Active Noise Cancelling
So what about the active noise cancelling feature? Well, for starters it requires a AAA battery to be inserted into the right ear cup, the side pops off with the press of a button on the bottom of the ear cup. Asus claims that a single AAA battery is good for up to 40h of usage. Unlike many noise cancelling headphones the Vulcan ANC's have been tuned specifically to reduce noise from computer fans and Asus claims an 85 percent reduction in fan noise with ANC enabled. Beyond reducing fan noise there's also a reduction in general noise. In as much as we'd say that this feature does indeed work pretty close to Asus' claims, it also changed the way the headset sounded. We felt like the bass lacked even more with ANC enabled and we're not certain that it added anything to our gaming experience. On the other hand, if you have a really noisy PC, then this might just be a life saver for your ears.
Final Words / Conclusion
It's quite tough to sum up the Asus R.O.G. Vulcan ANC's, as on one side they're excellent for gaming and voice communications, but we would really have liked a little bit more oomph in the bass department. The microphone lacks adjustment, but it doesn't seem to impede the voice quality. The active noise cancelling doesn't really add much, at least not unless you're gaming in a noisy environment. Overall it's an attractive product, but with an MSRP of S$179 (US$149) it's a fairly expensive headset as well. But then there's the comfort level, this is simply one of the most comfortable headsets we've ever used and if you're using a headset for several hours a day, this is one of the most important aspects of a headset. If you've got the money to spare, this is a great headset, just as long as you're aware of its limitations.
Overall this is a product we’d highly recommend and we think Asus has done a great job on the design of this headset, even though it’s not perfect, but then again, very few products are. Even so, taking into account the clear audio and the comfort of this headset, it’s a clear winner as a gaming headset; it’s just not quite as flexible when it comes to music and watching movies as we’d hoped it’d be. It’s also worth remembering that this is Asus’ first in-house designed gaming headset and as such it’s hopefully just a sign of things to come.