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As a longtime user of Alienware’s original AW988 gaming headset, I’m considering starting and concluding this first-look of the new AW920H Tri-Mode Wireless Gaming Headset with a simple statement: This headset is a dream come true. End of article.
If you’re at all familiar with any of Alienware’s products, adding the new AW920H headset to your arsenal is a no-brainer because, as always, it goes above and beyond what other gaming products offer, and is a generational leap forward from its predecessor. Growing up, I was taught to never be greedy, but Alienware is throwing that philosophy out the window and giving us everything and more in one stylish device.
Let’s take a closer look at eight highlights of the new Alienware AW920H Tri-Mode Wireless Gaming Headset that I felt enhanced my lifestyle beyond just the gaming space. This might be the last headset you’ll ever need to buy.
1.) Alienware Legend 2.0 Design
I think Alienware crushed it with its Legend 2.0 design language, and the new AW920H lets me physically be part of that ecosystem as I rock them at my desk, in the office, or on-the-go.
Available in Lunar Light and Dark Side of the Moon to match your laptops or desktops, the AW920H stylishly incorporates shapes and contours found in the Alienware family of products, while seamlessly integrating and hiding essential buttons and ports for a sleek look.
The front of the headset reminds me of the back of the Alienware x17 R2 laptop, and similarly hosts a nearly-invisible charging port and mic connection. It’s these types of little details that really show how much thought was put into designing for the user’s overall experience.
And of course, AlienFX RGB lighting comes standard and offers sync capabilities with Alienware Command Center for enhanced customization.
2.) Touch Interface
The exterior surface of the right side ear cup is actually a touch interface, and can interpret swipes, taps, and holds for intuitive controls.
I’m a big fan of this premium feature for a number of reasons: it reduces the number of physical dials and buttons, helps maintain the AW920H’s minimalist look, and relieves me from having to feel for buttons behind my ear and then remember what each one does.
Here are some functions that the touch interface provides access to:
- Volume adjustments
- Music track skip/rewind
- Phone call answering/rejecting
- AlienFX lighting power on/off
- Active Noise Cancellation / Transparency Mode
3.) Plushness All Around
The headband and ear cups feature very plush cushions wrapped in a luxuriously soft leatherette material. This design not only helps the headset feel more premium, but does a great job at distributing the weight of the device across my head.
With stiffer materials, pressure points begin to form after prolonged use, and often cause quite a bit of discomfort. So far, the AW920H headset feels mostly “weightless” to me, and I’ve had hours-long gaming/music sessions without complaint. If I’m really concentrating on something, I’ll occasionally forget that I’m even wearing a headset.
4.) Connect However You Want
This is an aspect of the AW920H where Alienware has gone above and beyond, and truly makes this headset viable for more than just gaming.
Included in the box are all the accessories you need to connect the AW920H headset in the following ways:
- 2.4GHz wireless via USB-C dongle with USB-A adapter
- 3.5 mm wired with in-line mic
- Wired USB-A
With so many options for how you connect the headset, the AW920H becomes a versatile audio solution that’s perfect for traveling too. I can connect to a variety of portable game consoles, personal devices, and even old-school airplane entertainment systems.
So far, I’ve found the USB-C wireless dongle to be universally supported, and has made the AW920H my go-to headset for the Oculus Quest 2. Basically, if your device has a sound output connection, you can use the AW920H to get high quality audio.
5.) Spatial Hi-Res Audio Quality
With 40mm Hi-Res Certified Drivers, Dolby Atmos support, and frequency range of 20 – 40,000 Hz, I’m completely satisfied with how the AW920H sounds when playing games, music, and movies.
The high tones are crisp, while the bass booms with a thick richness that fills the virtual stage. And the included Dolby license (which automatically activates when you connect the headset to a PC) unlocks the full potential of the Dolby Access app, allowing me to customize the EQ balance for a variety of scenarios and listening preferences.
Utilizing the Hi-Res drivers and Dolby Atmos together, the AW920H really excels at delivering an expansive virtual sound stage with positional audio. It’s so effective that I actually startled myself while watching a binaural video because I thought a stranger had come into my room behind me. This also translates to an advantage when playing first-person shooter games – directional awareness is key to decreasing your reaction times.
6.) Active Noise Cancellation
Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) is a feature that’s historically been reserved for lifestyle headsets from the likes of Sony and Bose, so I was pleasantly surprised to see Alienware include it with the AW920H.
And never ones to do something just for the sake of doing something, Alienware thoughtfully tuned the ANC levels to complement the headset and enhance what it was designed to do, which is provide a distraction-free gaming experience.
Taking advantage of the passive noise reduction of the plush ear cups, ANC applies just enough cancellation to eliminate the hum of laptop/desktop cooling fans (or a tower fan in a hot room). This accomplishes the desired reduction of distractions without creating a feeling of being in a vacuum that other headsets with more aggressive ANC have.
This feature also makes the AW920H a great travel companion, canceling out unwanted frequencies while also offering a transparency mode – tap and hold the right side surface for three seconds to allow external sounds to pass through.
7.) All-in-One Travel Buddy
The AW920H comes standard with a soft carrying bag that features a separate internal pouch for wires and accessories. Everything packs neatly in the bag, but that’s not the only thing that makes the AW920H so travel friendly.
Its visual design language is subtle enough to wear in public (for those who are shy about their gamer persona), a built-in mic works perfectly for phone calls when the boom mic is detached, and three taps on the right side surface turns off the RGB lighting for nighttime settings.
Plus, as mentioned previously, the various ways to connect the headset to devices means you won’t have to fear running into older technologies on airplanes or in hotel rooms.
8.) Fast-Charging and Long Battery Life
Because no one likes disruptions when gaming or relaxing, Alienware has included smart battery technology on the AW920H, offering up to 55 hours of use on a full charge.
The headset is also one of the first in the gaming space to take advantage of USB-C fast-charge technology – just 15 minutes of charging will deliver up to 6 hours of use. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve started games with friends only to find out my wireless headset is out of battery, and then have to spend the rest of the time wired to the PC due to slow charging.
This also means that when traveling, you only need to bring one USB-C cable and wall adapter to use for both your smartphone and the AW920H. But more likely, you’ll be back from your trip before the AW920H even runs out of battery – traveling light has never been easier!
Where to Buy the New Alienware AW920H Tri-Mode Wireless Gaming Headset
The new AW920H gaming headset is available now from Dell.com, with an MSRP of $199.99 and free next day delivery.