Setup, Design & Observations
The COUGAR IMMERSA is driverless, meaning there is no software needed to be installed. If your system has a 4 pole port (3.5mm), (normally featured on laptops, smartphones, tablets, PS4/Xbox One controllers, Macs) then you can connect directly using the 4 pole connector, however for a standard desktop you will likely need to make use of the included splitter.
Audio quality for analogue headsets will largely vary depending your audio processing, and can vary greatly depending on whether you are using integrated motherboard audio, a discrete soundcard or external DAC and so experiences can vary. Many systems do support higher sampling frequency and bit depth and by increasing these over the standard 44.1KHz 16bit, you can get a free boost in output quality.
The headset itself seems light, weighing approximately 320g, is flexible with an attractive aesthetic set in black and orange with gun metal mesh on the earcups. On wearing, the earcups fully enclose your ears and has a light clamp force ensuring comfort for long gaming sessions. The overall construction is rather minimalistic, using good quality materials that should be robust enough for general wear and tear, though on the flip-side you may need to keep an eye on your pet dog, specifically if they enjoy chewing human flavoured items.
The in-line remote features an oversized volume dial and microphone mute controls, the small design is non-intrusive and easy to locate.
To test the IMMERSA we disable all post processing effects in the audio software (where available) and start with some subjective listening. We use a various test tracks from different genres that are well known to the listener for comparison. The IMMERSA headset displayed a deep bass with a balanced mid-range and treble. The soundstage was more open than I expected and there was a good focus on detail, allowing the headset to reproduce good quality, enjoyable music playback.
In-game sound made real use of the deep bass, adding an enjoyable depth that gamers will appreciate. The finer details in game were apparent too, whether it is was the sound of passing conversation in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, or footsteps in CS:GO, the clarity felt, as the product name would suggest, immersive.
The microphone is retractable and flexible, giving you the ability to move it where desired. At maximum sensitivity, it would pick up literally everything in the room and make the user sound a little 'godlike', but taking that sensitivity down to around 70%, the voice sounds clear and natural with a little warmth. At this level background noises are limited and non-intrusive, though still present.