ASUS is a well-known player in the world of tech so I think I will not bore you with a long intro of the brand and jump right to the latest offering from ASUS (for headsets) the Cerberus. Rest assured that despite the name, it’s not designed to fit over three pairs of ears but more to that the headset can be used with not only your PC, but also laptops and smart devices as well.
A big thanks to ASUS Malaysia for providing the headset sample and without further ado, lets step right into the main ring.
The specs are very detailed, even the microphone ratings are separated from the boom mic and in-line mic. It’ll be interesting to see how the 60mm drivers will affect the sounds coming out of it as most headset will feature 40mm drivers instead. Priced at RM199 SRP, it looks like a good deal with specs this good.
The Cerberus comes in a red/black themed box that corresponds with the headset’s colour scheme, with a big transparent window for users to see the actual product. Over at the top-right corner, you’ll notice that it says “Designed for PC/Mac and Smart Device” which means that the Cerberus is compatible with almost everything that will accept a 3.5mm audio jack.
Moving along to the back, various features of the Cerberus is pointed out with some illustrations on the connectivity of the Cerberus.
In terms of accessories included, we have the Audio/Mic Splitter cable, the detachable microphone and the user guide. A short alternative adaptor cable is also supplied for mobile devices that doesn’t work with the Cerberus’s original 3.5mm 4-pole jack.
I’m glad that all the cables are braided and yes I do hope that all peripherals comes with braided cables so kudos to ASUS here for the thought.
The headset itself feels very light and the materials used feels solid despite how flexible the headband is.
The Cerberus is overall black with red-trims on both earcups and minimalistic branding on both sides of the headband.
And just to demonstrate the flexibility…..
Speaking of the headband, it’s self-adjusted (or non-adjustable depending on how you see it) supported by dual metal braces. The leathery material feels good but not too sure if it’ll be able to provide adequate comfort without additional padding.
The cable on the Cerberus is non-detachable, not that you don’t need it at some point but it would be nice if the option to use custom cables were available.
Moving on to the ear cups, ASUS made these larger than most headsets in order to house the 60mm audio drivers in them. The leathery cushion is very soft and will help with noise isolation on these closed-back earcups.
The boom-mic is very flexible and I find no problems getting it close to my mouth for optimum pickup and as seen from the specs, the boom-mic may be detached from the headset when not in use.
An in-line mic is also available with the volume dial and mic-mute switch, which is why ASUS mentioned that it’s designed for smart devices. Having to use the boom mic in public will seem awkward to say the least, so this inclusion is a definite plus to me. You’ll also find a handy clip at the back of the in-line controller.
What’s missing here is a receive call button or skip track button which I think should be pretty useful when plugged into a smart device. Instead I’m kinda forced into having to use the controls on my mobile phone instead.
Despite the size, the Cerberus is very light at only 266g, much different from the Gamdias Hephaestus
that I reviewed recently. Putting it onto my head the Cerberus feels “somewhat” comfy. Clamping force is adequate and the headband works very well to adjust itself and is comfortable without additional padding that it was missing; but the earcups takes a while to get used to.
Despite the comfortable cushions, the earcups clamped right down to my lower jaw (that’s how big it is!) which is something I think most headset will not reach. This causes a bit of irritation to me while using the Cerberus. The Boom mic works well though, it is a bit on the quiet side and needs a little boost on the volume.
Using it on-the-go however is another story. The Cerberus delivers music from my mobile phone just as well as it did on the PC but I find that the noise isolation is somewhat lacking. No doubt that the earcups fits over my ears snugly but ambient noise is apparent over my music at 50% volume so I did have to crank it up more to drown the noise. Because of the large earcups, I can’t hang the Cerberus over my neck when not in use. It feels like I’m wearing a neck-brace of some sort because I can’t look down with the earcups “supporting” my lower jaw. The in-line microphone delivered my voice clearly and I don’t even have to be holding it near to my neck; the only drawback is that ambient noise is very clearly heard as well.
In terms of sound quality, the 60mm drivers of the Cerberus delivers music nicely with clear vocals and good mid tones. High pitch notes are handled nicely, even on high volume, without cracking. Bass isn’t as deep as I like it to be though, which is apparent when you have the low rumbles in the movies I watched; but it’s good enough to enjoy explosions and gunfire effects as it is in games as well.
As you can see, the Cerberus is a mixed bag of chips in my opinion. The sound quality is good but in terms of practicality… let’s just say that there is much room for improvements. Even that ASUS specified that the headset is designed for smart devices, the design is not really suitable for people using it on-the-go and calls for a more relaxed environment to enjoy using it. Which is a pity given that the performance of the 60mm drivers are solid no mater what you’re listening to.
- Good material and solidly built
- Good inclusion of accessories
- Very light despite the large size
- Braided cables
- Detachable boom microphone
- Good audio quality
- Deeper bass is desired
- Earcups are a little too large to be of good use on-the-go
- Noise isolation could be better
Overall, I’m giving the Cerberus a Silver Tech-Critter badge.