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Monday, February 26, 2024

Sony Unveils New Inzone Gaming Brand for PC with Premium Headsets and Monitors

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Headset and monitor Sony Inzone
A photo: Michel Ehrhardt/Gizmodo

Sony is expanding its gaming footprint beyond the console with a family of monitors and headphones debuting under the new Inzone brand. To be clear, this No Playstation products. They are designed for both console and PC gamers, unlike Sony’s “Pulse” headset, which was created exclusively for PS5. Since these Inzone products are not blood (by wiring?) relatives of the PS5, they will compete more directly with the likes of LG, Samsung, Asus, Alienware and other giants that have already established themselves in the gaming accessories space.

While Sony has a steep climb here, the company has some distinct advantages over the competition, including a long history in Hi-Fi audio, outstanding noise cancellation technology (as demonstrated in Sony WH-1000XM5), as well as tight hardware and software integration with the PS5. Together, they create compelling products—at least on paper.

Sony Inzone H3, H5 and H7 Gaming Headsets

Starting with the headset, the Inzone H3 is the entry-level model and the most affordable way to experience Sony’s new gaming brand. The $99 wired headphones connect via a 3.5mm headphone jack and come with a USB adapter.

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Upgrading to the H7 (no H5) gives you wireless connectivity via Bluetooth and/or a 2.4GHz USB dongle. Sony says the H7 lasts 40 hours on a single charge, a decent amount of battery life, though not close to a record. HyperX Cloud Alpha Wireless 300 hours of battery life.

Sony Inzon H9, H5, H3
A photo: Michel Ehrhardt/Gizmodo

The most premium model, the H9, adds digital noise cancellation inherited from Sony’s excellent 1000X headphone family. In our recent Sony WH-1000XM5 reviewwe called noise cancellation best in class, outperforming even AirPods Max. The H9 also uses the incredibly soft synthetic leather material from 1000XM5, and both wireless models can be simultaneously connected to a PC/PS5 via a 2.4GHz USB dongle and to a smartphone via Bluetooth. The battery life of the Inzone H9 is rated at 32 hours, which is slightly longer than the battery life of its non-gaming counterpart.

While not technically in the same family as the existing Pulse 3D, Inzone’s headsets show a similar white-on-black color scheme. Sony is clearly aiming for a clean, sophisticated design rather than the overly aggressive design of traditional gaming accessories. All three headsets feature sleek, egg-shaped white earcups and rounded headbands. Sony has a lot to say about the comfort of these headsets, noting that the ear cushions provide minimal pressure yet remain stable on your ears. You can read our full review H9 headset, but fans of the 1000XM5 should be pleased with its convenience.

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Sony Inzon H9
A photo: Michel Ehrhardt/Gizmodo

Like the Pulse, these Inzone headsets feature Sony’s Tempest 3D audio technology, designed to deliver a more immersive listening experience. Another unique feature is the 360 ​​Spatial Sound Personalizer, which analyzes the shape of your ear so you can better hear the distance and direction of opponents in games. Theoretically, this gives a gaming advantage, but you can read our full review H9 to see how it works in practice.

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Sony did not provide details on driver size, frequency range, or other audio-related details. We’ve been in touch and will update this article as soon as we know more.

Sony Inzon H3
A photo: Michel Ehrhardt/Gizmodo

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The Sony Inzone H3 is $99, the wireless H7 is significantly more expensive at $229, and the H9 adds noise cancellation for $299. All three headsets are compatible with PC and PS5 (sorry Xbox fans). Sony has yet to provide availability details.

Sony Inzone M3 and M9 gaming monitors

Hoping to capture a piece of the growing gaming monitor market, Sony also announced today the Inzone M3 and Inzone M9, two 27-inch monitors. Those who want the best picture should go for the more expensive Inzone M9, while gamers looking for the fastest panel should go for the Inzone M3.

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That’s because while the Inzone M3 has a 27-inch 1080p IPS panel with a 240Hz refresh rate and 1ms response time, the Izone M9 boasts a 27-inch 4K screen with a 144Hz refresh rate. Both monitors support Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) via HDMI 2.1 and are G-Sync compatible.

Sony Inzon M9
A photo: Michel Ehrhardt/Gizmodo

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For pure image quality, the Inzone M9 is the better (and more expensive) choice. This flagship supports DisplayHDR 600 (the M3 is set to DisplayHDR 400 certification), covers over 95% of the DCI-P3 color gamut, and features full local dimming for better contrast and deeper black levels.

Breaking these features down, DisplayHDR 600 means the monitor supports true high-contrast HDR and can go up to 600 nits of brightness. Local dimming, which divides the monitor’s LEDs into 96 zones, allows gamers to spot enemies or find objects hiding in dark corners. And such a wide DCI-P3 color gamut should produce vibrant colors.

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Sony Inzon M9
A photo: Michel Ehrhardt/Gizmodo

When connected via HDMI 2.1, both monitors support variable refresh rates for systems with Nvidia or AMD GPUs, as well as for PS5 and Xbox Series X/S. The M9 and M3 are equipped with two 2W speakers, so you can watch YouTube or listen to music without having to plug in external speakers or headphones. Ports include DisplayPort 1.4, HDMI 2.1, USB-C, and a KVM switch.

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This display duo comes with a Windows app where you can easily adjust monitor settings including gamma, sharpness, brightness, contrast, gaming features like crosshairs, and preset picture modes. You can even assign specific picture and sound profiles to individual apps and games on your PC. Some of the in-game helpers I mentioned include the aforementioned crosshairs, timers, frame rate counter, black equalizer (to highlight shadows), and an FPS in-game image mode that “optimizes brightness and contrast” so you can see enemies better.

Sony Inzon M9
A photo: Michel Ehrhardt/Gizmodo

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When you connect these monitors to your PS5, the console will automatically recognize them and optimize your HDR settings. Sony says this will help you see more detail and richer colors, even in the brightest and darkest parts of the screen. There’s also a so-called Auto Genre Picture mode that adjusts things like input lag and image quality depending on whether you’re playing a game or watching a movie.

The Inzone M3 is $529 and will be available this winter, while the Inzone M9 is $899 and will go on sale this summer.

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Author: Philip Tracy

Source: Gizmodo

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