SteelSeries Arctis 7X Review: My favorite Xbox Series X headset so far [Video]

Arctis 7x with the new Xbox Series X

With a wireless dongle that enables use across Xbox as well as PC, PlayStation, Nintendo Switch, and Android Mobile devices, the SteelSeries Arctis 7X offers huge compatibility for next-gen consoles. Match that with 24-hour battery life and one of the most comfortable designs, and the 7X has a lot to offer for $149.99. Head below to watch the video and find out more. 

Out of the box

Snuggly housed in simple packaging, the Arctis 7X also comes with the USB-C wireless dongle, USB-C to USB-A extension cable, micro-USB charging cable, and a 4-pole 3.5mm audio cable. 

Overview + Design

Right in line with other headphones in the Arctis lineup, the 7X has a relatively simple overall design. The overall size and shape of the earcups look identical to the Arctis 9X. Large earcups hold all of the controls around the perimeter of the cans. A flexible metal headband keeps the structure while a ski-goggle-like strap rests on your head. The sizing on the headphones can be adjusted with the strap. 

On the left ear cup is the retractable microphone, micro-USB cable, 3.5mm port, mobile cable jack, volume dial, and a mic mute button. Over on the right earcup is the power button and the chat mix dial. 

Rotating 90 degrees, the cans can lay flat on your collar bones when not in use, which is always preferred in my opinion. 

SteelSeries Arctis 7X: Multi-Use

While it lacks Bluetooth connectivity like the older and more expensive $200 9X, the SteelSeries Arctis 7X is a more universal gaming headset thanks to the wireless dongle. The dongle has a unique shape, but that’s because it is also made to snap on to the USB-C port on mobile devices. So, you can use the 7X with your Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Android device, PC, Nintendo Switch, and even Playstation consoles. It appears that the chat mix dial only works on Xbox systems, but everything else is functional on other devices. 

Comfort is a top feature

Where I think the Arctis 7X really shines is comfort. Just like the 9X, out of the box, the cushions sit softly on my ears while the headband springs and wraps around the top of my head. I really think these are some of the most comfortable gaming headsets I’ve tried. 

It reminds me of the Black Shark V2 line from Razer. There isn’t anything crazy going on on either of these headsets; they are just very simple and comfortable. They’re not wrapped in premium leather, don’t clamp your head like a vice, and the Arctis 7X feel like a pair of slippers cuddling your ears. 

Steelseries Arctis 7x: Video

SteelSeries Arctis 7X: How does it sound?

On the Arctis 9x, it is possible to toggle through presets by pressing the power button once, but that’s not an option with the 7X. Out of the box though, the Arctis 7X has a nice, even sound signature. Bass is full and impactful while highs come through crisp and clear as well. For playing games like Destiny 2, I think this is great. D2 has a lot of immersive audio cues where it is very enjoyable to hear the environment around you. Connecting the 7X to a computer, though, unlocks a ton of audio customization through SteelSeries Engine 3. 

Stereo positioning is good, though the SteelSeries Arctis 7X doesn’t have a huge soundstage. Which, in my opinion, is to be expected. 

SteelSeries Engine 3 customization

SteelSeries Engine 3 has controls for EQ, mic monitoring, microphone volume, updating the headset, and can make a few other tweaks. 

One noticeable change here is the dynamic range adjustment. Like a compressor, this effect helps to level out sounds coming through the headset to even out loud and quiet noises. In theory, this is better for picking up quiet footsteps or reloads in the chaos of combat but takes some of the immersion out of the normal soundscape of your favorite titles. 

While not as great as the Superhuman hearing mode from TurtleBeach, this does help in competitive gaming. I’ve set up a comp preset for the SteelSeries Arctis 7X within SteelSeries Engine 3 that takes out a lot of the low end from the EQ, boosts highs a tad, and cranks dynamic range to the top. With all of those settings working together, it makes it easier to pick out enemies on the battlefield. 

My only complaint here is that to switch between a more immersive default mode and comp mode, the headset needs to be unplugged from the console and connected to a computer. I wish the enabled switching between EQ presets with a single press of the power button like SteelSeries has implemented on the Arctis 9X. 

Microphone

Since this Arctis 7X is basically universal, it’s much easier to do a microphone test. And while it’s nothing extraordinary, the microphone on the Arctis 7X does sound pretty good. It’s right in line with most wireless headsets. It’s not going to sound as good as a dedicated condenser mic but is perfectly fine for most gaming situations. 

Battery and Connection

With 24 hours of battery life, the Arctis 7X is perfect for long gaming sessions. And while a lot of people have reported connection issues with the older Arctis 9X, and I’ve experienced a couple as well, I have had no connection issues with the 7X on the Xbox Series X. 

Final Thoughts

With its comfort and variety of connectivity options, the SteelSeries Arctis 7X is a pretty killer headset. The wireless dongle is a little oddly shaped and isn’t as clean looking as using the Xbox Wireless protocol on the 9x, but because of that dongle, it can also be a great headset for mobile and PC gaming as well; giving the 7X more legs than the older 9X. I wish there was a way to toggle between EQ presets like on other SteelSeries headsets, but the ability to dial it in via a computer is nice.

We’ll be doing a best headset for the Xbox Series X|S comparison coming up, but so far, the Arctis 7X has been the headset I’ve reached for most often.

Buy SteelSeries Arctis 7X

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