The Nura Gaming Bundle was generously provided by Nura.
Nura released their Nuraphones, a new design of headphones featuring both in-ear and on-ear drivers, in 2017. Now, three years later, the clip-on Nura Gaming Microphone has been put on sale. With a premium price tag yet a wealth of innovative features, do the Nuraphones and microphone deliver a premium experience in both music-listening and gaming? Find out in this Rapid Review.
My Nuraphone Gaming Bundle arrived with the microphone and Nuraphones in separate boxes. Both the unboxing and setup experience felt suitably premium with the large Nuraphone box lifting up to reveal headphones embedded in a foam holder. Inside this box came two additional ear tips (more on that later) along with a 3.5mm Nura cable and a Nura charging cable. These cables slide into the bottom of the right Nuraphone speaker using a special type of connection. You will not be able to use your existing charging or audio cables with these headphones so it’s worth bearing that in mind if you plan to travel.
I charged the headphones and then began the set-up process. This whole procedure felt incredibly futuristic. The headphones automatically turned on and off when I respectively put on and took off the headphones and each time I did this a robotic voice spoke my name, said hello and informed me of the battery life. This alone sounds pretty futuristic but the real revolution in audio comes with the personalisation in sound.
On start-up, the app guided me through pairing the headphones and then, via a series of beeps and frequencies, scanned my ears. I was worried that this process would feel uncomfortable or even hurt but was pleasantly surprised that although the sweeping frequencies did sound slightly odd, it wasn’t uncomfortable by any means. After this process takes place, there is an audio sample which allows you to toggle this personalisation on and off. As soon as I enabled the personalisation, I instantly noticed the difference. The music just sounded that much clearer, that more richer and generally of a higher quality than before.
My unique way of listening created a colourful “blob” that abstractly shows my reaction to different frequencies which Nura describes as a hearing profile. Each person’s profile will be different so your experience with the Nuraphone will be highly personal and, if it’s like my experience, high-quality thanks to your unique hearing.
Another of Nuraphone’s unique qualities is the sliding “immersion mode” which could also be called “close to a concert speaker mode”. Putting this immersion to the max makes the in-ear driver physically shake and vibrate through the ear. I listened to a variety of songs from different genres and with immersion to the max, the bass in tracks such as in Queen’s “Innuendo” sounded astounding. The bass effect with immersion enabled is very strong so when I wasn’t testing this specific mode, I had immersion at around the ¾ mark. There are many bands and artists who I will never get to experience at a live concert so Nuraphone’s immersion mode offered a concert-level experience in my bedroom.
Additionally, the over-ear silicone naturally noise cancels as it enclosed my ears from the loud and noisy world. Even with this natural noise-cancelling, the Nuraphone also features active noise cancelling which was great whilst gaming. My PC fan gets loud under load so the ANC in the Nuraphone made me fully immersed. Nuraphone also features a social mode which relayed external audio to my ears via the in-built microphone. I like being immersed in my music without external distractions so whilst I did not use the social mode aside from initial testing, it’s a nice feature to have.
Nuraphone’s general design feels subtly premium. There’s no embezzled diamonds or glaring brand names. Instead, there’s a muted black and grey design with a metallic headband inlaid with a comfortable silicone. Throughout the design are small references to Nuraphone: a little logo on the headphone slider or the brand’s name etched in the head strap. Nuraphone uniquely features two parts to its speaker design. Aside from Nuraphones, there are usually two types of headphones: in-ear and over-ear. Nuraphones has both in-ear and over-ear which Nura says increases sound quality as each type can target specific frequencies.
In my review so far, I’ve spoken about the extremely good sound quality and immersion but unfortunately, I found wearing the Nuraphone to be initially painful. Although the pain gradually subsided over a few weeks, I found the in-ear part of the Nuraphone to feel more intrusive than my usual in-ear headphones. Nevertheless, I continued wearing my headphones and the pain lessened.
I informed Nura of my issues and they said that they had not heard of issues similar to mine. The CEO of Nura, Dragan Petrovic, said that “finding the right sized eartips (often, the small tips work well even for people with larger ears as they allow the tips to sit slightly deeper in the ear-canal)” would help, along with advising me of wearing the Nuraphone for “a bit of time as the silicone spring that attaches to the earbud gets softer with use, particularly in the locations where it needs to flex to sit in your ear”.
I found the medium size to be the best ear tip for me and my pain indeed lessened over time. Secondly, I also found that by moving the slider with the two speakers to a more central position, there was less pressure in my ears. This made my experience more comfortable. I think that naturally in-ear headphones aren’t designed for prolonged use so I didn’t use the Nuraphone for multi-hour evenings of work. The Nuraphone fitted my listening style, briefly listening to a song or two whilst cleaning or my small console gaming sessions. The Nuraphone did feel uncomfortable (but not painful) after about an hour of use. Again, I must reiterate that Nura says that discomfort issues are rare, but this is my review of the product so I feel the need to share my experience.
Nura for Gaming
So how does the Nuraphone gaming bundle fare for gaming? In thanks to the immersion mode, high audio quality and next-gen features such as PS5’s 3D Audio, the Nuraphone offers an incredible gaming experience. The streets of New York in Spiderman Miles Morales and the bustling City of London in Watch Dogs Legion felt all that more vibrant and alive. There were several moments when I stopped in the street and tuned in to the conversations around me. Additionally, with immersion up high, abilities such as the venom powers in Morales felt that more punchy thanks to the immersive haptics.
In a similar way to the charging and audio cable, the microphone slots straight into the right Nuraphone speaker and to prevent the heavier microphone from slipping out, there’s a clip included to hold the microphone in place. The microphone uses a longer audio cable than the main one provided and that 3.5mm cable simply slots into your port. My PC has a separate connection for audio and microphone inputs so I purchased a cheap £3 splitter from Amazon which Nura’s support page recommended.
When testing the microphone over a Discord call with my friend, they noted that I sounded loud and clear. This was the case even when playing music through the headphones on the call. High audio quality and punchiness to my gaming sessions made the Nura microphone a worthy addition to the existing headphones.
The Nuraphones fully deliver on their premium price tag with a wealth of features that make these headphones feel distinct. Features such as immersion mode and active noise cancelling when combined with the Nura gaming microphone work to create an excellent gaming and listening experience. Despite experiencing initial pain, by adjusting the headphone’s position on my head and by simply becoming accustomed to the design over time, the excellent sound quality far outweighed my discomfort. Again, when speaking to Nura I was informed that my discomfort issues were rare, so I feel comfortable in recommending these headphones based on the superb audio and subtle sleek design.
Rapid Reviews Rating
You can purchase the Nuraphone Gaming Bundle for £369.99 from Nuraphone’s website