In July, EPOS launched itself as a producer of premium audio solutions for gamers and professionals. But how do you know as a company what your consumer wants?
Hello Andreas and Maja, let’s get to know EPOS a bit better first. Can you tell us a bit more about the history of EPOS and how it is connected to other well-known audio producers, such as Sennheiser and Demant? EPOS launched as a standalone brand in June, what does that mean for the co-branded products?
Maja Sand-Grimnitz (Head of Global Marketing, Gaming): In 2018, Demant A / S and Sennheiser Electronic GmbH & Co. KG ended a joint venture (specifically Sennheiser Communications) between the two companies. The business segments would evolve into new units. Enterprise Solutions was brought together with Gaming headsets in a new company, EPOS. EPOS is now part of Demant, a world leader in hearing solutions. EPOS provides high-quality audio solutions developed for businesses and gamers. Based on breakthrough audio technology, we strive to unleash human potential by perfecting sound experiences and ensuring innovative design and the best performance of our audio solutions.
The EPOS product portfolio consists of all products in the GSP (headsets) and GSX (external sound cards) line-up, which are now marketed under EPOS│SENNHEISER. In the coming years, new products will be added to the portfolio under the name EPOS. These are products developed by the same team of engineers as that of the existing portfolio. In short, the launch of EPOS in itself is purely a sign of our commitment to gaming and our desire to continuously improve the products we develop. EPOS is owned by the Demant Group and as such builds on 115 years of innovation in audio, which we will be able to use to support the development and expansion of our product portfolio.
What kind of gamer does EPOS buy? Who is your ideal customer?
Maja: At EPOS, we believe that audio really completes the gaming experience, and we want to provide audio equipment that allows the gamer to enjoy the sound the game’s audio designer intended. We have a deep-rooted passion for the auditory experience, and it is this passion that we combine with our commitment to gaming. Only then can we improve the entire gaming experience and take it to the next level. In this sense, our audience is the audiophile gamer who is as passionate about audio technology as we are, but in a broader sense, it is about all gamers, those who play games purely for fun and are looking for a way to get the most out of their game. experience.
EPOS also strives to impress professionals. They share a desire for high-end audio, but the way they look at audio solutions is very different. What challenges does this pose?
May: EPOS delivers high-end audio solutions for gamers and business people and there are many similarities in the developed technology – be it sound, speech or the material we work with. The two business segments are run by separate product management and marketing teams to ensure that we deliver a product that suits the end user of the different segments.
What is involved in designing a good pair of headphones? How do you make sure it is comfortable but also looks good? Can you guide us through the different steps of the process?
Andreas Jessen (Senior Director, Product Management & Marketing, Gaming): Designing a headset starts with a concept or a certain direction. This can be a general total concept, because of course you have to start somewhere. For example, we may want to develop an in-ear product, or on-ear or over-ear and we ask ourselves questions about the acoustics we want to achieve.
After the initial concept has been established by studying the insights we have about our consumer, we start building prototypes with 3D printed parts. Using such parts allows us to test wearing comfort, ear cup angles, slide lengths and other comfort components before committing to a design. The headset may not play audio, but 3D printed parts are very suitable for the mechanical look and feel. We then test these prototypes in collaboration with people who we have built up a database over the years and who we know have headsets where it can be challenging to sit comfortably. From there it is a process of testing, making new 3D prints, retesting, making new 3D prints and so on. .
When the mechanical design of the headset is almost complete, let’s look at the performance of the speakers and microphones. The secret ingredient, of course, is knowing what a good weight distribution is with a headset, or how big average ears are, or how many degrees the angle of the head is. It’s know-how that allows us to make headsets that are truly comfortable.
In terms of design, we always try to balance the requirements for the headset with the original idea from the design phase. Sometimes these two elements collide and we have to bring everyone together to find a solution, but it is rare that we have to change the original concept again.
EPOS wants to deliver the very best sound experience. How do you ensure that the headsets produce the highest quality audio?
Andreas: It starts with using components that meet a very high standard – we choose speakers, microphones, batteries and chips that we have certified and know have the best performance in their category. We are always looking for new components to add to this list, but don’t take any chances with such components unless we are absolutely certain that they can deliver the quality we want. We also take full control of development, which means we always have internal people who are experts in their field. Just think about knowing when it makes sense to use an aluminum voice coil instead of a copper one, or knowing exactly how much glass to add to plastic to enhance a critical part of a headset.
We all want headsets that look and sound great, but gamers also love new and never-before-seen features. Can you tell us more about the R&D process?
Andreas: We are part of the Demant group, which means we have access to breakthrough audio technologies. With the power of such a powerhouse behind us, we can bring innovations to gamers that other companies will have more problems with. Our surround sound technology is a great example of this – creating a competence center around binaural audio and head related transfer function (HRTF) can be a major challenge for any audio brand, but we can leverage our entire organization to bring innovations to market.
EPOS collaborates with various esports teams and organizations. Can you tell us more about the value of these partnerships? Are players actively involved in testing the EPOS products?
May: We are always looking for partners who are as passionate as we are and who have their own way of sharing what premium audio can do for your gaming experience. Through our esports partnerships, we not only get the chance to tell gamers that, we can also show them what EPOS delivers. These partnerships allow us to test even more thoroughly and learn what expectations professional gamers have of our products. This way we know exactly which technologies to focus on.
What about the everyday gamer? How does their feedback help EPOS?
Andreas: We always read reviews of our products and every product manager in charge of gaming scours websites like Reddit or Amazon to gain insight into the customer. Of course, when developing a new product, we have to make up our own mind, but we are always ready to learn if those efforts can benefit the gamer. For example, with the GSP 370, we have put a lot of effort into achieving 100 hours of battery life, but if that does not add value to our users, then we should of course consider whether we are making the most of our resources and whether we should not focus more on the microphone.
What can we still expect from EPOS in 2020? We already saw the launch of the campaign with an impressive video from Anders Walter and there is clearly more to come.
May: We have a lot of exciting things to do for years to come and for the rest of 2020 we will focus on bringing the story around the power of audio to the gaming community and we also want to focus on getting to know our target audience even better so that we can bring worthy additions to their world.
Can we expect other audio-related products in addition to headsets?
Andreas: At EPOS, we are passionate about creating products that take your gaming experience to the next level through audio. We look at every way we can do that. We are experts in the field of audio and we strongly believe that this will allow us to make a difference in the market and bring real value to our gamers.
EPOS is a company that develops audio and video solutions and sells devices for business professionals and the gaming community. Founded in Denmark, the company is based on leading and advanced technologies, offering high quality audio and video solutions with design, technology and performance as its main measures.
EPOS was established to house the business units of the joint venture known as Sennheiser Communications, namely Sennheiser electronic GmbH and Co. KG and Demant A / S to develop in a different set-up. In addition to the introduction of a new proprietary portfolio, EPOS continues to sell the current portfolio of Sennheiser Communications under the joint name EPOS | SENNHEISER.
EPOS is part of the Demant Group – a world-leading group of companies in audio and hearing technologies. In this capacity, the company can build on more than 115 years of experience in innovation and sound.
EPOS is headquartered in Copenhagen and the company operates in an international market with offices and partners in more than 30 countries.
*The article has been translated based on the content of Source link by https://techpulse.be/interview/299130/epos-interview-gaming-headsets-hoofdtelefoon/
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