Hardware Review: Gioteck EX-02s Bluetooth Headset

Not long ago Dean reviewed Gioteck’s EX-03 headset and found it to be a very able and comfortable headset. This time round I’m looking at the EX-02s, a bluetooth PS3 headset that bucks current trends by not forcing you to shove a wedge of plastic 3 feet into your ear.

The EX-03 is a very nice looking bit of kit, there’s no doubting that. Continuing the company’s military theme, the grey and black styling certainly looks the part, although unless you’ve got eyes by your ears or play your games near a mirror that won’t really affect you once it’s put in place. Putting it on your ear in the first place is simple enough, and doesn’t take much adjusting. The headset is provided with an interchangable rubber hook so if you want to hook it up to your left ear it’s easy to do. This is something often ignored by 3rd party hardware developers, so it’s nice to see Gioteck taking the initiative by providing for those who are either left handed, have hearing difficulties or just prefer to use the other side of their head. Glasses wearers might have a little trouble initially (as I did) but find the right technique (or take your glasses off for a few seconds) and you’ll be up and running in no time.

You can even change the design by buying different facias…

So, what of the sound quality? As I mentioned earlier there’s no “bud” that goes in your ear to force the sound directly to where it needs to go, this just sits with a soft pad on your ear, so you’d expect the sound quality to be slightly lower than those that stab you in the ear. In practice though it’s not too bad; if you’re a bit obsessive about chatting while gaming you might notice the difference between this and, say, the official HD Sony headset but there’s not much in it. There’s certainly no issues hearing people (apart from the obvious and common PS3 comms issues) and with easy to access volume buttons it only takes seconds to find a balance that’s comfortable for you.

However, the biggest bug bear with your average third party headset is the clarity of your voice to other gamers. With so many bluetooth headsets on the market it’s easy to find one that makes you sound like you’re in a metal wheelie bin; most are only made to use with a phone after all. But there’s no such concerns with the EX-02s. I tested it with a few co-op missions on Uncharted 3, as well as a few rounds of MW3 and FIFA12 and everyone I asked said I came across crystal clear, with one friend saying it was the clearest he’d ever heard me. Considering I’ve previously used the Sony HD set and the Turtle Beach PX21s (which are better overall, but it’s not a fair comparison), that’s quite an impressive claim.

So I’m torn between which is better between this and the Sony headset. The Sony headset is possibly slightly better for hearing people due to the nature of the earpiece itself, but it’s hard to ignore the people who said the EX-02s was very clear at their end. The Gioteck headset is, however, definitely the more comfortable due to the way it sits on, not in, your ear so it’s very easy to use in extended periods of playing.

The EX-02s is a very well made, very comfortable headset that comes highly recommended. If you’re in the market for something new, then it’s definitely worth a look.

Review gear provided by Gioteck

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