Turtle Beach Stealth 600 Review: For Xbox One
Turtle Beach was at one time the gold standard for gaming headsets, blending a mix of comfort, aesthetics and velvet sound quality. It didn’t take long before competitors like Sony picked the act, and the company is now just a good headset manufacturer in a sea of very good gaming and entertainment manufacturers. The Turtle Beach Stealth 600 is the company’s wireless headset for the Xbox One or PS4 that sounds nice but doesn’t cost too much.
A mainstream brand wireless headset for the price sounds like a superb deal. While that’s true, awkward mic placement, lack of versatility and uncomfortable fit makes the Stealth 600 a hum-hum sell.
Turtle Beach did make lots of compromises with this headset, but those compromise did help make it one of the most affordable wireless gaming headsets. Just weigh your preferences and options accordingly.
Unlike most modern gaming headsets that focus on subtlety, the Stealth 600 is every inch a gaming headset. It’s a cut from chunk plastic, complete with green accents on the cups for the Xbox wireless model we’re reviewing. A PS4 version is also available with the familiar swap to blue trim.
Sadly, the material feels like very cheap plastic. Some parts are comfy, but the headset definitely gets an unsettling creakiness to it when holding and trying to affix it to your head. Of course, the compromises on build quality are fair given the price for a wireless headset with virtual surround sound, though the Bose QuietComfort 35 II controller does feel a lot more subtle that this headset.
The ear cups have a slight swivel to them, which does help them fit comfortably, and they fold up for portability. The foam padding on the headband is plush and it has a lot to give, the extendable notches are rather cheap and finicky, so getting them to fit takes some trial and error. Of note, the left ear cup is pretty crowded, since it holds both the volume dial and the chat-volume dial, all placed right next to each other.
Turtle Beach Stealth 600 performance
For as long as you can keep it on your head long enough to play a game, the Turtle Beach Stealth 600 sounds exquisite. This wireless headset offers both stereo and surround sound on the Xbox One or PS4, and no matter which one you choose, the audio is smooth, balanced and clear. Honestly, it does deliver when it comes to sound quality. When you flip to virtual surround sound, the audio output impresses with its depth and clarity, offering balanced game audio across different types of games.
The swords and shields on Middle-Earth: Shadow of War, Dark Souls will have your ears reeling, and that’s as much as you need from a gaming headset. Swapping over to Call of Duty: WWII you equally get a punch in multiplayer battles, as bullets whizz by your ears and nearby explosions reverberate well through the Stealth 600.
Despite the justifiable miscues with the Stealth 600’s build and design, this wireless gaming headset lives up to Turtle Beach’s reputation on the surround front. We’re not particularly impressed with the non-surround setting which is a forte on the Hyper X Cloud II, which comes out as confined and a bit muddled while gaming, but you’ll want to switch to default surround anyway. It’s makes a significant difference. Again, tapping the power button during play activates “Superhuman hearing” which is an impressive little perk.
The Stealth 600 headset for Xbox One does a few things very well: producing very sharp sound quality, the wireless connectivity is seamless and reliable, and the low price point is a big plus. However, with the low price you have to do with a few drawbacks, and regrettably, some of them might be more pressing than others. Top in the list must be the uncomfortable design issue that’s clear in our eyes, along with a build that feels cheaper than expected at this price. Beyond that, the lack of connectivity with other devices is a major omission.
At this price point, the SteelSeries Arctis 9X Wireless Gaming Headset delivers better aural performance while excelling in all the ways the Turtle Beach Stealth 600 falls short. And if you don’t like SteelSeries’ headset and still want something wireless, you might be better paying a little more for a headset like the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Premium headset that’s a lot more versatile and refined than this odd misfire.