It would take a lot for me to replace my Gold headset for the PlayStation 4. Its ease of use and quality make it the de facto headset for Sony’s new machine. Turtle Beach has always been one of my favorite third-party audio solutions ever since I started using headsets. Their latest attraction, the Elite 800 is definitely one of their finest yet. Completely wireless with channel skipping technology to avoid breaks in the action are definitely one of the best headsets I have used to date, but they don’t come without their own set of issues as well.
Design is always important in a headset. Comfort is a must, and Turtle Beach has always delivered in the headsets I have tested. The Elite 800 is no exception. While a little weighty at first, the padded ear cones make long gaming sessions plausible. The headset itself is made from thick plastic that screams quality, and the controls are touch-based on each earcup. The build is fantastic. The mic is also hidden into one of the cups, much like the Gold headset, making it ideal for using the headset for more than just gaming online.
Platforms: PS4, PS3, PC
Price I’d Pay: $299.99
The charger base also serves as the hub for the Bluetooth signal. This is where one of my issues comes into play. The headset comes with an optical cable which plugs into the back of the PS4. It also comes with a USB charger cable that needs to take up one of the two USB ports on the front. This takes away from the sleek design as there is now a cable dangling down in front of the system. I don’t blame Turtle Beach, this is more a design flaw on the PS4. Only two USB ports and both in the front was a bad choice.
The charge base is great outside of these issues. It uses magnets to lock the headset in place, and it power cycles when placed to let me know it is charging. Like I said the entire package looks sublime. I just wish the cable management was a little more elegant. Trying to wrangle yet another USB cable and an optical cable around my spaghetti mess of wires was not ideal.
Performance wise the headset delivers. In addition to being extremely comfortable, it also lasts close to ten hours on a full charge. It is worth noting though if you do not leave your PS4 in rest mode, charging does not happen. The headset also works on PS3 and PC through the same technology, and just as well. Overall I was extremely happy with the dynamic range, just wish it also somehow worked on the Xbox One.
The sound quality is where it shines though. The Elite 800 outputs in 7.1 and the range of audio is impressive. Hearing footsteps behind me, or gunfire from all angles really brings games to life. The levels are also really well done, so no overbearing bass for example. There are an array of settings for movies, games, and music all toggled with a quick press of a button. The built-in voice also let me know which setting I had. These headphones sound fabulous.
One of my gripes with the headset stem from one of its greatest features, the touch buttons. I found myself constantly hitting them as I lay my head on a pillow, or rest. They are too sensitive. Also when the battery is low, there is really no indication, the sound just starts to break up and crackle. The instructions are also out of date, referencing sections of the PS4 that have been moved to other areas. I lost communication when trying to hook them up a couple of times, and again the cord management in my entertainment center was not ideal.
Even with all of these problems these are probably the most impressive set of headphones I have used in a while. The price tag is steep, but the sound quality and comfort make the blow easier to take. Those looking for a high-quality set of cans for their PS4 (or PS3/PC) would do well to go with the Elite 800. If your wallet is deep enough, their quality is more than worth the price of admission.
Review copy of headset provided by publisher.