Here at chateau Gaming Nexus, I'm the chief audiophile, especially when it comes to gaming headsets. In fact, I've reviewed almost every 5.1 headset on the market today. Currently there are two primary methods of creating surround sound in a headphone; simulated digital surround sound, and 5.1 headsets with 5 speakers per ear. The simulated surround sound using timing and volume changes through a single speaker to trick the ear into thinking theres more than one direction of sound coming at your head. Then there are the 5.1 headsets that actually have 5 speakers in each ear that simulate the effect of surround sound by tilting the speakers so that they almost pass sound by the ear appropriately. One of the notable exceptions to this is the PSYKO 5.1, a headset that does things a bit different.
In the PSYKO 5.1, the speakers are located in the bridge of the headset and the sound is passed through...wait for it..."a series of tubes" (Todays internet meme quota reached) to the ears. By positioning the speakers on the bridge based on location from left to right (ie the left front speaker is located closer to the left ear than the right), the timing of sound actually reaches the ears appropriately. Further, the tubes are angled so that sound bounces into the ear from the front or the back based on which speaker it's coming from.
While I probably could have read some of this, the folks at PSYKO prefered to give to me in phone conference from "Head Psyko" James Hildebrandt. James is a scientist, designer, and now founder of a gaming audio company. His science lesson was really informative, and not just because of the headset, it helped me to better understand why and how the ears and brain handle sound, especially how we know what direction it comes from. This not only helped me understand their product (which I'll be reviewing in the coming weeks), and any other future gaming audio review.
Below is a short video demonstrating how their system works.