Top positive review
11 people found this helpful
True wireless gaming for either the Xbox or the PS3. Expensive but worth it
on 4 June 2012
I've owned various Turtle beach headsets for about 5 years now and have loved each of them, the latest being the X31. It took it's time coming over from the US to the UK but they have finally made an appearance in their basic form in the high street shops. The XP400 is Turtle Beach's latest model having just been released in the US on the 11th April which is where I bought mine from.
The main reason I bought the XP400's is the fact that they are one of very few true wireless gaming headsets. The most significant difference is that unlike many other gaming headset on the market the Bluetooth functionality allows you to use gamechat without any wires from the controller to the headset. The other difference is that you have the ability to take/make calls from your mobile phone on your headset.
What do you get in the box?
You get a rechargeable headset with a very very long Mini-USB to USB cable to charge it with; a sound transmitter; an optical cable; a thin instruction booklet (in English only); and a Bluetooth puck that plugs into your Xbox controller (PS3 won't need one as the controllers are Bluetooth enabled already)
Set up was straight forward.
· plug in the optical cable from the input of the transmitter to the back of the Xbox360 (or PS3). If you have an older model without an optical input to your console you can purchase an audio adapter but this is sold separately and doesn't come packaged.
· Plug the transmitter into the USB port at the back of the Xbox (or PS3) and switch the headset on -this enables sound from the game.
· Plug the Bluetooth puck into the Xbox controller and switch it on and it should automatically pair with the headset- this enables gamechat. For the PS3 just pair your controller with the headset.
Aside from following the main instructions on setting up the headset I had to go into Xbox dashboard>personal settings>allow voice output to be put through both speaker and headset. For some odd reason when the voice output is set to go through the headset only I can't hear anybody in game chat. You can also use an additional optical cable to plug into your home theatre system but again this doesn't come packaged.
A nice feature with the XP400's is that you can pair your headset with your mobile phone so that you can take phone calls which again is easy to set up - Just press and hold the Bluetooth button on the headset to turn it off, turn it back on again by holding it for 5 seconds and turn your mobile Bluetooth on. The instructions say to enter a code but I didn't need to.
On the right side of the headset you have a Bluetooth button and volume controls, the mic-mute button, charging LED light indicator and headset charging port. On the left side you have a variable mic monitor (which allows you adjust how much of yourself you can hear through the headset from the mic), tone and blast limiter button (which adjusts volume of sudden loud sounds like explosions to protect your ears) and optional talkback cable jack in case you want to use a wired cable to your Xbox controller.
If you're a serious gamer like me, then you know how important sounds are during gameplay where you can hear every detail like feet walking in the room in Call of Duty and the XP400'd don't disappoint. The sound quality is very good and you have the ability to change the level of surround sound to your liking depending upon which game you are playing. You can really hear the difference with this as sometimes I find myself wondering if an earpiece isn't working as I hear a sound or movement (again in COD:MW3) to my right or left (so I only hear the sound in the right or left earpiece).
I loved the fact that I'm free from all wires while playing with a wireless controller and I think that this is how all gaming should be. I also like the fact that you can charge the headset via the USB cable even when the Xbox is switched off (I have the black slim console and I don't know if it makes a difference with older models). I don't think you can charge via USB on the PS3 when it's switched off as I have other charging hubs attached for some PS3 Move controllers which don't seem to charge.
The headset I find they sit slightly lower on my ears when resting the top of the headset on my head than my older X31's which surprised me and it feels much bigger. I consider my head to be of average size so I wouldn't advise these headsets for anyone with small heads as you will probably find that they won't be comfortable. The foam ear pads were also on the firmer side than I'm used to on my X31's but this could just be because they are new and I expected softer ones.
You can cycle through presets which change the angles of the sound in your ears to give you some depth of sound from in front or behind you and this works really well. There are 2 downsides though; the first is that you can only cycle through the presets on the transmitter itself as this is where the button is which means that you can't really experiment easily during gameplay; the second downside is that it's not easy to see which preset you have chosen on the transmitter as it only shows in sequence of LED flashes. There is a tone button on the headset which changes the bass/treble boost and there are 4 presets which cycle through and you can hear which one you've chosen by the number of beeps you hear in the headset.
Pairing the headset with my Iphone 4 was easy and sound was clear when on the phone whilst talking to someone. If a call comes in on the mobile and you are in the middle of gameplay, the game sound cuts off to take the call and resumes when it's ended.
It should also be noted that the Bluetooth puck that plugs into the Xbox controller draws power from the controller battery so you'll be changing your batteries significantly more than normal. I use rechargeable AA batteries and seem to switch them every couple of days rather than once every week or so.
The XP400 series are related to the XP500 (which allows you to programme your own surround sound and equaliser settings instead of having presets on the XP400) and the XP300 series (which are cheaper but are only stereo sound and not surround sound).
You should also be aware that Turtle Beach claim that the Bluetooth chat adapter (puck) may not work with non-official Microsoft Xbox360 controllers but I haven't tested this as I only have Microsoft wireless ones.
All in all I love being able to game without having to worry about any wires at all and the sound is very good. The headset is on the large side so those with smaller heads may want to avoid this model. The major downside is the price tag which is still extremely high even having bought them in the US but is now priced on Amazon UK proportionally. In my opinion it's definitely worth it for me as a hardcore gamer and would definitely recommend them.