Given all the big name headset manufacturers at CES, you would be forgiven if you hadn't heard of Trackscan. After all, up until 2008 the company wasn't in the headset market at all, focusing entirely on rental NASCAR headsets for race fans instead. Take notice though, because this company was in Las Vegas showing off the VIBRAS Five.One, an accessory for those fed up with giant headsets.
What makes the Five.One such a unique headset is its microdrivers. Where most surround sound headsets use two-four 40+ mm drivers, TrackScan tries a different tactic; they slash the size of any individual driver, cram five into one ear, and still come out with a headset smaller than any of comparable quality. Best of all, durability isn’t compromised one bit and the end product feels remarkably sturdy given its size.
Not content to stop with driver size, TrackScan has veered away from other headsets in its design as well. With large, spacious ear cups gone, the Vibras 5.1 sits almost directly against your ear. Not an issue during my brief sample, it remains to be seen how that will affect the long term comfort.
Also gone is the traditional scrolling mixer, instead replaced with a combination of a scrolling sound control and 3 channel mixer. Using buttons rather than a wheel didn’t feel natural at first, but it certainly clarified the process. Alterations aside, the VIBRAS did exactly what it promised; it delivered some of the truest 3D sound I heard the entire show.
Although there are still a couple of lingering comfort questions, if we're talking pure sound quality then track scan's officially licensed headset can hang with the best of ‘em. It may not be as feature packed or as pretty as some other PC and 360 headsets, but it is definitely one to check out if you're in the market for high quality surround sound in the $200 range.