Shaun Munro reviews Turtle Beach’s Stealth 600 wireless surround sound gaming headset for PS4…
If you’re in the market for a premium PS4 gaming headset that won’t annihilate your bank account, the Turtle Beach Stealth 600 just might be the one for you. A superb wireless surround sound headset that packs a crisp aural punch without sacrificing an ergonomic form factor or general ease-of-use, the Stealth 600 is a largely fantastic piece of kit with just a few minor design concessions.
I spent most of my time testing the headset on the newly-released Call of Duty: WWII and Star Wars Battlefront II, given their generally meticulous sound design and dynamic use of a wide audio spectrum. With the Stealth 600‘s comfy earpads fitted firmly over the ears and bass and treble boosts selected with the press of a button, both games are almost frighteningly immersive, the chaos of battle feeling more frantic and intense than ever. The low-end bass, the poor representation of which can shame many cheaper headsets, is thunderously present here, with both the games’ orchestral scores and multitudinous explosions proving fantastically jolting in surround sound.
The headset does tout a so-called “Superhuman Hearing” mode, which Turtle Beach promises will allow players to hear approaching enemies during tense gameplay with a mere press of a button on the side of the headset. However, the feature never proved particularly useful for me, and even after using the headset for countless hours on each of the aforementioned games, I felt that that this audio mode flattened most aspects of the sound mix, and was ultimately inferior to the default preset. It’s clearly designed with the competitive crowd in mind, though, so perhaps they might get more out of it.
One of the headset’s neatest features, however, is its flip-down microphone, which is muted when rested in the default position and becomes active when flipped down towards the mouth. Though there may be those users who never once dare to use the microphone, rest assured that the sound quality is incredibly sharp, and absolutely ideal for fast-paced multiplayer squad play. That flip is really damn satisfying, too.
In terms of getting the headset working in the first place, be sure that setting this thing up is an absolute picnic; it comes boxed with a USB dongle which plugs into the front of your Ps4, as well as a Micro USB charger cable that’s unfortunately too short to charge while playing. Activating the device in your PS4 menu takes a mere matter of seconds, and if you plan to also use the headset on your PC, any Windows 10 system should recognise it within a few moments at most.
The overall comfort level is also staggeringly good; the earpads have a fantastic feel and don’t wear on the ears even over day-long play sessions, and they can be swivelled around more than 90 degrees to ensure optimal use for all-sized noggins. The top of the headset also boasts a thick, spongy cushion which means your head will never brace awkwardly against the hard plastic top, even if you use the headset while laying back in bed.
If there is any small knock against the Stealth 600‘s design, though, it’s that the volume control and speech level wheels are placed directly next to each other, which can result in a minor fiddle, and possibly an incorrect input during a heated game. A minor quibble, yes, but worth mentioning all the same.
The headset’s wireless range is meanwhile exceptionally impressive, and far in excess of the demands of most users. In field tests, sound managed to travel around 30 feet before fully cutting out, ensuring it’ll have no problem reaching your bed, and if you decide to use the headset with your PC, you can freely listen to Spotify while walking around your living room (and thanks to minimal sound leakage, you won’t annoy anyone in the vicinity). Ultimately, if you require further wireless range, then you’re clearly in need of a pricey high-end headset, but played under optimal conditions, I didn’t encounter a single drop-out.
The box’s promise of all-day battery life also lives up to the hype, with the charge lasting around 15 hours, which will more-than-meet the demands of all but the most dedicated streamers. Fully charging the headset takes only a fraction of that time, of course, and for those who plan to use it for just a few hours per night, you can leave it charging while eating dinner and it’ll be good to go by the time you’re done.
After using the Turtle Beach Stealth 600 for tens of hours on two of 2017’s biggest AAA shooters, going back to a conventional TV speaker setup felt positively barbaric. The headset provided a stunningly heightened experience with just about any game I tried it on, and when tested on a PC while listening to uncompressed FLAC music files, it uncovered new layers in songs I’ve listened to hundreds of times before.
Comfort has clearly been a major concern here, and to that end the headset feels absolutely fantastic, while numerous smart choices have been made in terms of accessibility and ease-of-use (a few minor issues notwithstanding). Those desiring a proper noise cancellation solution may prefer to seek out the more expensive Stealth 700 unit, but for the overwhelming majority of gamers craving a robust, no-fuss headset, the Stealth 600 is an almost scarily good creation.
+ Incredible sound quality on both PS4 and PC
+ Extremely comfortable
+ Terrific flip-down microphone
+ It takes seconds to set up
+ Long battery life
– No noise cancellation
– Volume wheel placement could be better
– Superhuman Hearing feels like a gimmick
The Turtle Beach Stealth 600 wireless surround sound gaming headset is available now for £89.99.
Shaun Munro – Follow me on Twitter for more video game rambling.