GAMECOMX95 WIRELESS HEADSET FOR XBOX LINKSYS E4200
Plantronics, $149 plantronics.com.au
★★★★ On the box of the X95 headset there was only the mention of ‘‘stereo’’ headphones. Despite the arms race around Dolby Digital surround sound, it does not feature in this headset. However, sound is crystalclear when using the headset. The noise-cancelling feature, on the other hand, is poor for gamers hoping to avoid annoying the rest of the household. But the X95 headphones are pure luxury. They’re comfortable, and behind each earpiece is a dial and a switch — the left side controls in-game chat (volume and mute) and right side controls in-game sound (volume and power). This eliminates controls usually found dangling in front of players (and knotted with other wires). Good value. Linksys, $299 cisco.com.au
★★★ As you would expect from Cisco, this is a seriously fast wireless router. This model was designed in Europe and the E4200 will sit next to televisions and stereos without looking garish. This is also one of the pieces of kit where the numbers do count. It is a proper dual-band router with both the usual 2.4GHz and the more powerful 5GHz channels on board. On the 5GHz channel, the router can run at up to 450Mbps (the National Broadband Network promises speeds of 100Mbps by comparison), so even hardcore gamers could happily stream from this box. It also features four gigabit ethernet ports. The biggest drawback is that $299 is a fair chunk of cash for a wireless router, especially considering it is not a modem/router combo.