A fine mid-level headset ideally suited to multiplayer gaming
Gadget review: Turtle Beach EarForce PX24
TURTLE Beach, the veteran headset manufacturer who have been changing the way people hear games for more than three decades, is one of the best known firms in its field. While rivals like Astro focus on high-end consumer, the New York based company has an acute understanding of the mass market, producing headsets that are packed with features at reasonable prices.
Celebrating its 30th year, the firm has decided to update its roster. One new addition is the mid-level PX24 model, firmly aimed at those picking up an Xbox One or Playstation 4 and who want an improved audio experience over the basic console headphones, without having to break the bank. As a multiplatform set, the PX24s will work with Playstation 4, Xbox One (an adaptor may be required, depending on what version of controller you have), PC and Mac. Thanks to a universal 3.5mm jack, it will also cater to those who play mobile or tablet games on the move.
The SuperAmp is well designed, responsive and holds its charge
The main attraction of the PX24s is the SuperAmp, an in-line amplifier which will be familiar to anyone who use used the firm’s PX22 set or the RIG headset from Plantronics. A small rectangular remote that lets you tinker with various settings, it is a well designed and responsive unit. We managed over a week’s gaming without needing to recharge it, a sign that the manufacturer’s claim of 30 hours’ battery life is a realistic one.
Another feature, the rather grandly titled SuperHuman Hearing mode (Turtle Beach have a penchant for superlatives) meanwhile, does not confer Superman style powers upon the wearer, but it does come in useful when playing multiplayer titles or games that require a degree of stealth. The preset option effectively muffles extraneous background noise and focuses on the player’s immediate environment. Tested with Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain, the feature did an admirable job in highlighting the movements of nearby guards while a few rounds of team deathmatch on Black Ops 3 also alerted us to players nearby.
The bass growls satisfyingly, with high ends crisp
In terms of performance, the PX24s tick all the boxes. Unsurprisingly for a gaming-dedicated headset, the low-end is given emphasis, with the bass of roaring engines in Need for Speed rumbling and growling satisfyingly. The 50mm drivers also do a good job of bringing crisp treble to the fore. The build quality, meanwhile, is near identical to the PX22s and in typical Turtle Beach style, are rugged and durable with flashes of bold design. The closed earcups are comfortable over long sessions thanks to memory foam and soft mesh-like material, while the exterior hard plastic shell is robust and will withstand bumps and falls.
The price means that there are concessions. The set is wired and at maximum volume, especially with a bass heavy output, the PX24s can suffer from distortion, with the resultant sound likely to get on the nerves of anyone who happens to be in the same room - the earcups may be robust, but they lack the overall build quality of the company’s premium offerings. If you want to adjust microphone and chat volume, you will have to do so in the console settings or menu of whatever game you are playing. But for under £70, these exclusions are hardly surprising.