Categories: PeripheralsFeatured

SteelSeries Arctis 9 Wireless Headset Review

Performance

If there’s one good thing about this headset, it’s that the audio hardware is basically identical to the previous flagship models from SteelSeries. Actually, I feel I’m seeing double just looking at it, and hearing double just using it. This is the Arctis 7 headset from two years ago, but it’s just had a few minor tweaks made to it.

It may be a two-year-old design, but it was one of the best made and best looking then, and it still is today. They’ve changed the headband design a little, it’s a black and white pattern rather than black and grey. Plus, I’m sure it’s bigger too.

It’s those drivers that I love the most though, and I’m happy to report that SteelSeries hasn’t tinkered with the magic here. The sad news is that if you already have an Arctis, there’s pretty much no acoustic benefit in upgrading. However, the Arctis 9 Wireless does have dual wireless thanks to the Bluetooth and 2.4 GHz. These can be used simultaneously to use your mobile and PlayStation, or mobile and PC together. It’s great for listening to music, pairing with Discord, taking calls, and still keeping up with your gaming. Actually, it’s great for working from home too, as you can take calls and still hold a zoom call.

The headset offers up DTS: HeadphoneX on PC too, which is basically an object-based audio rival to Dolby Atmos for Headphones. The effect works incredibly well, and while I typically use Atmos myself, both setups sound really fantastic. Especially if you get a game that can really use spacial audio. I’ve found Star Wars Squadrons an absolute blast with this turned on. That being said, the drivers are pretty punchy in stereo or surround mode.

The headset is quite loud, and while the sound is tight and accurate, it also handles a heavy EQ. If you like to pile on some extra bass, it’s easily done. However, keep in mind that you need the desktop app to do this, and while you can save the features then use the headset on PlayStation, you can’t change the EQ via the PlayStation.

The noise cancelling microphone is excellent, nice and clear and great for those family Zoom calls or chatting on Discord. However, it also offers side tone monitoring should you need it.

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Peter Donnell

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