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Ear Force DSS 7.1 Channel Dolby Surround Sound Processor

by Turtle Beach
Windows Vista / 7 / XP, Mac OS X, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (174 customer reviews) 3 answered questions

There is a newer version of this item. See details below.

Available from these sellers.


  • Dolby 7.1 channel surround sound processor
  • Works with any stereo headset or headphones
  • Headphone amplifier with variable bass boost
  • Digital optical and analog stereo inputs
  • Works with XBOX 360, PlayStation 3, PC and Mac
There is a newer version of this item:
Turtle Beach Ear Force DSS2 Dolby Surround Sound Processor - Xbox 360 Turtle Beach Ear Force DSS2 Dolby Surround Sound Processor - Xbox 360 4.1 out of 5 stars (64)
$110.99
In stock. Usually ships within 2 to 3 days.


Product Details

  • Shipping: This item is also available for shipping to select countries outside the U.S.
  • ASIN: B003O0KICS
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 5.9 x 1.2 inches ; 8.3 ounces
  • Media: Accessory
  • Release Date: June 22, 2010
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (174 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,245 in Video Games (See Top 100 in Video Games)

Product Description

From the Manufacturer


Turtle Beach Ear Force DSS - 5.1 | 7.1 Channel Dolby Surround Sound Processor

Z205

Overview

The Ear Force DSS works with any set of stereo headphones and is the perfect complement to the Turtle Beach Ear Force series of stereo gaming headsets (X31X11XLCZ1, Z2, and PX21).

The optical digital input easily connects to a game console or media player for Dolby 5.1/7.1 channel surround sound and the analog input can also be used to upgrade analog stereo audio sources to Dolby Pro Logic IIx for virtual surround sound. A bass boost control adds sub-woofer effects for enhanced realism to any audio source.

With the Ear Force DSS, video game and movie fans will be able to hear distinct audio events happening all around them, greatly enhancing the overall experience and rewarding gamers with a newfound competitive edge. DSS users playing games and watching movies on their game consoles will actually hear the 7.1 surround sound from certain 5.1 channel audio tracks via additional hidden channels called Dolby EX.

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Dolby 5.1 | 7.1 Channel Surround Sound Technology Click here to enlarge

Dolby 5.1 | 7.1 Channel Surround Sound

The DSS uses immersive Dolby Digital Surround Sound technology to greatly enhance your multimedia experience. Video game and movie fans will be able to hear distinct audio events happening all around them, greatly enhancing the overall experience and rewarding gamers with a newfound competitive edge.

Dolby Pro Logic IIx

With stereo audio sources, the Ear Force DSS Dolby Pro Logic IIx takes over. Using an advanced matrixing technology, the DSS creates an incredibly realistic virtual surround sound environment with greatly improved directionality over standard stereo audio.

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Take your audio to the next level. Click here to enlarge
Bass Boost Effect

The Ear Force DSS has a variable Bass Boost feature, which enhances deep-bass effects and makes the audio even more dynamic. This is similar to adding a subwoofer to a home theater system where extra bass introduces additional depth to the overall sound. The Ear Force DSS Bass boost effect will allow you to hear deep audio cues that would otherwise be difficult to hear, resulting in a valuable advantage over your competition.

Multiple Input Options

Convenient digital and analog audio inputs make the Ear Force DSS versatile enough to connect to virtually any gaming or audio set up.

Powered by USB

The Ear Force DSS front panel pass-through connects to other USB devices for power or data transfer, reducing the number of USB ports needed in your gaming or audio set up. To use a wall outlet, an optional USB-to-AC power adapter is available from TurtleBeach.com so the device can be used with a Blu-Ray or DVD player.

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The Ear Force DSS is also a full function headphone amplifier. Click here to enlarge
S/PDIF-to-Analog Converter

In Bypass mode, the Ear Force DSS becomes an audio converter that accepts a digital optical input and outputs a decoded analog signal. This allows you to connect a digital source such as a game console or Blu-ray/DVD player to other devices such as a home theater receiver via standard stereo analog audio connections.

Product Description

The Ear Force DSS 7.1 channel Dolby surround sound processor transforms any stereo headset into full, immersive surround sound for playing Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 or PC games and watching movies with Blu-ray or DVD players. It works with any set of stereo headphones and is the perfect complement to the Turtle Beach Ear Force series of stereo gaming headsets (X31, X11, XLC, Z1, Z2 and PX21). The optical digital input easily connects to a game console or media player for Dolby 7.1 channel surround sound and the analog input can also be used to upgrade analog stereo audio sources to Dolby Pro Logic IIx for virtual surround sound. A bass boost control adds sub-woofer effects for enhanced realism to any audio source.With the Ear Force DSS, video game and movie fans will be able to hear distinct audio events happening all around them, greatly enhancing the overall experience and rewarding gamers with a newfound competitive edge. DSS users playing games and watching movies on their game consoles will actually hear the 7.1 surround sound from certain 5.1 channel audio tracks via additional “hidden” channels called Dolby EX.

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Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
50 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple to setup, and does what it's supposed to. June 28, 2010
Fun: 5.0 out of 5 stars   
If you are traveling, and you need something that can handle optical 7.1 channel audio, this is a fine item to bring along. It's a little smaller than a pack of smokes and can be run off of a usb to ac adapter. I live in a small apartment in Japan, so I don't have space for a huge sound system. Also, I suffer from insomnia, and sometimes I want to play a game or watch a movie late at night. This gadget allows me to hook up some good headphones and enjoy my movies and games without being a pain to my roommates or neighbors.

It's also worth noting that the surround sound, even on standard headphones, is remarkably well-done. I have been testing it with Metal Gear Solid 4 on my ps3, which I connected to the unit with an optical cable. I'm hearing things I never noticed before in the game, and I really can sense the location of enemies and other things by sound alone with this device.

I think audiophiles would prefer other DACs for listening to cds or lossless music, but if you want a surround sound system that can fit in your pocket or go with you on a trip, or want to be able to listen to surround sound without disturbing your neighbors or flatmates, this is what you've been waiting for.

My only other suggestion is to use good headphones with this unit. It'll work with whatever you hook into it, but better headphones will reveal the high-quality bass, mid, and treble sound that this unit produces.
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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for movies and gaming September 30, 2010
By James
Verified Purchase
Fun: 5.0 out of 5 stars   
Like any self respecting gaming/movie buff college grad, one of my top priorities for survival after graduating was a solid entertainment system. To this end I got myself a PS3, hooked it up to my TV and z-5500 5.1 surround sound speaker set (I know, fancy right?). This set-up was pretty fantastic, especially for the price of entry, and served me well for a couple years.

Then, one stormy night, lightening struck way to close to my apartment complex. Actually, it might have even hit our complex, I don't know as I wasn't actually at home that night. Unfortunately, that managed to fry some of my stuff. I even had one of the Ethernet ports on my PC get zapped, because (and I did a little research on this because I thought it was so weird) the Ethernet cable was so long (coiled up 25' cable) and the lightning struck so close the it acted like an antenna and picked up a ton of EM. FYI, I guess it happens.

Anyway, the z-5500s were also a casualty. I decided that since I had an excuse I should maybe just invest in serious speakers. In the mean time, I definitely needed something to provide sound! TV speakers just don't cut it for gaming. After doing a ton of back and forth on the Astro A-40 mix-amp vs. cans with multiple drivers, I settled on a virtual surround processor with "real" headphones as the answer. Instead of the Astro mix-amp though, I decided to give this new kid a shot. Because this is cheaper. Hah.

The Ear Force DSS itself feels well put together. It doesn't have the heft of a serious gadget, but really it's just a processing chip after all. Actually, it is pretty much feather light. No rough edges on the matte plastic case, and it fits together nice and snug. The volume knob has some nice resistance that gives it a pretty good feel.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It is good, very good. November 10, 2010
Verified Purchase
Fun: 5.0 out of 5 stars   
Well, teamed up with my px21s this little box is a dream. It actually does work, and my game play has gone up by loads on Black Ops.

*
Thought I would update now that I have spent some time with the device. I am still loving everything about it. I took a while to find the perfect balance between the px21 settings and the dss setting, but I have found it and the sound is amazing.
All I have played is Black Ops and as we know the sound with the game still has some issues, but even so it works a treat. I can hear enemy footsteps/rc car engine from afar and also what direction it is coming from. I can not count the amount of times I saved myself from a certain death by knowing which way the enemy is coming from.

My kills have also shot up, where as before I was a very below average player, I end up now in the top three much more often than not. My K/D ratio has gone from .45 in MW2 to 1.25 in B Ops. And all of this changed since the day I started using the headphones and the DSS.

So yes I am 100% convinced this little gadget was worth the buy and I would recommend it 100%.

It works very well with turtle bay headphones.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ear Force DSS vs. Astro mixamp! April 14, 2011
By Ron H
Verified Purchase
Fun: 4.0 out of 5 stars   
Overall, the Turtle Beach is great little Dolby Headphone surround sound processor for gaming/movies/etc.

Dolby Headphone surround scales up nicely with nicer headphones. However, know that some headphones work better than others for gaming and surround sound. You want to pair this with headphones that have a large "soundstage" with good positioning within that soundstage. These will give you the best surround sound effect. There's more information on the interwebz about this if you look for it, but 'll list a few solid headphone recommendations below...

Good Headphones for gaming:
- Koss KSC75 - not bad for $15 :)
- Sennheiser HD558/598/PC360 Headset
- Audio Technica AD700
- Beyerdynamic 880/990/MMX300 Headset
- AKG K701/K702

I also own an Astro Mixamp 5.8, and I've compared the two. A lot of people debate which to get so I'll give you some info on them both:

- Sound quality wise they are essentially the same. They both have the same Dolby chip in them, so the surround quality is identical. I will say that the Ear Force DSS has a more powerful bass boost and its adjustable, while the Mixamp 5.8's bass boost is more subtle and simply on/off.

- Functionality wise they are different. You are paying more for the Astro mixamp for better build quality, features, and functionality (and its wireless!). The DSS is a cheaper bare bones processor but it does a fine job for what it was designed to do. It doesn't have good support for microphones and voice chat. Its designed to be paired with Turtle Beach headsets, and third party headsets can't use their mics with it. The Astro mixamp however adds voice/game mixing features and is compatible with third party headsets.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Good But could be better.
Works really well i bought it for my ps4 i couldnt use the mic feature but it still works just as good works well with playsation golds.
Published 1 month ago by Mark
2.0 out of 5 stars Meh
Product works, but the packaging was dreadful looking, and non-protective. I'm REALLY suprised it even worked after shipping.
Published 1 month ago by James
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Helped the experience of my headset expand was awesome!
Published 1 month ago by Tim McDaniel
5.0 out of 5 stars quality over convinience
i use this with the Audio-Technica ATHM50RD Pro DJ Headphones - Red and i must say that every footstep gunfire and explosions are really clear i presently have the Turtle Beach... Read more
Published 3 months ago by DENNON
3.0 out of 5 stars Not a new unit!
Works well in spite of the chew marks on it from the previous owners animal. I remember the ad in no way did it specify that this was a used unit.
Published 3 months ago by Bradley Satariano
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
works well
Published 3 months ago by Robert Shoemaker
4.0 out of 5 stars DSS me please
The DSS really adds the total gaming experience. due it's pretty messy on the cable side but that's my fault cause I needed to know before i've bought it.
Published 4 months ago by Liran Tevet
4.0 out of 5 stars Works good.
Improved the sound of my turtle beach x11's. One star removed because for some reason while playing call of duty it seems the environment noise will suddenly fade out during... Read more
Published 4 months ago by frank s ostrosky
5.0 out of 5 stars Great magical piece of art
I bought this mainly to watch movies not for games. Combined with sennheiser hd 558 I found it really great choice for private movies. Read more
Published 4 months ago by sharif
5.0 out of 5 stars this works awesome
plugged this little gem into my xbox one and was able to get a nice surround experience from some older 360 headphones!
Published 5 months ago by JW
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