Review: Logitech G633 Artemis Spectrum

Be it gamers, casual consumers or professionals, anyone who has dealt with PC peripherals knows the name Logitech. The Swiss-company has established themselves as one of the leading manufacturers in mice, keyboards, webcams, audio equipment and controllers, be it traditional or specialized ones such as race wheels and flight sticks. The company even has their foot in industries such as universal remote controls and video security. Regardless, in the last five years specifically, PC gamers know them all too well for their high quality headsets, whether it’s the long running wireless G930 or the wired G35. Logitech has opened up their gaming brand even further a few years ago with the G430 and G230, but now there’s a new headset added to their catalog. While we quietly anticipate the next big wireless iteration in October, Logitech has released a wired version of their latest Artemis Spectrum series of headphones, branded G633.

The G633 Artemis Spectrum is a beast of a headset, sporting 7.1 virtual surround sound, and best yet, full RGB support with upwards of 16.8 million unique color combinations to customize. The design of the G633 is also something to marvel at, containing reflective material on the large ear cup hinges and a solid plastic frame throughout. It comes in a dark grey/black color scheme with stylized stripes riding the headrest and ear cups. It looks like something that was pulled out of the future. The G633 is primarily designed for the PC foremost, but like other headphone manufacturers, Logitech recognizes the large market share that mobile and consoles possess, especially now with dedicated 3.5mm connections. Because of this, there’s a PC and 3.5mm slider on the top of the device itself, allowing users to not only switch between the two channels, but mix them at the same time. So you can be playing a game on a console while talking to someone on Skype without having to switch between audio equipment. As someone who has most of his consoles located on his computer desk, this becomes incredibly useful.

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The Logitech G633 also comes with various customizable buttons, along with a surprisingly heavy duty volume wheel. The three buttons on the back of the left earphone are fully customizable through Logitech’s Gaming Software, which is far easier to use than most peripheral applications. By default, the buttons are designated to changing equalizers, switching between surround sound options and cycling the different effects. Users are able to go into this program and change this to their desires, be it media functionality or specific keystrokes. There’s a large array of pre-existing commands that can be chosen. Looking past this, the headset also comes with a great deal of equalizer functionality, with a number of pre-installed modes, such as ones for first person shooters and bass-heavy music, along with the ability to customize new profiles for those with more advanced knowledge. There’s also DTS Headphone X and Dolby Virtual 7.1 Surround Sound options, although they are fairly basic with a couple of options for DTS and mainly just volume control with Dolby.

What comes in the package is fairly light. The simple instructions are built right onto the inside of the box itself with what’s included being the headset, a 3.5mm cable and a micro-USB to USB cable. It’s surprising how high quality the items are considering most companies just throw in the basics and are done with it. The 3.5mm cable is braided and even comes with a simple clip-on media control box that has a play/pause function, and sliders for the microphone and volume. It does add a little bit of weight, and could be an extra inch in length from the jack to the control box, but the clip-on end is a nice touch, although I don’t expect anyone to go jogging with the headset. The micro-USB to USB cable is incredibly lengthy, spanning a great distance, and while it’s not braided, it’s much thicker than your average cable. This ensures more protection for the cables inside, but there were times when I did wish it was a little lighter only because I found the cables would press down my chest and arm slightly, reminding me they’re there. This isn’t a problem for those who have their computer located on the left or don’t allow for any slack when using wired devices, thoigh. Regardless, Logitech doesn’t skimp on the components as the G633 not only comes with everything you need to get the job done, but in a fashionable way.

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The G633 features a surprisingly large amount of backlights for a headset. We recently reviewed the Corsair VOID which also featured customizable coloring for its backlight ear cups, but there was very little that actually lit up on the headset itself. The 633 on the other hand has a lot of potential to show your headset off, with not only the G logo on both sides of the device displaying color, but two long stripes around the sides of the earphones lighting up, as well. Unfortunately, the downside is that these stripes are only on the back of the headset. It makes sense you see it every time you put them on, but if you’re streaming online or talking to someone else in the room, they won’t see it unless they’re looking at the back of your head. It’s understandable that they couldn’t do it on the front as that’s where the microphone is located as there needs to be symmetry, but its value will be determined on personal appreciation over impressing others. As for the effects the lighting has, there’s breathing which lights up and down, color cycle which goes between preset colors, a self-explanatory solid color, and custom lighting.

One of the coolest designs is by far the hidden microphone. While Steel Series have retractable mics, and plenty of other companies such as Kingston and Turtle Beach have detachable ones, Logitech went with a more creative route. Looking at the device, you couldn’t even tell there was a microphone attached to it; that’s because it’s not only four-inches short, but it flips in and out of a small space that’s designated for it. While other companies seem to just throw in a microphone after the fact, not really taking it into consideration when thinking about the design, the G633’s mic is built with it in mind, molding into its symmetrical shape. The microphone may as well be camouflaged, blending in with the headphones so perfectly you’d never be able to find it unless you spotted the microphone tag that originally comes with it. The microphone is also well made. Unlike traditional mics that have a boom at the end or just some nub, the 633’s microphone looks as if it was straight out of Star Trek, sporting an elegant, futuristic design. While its base isn’t necessarily adjustable, it contains a fully bendable inch and a half extension within. For the most part, the mic quality was strong, although we did experience a little bit of random static that could be heard both on our end and another’s that would only go away by flipping the mic up and down (to mute and unmute it).

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The cushioning in the ears is also a positive aspect to the G633. It’s much better than what Logitech has offered in the past, being incredibly lightweight and at least from its appearance, breathable. The material isn’t microfiber or leather, but a relatively soft cloth that contains a bit of a crunch when moving around, but feels plush and sticks out when put on your head. While the earphone’s cushions are large and will wrap around your ears nicely, even though I did find the headset rolling off my head from time to time, the headband cushioning isn’t quite this. It’s nowhere near as plush and feels far stiffer than anything else. At the very least it is soft enough to ensure your head won’t be resting against the hard plastic, but it still feels more like an afterthought, especially when comparing it to the ear cushions. Finally, while these seem breathable from the outset, that’s not necessarily the case as after less than an hour of usage, my ears began to feel a bit toasty, and this is being tested in a somewhat colder climate than most. Granted, they don’t become uncomfortable, but it became a noticeable after a while. Regardless, the comfort level is high for the G633 and should have user happy for hours on end.

While the comfort levels and number of features are important to any headset, it’s the audio quality that truly matters. Thankfully for the G633, it’s exceptional. The headphones contain your typical stereo audio quality, but also has both Dolby virtual 7.1 surround sound, and DTS capabilities for PC, allowing for all options at your fingertips. From a personal standpoint, Dolby’s virtual 7.1 surround sound has never been all that spectacular, mainly because it sounds like you’re in a tunnel, generally producing less than adequate volume for dialogue in movies and games. DTS surround sound on the other hand is far better, containing more amplified audio that seems to balance everything out perfectly. This ensures that the G633 has crisp and clear audio quality for whatever form of media users are consuming. Depending on the device that’s being used with the headset, there might be a little bit of white noise, but little to none were experienced with the PC mode. We tested this out by listening to an extensive library of music, playing a number of games and watching a few movies and the quality of the G633 was beyond our expectations. If there was one headset to get for the sheer quality of its audio, it’s the G633 Artemis Spectrum.

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Closing Comments:

Logitech has a winner on their hands with the G633 Artemis Spectrum. Looking from the outside, it’s a beautifully crafted headset, containing a stylish design that looks like it was pulled from the future. It certainly helps that the microphone blends right into the design of the headset itself and the RGB lighting makes it a visual marvel. While the cushioning could have been better on the headband, the ear cups contain comfortable, plush material that will have users enjoying their time for hours on end. All of this is meaningless if the audio quality doesn’t hold, but thankfully Logitech’s engineers were able to create something worthy of your time. Dolby virtual 7.1 surround sound is still lacking, but the DTS Headphone:X feature more than makes up for that by amplifying the audio quality tenfold. In such a crowded market, Logitech has made something special in the G633 Artemis Spectrum, which is now my go-to headset.