When it comes to audio, sometimes what is really needed is a simple idea done well. LucidSound’s latest headset offering is a fine example of this philosophy. Coming out of the Californian sunshine, the LS25 is LucidSound’s newest headset designed to bring a rock-solid performance to any the eSports arena.
Designed to bring a great audio performance to competitive gaming, the new LucidSound LS25 is a device that really reflects LucidSound’s statement that “We believe less is sometimes more”. While my own home headset of choice comes loaded with an orchestra of extras that include 7.1 virtual surround sound, RGB lighting, and a great wireless signal the LS25 strips away many of these gaudy extravagances in favor of a streamlined design. In many ways, this is for the better as LucidSound LS25 refrains from adding the sort of flashy additives that camouflage the core competencies of the product.
Pulling the LS25s out of the box, it is all too apparent that this design philosophy is at the core of this particular headset. On dispatching the cardboard packaging, the quality construction of the LS25s is abundantly clear. A pair of sizeable speakers makes up the core of the LS25. These are adorned with a set of generous cushions and set with red stitching. The rest of this set follows a similar red and black theme, mixing materials to create an aesthetic that is distinctly louder that LucidSound’s previous outings. The patent plastic backplates capping these speakers are emblazoned with a pillar box red LucidSound log and finally lead up to a metal and plastic frame, which has a real heft to it.
This sturdy construction doesn’t come at the expense of comfort. The LS25 is crowned by a stitched leatherette section under the headband that, coupled with the ear cushions, strikes a quite fantastic balance between comfort and endurance. After a week of gaming and travel, I didn't feel any need to readjust or remove the headset at any point. The whole package certainly does scream for attention when you take them outdoors, and if you are looking for something more subdued then the LS31s might be more your thing. In the case that, like me, you’re more accustomed to a headset colored in Splatoon yellow then the LS25 won’t feel out of place on your morning commute.
If you do decide to take the LS25 headset on the go then two 3.5mm jack housings sit at the bottom of the left speaker, ready to help you out. Here you can connect the LS25 audio input cable and detach the headset’s removable boom mic. This boom mic is joined by an additional internal mic and a volume control wheel, integrated into the left headset speaker. This provides great flexibility and control. It won’t matter whether you are tied to your home rig or out chasing more Pokemon. With two styles of mic, two types of audio cable, and an easily accessible set of controls you won't ever feel like the LS25 is out of its element.
Before even plugging this headset in, the design of the LS25 had me on side. Everything from the quality materials, the color scheme, and the controls speak volumes about Lucidsound’s balance of form and utility. For those more focused on the LS25 function, the technical specifications for this headset are outlined below.
- Weight: 318g / 11.2oz
- Speaker Size: 50mm
- Sound Space: Passive Stereo Sound
- Surround Sound: Xbox One, Windows 10 using Dolby Atmos or Windows Sonic
- Power Output: 70mW 32ohm per channel
- Frequency Response: 20 - 20,000 Hz
- Characteristic SPL: 97 +/-3dB
- Connectivity: 3.5mm combined jack or 3.5mm splitter jack
- Microphone: Removable boom mic with wind sock + built-in mic
The LucidSound LS25 comes in between just below LucidSound’s recent wireless LS31, providing a 3.5mm jack connection for gaming. This might not be what you expect from a headset with an RRP of $80, but the LS25 gains an immeasurable amount for this outlay. The 50m speakers and Neodymium magnets make my recent outing with the Head:Set S seem almost a world away. While Snakebyte ’s headset is admirable for the price point, the price differential opens up a whole different world of audio. It’s not just the power sitting behind the 50mm speakers that make the LS25 headset a great piece of kit. The tuning of the LS25 sits in the middle of the audio spectrum and although the LS25 can open up to a reasonable volume, bass on the LS25 will not necessarily blow you away. While crawling through combat I found that footfalls, the whine of incoming drones, and even weapon reloads do, however, come through with astounding clarity. It is a balance that favors an open sound and something that seems to be a signature of Lucidsound headsets. The added inclusion of Atmos and Windows Spacial Sound in this package also manages to elevate the average royale, providing the level of accuracy you would expect from a competitive product. Much of this evaluation is determined by the quality of any other hardware involved and when the LS25 was used to test the Cyrus Soundkey Gaming Edition, the quality of the Lucidsound LS25 shone through. The middles and high ends of games like Grip: Combat Racing were even better than my initial impressions and adversaries became easy to sound out before they even appeared on screen. Bass still isn’t quite as strong as you might like, but the inclusion of Xbox, Windows, and Dolby surround compatibility allows for a level of customization that should tend towards particular player preferences.
The impressive audio of the LS25 stands in contrast to the headset’s limitations. Of the two microphone inputs available, neither the removable boom mic or integrated microphone are quite as impressive as I would like. The internal mic is, admittedly, incredibly convenient for strolling down the street, and the boom mic manages to do an above average job without having to be directly in your face. When in live games, the boom mic clearly picks up player chat without issue but also manages to occasionally grab the background. I never found myself particularly warming to the LS25 microphones and while this kind of performance is not exclusive to the LS25 it stands in contrast to some fantastic audio.
Despite this niggle, the LucidSound LS25 is a headset that utterly outperformed my expectations. The 3.5mm jack design is definitely one that will benefit some gamers. After a week of traveling with my laptop, Soundkey, mobile phone, and Nintendo Switch I have to say I’m impressed with its versatility. The inclusion of generous ear cushions, two microphones, and the convenient volume dial are all carefully considered choices by LucisSound. The output quality of the LucidSound is not in question here, this is a great set of headphones and while they boisterous aesthetic might not be to particular tastes, it really isn't an issue when compared to my own bright green hair.
In the end, LucidSound does not need to make a lot of noise about the LS25, it just comes in and blows away the competition. The gorgeous open sound, the design, and the aesthetic make the LucisSound LS25 a competitive, reliable headset that can fit almost any situation. The LucidSound LS25 is available now. Find out more on the official website.
- Massive versatility
- Great clarity
- Comfort for hours
- Subdued bass
- Middling microphone
- Will be a little bold for some tastes
The product discussed in this article was provided by the manufacturer for the purpose of review.