With the Cougar Phontum a headset was introduced, which should be usable for several areas at the same time. No matter if you sit at home in front of the computer, the PlayStation or the Xbox or if you need a headset on the go. The Cougar Phontum should be equipped for every situation with a second pair of ear pads and a partially removable cable. Whether the 50 Euro expensive headset meets these requirements, we have tested for you.
- Stereo headset for all devices (3.5 mm jack)
- Cushioned, circumaural ear cups
- 53 mm driver units
- Headphone Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz
- Headphone impedance: 32 Ω +/-15%
- sound pressure level: 98 dB/mW at 1 kHz
- Microphone Frequency Response: 100 Hz – 10 kHz
- Sensitivity: -45 dB +/- 3 dB
- Microphone impedance: 2.2 kΩ
- Directional characteristic: Uni-directional
- Cable length: 1.2 m + 1.8 m (removable)
First Impression and Quality
The first impression of the 50 Euro Cougar Phontum is very good. The packaging is high quality and the headset itself is stable. At first glance, the headset looks very thick and heavy, as the ear cushions, which are intended for home use and gaming, are quite thick. In the scope of supply are still second ear cushions, which are clearly thinner and intended for on the way. The detachable microphone is firmly plugged into the socket and the bracket does not wobble. The headset is also otherwise robust and well manufactured.
If you put on the headset, you sink into the thick cushions first. They are very soft and are strongly compressed by the high contact pressure. In spite of the pressure, even spectacle wearers do not have the feeling that the headset is too tight. Even after several hours, the headset still sits well, but impressions form around the ears over time.
The second ear cushions for on the way can be attached very well and the four nipples for attachment hold very well. It becomes problematic, however, if you set it up. The high contact pressure ensures that the pads are completely compressed and the ears rest directly on the driver. This means that the ears start to go on strike as soon as they touch down and the headphones can no longer be worn for more than a few minutes.
The Cougar Phontum does not offer great features. With the displacement of the ear cups the general size of the headset can be adjusted and the microphone is removable. The 3 meter long cable is a nice feature for one or the other, but generally a bit too long. At the beginning of the 1.8 meter long detachable cable is a wheel for volume adjustment and a switch to mute the microphone, so you don’t have to interrupt the game.
The microphone is the worst part of the headset. It doesn’t really pick up the speech well and backs up the already bad recordings with a strong noise and a continuous high beep tone. The noise will not be audible until the level is lowered, but the recording will be too quiet. Unfortunately a very strong minus point for the microphone in connection with the 3 meter long cable.
If you remove the extension and use the 4-pole plug instead of the two 3-pole plugs, the noise is greatly reduced and the fieptone is omitted, so that only the relatively poor speech quality remains. The alignment of the microphone is very good, you can adjust it freely and then the microphone stays in position and does not bend.
The 53 mm drivers are installed in a two-chamber system. However, this has no particular effect on the sound. The sound is well mixed, but there are no highlights. The bass is not particularly powerful and the treble is only reproduced up to a frequency of 17.5 kHz, which is a pity. In gaming it is easy to assign sounds to a direction and thus locate the opponent.
Result & Rating
A conclusion about the Cougar Phontum is difficult. The microphone is simply not usable when using the 3 meter cable. I wouldn’t recommend this headset to PC users who talk a lot with other people. For the console and with the short 1.2 meter cable, the microphone is acceptable for the price. The sound of the Cougar headset is not outstanding, but it serves its purpose. So the highs and lows are not particularly pronounced, but for 50 euros one cannot complain.