There’s one thing to be stated for affordable, easy devices. The BoomPro is a great concept that’s executed nearly completely. With a single cable, you get a microphone (with a versatile arm for simple repositioning), quantity controls, and a mute swap. It can substitute for the 3.5mm audio cable that you just’d usually plug into your favorite wi-fi headphones, instantly reworking them into a significantly better communication software.
For years now, I’ve been utilizing V-Moda’s BoomPro microphone to talk with folks whereas gaming. During the pandemic, I’ve additionally regularly used the $35 accessory to enhance the audio high quality on my finish of convention calls — after I don’t wish to trouble with my desk-mounted Rode microphone, that’s.
This week, V-Moda introduced a brand new evolution of that concept: the $45 BoomPro X has a tweaked design, revamped mic, and extra streamlined controls. But in any other case it sticks largely to the similar formulation. You can plug it in while you’re sitting down for some multiplayer or becoming a member of a Zoom assembly, after which simply detach the cable when you’re performed and use your headphones like regular. Antlion’s ModMic products are similar in concept, however they use a magnetic attachment.
The finest side of the BoomPro X is its versatility. You can immediately convert any headphones you already personal into a gaming or convention name headset. Sure, V-Moda would love so that you can use it with the firm’s personal headphones — however it’ll work equally nicely with different pairs like Sony’s WH-1000XM4 or Microsoft’s Surface Headphones 2. As lengthy as you’ve received headphones with a removable 3.5mm cable, you’re all set.
Some headsets (like these from Bose) use a smaller 2.5mm jack, however even then, you should utilize a 2.5mm-to-3.5mm adapter to get the BoomPro X working. USB-C adapters work fantastic too. In many instances, utilizing the headphones you already love can even offer you higher sound high quality than you’d get shopping for a single-purpose gaming headset.
Compared to the authentic BoomPro, V-Moda has made fairly a couple of modifications. The most vital distinction is the kind of microphone getting used: to assist cut back background noise, it’s now a cardioid unidirectional mic that’s designed to solely decide up sound coming from wherever it’s pointed. The older BoomPro used an omnidirectional mic, which allowed extra ambient sound to come back by way of. But now your voice must be higher remoted when on work calls or in the center of a busy Call of Duty: Warzone match. I’ve commonly received both an air conditioner working or a fan blasting to fight the New York summer time warmth, and so they’re not practically as audible in my recordings with the new mic to this point.
In phrases of mic audio high quality, the BoomPro X definitely isn’t going to method a correct podcasting setup or skilled microphone. It appears to favor decrease frequencies and lacks some crispness. But it’s positively clear, and also you’ll get much better outcomes than you usually would by way of the built-in mics on wi-fi headphones. The growth arm makes all the distinction for readability, and also you don’t have to fret about close by noise that your laptop computer’s mics would decide up throughout a piece assembly. In my exams on each PS5 and Xbox Series X, everybody stated my voice got here by way of loud and clear with none annoying audio hiss or different distractions.
The onboard controls have additionally been redesigned and downsized. They now look a lot nearer to the inline controls on many headphone cables, and the housing is far thinner and lighter. The previous controls had been so giant that V-Moda included a non-removable clip for attaching the plastic to your garments, however that’s gone — and so is the occasional pull/drag you’d really feel from the earlier, heavier controls.
But the controls themselves have additionally modified. Instead of a dial for adjusting headphone quantity, V-Moda switched to a slider. It does the job, however one thing about the dial felt extra pure to me. On the different facet is a mute swap, which works precisely as you’d count on. Since each of the controls now use comparable slider buttons, it’s exhausting to tell apart between them by really feel, which is one more reason I most popular the previous quantity knob. But I don’t suppose V-Moda had a lot of a alternative contemplating how a lot smaller the new controls are.
The BoomPro X cable is shorter than the authentic, however in the field you get an extension cable in the event you want extra size between your machine and the headphones. (Both the customary cable and extension are every 1 meter in size.) I like that, because you don’t all the time desire a ton of additional twine in the event you’re plugging into a recreation controller or close by laptop computer. There’s additionally a Y-adapter included. New for the BoomPro X, V-Moda additionally throws in 5 completely different tiny microphone covers in numerous colours: this firm is known for its customization and personalized ear cup shields, however the mic covers are far more refined.
I’ve preferred the BoomPro sufficient to hold it in my headphones case for a very long time, and I’m even happier with the BoomPro X due to the improved, unidirectional mic. That’s simply value the $10 additional, and in return I get a easy gadget that leaves me sounding higher after I’m gaming or working from residence — all with the headphones I’d be sporting anyway.
Photography by Chris Welch / The Verge