Voice chat has become a thing with gamers. We’re past the point of sharing a couch to socialize when playing online games.
So, why the fuss when you can sit on your couch at home and still chat over the internet? According to research, voice chat made online gaming feel more natural than communicating with text. Plus, it makes virtual spaces more social.
The VoIP industry is also growing — with eSports receiving $4.5 billion in investment in 2018. So, you can expect to have different VoIP options for users, right? Yes, you’re in luck.
That’s why, in this article, we’ll compare two of these VoIP solutions for gamers — Mumble vs. TeamSpeak.
These tools offer great features. So, we’ll go through these features and give you a winner.
Let’s get started.
What Is Mumble?
Mumble is an open-source VoIP platform that works on Linux, Mac, and Windows. However, it needs a third-party app to run on mobile devices.
Also, this tool is a voice chat application with low latency. Plus, it supports text chats and provides positional audio for specific games.
Mumble uses codex to improve voice quality. It also provides echo effect cancellation, which allows you to converse without worrying about echos. Even more, the tool works with bandwidths as low as 20Kb/s.
What Is TeamSpeak?
TeamSpeak is a VoIP application for voice communication between people on chat channels. Think of it as being on a phone conference call with a headphone with a microphone.
The tool allows you to connect to its server and then join chat channels. It is used by gamers to talk with other players on their team in a multiplayer game.
This feature comes in handy while you are playing a game but need to see who’s talking or listening. Let’s see if these tools offer this feature.
Mumble features an overlay within a rendered application that shows you status information. With the overlay, you get an in-game heads-up of which of your team member is talking or listening.
Even more, Mumble provides an OpenGL overlay for OS X, Linux, and Windows. Also, the tool provides a Direct3D 9 and 10 overlay for Windows.
When a full-screen game obscures TeamSpeak, the tool allows you to activate an overlay. This overlay shows you relevant information, like who’s talking, within a semi-transparent window.
This feature allows you to keep your eyes on the action. Plus, you can receive messages and notifications and quickly access voice controls when you need to. You don’t need to switch between tabs to see and reply to messages.
Both tools are winners here. They both provide an in-game overlay that shows you relevant information.
Customization allows you to change the look and feel of the tool to meet your taste.
Mumble has a fully customizable desktop interface. You can apply custom coloring, different languages, and layouts.
You can also customize when Mumble displays notifications in the text area. Even more, you can choose when the tool uses your OS notification. Plus, you can decide to use custom notification or text-to-speech sounds.
Mumble also provides an ice middleware that allows you to customize the interface with right-click menus.
Additionally, this tool lets you set custom avatars. This avatar shows when someone hovers on your name.
You can also customize comments to show beside your name as an icon. With these comments, you can include some information about yourself, like a short bio or other names. Mumble gives users the option to set up a custom hostname, like yourhostname.mumble.com.
TeamSpeak allows you to customize your interface according to your taste. You have access to different themes, icons and sound packs, and plugins.
The tool also gives you access to numerous add-ons created by other users. Plus, you can create your own add-on.
Both tools win this one. They both offer different customization options.
New users can use the product tour feature to understand a product before deciding which ones to buy.
Mumble offers users the opportunity to tour the product and decide if it’s a fit for them. You can see eight product features and functions of mumble using the product tour snapshot guide.
The tool highlights its core functionalities like connecting users to their friends, it shows the look and feel of the Mumble client and skin, and the display of a MumbleWeb client when it’s connected to the Mumble server.
Users will also get a feel of how to personalize their Mumble client settings. The tour also shows you how the in-game overlay brings Mumble to your games. If you run a gaming community, Mumble makes it easy for you to show your users who are connected over the Mumble server.
The only way to get a feel of what TeamSpeak is capable of doing is to read the documentation on their getting started page and then download and install the software and try it out.
If you’ll prefer a hands-on approach to understand what the software has to offer then this is a better option. However, if you want to get a quick view of what TeamSpeak is capable of doing, then this isn’t ideal.
Depending on what you prefer each of these software gives you an opportunity to experience them pretty quickly. If you’re looking to get a quick view of what the software offers, Mumble wins. If you’d rather use it to decide what’s best for you, TeamSpeak wins.
Being able to transfer files while gaming is an added advantage to gamers.
Unfortunately, Mumble does not have this feature.
TeamSpeak allows you to easily store and send files to people within your community without worrying about firewall issues. This helps you maximize your online collaborative experience.
The tool allows you to save files to the server or transfer them to other participants.
TeamSpeak is the winner here. The tool allows you to store and send files to other users.
Data security is important even for VoIP tools. So, let’s look at how these tools protect your data.
Mumble encrypts both voice data and controls messages. The tool uses TLS-negotiable cipher suites to encrypt its control channel.
Mumble also encrypts its voice channel with OCB-AES128. Plus, it uses OCB to maintain low latency and provide authentication and secrecy.
The encryption offered by Mumble can’t be disabled.
Though TeamSpeak is an open-source platform, it allows you to specify who has access and to where. Even more, you can enable TS3, AES-based encryption for specific channels, or the whole server.
Mumble wins this one. Though both tools provide encryption, TeamSpeak’s encryption can be disabled.
Advanced Permission Controls
Advanced permissions controls give you full control over your users’ privileges.
Mumble features an advanced permissions system. This tool comes with 15 permission options where you can allow or deny users access to each control level.
The control levels here include Enter, Speak, Traverse, Mute, Ban, Register, and more. You can offer these permissions by grouping users, or assign permissions to each user.
Mumble also allows users to modify their ACL permissions. You can find their step-by-step guide on their website.
TeamSpeak also offers advanced permissions and controls. You can access it in Settings. Click on Options from TeamSpeak, on the left you’ll find Applications, click on it. In the Misc section, check the box beside the text “Advanced permissions system.”
Usually, TeamSpeak comes with this feature blocked because about 90 percent of their users would limit advanced permissions anyway.
Blocking advanced permissions from the onset gives you a better user experience as you won’t need to bother if you are granting users more access than they need.
Both software solutions have done a nice job here of including user permissions. However, mumble wins as they have provided a robust permissions management option for their users.
Being able to access a platform from your mobile device is an added advantage. Let’s see if these tools have this feature.
Mumble has a mobile app for iOS devices. But for Android devices, you need to use a supported third-party client like Mumia.
TeamSpeak has mobiles for iOS and Android devices. You can issue commands right from your phone. This allows you to keep up with games and conversations on the go.
TeamSpeak wins this one. The tool has both Android and iOS apps.
Positional audio makes gaming more realistic. This feature allows you to hear sounds from the exact direction they are coming from in a game.
Mumble provides positional audio for games. You can hear your partners from the direction they are in the same, with 3D sound.
Mumble integrates this feature with some games. With others, you need custom readers.
TeamSpeak offers positional audio. The tool allows you to hear other players within a 360-degree soundscape.
Both tools win this one. They allow you to hear your teammates from where they stand in games.
With auto sync to cloud, you have remote access to your data, as well as a backup. Let’s see if these tools offer this feature.
Mumble does not let you sync your data.
TeamSpeak allows you to sync your data to the cloud. This way, you have access to relevant data from anywhere and on any device.
TeamSpeak wins this one. The tool lets you sync your data and access it remotely from anywhere.
Text chat allows you to send private messages to teammates. Let’s see if these tools offer this feature.
Mumble does not offer this feature.
TeamSpeak allows you to keep your conversations under the radar with text chat.
You can also send messages using team text chat or direct messaging.
TeamSpeak wins this one. The tool provides voice chat and text chat.
While playing online games, you might want to store and organize your contacts and team players’ details. This feature helps you do that.
Mumble does not offer this feature. But, the tool allows you to become an administrator and register other users.
TeamSpeak offers efficient contact management.
You can categorize your contacts whatever you choose. Even more, the tool lets you name your contacts and give them different access permissions levels. This helps enthusiastic gamers to track their friends.
TeamSpeak wins again. The tool allows you to organize your contacts, so you don’t lose them.
Customer Service & Support
Every now or then, you might have issues with any of these platforms. Let’s have a look at the customer support options they offer.
Mumble offers customer support via email. They also have a repository of guides with different articles on how to fix different issues.
TeamSpeak provides customer support via live chat, fax, telephone, and email. Their website also has a support page that provides you with FAQs and guides on getting started. They have a forum where their community of users can interact and help each other with different issues.
TeamSpeak wins here by a mile. Asides from email, you can reach their support team on the phone or via live chat. Plus, there are guides and a forum to help with your experience on the platform.
Both TeamSpeak and Mumble can be downloaded for free, but these tools don’t provide free servers. So, let’s take a look at their server prices.
Mumble offers ten server pricings depending on the number of user slots you need. These pricings include:
- 15 slots – $54 per year
- 25 slots – $82.80 per year
- 35 slots – $111.60 per year
- 50 slots – $154.80 per year
- 75 slots – $223.20 per year
- 100 slots – $266.40 per year
- 150 slots – $399.60 per year
- 200 slots – $511.20 per year
- 300 slots – $756 per year
- 400 slots – $936 per year
These prices might differ for some server locations. Also, they might change with time. Please visit the Mumble website for more information.
TeamSpeak offers five server pricings depending on the number of slots you need. They include:
- 64 slots with one virtual server – $55 per year
- 128 slots with two virtual servers – $100 per year
- 256 slots with two virtual servers – $175 per year
- 512 slots with two virtual servers – $300 per year
- 1024 slots with two virtual servers – $500 per year
TeamSpeak wins this one. Mumble has steep pricing — with only 15 slots going for $54. On the other hand, TeamSpeak starts with $55 per year for up to 64 slots.
Mumble And TeamSpeak Similarities
TeamSpeak and Mumble have some features in common. Their similarities include:
- TeamSpeak and Mumble are free to install
- Both tools offer positional audio
- They both provide encryption
- You have access to multiple customization options
TeamSpeak vs Mumble Differences
Let’s look at the features that make these tools different from each other.
These VoIP tools come with unique benefits. Let’s go through these advantages.
- Mumble provides low-latency communication
- The tool works well with high-octane games, especially those with multiplayer options
- You have access to positional audio settings
- Mumble gives you full control of your settings
- You can download a server version of Mumble
- The tool allows you to create channels for better organization
- The tool has an easy-to-use interface
- TeamSpeak produces high-quality audio
- The app has a flexible permissions system
- TeamSpeak allows different users to control different aspects of the server
- You can control a channel and grant control to other users
- The tool allows you to self-host
Everything comes with its disadvantages, and these tools are not exclusive.
- Mumble allows you to connect to only one server at a time
- The tool has a clunky interface
- Mumble has a steep learning curve
- You can’t connect to multiple TeamSpeak servers at once
- Self-hosted TeamSpeak servers are limited
Mumble and TeamSpeak Alternatives
Let’s take a look at some Mumble and TeamSpeak alternatives.
Discord is a VoIP software that allows friends, gaming, and art communities to talk over video, voice, and text. The tool also provides third-party, chat, and voice integrations that help gamers enjoy the gaming experience.
Also, Discord is available on Android, iOS, Linux, and Windows devices. Even more, you can access the tool from any browser with the web client.
Steam is an interactive, live gaming tool with multiple VoIP capabilities. As a gaming enthusiast, this tool allows you to connect to learn, chat, and team up for games.
This platform also has a robust community where users can chat in-game, meet new people, join groups, and form clans. Plus, you have access to over 20,000 games.
Steam is available on Linux, macOS, and Windows devices. Even more, they have a mobile app that allows you to follow conversations on the go. These apps are available on Google Playstore and Apple App Store. You can also tweet, chat, see who’s playing, and so on.
Additionally, the Steam app allows you to:
- Protect and manage your account
- Buy software
- Be up to date on the community and games
Ventrilo is another VoIP group communication tool for gamers that offers special sound effects. The tool also provides sound positioning on three levels. They include:
- Global or server configuration level
- Channel level
Also, Ventrilo allows you to adjust and customize sounds from other users. Even more, the tool uses minimal CPU resources and has low latency. Plus, it doesn’t interrupt other computer operations while you’re gaming.
Ventrilo is available on macOS and Windows devices.
Element, formerly known as Riot, is an open-source VoIP tool for teams and gamers.
The tool is created with the matrix protocol. Also, it is a secure, open standard network that provides decentralized communication.
Element also allows you to host your server if you need to own your data. Even more, it comes in 25 languages. Plus, it is available on Linux, macOS, and Windows devices.
Additionally, you can access Element with their mobile apps. The tool is available on the F-Droid store, Google Playstore, and Apple App Store. More so, the tool can be accessed on any web browser.
Battle.net is an online VoIP and gaming voice-chat platform powered by Blizzard Entertainment.
This tool allows gaming experts to interact and connect with fellow gamers and friends.
Battle.net works well with eSports games and hosts over 50 million players. Even more, the tool is available for Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android devices.
The mobile app allows you to stay in touch with friends and fellow gamers on the go.
Battle.net supports eSports games like:
- Tespa Collegiate Series
- Hearthstone Grandmasters
- Overwatch World Cup
- Overwatch League
Check this post to find more alternatives to TeamSpeak and Mumble.
Final Thoughts: TeamSpeak vs Mumble
From our comparison, you can tell that both TeamSpeak and Mumble are great VoIP tools with excellent features. But, we have to pick a winner — that’s TeamSpeak.
TeamSpeak allows you to converse in real-time using voice chat. You can communicate with your gaming partner efficiently while saving communication costs.
Instead of peer-peer, the platform uses a dedicated server. Also, it provides you with a client-server architecture.
Even more, TeamSpeak can handle numerous users simultaneously. This makes your communication even more efficient. It also makes the platform ideal for many use cases aside from gaming, like conference calls.