Name: Ear Force Stealth 300
Brand: Turtle Beach
Released: 31.07.2018 (Nordics)
Platforms: PC, Mobile platforms, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 (Pro)
Tested on: Samsung S7, Asus ZenPad 3S, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 Pro
Acquired: A demo headset was provided from PR company for review purpose
Reviewing hardware is always a challenge for me, because we have different scenarios and uses even though we want to buy a hardware from the same type. For instance, buying a new headset, some people just want a simple headset, so they can listen to music and others want that big expensive surround monster of a headset for video games. The Ear Force Stealth 300 falls under that last category; video games. To be precise, console gaming. So we got the basics of what we’re reviewing, a gaming headset, but what am I looking for when it comes to a gaming headset? These topics are the ones I will try to answer in this review, when I want to buy a new gaming headset I want the design to be astonishing, how is the durability?Is the sound any good? How is the comfort? Battery life? How is the noise reduction?
Design & Availability
The first thing we notice when looking for a new headset, is the design. The Ear Force Stealth 300 has a black chassis, fabric at the middle of the headset as well inside the “ear cup”. The headset I tested had these fabrics coloured in green and the box indicated that it is a Xbox One headset. But if you own a PlayStation 4, but you’re favorite colour is green, there is no problem buying the green one. Aside from the aesthetics, the colors does not have any impact on the specs, so choose your favorite color. (PC version is red, Xbox is green and the PS4 is blue).
The Stealth 300 looks has a lot of similar design choices as the rest of the headsets in the Stealth series.(600 and 700) But the 300 has one huge advantage, and that is the price. For now the headset is available around 80$, and that is a good thing, since almost every headset with a decent design and good specs costs over 100$ easy.
This version comes wired with a 3.5mm jack. It’s not removable as it must be connected to the device at all times to function. However, you do have a power and mode button aside each other on the left ear cup, as well as the microphone. The microphone isn’t removable either, but it smoothly folds up neatly against the ear cup. You can also fold the whole headset flat, making it easier to stash it somewhere or bringing it with you in a backpack.
Having the option to use your gaming headset on multiple platforms is always a bonus. As mentioned, this headset works with every platform which has a 3.5mm jack entry. Have in mind, if you have the original Xbox One controller or simply one of the Xbox One controllers without the 3.5mm option, you’ll need the Headset Audio Controller adapter. (which is sold separately)For PC you’ll need a PC Splitter cable (pink & green jacks). Nintendo Switch owners might not want to use this headset if they want to use the microphone, because the chat functionality isn’t available for the Switch.
Durability & User friendly
During my testing of this headset, I tried to “break” the headset physically. Bending, folding in and out multiple times, plugging the jack in and out and tons of other “daily basis” uses to try to simulate the durability of the headset. And to be honest, the headset looks and feels exactly as it was when I unboxed it. (Almost, there are some minor scratches on the ear cups after falling as sleep on the couch with my Golden Retriever..) When it comes to the question, how long can you use it before you must recharge it. Yes you need to charge it, normally other wired headsets in this price range functions even though the power is out, it just works without all the “special effects” of specs the headset features. In Stealth 300’s case, it shuts completely down. But then again, I had an awesome gaming weekend with my friend playing some Strange Brigade from Friday till Sunday without having to charge once. (The headset might have been at 80% power when we started), of course the battery life weakens after time, so charging between each play session is recommended.
(A replay of our stream, you can also hear the quality of the microphone here)
There is one other thing I want to complain about, which interferes with the user friendly bit.
Both the power and mode button are next to each other on the left ear cup, which is confusing when pushing them while having the headset on your head. (pushed the wrong button a lot) Even though I didn’t notice big changes by pushing the mode button, I did however turn the headset off a lot of times by “accident”. Same goes with the volume-control dial and chat-volume dial as they are right on top of the other. To properly adjust the volume and pushing the right buttons, I had to remove the headset from my head to see what I’m doing.
Ah the comfort, this topic is where the Stealth 300 shines!
Not only was it comfortable wearing the headset for hours, without having to take it off for a “break” because of the pressure many headsets delivers on the head. But there is one specific feature that I’d loved with this headset, and that is the ProSpecs technology. Turtle Beach advertises this technology to be incredible comfortable, even if you wear glasses. And as I use spectacles myself at daily basis, I can for sure confirm that this works at its finest. I got no marks on behind my ears from my glasses after wearing the headset, nor other ill effects. The fabric inside the ear cups and below the headband, isn’t making me sticky/sweaty either after hours use.
The bad part, yes sadly there were some things I struggled with. Underneath the headband, there’s a steel rod, giving you the option to adjust it up and down to fit your head. Adjusting it might be a tricky one, as its extremely rigid. But once you find that perfect “spot”, the headset held its place pretty sturdy.
Sound & Noise Reduction
Okay, so to the little more technical part, and by all means one of the most important things. How does it sound inside this headset?
The first thing I do when I come home after purchasing a new headset, I’ll give test “Hertz” (Hz) on two topics, Bass and Treble. Then I test the surround, left sound, right sound, center sound etc. The Stealth 300 scored pretty high here, as for the Bass a number around 20 Hz is regarded as great (lower, the better). The Bass wasn’t noticeable after 30 Hz, which isn’t great but acceptable in my opinion. For the Treble a number around 20 000 Hz is regarded as great here, the headset stopped at around 15 000 Hz.
The surround works perfectly, pretty clear which ear the sounds comes from, you will even notice the when the sounds comes from the “center”. This function is extremely crucial when it comes to gaming, especially playing in either Fortnite or PUBG. Overall a decent sound system inside this headset. When it comes to noise reduction, you might want to be alone or in quiet room while playing. Even with the voice-chat dial turned off, I heard noises around me such as my dog barking, my girlfriend talking to me etc, I even noticed the sound of unwrapping my chocolate bar extremely well. Okay so I might have cheated a bit on this test, as I wasn’t playing anything, the noise is reduced a bit while watching a movie or playing a video game. But you aren’t completely “logged out” of the real world when the headset goes on.
Sound – 7/10
Noise Reduction – 6/10
Design & Availability 7
Durability & User Friendly 8
Noise Reduction 6
Ear Force Stealth 300 is by far the best headset you can get today within this price range for consoles. If you don’t have the budget or simply won’t use over 100$ on a new headset, you can get this one with good confidence. It provides excellent comfort, simple setup, decent sound and great looking design. There are some flaws in the design, but beside that, a great low budget choice.
User Review( votes)
- Decent sound
- Comfort (works great while wearing glasses)
- Works with multiple systems
- No “offline” mode
- The bass isn’t that great (even with the bass mode on)
- Noise Reduction could have been better