Surround Yourself With Sound With the JBL Quantum 400 USB Gaming Headset

Audio Gear Products Reviews Videogames

JBL is one of the top names in consumer audio. They recently sent me the Quantum 400 USB Gaming Headset, which is JBL’s mid-range headset with QuantumSURROUND sound. The JBL Quantum 400 retails for $99.95, but is currently available at a discounted price of $79.95 at both Amazon and directly from JBL.

Is this going to be your go-to gaming headset? Let’s take a look.

JBL Quantum 400 USB Gaming Headset

The box, straight off the shelf. Image by Paul Benson.

The box definitely has a striking look, which leads to a good shelf presence. It has a flap that opens, revealing the securely-nestled headset within.

Inside the flap. Image by Paul Benson.

When you pop open the box, you’ll find the headset and two separate braided cords: one with a 3.5mm plug for consoles and other gaming devices and one with a USB connection for your computer. Both cords are nice and long, giving you some freedom despite the fact that the headset isn’t wireless.

Along with an instruction booklet, this is what you’ll get. Image by Paul Benson.

Visually, the headset is fairly unassuming. It does have a programmable light-up feature on the JBL logos and microphone, but this feature only works when connected via the USB cable.

The headset lit up. Image by Paul Benson.

The back of the left ear cup has several controls, including a game audio/chat balance dial, a volume dial, and a manual mute button. The microphone also will mute if you move the boom arm to the upright position. Additionally, there’s a 3.5 mm jack and a USB-C port for the included cords.

All of the controls are in handy reach. Image by Paul Benson.

Somewhat amusingly, the interior of the ear cups have a large “L” and “R.” These seem somewhat superfluous as the microphone is only usable if you’re wearing the headphones correctly. However, you’re sure to never forget to put the headset on properly.

The handy ear cup interior print. Image by Paul Benson.

JBL Quantum 400 USB Gaming Headset Specifications

Driver size (mm): 50

Maximum input power (mW): 30

Driver sensitivity at 1kHz/1mW (dB): 98

Dynamic frequency response range (Hz): 20 Hz – 20 kHz

Impedance (ohms): 32

Passive Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 20 kHz

Using the JBL Quantum 400 USB Gaming Headset

Even though the JBL Quantum 400 Headset is primarily designed for use with a PC, as I stated previously, it can be used with other devices.

Xbox

I started out by connecting the headset to the controller on my Xbox Series X. It immediately worked as a stereo headset with microphone. Certain features are unavailable, such as the QuantumSURROUND, lighting, and custom settings. However, it worked well as a stereo headset with microphone. The features that are built into the headset, such as the dial balancing the game and chat audio, are still available when using the Quantum 400 with a console.

PC

However, it is with a PC that the JBL Quantum 400 truly shines. When I first plugged the headset into my computer, the headset was identified and I was prompted to install the JBL software. This software provides a high level of customization for the headset, allowing you to fine-tune the settings for sound, lighting, surround sound, and microphone.

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You can get pretty granular in your choices if you go into advanced mode in any of the settings. For example, with the lighting, you can arrange the colors and how long each will appear before fading to the next. Here’s an example of one of the color schemes, “Spectrum,” in action:

 

Final Thoughts

Overall, I was getting some really nice audio output from the JBL Quantum 400 USB Gaming Headset while gaming. The QuantumSURROUND effect won’t replace having actual surround sound speakers, but it actually does separate the audio in a way that it feels like you’re getting sound from all around you. The microphone picked up my voice cleanly and clearly—important for communicating with my teammates on Overwatch.

I loved all of the adjustments that I could make using the software on the PC. If you’re an audiophile, you can really spend a long time tweaking the sound to your hearts’ content. And even when using it on my Xbox, the functionality of the chat/audio balance dial was evident.

I wasn’t personally blown away by the visual style of these headphones, but as I’m not streaming my gameplay, how they look really doesn’t matter as much to me as how they feel. And the JBL Quantum 400 is lightweight and comfortable to wear. I could definitely see wearing these effortlessly for a long gaming session.

If you’re in the market for an affordable gaming headset that’s customizable and has great sound, then take a look (and listen) at the JBL Quantum 400 USB Gaming Headset. You’ll definitely get a lot of bang for your buck.

Note: JBL sent me this headset for evaluation, but had no input into this review. As an Amazon affiliate, I may earn a small commission on qualified purchases.

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