Turtle Beach had a bit of a rocky reputation not too far back and they have worked hard to try to change gamer’s hearts and minds. With the Elite Atlas Aero Wireless PC Gaming Headset they went all out to capture the PC gaming market, which is generally underrepresented when it comes to headsets with all the bells and whistles. As a PC gamer myself, I have been stuck with headsets that are designed with consoles in mind and PC gaming as an after thought. Did that ever matter? I didn’t think so. Did Turtle Beach change my mind? Read on to find out.
The Elite Atlas Aero has a lot going for it from a design perspective. As much as I dig all the fancy RGB lighting and over the top colors that come standard on many headsets, I always felt like those were only going to be useful for gaming and not something I would use in any other capacity. Turtle Beach made a statement with this headset, though. It isn’t just a nice flat black and simple design, it is incredibly comfortable. I wear glasses most of the time and most headsets become uncomfortable pretty quickly.
This headset, though, can be worn for hours on end without any discomfort. I’ve gone from a long gaming session to plugging in the included cable to my phone to do things around the house while listening to songs on my phone and then heading back into a gaming session almost forgetting I was wearing the admittedly hefty looking headset.
The modular design is also a huge benefit. I don’t use my microphone often, so the fact that it is detachable is a huge bonus. Battery life is… long. I never had it die on me, even after forgetting to plug it in for a few days at a time. The ear cups are large, well padded, and extremely comfortable for long periods of time while also acting as something similar to a noise cancelling headset. They feel like the large leatherette padded phones I used growing up with my father’s record player.
This is where the headset either succeeds or fails. I can wear it all day, but if it sounds like I’m playing telephone with empty cans and string, what’s the point? I’ve listened to countless songs, played a great deal of different games, and watched movies and podcasts and in every single case the headphones out preformed my already high expectations.
During this review I have run the phones through a gauntlet of songs including “Take Me to Church” (Hozier), “V. 3005” (Childish Gambino), “Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite” (Remaster 2009, Beatles), “Yesterday” (Beatles), “Seven Nation Army” (The White Stripes), “Don’t Stop Me Now” (Queen), “Canon” (London Symphony Orchestra), and “Lightning” (Octavian) and for the most part I have nothing but great things to say.
While songs like “Lightning” show off the depth of the bass on the headset, “Seven Nation Army” shows how things can get a little muddy when the phones try to combine the deeper bass with higher hi-hats of songs. It isn’t hugely noticeable but worth a mention. “Canon” and “Being For The Benefit Of Mr. Kite” show off the clarity, as does “Yesterday” when the set isn’t pushed too hard, with “Mr. Kite” being a highlight due to the complexity of sounds all coming through fairly clear.
In games, though, which is why you buy this type of headset in the first place, everything is exactly as it should be. Red Dead Redemption 2 does a good job of highlighting the spatial sound and the simulated 7.1 surround. While I would not consider this true surround sound, it does a good job of imitating multiple speakers with sounds coming from different areas. It was very easy to identify from where a voice or random gun shot originated making the game more pleasant to play with the headset versus my desktop speakers. There isn’t a ton to say about the microphone; it sounds very good but you won’t be recording podcasts with it.
Of course, some of the muddy sounds that I wrote about previously can be tuned in a bit. I’m not a huge audiophile so I rarely go outside of presets, but the tooling around I did with the included Turtle Beach software did make a bit of a difference. Someone with a better grasp or more patience for dialing in specific parts of the sound spectrum should be able to get the perfect sound they want without issue.
Ultimately, your purchase is going to come down to your perception of the value of the item you are considering. I don’t review on price, but I do feel it deserves a mention. At $149.99 USD, this is one of the best valued headsets I have found on the market so far. As someone that once fell into the Astro money pit, I can say I prefer these over anything Astro put out, and the Turtle Beach headset is half the price. Your wallet will ultimately decide if this is worth a purchase, but at the asking price, a wireless headset with the ability to connect to any console, phone, tablet, or other device with a headphone jack, makes it a pretty easy recommendation.
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The product was provided by Turtle Beach for this review.