When the Xbox Series X launched earlier this year (check out our review here), it has made several improvements over its predecessor, the Xbox One. However, while one of the major milestones for the Xbox Series X over the PlayStation 5 was how all the accessories you had for Xbox One, including controllers and headsets, were instantly compatible with your new one. system, the PS5 Pulse 3D wireless headset offered audio quality and features. that no first party offering from Microsoft could match. Now Xbox is here with its own first-generation wireless headset to compete with Sony’s PS5 launch offering.
True to the mission of the whole Xbox field this generation, the Xbox Wireless Headset almost instantly connected to my Xbox Series S and updated wirelessly through the Xbox Accessories app. Once updated, I could go into the app and fine-tune how I want the audio to go through the headphones, including various EQ settings and bass boost, as well as the sensitivity of the feature. automatic microphone mute or brightness. I want the mic light to be on. Once I have the headset the way I like it (or at least how I think I like it … I won’t know until I play), it’s time to jump into a game.
In one game, the headphone punch was immediately evident when I opened up loot boxes in Overwatch. Once I joined a party, I had to make some adjustments with my teammate. For one thing, the headset seemed to pick up more volume from the party mate’s microphones than other headsets I’ve used because its voice sounded almost multitrack. I’m not sure if this is due to a setting I had (I had my own mic monitoring enabled, but it shouldn’t affect the sound of her voice in the chat), but when I switched between the Xbox wireless headset and the LucidSound Headset that I had been using since the launch of the X / S series, his voice returned to normal. Coming back to the Xbox Wireless Headset, his voice sounded strangely layered again. She also tried several helmets to no avail. I asked him to move his microphone away from his mouth, and that seemed to rectify the problem. Again, I’m not sure if this was a connection issue, Xbox issue, setup issue, or audio pickup issue, but it was resolved fairly quickly. .
Once we were in the game and the initial audio chat issue was resolved, voice chat was crisp and easily leveled compared to in-game audio. My teammate also commented on how my voice is clearer in using the Xbox Wireless Headset than it normally does with my other headset that I typically use. The adjustable auto-mute feature, which blocks out background sounds, works well, although I didn’t have a lot of background noise while I was testing it; I plan to keep the feature turned off anyway. Mic monitoring, even when set to ‘high’, did not provide the output level of my own voice in my headphones that I expected, but other than that my review of how voice chat works with Xbox Wireless Headset is minimal.
The sound of the game is very clear; in one game of Overwatch I thought the whole opposing team was in front of me, but suddenly I heard a Reinhardt charge from behind with enough time to react and dodge his attack. The sounds of the weapons are also very clear, providing a strong sense of presence. While the headphones work great as is, I have found that I get the most out of them when using the Dolby Atmos setting, which is enabled through the Dolby app. If I watched a tech demo for Atmos technology (the earbuds literally vibrated as thunder roared during the video), enjoying a scene from the critically acclaimed 1917, or playing through a Gears 5 mission, the 3D sound is impressive and precise.
Perhaps the newest part of the Xbox Wireless Headset is how the device can connect to your Xbox and your mobile device simultaneously, delivering sound from both hardware elements. Using this, I launched Mortal Kombat 11 on the Xbox Series S and then put on the 1995 Mortal combat soundtrack of the movie and had both devices coming out to the headphones at the same time. While this use case may be less common, it was a fun way to test the functionality. I also started a podcast while playing a few Dead Cells series, and even a little Madden game on my favorite workout playlist. If a device is too powerful, you can easily adjust the output volume on either device. Obviously, since it can connect to a mobile phone via Bluetooth, you can wear the headset as a standard headset on the go if you want.
All of these features and options are great, but I was very pleasantly surprised at how comfortable the headset was during extended use. Usually, I don’t even like wearing helmets for longer sessions, as the headband often hurts at the top of my head after a short time. Fortunately, this is not the case with the Xbox Wireless Headset. Even after a few hours of continuous play, I only had to adjust the headband once for slight discomfort. Plus, the ear cups are soft and fully enveloping, but my ears have never felt overheated or sweaty. The Xbox Wireless Headset is one of the most comfortable gaming headsets I have used.
At $ 100, the Xbox Wireless Headset offers great value for those who want to get the most out of their Xbox consoles without breaking the bank. 3D spatial audio sounds great in action, and with crisp, crisp communication, both inbound and outbound, it’s a great option for those who like to hear every detail while staying in close contact with their team. The Xbox Wireless Headset launches March 16 and is compatible with Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, Xbox One, Windows 10 PCs, and mobile devices via Bluetooth.