Sony’s Inzone series is an extension of the PlayStation business going to PC and therefore the focus of the Inzone series is to grab as many PC gaming customers under their wing as possible. The Inzone H9 wireless gaming headset heralds that arrival and I am convinced that these are the gold standard for wireless gaming audio so if you need some convincing, read on.
Sony Inzone H9 review
Full-bodied sound for an empty wallet
These come very close to the Corsair HS80 RGB Wireless in terms of build quality. The plastic construction feels durable yet lightweight. There is no squeaky sound from the joints and cups when you move your head, unlike the Steelseries Arctis 7P which has a creaking sound from every joint.
The design is very similar to the Sony WH-1000XM5. These have plenty of adjustments to sit over your ears perfectly and the cushioning is great too. It’s soft and the clamping force is better than Corsair and Steelseries. Albeit, sitting in the heat might toast your ears but that’s expected if you wish to enjoy the H9’s passive isolation.
However, the best way to cut out the noise is to use the ANC feature. It has borrowed notes from Sony’s lifestyle headsets and although it’s not as good as the 1000XM5 in canceling out noise, it does a good job of keeping the fan and AC noise away from your ears. Even construction and wind noises from the neighborhood don’t flood in while you’re gaming.
The spatial audio is truly special on these but it depends on what games you’re playing. PlayStation games that have Tempest 3D Audio support sound incredible with pinpoint audio placement. Returnal and God of War Ragnarok on the PS5 make proper use of the Inzone H9’s surround sound chops. Footsteps of zombies running around the space station in The Callisto Protocol on PC are placed accurately in the virtual surround on the H9.
Competitive PC games like Valorant and Overwatch 2 also make great use of the surround to track footsteps. We wish the Inzone H9 had Dolby Atmos support as well because the Corsair HS80 RGB Wireless support Dolby Audio and if you game on an Xbox Game Pass subscription then Xbox first-party titles make good use of the feature. Even Overwatch 2 supports Dolby Atmos now.
The overall sound characteristics of the H9 are simply better than everything else. The low-end is impactful but not boomy. Everything sounds crisp in the top end too. It’s not too bright and jarring like most gaming headsets and that makes it great for music listening also. The spatial audio might make the midrange sound hollow but only if you play games that don’t take advantage of the surround. Sony exclusives and other triple-A titles use it well.
Software and buttons
You can also always opt out of the Spatial bit from Sony’s PC software suite which is very impressive because firstly it has everything necessary for PC gaming - a proper EQ with profiles, sidetone, sound settings and even device button settings are all present. Secondly, it does a much better job than gaming-first brands like Corsair and HyperX with its software.
The flip-to-mute mic is not detachable but it has a really nice quality. It’s still not better than the Corsair HS80 RGB Wireless which is class-leading.
Sony hasn’t spared the details either. There’s a volume rocker along with power, Bluetooth, ANC and game/chat buttons. It also has a USB Type-C port for charging and lasts about 32hrs without ANC. We wish it had a dedicated button for Spatial Sound because music only sounds good without Spatial Sound. You will have to visit the software to turn it off while listening to music on your PC. It automatically switches to stereo in Bluetooth mode so there’s a way around it too. The Sony Inzone H9 allows for simultaneous audio streaming from Bluetooth and the 2.4GHz dongle connection. So you can play music from your phone while being connected to the game audio on your PC/PS5 as well. A perfect companion while aim-training for Valorant, eh? No wonder Sony Inzone is an official partner with Valorant VCT 2022.
Fun sound, feature-rich and full of immersion, these bring quality audio to the PC gaming space. The Sony Inzone H9 doesn't tread the same line as other gaming headsets. Although not as detailed and balanced as the Corsair HS80 RGB Wireless, these offer ANC and other important titbits that complete the overall package. The Inzone H9 is definitely better than the Steelseries Arctis 7P and if you’re always dabbling between PC gaming and PS5, this will work wonders. Especially with its long battery life and fast charging.
Feature-rich and superb sonics put this on a must-have list for PC and PS5 gamers
|Battery Life:||32 hours (ANC OFF)|
|Connection:||2.4 GHz dongle, Bluetooth 5.0|
|Frequency Response:||5–20,000 Hz|
|Microphone:||Bidirectional,100Hz to 8000Hz|