large 50mm drivers. Sounds good to you? Well, let’s find out if they really sound good.
The Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB comes in a black simple hard paper package, with a window for you to peek at the headset on the front.
Over on the back you get a list of features and a image of the product.
The specifications are over on the left side, with all the numbers that you need to consider before getting a headphone.
After opening the box, you will only need to slide out the plastic tray in which the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB is placed in. And voila, this is all you get with the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB. There is no user manual included in the package, and also the cable is fixed so you won’t get loose cables in the package.
If size matters, well then the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB will score really highly here. The earcups are absolutely massive, as are the pleather earpads. A metal frame running above the leather wrapped headband that will automatically adjust to your head’s size. The metal here is plain brushed metal, which can look better if it was anodized in a darker color to suit the rest of the otherwise entirely black headset. Portability is out of the question as the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB doesn’t fold flat, nor does it fold at all.
The Gamdias emblem is embossed onto the pleather-wrapped headband. Also, the wires that connect the two earcups run through the headband, and stick out from the sides. This is necessary for this design, but Gamdias could have done better with flat cables or braided ones for better durability, as the ones used here look quite cheap.
The earpads are as deep as they are huge, offering plenty of space for everyone. There is a fabric mesh covering the drivers in the center. The padding is very thick, so they should offer a good seal and comfort over extended periods of gaming.
I have previously mentioned that I am not a fan of inline controls, and I prefer them on the headset. You get buttons for the RGB illumination, microphone switch, volume controls and also the vibration toggle. We will get to the vibrator soon. The cables here are pretty unique too, with a clear plastic sleeve over the fabric sleeve. The USB connector is not gold plated, which is surprising as the specifications mentioned a gold plated plug.
The Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB works right out of the box as a headset, but there is the Hera driver software to make full use of the virtual 7.1 surround and other rather cool features available. Without the driver software, you can toggle the vibration, adjust the volume and even enable the RGB, all via the inline controller. Actually, all you need is the inline controller to play around with the RGB lighting, as you only get the option of it off, or cycling through its colors. Not that I mind, since I don’t get to see the colors anyway. Speaking of the inline controller, the one here doesn’t feature a clip, but is quite smoothly shaped preventing it from getting snagged on everything.
Comfort was not that great, due to the oversized earcups over-reaching and actually pressing down on my jaw. With the clamping force exerted, my jaws were sore pretty quickly. Yeah, quite a weird place to have soreness from a headphone, but that’s what I experienced. Repositioning the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB helped, but the clamping force is considerably strong. Stretching the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB out might make it more comfortable. I wish Gamdias had designed the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB with swiveling cups, so it could exert the clamping force more evenly over the surface of the earpads, instead of most of the force focused onto the lower edge of the earpads, which can get uncomfortable pretty quickly. The weight is pretty acceptable, and the wide headband helps to spread the pressure over a larger area.
There are really a lot of options available to play around with in the Gamdias Hera software. It looks very gamer-ish, but the yellow-on-black accents look decent. The icons are easy to understand, and most of the options are self-explanatory. It is actually a one-stop shop for all your Gamdias peripherals, which is really convenient if you have a full set of Gamdias stuff. Here, you get to toggle the 7.1 surround mode, even adjust the position of the virtual sound sources. An equalizer allows you to tune the sound output and you can even simulate a certain environment. Padded cell and carpeted hallway are acceptable to use, but they don’t change much of the sound, with the rest being just plain gimmicky. You can adjust the size of the simulated space too, if you enjoy that kind of thing.
Now, on to the listening experience. The sound quality of the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB is actually not bad, but can be a little overbearing with its emphasis on bass. Which is why I tuned the equalizer as seen in the screenshot above. Pushing the mids and highs up, the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB actually sound pretty good. It works great for my music needs as well as when I was gaming. Turning on the 7.1 virtual surround yielded a seemingly wider soundstage, but it really didn’t make much of a difference in Overwatch. Volume wise, the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB is very loud. I set them to around 10/100 in Windows in stereo mode, and around 26/100 with the 7.1 virtual surround enabled. This goes to say that you can easily damage your hearing if you turn them all the way up. If you want an added kick, turn on the vibration mode. This adds a subtle vibration to your music, simulating heavy bass. It is a fun thing to have, and does wonders to enhance immersion in action movies. I wouldn’t recommend it for long sessions of music listening though.
The flexible boom microphone can be bent as you wish to offer your teammates a quieter experience gaming with you. The length was sufficient for me, but I do worry about its durability as it can wobble around quite a bit. The quality is pretty decent, with my teammates understanding my excited yelling. None of them noted excessive background noise, which is a definite no-no when it comes to gaming headsets.
You also get to tweak your voice output. It annoyed my friend to no end as he preferred my naturally manly voice which is too sexy to share here on this blog, for fear of too much traffic coming in to listen to me speak. Microphone echo does what it says, adding echo to anything the microphone picks up. Quite useless, I must say. Key shifting adjusts the key of the output, which could be really helpful for those who enjoy karaoke sessions. Well, not me. Vocal cancellation attempts to block the vocals so you get an instrumental track to sing along to, but from my experience, it failed with every song I tried. Perhaps Gamdias has to work on that a little more.
The Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB is actually a pretty decent pair of headphones that offers a rather comprehensive feature set, albeit a large part of which are plain gimmicks. The 7.1 surround sound helps to enhance the sensation of a wider sound stage, and with it being customizable is indeed very interesting. We have the vibration motor offering bass you can feel, which, believe it or not, was pretty enjoyable to watch movies with. The microphone is decent, and I really liked talking in a high pitched voice to everyone in my Overwatch party. The only downside is that they could improve on the comfort and also the microphone boom design. Priced at RM229 on Lazada, the Gamdias Hebe M1 RGB is actually a pretty good option for such a feature-rich gaming headset. I would give it our Bronze Pokdeward.