Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Xbox One Headset Impressions

All of the features…except for Build Quality?

I owned a $149 Turtle Beach Stealth 700 for a couple of hours, and I want to tell you about it. That’s not long enough to call this a review, so I’m not calling it one.

I returned my pair because the adjustment mechanism on the left ear cup was so loose that the cup would fall down to the fully extended spot if I just picked up the headset.

That’s a shame, because the rest of this thing was actually pretty good.

SOUND QUALITY

Using 50mm drivers, the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 ships by default set to their “Signature Sound” profile, which is aggressive, fun, and boomy. Bass slams into your chest and footsteps are a touch accentuated. It’s not realistic or natural at all, but it’s fun in the way that a home theater demo in a Best Buy is fun.

The headset has three other profiles to select from…but I think you can only get to them through the mobile app? I couldn’t find a way to do this on the headset itself. So if you don’t have a Bluetooth-enabled mobile device, then you’re out of luck.

The Xbox version of the headset doesn’t have any built-in surround processing and relies on the Windows Sonic/Dolby Atmos modes in the Xbox One software. The PS4 version has DTS support via an optical cable connection to the dongle.

COMFORT

I like to wear a headset for at least a day to test comfort, so I can’t fully speak to this one. But, for the hour or so I tried it, comfort was good. The ear cups are pretty shallow, so the insides did touch my ears. But I appreciate the “ProSpecs” cutouts in the pads that relieved pressure on my glasses. This isn’t as advanced as the version used on the Elite Pro headset, which has an adjustable notch. They’ve simply made one area of the ear pad squishier than the rest.

BUILD/DESIGN

Ugh.

I’ve never loved Turtle Beach’s build quality on certain models. They rely too much on thin plastic in some of their headbands…and then other models randomly have better headbands, with no apparent price correlation.

The Stealth 700 has an all-plastic headband, with all-plastic adjustment mechanisms. The plastic started to rub against itself even in the short time I had the headset, leaving little plastic bits on the adjustment rails. The clicky detents on the right side of my headset were very good…but the left side mechanism was basically broken in the middle of the range. Every time I picked up the headset, the left cup would just kind of drop down out of the headset.

Will you have this same problem? I can’t say for sure as I only tested the one model. But the plastic headband and adjustment arms didn’t really inspire me with confidence. Plastic builds can be done very well…but Turtle Beach missed the mark this time, in my opinion.

The plastic-y feel carries into the ear cups. The right cup feels lighter than the left ear cup. The ear cup rotation mechanisms feel a bit cheap and loose. The adjustable boom mic and the control buttons… are the two pieces that actually feel really good. The boom mic clicks firmly into its two main positions, and the buttons have a nice thick rubber texture to them.

If my left ear cup adjustment had been tighter I would have kept these…and been paranoid that the plastic would snap one day. The Astro A10 I reviewed recently costs less than half as much and feels dramatically better in the hands.

FEATURES

This headset has all the features, and I was really bummed to return it.

It has direct wireless Wi-Fi Direct connection to the Xbox One, so it shows up as a native headset in the OS. This is really cool!

It has full Bluetooth support for connection to any device that supports Bluetooth audio. I found the audio a little quiet in this mode, but still pretty darn great considering it just supports SBC and not any of the fancier codecs.

It has a non-proprietary 3.5mm jack so you can connect a regular analog audio source, though it doesn’t include a cable.

The USB charging port can also be used to update the headset. I didn’t have the headset long enough to test its battery life claims.

Also…they’ve included Active Noise Cancellation! It’s not the best I’ve ever heard at all, but it’s great for the relatively low price point, and doesn’t introduce any noticeable hiss or ear discomfort.

FINAL THOUGHTS

If the headband adjustment mechanisms in this headset were made from metal, this would be an instant buy. It packs a ton of features into a $149 headset. I was really sad to see it go, but I couldn’t keep a pair with a broken side.

I still think the Elite Pro and the Elite 800 are the best-built and best-looking Turtle Beach headsets. The PX24 has a much better headband pad than this more expensive model. I have no idea why the Stealth 700 re-used an old and iffy headband design.

Please clap for this if you liked it! Have you had a different experience with the Stealth 700? Let me know in the comments! I really wanted to love this one.