Thick yet comfortable gaming headset
EKSA’s Star Engine E5000 Pro is a great option for those looking for a gaming headset you can wear for hours. Massive ear pads mean the E5000 Pro is a comfortable wearable for your longest gaming sessions. While the sound profile isn’t for everyone, you can still use the desktop app to customize your sound profile, as well as 7.1 surround sound.
- Mark: EKSA
- Lester: 325g/11.46oz
- Microphone: boom microphone
- Style: on the ear
- Comfortable, oversized ear cups
- Lots of connection options
- Support for every platform
- Desktop app enables customizable equalizer
- Decent sound
- Sound must be changed using the desktop app
- The chunky waistline won’t appeal to everyone
- LEDs do not work with 3.5mm jack
- Desktop app only available for Windows
EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro
The EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro is a mid-range gaming headset that hits home with some really decent features. Although the EKSA brand is little known compared to the big names in gaming hardware, the headset features large and comfortable ear cushions that help create an immersive experience, built-in 7.1 surround sound and custom 50mm drivers.
Plus, there are a few pops of color to bring the helmet to life, in alien green, no less. Otherwise, how would you know it was a gaming headset? !
The EKSA E5000 Pro has a lot going for it, but not everything is clear. Find out what we liked and what annoyed us in our hands-on review of the EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro – and at the end of this review, you can enter to win your own!
EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro Style and comfort
Starting with two of the most important features for any gaming headset: style and comfort. If you’re not comfortable playing, what’s the point?
Thankfully, the EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro’s oversized memory foam cushioned ear cups provide plenty. I don’t have the biggest ears, so for me at least, this is a full on-ear gaming headset, which really helps with passive noise cancellation (more on that in a bit). The padding extends to the adjustable headband, which, like the ear cups, is covered in a soft leatherette material. The headband does not exert excessive pressure, but the helmet is secure when you move your head. In all honesty, you don’t move your head much while gaming, but it’s nice to feel like your headset isn’t about to wander off at an inopportune moment.
The E5000 Pro is slightly heavier than I would like, weighing in at 325g/11.46oz. It’s by no means outrageously heavy, but you’re still slightly aware of their presence rather than blending into the background. Still, you can absolutely wear them for hours without fatigue, and cushioned ear cups aren’t one of them.
Now, perhaps adding to the weight, the EKSA E5000 Pros are big boys. The width of the earcup outside the frame measures around 2.5 inches, which means they protrude from your head a decent amount of time. These are definitely made for sitting and playing games rather than strolling around town. You absolutely can, of course, but slimmer alternatives exist.
On the back of the earcups, you’ll find a circular metal mesh covering the EKSA logo, around which is the headset’s alien green LED ring. The ring light isn’t customizable, but emits a steady, unearthly green glow once you plug the headset into your computer (using the USB-C cable, it doesn’t work with the jack 3 cable .5mm). Is part of the song due to the LED lights? Or is it just an extra box for the 7.1 surround sound, drivers and other tech bits of the E5000 Pro? Who knows. Either way, the oversized look is an interesting decision and one that somewhat sets the E5000 Pro apart from other gaming headsets.
As is tradition, you’ll find controls integrated around the bottom of the earcups (the left earcup in particular). There’s a button to switch between stereo sound and 7.1 surround sound, mute the microphone and change the volume. The proximity of the buttons means you’re likely to adjust the volume while switching between audio modes, but that’s not a big deal. As this is a wired headset, the USB-C input is also here, along with the detachable boom microphone input.
Connectivity EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro
The E5000 Pro is a wired gaming headset that many people prefer. In the box you will find a few different wired connection options, convenient for connecting to various gaming devices. The options are:
- USB-C to USB-C
- USB-A to USB-C female extension
- 3.5mm jack
It’s a good range of connection options, so you can use the EKSA E5000 Pro with any gaming hardware, including your PC, PS5, Xbox Series X, Nintendo Switch or even your smartphone.
EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro sound quality
Now on to the main concern: how does the Star Engine E5000 Pro gaming headset sound?
If you want the TL; DR, it’s a mixed bag. At times the E5000 Pro sounds pretty good, with the custom 50mm drivers working well to push the audio with good quality. The high-end out-of-the-box setting is pushed way too high, making some tracks look horrible; while sometimes the bass is also lacking. However, you can adjust the equalizer using the EKSA desktop companion app. After creating a flat EQ, the E5000 Pro sounds much cleaner, removing the extra tuning that EKSA has added to the listening experience. It still lacks bass and treble issues, but the sound of the E5000 Pro is good overall.
This is when you are in stereo mode and listening to music. You can switch between stereo and 7.1 surround sound using the button on the earcup, or you can plug the headphones into your computer and adjust the sound using the companion app. One thing to note is that surround sound and customizable EQ are only available with the USB cable and not the 3.5mm cable. Also, at the time of review, the EKSA desktop app is only available for Windows users, which means macOS (or Linux) users don’t have any customization options, which is a definite limitation of the E5000 Pro.
Back to 7.1 surround sound. Like the overall sound quality, the E5000 Pro surround sound also performs well. As we expected, switching to 7.1 surround sound while gaming should provide greater immersion and help you pick out additional sounds around you, placing them more spatially in the headset. Creating an amazing, immersive surround sound experience in a 1.5-by-2.5-inch earbud is never easy (and it’s not a feature I’d recommend focusing on when buying a headset). a new gaming headset!), but the E5000 Pro surround sound works and gives you an indication of where you are in the world, where the gunshots are coming from, and where someone might be move nearby.
Now, while the EKSA E5000 Pro headphones don’t have active noise cancellation, their oversized ear cups offer a decent amount of passive noise cancellation. It won’t block out everything (not that ANC does anyway), but at the very least it will prevent some background noise from seeping into your gaming experience. Things like doorbells, phones , etc. are muted, but you’ll probably still hear people talking nearby unless you turn up the volume to intolerable levels (which you definitely shouldn’t).
EKSA Desktop App
You can customize the sound of the EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro using the desktop application.
To download: EKSA 7.1 Surround Sound Drivers for Windows (Free)
Once downloaded and installed, connect your E5000 Pro using one of the USB cables. It should recognize the headset instantly. From here you have options to customize surround sound or stereo audio options. With each audio option, you can adjust ten different channels to create a custom equalizer, and you can create several different equalizers based on your preferences.
The EKSA desktop app is a handy addition and is recommended if you purchase the EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro.
Should you buy the EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro gaming headset?
The EKSA Star Engine E5000 Pro retails for $99.99. Now, I had never heard of EKSA before the Star Engine E5000 Pro arrived on my doorstep, but I was pleasantly surprised by a few key features.
First, comfort. While the oversized earbuds are a bit of a thing in hot weather (and we just had a 104°F heatwave in the UK), overall this is a box set of very comfortable game that you will wear for hours while you play. And when it comes to long gaming sessions, comfort is paramount.
Second, the sound quality of the E5000 Pro is decent, especially when making some adjustments using the EKSA desktop app. The out-of-the-box audio profile will appeal to some, and you have the option to change things up if not. Having the ability to adjust your EQ makes a big difference to your experience.
So, these might not be mind-blowing gaming headphones, but they certainly offer enough that you won’t feel cheated, especially if you can buy them during an offer or sale.