(photo from Astro’s site)
I received my A40 yesterday! I was impressed right-away by the packaging. Both the headset and MixAmp came in large heavy black boxes with orange accent color inside. They sell you on the quality of the product before you even get into the product itself. The headset comes inside of a heavy duty travel case too (I’ll try to post photos later). The build quality of both the A40 headset and MixAmp feel great.
I gave the system a test run last night on my Xbox 360 with Borderlands co-op. I’m not sure if it’s the best 5.1 mixed game, but I was quite impressed with how easily I could pick-out the direction of my co-op friends and enemies just from the audio. The biggest plus over regular headphones was being able to voice chat while enjoying being enveloped by the in-game sound.
The only downside I can see so far is the amount of cable clutter, because these headphones are not wireless. If you don’t use batteries for the MixAmp it requires a USB cable for power, plus the optical audio cable from the console. You then plug the headset into the amp, and when on 360 you run another cable from the controller to the amp for voice chat (up to 4 cables to/from the amp). It’s not too bad though for the features you get. On PC you can run it through just USB if you want.
That’s my quick impressions so far. Overall I’m quite happy with the A40 Audio System. I just need to buy some longer optical cables and maybe some cable sleeving to cutdown on cable clutter from the console (combine the USB and optical).