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Turtle Beach Elite Pro 2 + SuperAmp Review

By Robert Baddeley on September 18, 2018 | Hardware Reviews | Comments

Turtle Beach Elite Pro 2 + SuperAmp Review

Turtle Beach has been THE name in console headsets for as long as I can remember.  Back before I really dove into PC gaming I remember the excitement of getting my very first Turtle Beach headset for my, at the time, brand new XBox 360.  More and more people have taking up the mantle as gamers since then which means more and more money could be dedicated to delivering console gamers with perfection in sound and comfort.  The Turtle Beach Elite Pro 2 headset has all the makings of that perfect headset for XBOX and PS4 - even Windows 10 if you want. Do they live up to the price and the trusted Turtle Beach name? Read on to find out.

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Specifications

Writer note: I reviewed the headset designed for XBOX ONE.  There is an, essentially, identical version for PS4 though it won’t work with Windows 10 like the one I reviewed.

  • MSRP: $249.95 (Amazon)
  • Audio Connection:
    • XBox One and Windows 10 - 3.5mm + USB
    • Mobile Devices - Bluetooth®
  • Speaker Frequency Response: 12Hz - 20kHz
  • Speaker Size: 50mm Nanoclear™ speakers with Neodymium magnets
  • Microphone: PRO GAMING MIC WITH TRUSPEAK™ TECHNOLOGY
  • Headband Material: Athletic fabric
  • Ear Cushion: Over Ear, Athletic fabric, leather & cooling gel infused memory foam
  • PROSPECS™ GLASSES RELIEF SYSTEM
  • SUPERHUMAN HEARING™
  • DYNAMIC CHAT BOOST™
  • VARIABLE MIC MONITORING

Forget wireless, it has a SuperAmp!

In an age of wireless, wireless, and more wireless Turtle Beach does something a little risky - add in a few additional wires.  There first thing people are going to notice when they crack open their Elite Pro 2 headset is the small, puck-like unit that sits in the middle of the foam that headphones come in.  That’s your SuperAmp, a unit that up until now I don’t think I’ve ever seen included in a gaming oriented setup.  It has a volume knob, a spot for the USB, the headset and even an audio out to bring that audio to a stream or capture setup for content creation - but that’s not all it’s for.

You can use your phone to connect to the SuperAmp via bluetooth where you’ll gain access to a few different presets like Bass Boost or Treble Boost as well as some of the Elite Pro 2’s selling points: Superhuman hearing, microphone monitoring, and chat boost.  Off the bat I can tell people are going to love or hate microphone monitoring right off the bat.  It took me a little bit to get used to being able to hear myself - as well as what’s going on around me in the house while I play - but now that I can I don’t think I can go back.  I wear headphones because of the tactical advantage but being married to a non-gaming wife not being able to hear her if she’s calling for me has been a point of contention.  Microphone monitoring has, for me, alleviated that though that’s entirely not the point of the feature.  Monitoring your mic allows you to adjust the volume of your voice so you aren’t blowing out the ear drums of your fellow squad members - something I think we’ve all experienced.

Superhuman hearing is a different beast.  At first when I enabled it I thought it just made everything louder and rolled my eyes - I can manually turn up my volume myself so what’s the point of this?  Upon further testing, however, it seems that it really does bring frequencies that matter in competitive games to the forefront.  Footsteps WERE louder compared to the other sounds - louder than they were without it on -  and the same goes for the sound of someone foraging for weapons, etc.  Is it cheating… eh? Clearing it provides an advantage but it definitely helps an old Army guy like me with crap hearing from being considerably worse than the young people I’m playing against.

The Bluetooth came with one last fun surprise for me and that was the sounds from my phone, including phone calls, coming in through the headset while I was using it on my XBOX and PC.  I was able to take phone calls without taking it off or interrupting my gameplay and I’m going to have a hard time going back to not having this feature at my fingertips.

All said and done you don’t have to use the SuperAmp if you don’t want to.  The headset comes equipped with a standard 3.5mm jack and can easily be plugged into your XBOX controller, phone, Nintendo Switch, or whatever you want really.  You’re missing some features without it but you’re still left with quality audio and voice.

Looks and Comfort

The XBOX version comes in a pure white while the PS4 is a black headset and I couldn’t be more pleased with the look of this white headset.  The Elite Pro 2 is simply gorgeous to behold, in my humble opinion, and houses a few quality build points.  While the majority of the headset isn’t made from metal we at least aren’t left with flimsy plastic.  The connection points on the headband to the ear pieces are considerably hefty by headset standards and the band itself is a thing and durable alloy.  We don’t get as much top of the head cushion as we get in some PC gaming oriented headsets like Logitech’s G933s or Razer’s Kraken Tournament Edition they showcased for me at PAX West, but the headset is light enough that it doesn’t really get uncomfortable during long sessions.  I’ve been using the headset exclusively on both PC and XBOX for the past two weeks with some sessions netting over five or six hours straight with no head or ear discomfort to be had.  That’s a MAJOR feat of accomplishment in my book and can largely be owed to the amazingly soft and cool over the ear cushion area.

Unlike most headsets I’ve run across the ear cushion area on the Elite Pro 2 attaches with magnets instead of the annoying elastic that you stretch over the plastic method.  Not only does this make them a breeze to clean and maintain but will mean that getting replacements in the event of breakdown will be incredibly simple.  When I spoke to a Turtle Beach representative at PAX West they told me there are plans to provide replacements when they’re needed but couldn’t give me an idea of what they might cost.  The outside plastic cover of the headset are also detachable by magnets, allowing squads, teams, and even the savvy user to order or create their own custom side plates for personal flair.

Lastly there is finally vindication for those of us with bad eyes! If you’ve ever had to wear glasses and a headset at the same time you know how incredibly uncomfortable it is.  The cushions squeeze your glasses against your face or down onto the bridge of your nose and limits the duration you can tolerate wearing your headset.  Turtle beach came up with a rather elegant solution to this problem.  On the back side of the (easily removable) ear cushions is a small rubber tab that can be pulled and hooked like a belt of sorts (see picture).  This creates a small divetted channel that perfectly rests OVER your classes on the side of your face.  That five or six hour gaming session I had the other night was done completely with glasses one and zero discomfort.  Take that contact users!

Sound

All of the features I’ve talked about mean absolutely nothing if the sound is terrible.  The Elite Pro 2 features 50mm speakers with a frequency response range from 12Hz to 20kHz.  Most headsets that you run across go from 20Hz to 20Khz, which is the standard range for human hearing, so it’s interesting that Turtle Beach decided to go lower.  The idea behind utilizing speakers outside of this range is to prevent distortion when you push the limits of the speakers.  This YouTube video plays a constant 12Hz and will probably sound like your speakers are falling apart unless you have a 12Hz frequency response.  You’re hearing distortion that I don’t hear on the Elite Pro 2.  Not hearing this distortion means for gaming explosions or other ultra bass sounds I don’t get the rattlely, distorted sound that we all know and hate.

Having a plastic, closed backed speaker means the sounds are nice an enclosed and feel close to the ears.  The surround sound delivered from Windows and XBOX is delivered perfectly by the speakers.  I feel like in using the Elite Pro 2 headset I can pinpoint sound in a full 360 degree area around my character instead of just general cardinal directions.  In certain games like PUBG or the recent beta for Black Ops 4 Blackout I can get a pretty good idea of how far away someone is when they’re in a close proximity to me as well.  When it comes to sound quality I’ve noticed no distortion, no missed sounds, and an increase in gaming performance.  I don’t think we can ask for much more than that.

Lastly I want to talk about the microphone which, for a headset microphone, really impressed me.  The other day I was making a video for a different review and I couldn’t get my condenser microphone to work so I had to use the headset.  I was dreading listening to it.  We’ve all used headsets mics before and they generally sound pinched, over trebled, and easily distorted.  The Turtle Beach Elite Pro 2 microphone delivered crystal clear audio that’s impressive and appropriate for a product of it’s calibur. Check out this recording using the Turtle Beach Elite Pro 2 headset.

Final Thoughts

The Turtle Beach Elite Pro 2 headset marries quality craftsmanship and superior sound to deliver the pinnacle of gaming audio and comfort to console gamers.  Turtle Beach has paid attention to a lot of the small, luxury details from cooling jell to glasses channels to give gamers a headset that feels worth the money.  Thought the MSRP is high I stand confident that the headset will stand the test of time and provide gamers with every dollar of value put into it which is why I’m giving it our Golden Award.

Pros

  • Incredibly comfortable
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Great microphone
  • Superior sound quality

Cons

  • High MSRP
  • Headband padding is thin
  • Some just won’t like wires

The product discussed in this article was provided by the manufacturer for the purposes of review.