The Sound BlasterX G6 from Creative, a company well established in audio products, is a universal gaming digital to analogue converter (DAC), sound card with headphone bi-amp. The G6 comes packaged with a USB cable and an optical cable, using the G6 on Xbox One requires both these cables, the USB to power the unit, plugged into one of the consoles USB ports, and the optical cable for audio input (port located on the rear of the console). You do have to go into your Xbox settings to change the output for it to work correctly, but this takes seconds.
You then simply plug your headset into the 3.5mm socket and you’re good to go. Any headset that has a 3.5mm jack is compatible with the G6, and the difference it makes is noticeable straight away, whether you’re using a cheap or expensive headset you’ll definitely benefit from better audio all round. This is in part due to the Xamp headphone amplification that amplifies both audio channels separately, enabling more detail to be heard from highs, mids and bass. I tested with a variety of headsets from Creative’s own Sound BlasterX H7’s, Turtle Beach XO One’s and even a cheap unbranded set. Comparison was made with plugging the headet directly into the controller headset port. The difference as already mentioned is very noticable, I’m no technology buff and don’t know how it works, it just does.
There’s a couple of other functions on the G6 too, with a gain switch that highers or lowers your volume, an SBX button that configure the audio to give the best surround sound possible no matter what headset you’re using. Last but by no means least is the Scout Mode, this enhances audio for things like footsteps, weapons changes/reloads etc. giving a huge advantage when playing online shooters and battle royales. However, the G6 does have a disadvantage when using with an Xbox One, that being the inability to use your microphone. Since the G6 has to use the Optical Audio output on Xbox One, it’s simply not possible you use party or in-game chat while using it. This is more Microsoft’s fault as it’s the only console that the G6 is compatible with that doesn’t use the USB connection to deliver the audio.
Moving on to the testing I did on PC, The Sound Blaster G6 does have a bit of software you can download to use with it, called Sound Blaster Connect. This programme allows you do lots of stuff from messing with the equalizer to perfect your audio experience, and save them as individual profiles for different games. You can even alter your voice with a variety of different pre-set settings. You can also alter the colour and behaviour of the lighting of the ‘X’ on top of the G6.
While it’s difficult to say this is a must have bit of kit if you’re gaming on Xbox One only, It’s definitely worth thinking about especially for those Hardcore gamers that want the best of everything, and the G6 does just that, it squeezes every ounce of performance out of any headset providing the best audio quality possible. If however you use alot of gaming platforms then the G6 will be an ideal asset to your gaing setup.