Steelseries Arctis Pro Wireless Headset Review
Published: 26th March 2018 | Source: Steelseries | Price: £299.99 |
The Arctis Pro comes in a very sturdy box. Yes it's £300, but the clarity of the packaging does lend itself more to the higher end of the market where shouting about unexpectedly good value features is less important. After all, at this price we expect to have all the bells, whistles, kitchen sink, eggs, beans, fried slice, the whole shebang.
Beneath the actual headset and it's double layer, very sturdy, plastic housing is another black cardboard box inside which we can find the multitude of cables available to connect the Arctis Pro to whatever hardware you choose. It's particularly nice to see an Optical cable included. Again at this price it's to be expected, but expectations and reality don't often match.
The main event is, of course, the headset and connection box. Steelseries have included two batteries in the box so you can always have one on charge and the other running in the headset itself, ensuring almost zero downtime and not having to resort to digging out a charging cable in the midst of a firefight.
Unlike the lower priced offerings in the Arctis range, the Pro curiously comes without any lighting at all. We understand that you need to maximise battery life, and perhaps the inclusion of RGB lighting would necessitate running the Steelseries Engine software, but it seems a curious omission particularly when the Pro+DAC option gives you the RGB glow.
Besides that the design will be extremely familiar to anyone with even a passing knowledge of the Steelseries Arctis range. Big, closed back, ear cups, suspended headband design, retractable microphone and huge foam ear pieces all complete the recognisable design.
The microphone retracts into the ear cup and, most importantly, doesn't resolutely refuse to straighten out. You can put it wherever you like and it stays there, more than can be said for a lot of retractable microphone designs.
There are a lot of controls on the headset, as you would expect from a wireless design. Going clockwise from the top left we have the microphone mute toggle - easy to hit and tell at a glance whether you're muted even without the glowing red dot on the end, the volume which just spins and spins as it has to given that you can also change the volume with the connection box connection options including 3.5mm jacks for playing when you're out and about and finally the microphone. On the right hand ear piece we have the power button and Bluetooth connector which doubles up as a play/pause/answer button. It's worth noting that this doesn't seem to work in Windows 10 to control either Windows Media Player nor the damn annoying Groove Music. At least it doesn't work on our test machine.
The covers are kept in place with strong magnets and are extremely easy to remove. It's perfectly possible to change the battery from the one in the dock to the headset and get back gaming in around ten seconds, of which two are turning the headset back on again. Unquestionably the least frustrating wireless solution we've seen.
The previous model in the Arctis range we looked at came with a ski-band design that repelled as many as it enticed, so it's nice that the Pro is designed in an all-black manner. The headband is easily changed if you want to buy another, but at least with a plain black design fewer people will want to do so as a matter of necessity.