ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air and Elo X Stereo Headset Reviews

AIMO Enabled Headsets Are Something I Didn't Know I Needed

ROCCAT, the more gaming focused arm of Turtle Beach, has released a series of headsets under the Elo line. Generally, I try to keep all tech reviews separate, but since the Elo 7.1 Air and Elo X Stereo both fall under the new line, and honestly, there aren’t enough differences in the Elo Stereo to garner a full review, I’ll cover both here. I imagine most people will be looking at the price differences and trying to decide which way to go when it comes to this line, so this should make comparing the ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air, Elo X Stereo and other headsets in this price range easier. First, the Specs for the two headsets.


ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air Specs

MSRP $99.99 USD

Direct wireless connection via USB-A transmitter

2.4GHz transmitter frequency response

Rechargeable 24h battery (average 1+ week play time based on typical ~3h use per day)

Audio controls: power button, master volume wheel, mic mute, mic monitor wheel

Removable unidirectional microphone

Leatherette headband with foam cushioning

Over-ear design featuring memory foam

345g weight

Cable length: 2m

Measured Frequency response: 20 ~ 20000Hz

Drive diameter: 50mm

Driver unit material: Neodymium magnet


Elo X Stereo Specs

MSRP $49.99 USD

Jack plug: dual plug 3.5mm (3-pin)

Audio controls: master volume wheel, mic mute

Leatherette headband with foam cushioning

Removable unidirectional microphone

Over-ear design featuring memory foam

314g weight

Cable length: 1.65m

Measured Frequency response: 20 ~ 20000Hz

Drive diameter: 50mm

Driver unit material: Neodymium magnet


ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air and ROCCAT Elo Stereo X Review

Elo Headband

Most of this review will focus on the ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air and besides sound quality and connections, there is only one difference in the two headsets design. AIMO lighting is enabled on the 7.1 air while there is no RGB on the Stereo X. So as you read through this review, keep in mind that the biggest differences in the two headsets is that you get 7.1 virtual surround, a wireless connection with 24-hour battery life, and AIMO lighting on the 7.1. With the Stereo X, as you would expect, you get stereo sound and a wired 3.5 mm connection. The biggest advantage of the Stereo X is that it is compatible with anything with a 3.5 mm jack while the 7.1 Air will need a USB connection.

The first thing to cover with the Elo line of headsets is the incredible comfort. I prefer the headband style of the Elo over headsets like the Stealth series, as it gives an adjust free fit. The earcups are also incredibly comfortable with a softer leatherette covering. It can come down to personal preference but this is my preferred style of design and the Elo series knocked it out of the park.

Elo Cushions

A detachable microphone is included, which I keep plugged in since the mute button is easily accessible. One key thing to note is volume control for the microphone is available on the 7.1 Air but not the Stereo. Volume control is included for both when it comes to the headsets, but it is missing from the microphone side for the Stereo X.

Overall, the Elo line’s design is probably my favorite from all the headsets I’ve reviewed. The Logitech Pro X comes in close and I couldn’t pick one over the other if I was forced, but there are a few extra benefits to the 7.1 Air that give it the edge. From a comfort perspective, though, this is the best Turtle Beach or ROCCAT has done so far.

Sound Quality – ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air

Elo 7.1 Air Render

As is the norm with ROCCAT and Turtle Beach products, the Super Human Hearing feature is alive and well. I don’t play enough games that require the enhancements, but by now most should be familiar with the feature and know if they will use it or not. It is as good here as with any other version. The big takeaway from the Air, though, is the quality of the sound. It matches, and possibly exceeds, the quality of the Stealth 700 Gen 2 for my everyday use. I would argue the Stealth 700 series is a bit more tuned for gamers focusing on more competitive gaming while the Elo Air has become my go-to headset for music, video, and gaming.

Playing Marvel’s Avengers and Star Wars Squadrons just sounded much more balanced with the Elo 7.1 Air. Bass heavy music, films or videos with variable levels of volume, and general classical music all sounded balanced and pleasant. Switching the sound fields to the virtual 7.1 does make a difference, though it felt more like 5.1 as the back two channels were not distinct enough from the left and right channel. Still, at the asking price, I don’t expect top notch 7.1 surround in a headset. I rarely expect 7.1 in any headset regardless of price. There is a hint, but buy this for the other qualities, not for the 8 channels.

Sound Quality – ROCCAT Elo X Stereo

Elo X Stereo

Much of what I said with the 7.1 Air quality stands for the ROCCAT Elo X Stereo. Obviously the headset is designed to only work in stereo and there is a clear difference between the two. Surprisingly, for music, I preferred the Stereo’s audio profile. There isn’t a ton of music out there mixed in surround sound, so the Stereo has an edge if you will be using it for music as a primary use. It also does very well with the Nintendo Switch where the games are generally a bit more casual and the overall sound field does well in stereo sound.

The other advantage is the 3.5 mm jack. There isn’t a huge difference in sound quality, but I’m a guy that still prefers wires when trying to get the best out of something and through my own bias or because it actually does sound a bit better, non-gaming sound was just a hint better with the Elo X Stereo. For an asking price of $49.99 as of the time of this writing, the X Stereo is a very solid choice. You won’t get virtual surround sound and that can be a deal breaker for modern games in general, but it is such a solid sound that it is hard to argue against a recommendation of this headset.

Conclusion

Elo AIMO

The differences in the ROCCAT Elo 7.1 Air and ROCCAT Elo X Stereo ultimately comes down to how they are connected, AIMO lighting, and sound field. For PC gaming the Elo 7.1 Air is the way to go without question. As a nice headset with a solid and balanced sound, the Elo X Stereo will do the trick for many. Ultimately, what is the primary use, where will you be using it, and are wires a problem. The 7.1 Air is a bit more specific in its use, especially targeted at PC gaming and the Stereo is a bit more of a “fit anything” product.

For those unaware, AIMO lighting is ROCCAT’s “gotta catch them all” lighting system. Between the different AIMO keyboards, mice, mouse pads, and headsets using it, the lighting system moves from one accessory to another. You won’t notice it on the headset, but others will and it really does turn a PC setup into a lightshow that is extremely entertaining.

I have no problems suggesting both of these headsets at the MSRP. They are both solid. I prefer the 7.1 Air since most of my time is on the PC. But when compared to the competition, even within their own house with the Stealth 700 Gen 2, it is hard to find many faults with the Elo line. I was actually surprised that they are coming in cheaper, but the exclusion of Bluetooth in the Air is likely a big part. If you are looking for a catch all headset, you are likely better served with the 700 Gen 2 as the Bluetooth opens up a wider variety of uses, but when it comes to specific use I prefer the fit of the Elo series. The sound quality is extremely good at this price range and the separation of voice and game makes this an easy recommendation.


ROCCAT Provided review units for the purpose of this review.

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Chris has been playing around in the gaming industry for entirely too long. These days he is working on become an educator while also chasing his passion of helping up and coming writers and content creators make a name for themselves. He’s a talker, so careful if you value your time.

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