Audio-Technica ATH-PDG1 Review


With the rise of gaming into the mainstream and pop culture, major pro audio companies jumped on the bandwagon and have been increasing their gaming headset line up. While the transition into the market wasn’t easy for a few companies, most have gotten to a point where their base lineups are solid and gaining diversity. While a lot of gamers stick to gaming brands like Razor, SteelSeries, and HyperX because of their history and peripherals. Brands like Sennheiser and Audio-Technica are gaining momentum into the industry.

Audio-Technica ATH-PDG1 Review

The PDG1 comes as a mid-range addition to their gaming headset lineup, along side the closed back model version the PG1. I found the headphone to be more situated for console use than PC, mostly because of the lack of USB audio which is pretty important for PC headsets arriving around this price point.


The PDG1 is a super lightweight headset that offers a good amount of comfort in the headband and earpads. While most of the construction is plastic, there is some metal finish around the earcups. This model is the open-back version which helps with sound imaging which really comes in handy when trying to pinpoint enemy fire or footsteps. The main point of attraction I see design wise is the removable cables. Coming equipped with 3 different cables: one 1.2m with a microphone, mute switch, and volume controller, a 1.2m smartphone cable with mic, volume control, and one button controller, and finally a 2m PC expansion cable with mic and headset outputs. A weird thing I noticed about the headphone is that it slightly press against my ears, while thinking this was a fault of the build I had a couple other people try it on and their ears were not affected by it, so news to me.


If a microphone cannot swivel than having it removable is the next best thing. It helps prolong the microphone’s life and if you want to ware the headset out of the house it’s useful. The microphone is of good quality and pretty transparent on your voice, so you wont end up sounding like a 12-year old, unless you know.. The cable is a high quality Gooseneck cable that forms to any angle you want it placed. The pickup pattern is omni-directional which means that it will pick up sound all around the capsule, so it will pickup some things in the background or room besides your voice. I noticed when using the mic on PS4 when muted the microphone would randomly ghost a signal which wasn’t really an issue, I probably need to pickup a new controller more than the headphone being at fault.

Sound Quality

The PDG1 has a pretty standard sound quality for a gaming headset. Gaming headsets have to have a certain tonal balance to them which can often time not translate well over to music, seeing as there are different means to an end. The PDG1 has the usual boosted low end, a more forward mid range, and a wide soundstage, and the overall sound quality does translate decently over to listening to music. This is where the cable swapping comes in handy.

Low End

Gaming headsets have gotten a bad rep for being way to bassy and having little control over the low end. While there is more power than detail in the low end, the PDG1 does well for a gaming hedaset by finding a good balance between the two. The low end gives explosions, shotgun blasts, and low end sound design that extra depth that gamers usually look for. While carrying over more power than detail the PDG1 has enough control so it can transfer over fine into listening to music.

Mid Range

Gaming headsets must have a forward mid range that has clarity and detail. Vocals come through the headset well and highly important effects like footsteps and gunfire are highlighted. There is plenty of room for voices and audio content to come through without blurring together. When listening to music the mid range comes off a little strong but it isn’t overbearing it just makes vocals and guitar more forward in a mix than it would normally.

High End

The high end isn’t really highlighted in this headset, it takes a backseat because of the colored low end and mid range, but there is detail and some extension into the high end. The high end doesn’t come off sharp when listening to music, it as a more natural quality to it.


The soundstage in the PDG1 is pretty wide, I was surprised by the range of the imaging and placement of objects in the stereo field. When in game I could clearly distinguish where and what was coming my way. This really helps you keep your positional awareness and

Tech Specs

Driver Diameter 40 mm
Frequency Response 20 – 20,000 Hz
Sensitivity 92 dB/mW
Impedance 39 ohms
Weight 225 g (without cord)
Connector 3.5 mm (1/8″) mini stereo, gold-plated, L-shaped
Accessories Included 2.0 m (6.6′) extension cable with two 3.5 mm (1/8″) gold-plated mini stereo plugs
Frequency Response (Microphone) 100 – 10,000 Hz
Polar Pattern (Microphone) Omnidirectional

Overall Impressions

I found it more suited for console use than PC because of the lack of USB audio and Surround Sound which is something I prefer to have at this point in PC gaming. Another thing I’d prefer to see is a cardiod pickup pattern for the microphone to help with reject background noise. I do give it credit as a good console headset with the featherweight design, wide/deep soundstage, and good microphone id enough for a top of the line console headset. As always throw caution to the open-back design, if you live in a very loud area, have noisy roommates, or prefer isolation maybe go for the PD1 closed back version if you’re sold on the headset. Also the portability and multi-use functionality increases heavily with the closed-back version.


While originally marked at $200, Audio-Technica has officially dropped the price to $129.99. Around this price range it’s a really good deal that conscientious gamers should look into it. Other good gaming headsets around this price range are the Siberia 350 from SteelSeries or the ManO’War from Razor.

You can get the Audio Technica PDG-1 at the lowest price on Amazon.

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