- Manufacturer KYE Systems/Genius
- Requirements: Compatible sound card, audio output source
KYE Systems may not be a familiar name to most people, but the company has been producing peripherals for HP and Microsoft and others since at least 1983. The Genius label, however, is what KYE Systems uses to sell its kit directly to the public, and these 5.1 speakers are from its GX Gaming range.
The SW-G5.1 3500 is a colourful and interesting speaker set. The four satellites and central speaker manage 10W RMS each, with the sub offering 30W RMS, totalling 80W RMS output. Each satellite speaker features a 3“ driver, and the sub houses a surprisingly large 6.5″ driver.
The design of the SW-G5.1 3500 is quite extraordinary and, as we said, quite colourful. There’s a multicoloured LED located at the bottom of the sub, set below a control panel that oddly covers a large percentage of the sub’s driver.
Each satellite is identical, making it a little awkward to determine the best placement for the speakers, with a black glossy surface and a shiny red driver.
The entire set is made from a decidedly cheap plastic, with the exception of the sub which is has plastic casing (again, very cheap) surrounding a wooden frame. Although it should take its share of potential kicking under a desk, it’s still pretty lacklustre in the quality department, as are the satellite speakers.
The rear of the sub features a basic input set of ports, along with the five outputs for the speakers and a power button. The front, though, has the oddly positioned control panel, with volume and bass controls, line-in and headphone speakers, a standby button and a button to select between two- or five-channel sound.
All the controls at the front, though, can be managed via the wafer-thin remote that’s included with the kit. It’s a fairly average remote, as cheaply made as the rest of the set, but it works well and from a reasonable distance.
The sound quality and performance from the SW-G5.1 3500 wasn’t great; in fact, it was some of the worst we’ve heard in quite some time. There was plenty of bass from the sub, a little too much most of the time, but the high and mid-range frequencies felt weak, and the voice was far too distant to pick up over any deeper background noises such as explosions and the like.
There were also a worrying number of missed audio sections and more popping and crackling than we encountered from the MS-Tech 5.1 set.
With poor audio output and even worse build quality, the Genius SW-G5.1 3500 set isn’t going to win any awards here. To add insult to injury, it’s priced at around £75, which beggars belief when you compare it to a good set such as the Xenta or Creative A550 – both of which are £15 less.
With poor audio output and even worse build quality, the Genius SW-G5.1 3500 set isn't going to win any awards here. To add insult to injury, it's priced at around £75, which beggars belief when you compare it to a good set such as the Xenta or Creative A550 - both of which are £15 less.