Tech Review – Turtle Beach XO Seven Gaming Headset
Turtle Beach has the title as one of the most popular gaming headsets in the industry. With their intelligent marketing and well placed inventory, it seems that Turtle Beach headsets associated with some of the most popular multiplayer shooters in the business. One would also expect that Turtle Beach would have an impressive and plentiful lineup of headsets for the Xbox One as well. The XO Seven is one of three models released and Geekswagg is ready to give you the low down.
First things first. These headphones get it done on the sound side of things. As you move from the paltry Xbox brand stereo headphones you are most certainly going to see the difference with the XO Seven. Still, as you begin playing games where directional effects should be noticed, you can tell that there is no Surround Sound simulation at all. As you pay even closer attention, the various levels of bass that you figure you should hear just don’t seem to come in the same in the XO Sevens. The untrained ear my never even notice the difference though. I say this because the silencing ear cuffs are a great size, even with my big ears, providing just the right silencing effect that enhances the XO Seven’s sound. Of course, this is due to the fact that the controllers for the X1 (which power the headset) only deliver stereo sound so the sound is probably being delivered about as well as the source allows for.
When it comes to the volume test, I cranked up the headset on the adapter buttons to get the full effect and didn’t hear that trademark hiss that headsets of poor quality will exhibit. Nothing but quality stereo goodness here. The same can be said of the excellent microphone the headset comes with again. The mic boom holds the position that you move the mic in very well with little need to feel like you are fighting with the boom to get the mic positioned where you want it. The mic cover is snug and doesn’t look like it will fall off after a few months of shouting expletives at all those little internet Arnolds flexing their Anony-muscles in the game lobby. As for how the chatting sounds on the other end, the survey of friends were impressed at the crisp sound and even the occasional giggle when something in the background of my household came through loud and clear. Upload Studio should get a heavy dose of this microphone when clip editing in lieu of the at times frustrating Kinect microphone.
When wearing the XO Seven, they certainly feel of solid quality construction. Wearing them after a long couple hour session though does put a strain on the old dome piece though. It leaves that noticeable ache about the ear pads that could almost pass as validation of a game session well played. Key word here is noticeable and not necessarily painful.
One thing that does happen often enough to be annoying has to do with the headset adapter that connects to the controller. If the controller is on and I’m plugging the adapter in, it takes a few seconds for the controller to recognize the adapter and headset. Not too long but it is noticeable. Then, at times, the whole controller would freeze up during gameplay and lose connection with the X1. This was remedied by removing the batteries and putting them back in. I’m guessing this was a Microsoft issue (with the adapter or the firmware) and not a Turtle Beach issue, but it is still annoying (especially during online battles).
The XO Seven, oddly enough for its price, is only compatible with the X1 and mobile devices when it comes to provided adapters and such. The X1 audio and chat adapter provided beautifully provides the XO Seven with all that it needs. The only cord you need is the one from the headset to the controller giving it a very comfortable semi-wireless experience. Even better, the cords used on the XO Seven aren’t you’re typical plastic covered wires that end up with those annoying permanent bends in them after prolonged use. Instead you are treated with very impressive fabric covered wires along with a breakaway connector in case you drop your controller while your headset is on. This also makes putting them away easier since there’s less of a tendency to have to wrap up a long and uncooperative cord.
In the end the $169 price tag seems as if it should offer compatibility with PCs at the very least. While the sound and feel of the headset satisfies that household requirement to mute your game session in the late hours, one can only wonder if the superb mic could have been adapted for PCs.