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SteelSeries Arctis Nova 5X Wireless Headset (Hardware) – Review

Founded in 2001, but famously coined SteelSeries in 2007, this ostentatious company has come a long way from their initial products the ‘Icemat’ and ‘SteelPad’ mouse mats. With a wide range of products now, SteelSeries has expanded to cover all your needs as a gamer. Introducing the ‘SteelSeries Arctis Nova 5X Wireless Headset’, a new addition to the vast range SteelSeries already boasts. Let’s take a peek at what there is to find.

The packaging is meticulous. In the box, you will find; the headset, USB-C Wireless dongle, USB-C to A adapter cable, charging cable and a sticker sheet. It doesn’t have an AUX cable sadly though. Boy, does the headset look sleek though as it proudly sits in the middle. Coming in matte black with green swirling accents on the elastic support headband, it has medium-sized ear cups with the SteelSeries logo on each side. The ear cups are not overly large but not too small, they are comfortable with dense foam padding and easy to adjust with the flexible slide in the headband.

With a flexible and retractable microphone to deliver your voice, it is not too long that it is obnoxious; you will barely know it is there especially when it has a seamless stealth retraction. It also picks up your voice precisely, delivering a great listening experience for your audience with its 32KHz/16-bit audio ability.

Functionality-wise, the Arctis Nova 5X Wireless has a plethora of features. Firstly, and most simply, there are 2 functional buttons on each cup. The left houses the volume wheel and the ‘push to talk’ button while the right has the Power On/ Quick Switch mode button and the Chat Mix dial.

Designed for Xbox, this device is actually compatible with a shopping list of devices including the Playstation, Nintendo Switch and a range of Android and Mac devices. Testing the headset on my Xbox and PC, one of the shining features, in particular, is the ability to switch from wired to wireless either through Bluetooth or the 2.4GHz Dongle mode.

Not only can you switch on the fly you can be connected to both at once and switch between them with no hassle. I could go from talking in an Xbox chat to listening to my playlist on Spotify with a simple touch. Very convenient.

The only issue I had with the dongle is the fact the Xbox Series X has no USB-C slot to plug it into meaning you need to run the adapter cable across your desk. This isn’t the most sophisticated look. I actually preferred to use it more with the PC and Discord where a cleaner setup was possible. I wish the dongle had been a USB-A.

So what is the audio actually like with its Neodymium Magnetic Drivers? Crystal clear, actually. Every tone and bass is distinct with no distortion. I could switch between sound profiles and hear a defined change in levels and audio peaks. Music slapped and games rumbled from the power of the Arctis Nova 5x Wireless.

I could pick up the most minute details with finesse from the footsteps of enemies in ‘Rainbow Six Siege’ to the pitter-patter of rain and the distant roars of a T-Rex in ‘Ark: Survival Ascended’ with no difference in sound quality transferring from PC to Xbox games. It also has decent noise cancelling of environmental sounds but in 2024 that is a feature I would expect from any decently priced headset.

It boasts a 60-hour battery life, 50 hours with the dongle, and while I didn’t time this, I did use it for a solid week without having to put it on charge and confidently kept using it before feeling like I should just because it’s now routine for me. It also has fast charging, a must in this modern time where time is of the essence. Handy, for when you need to take a headset on the go.

The SteelSeries GG software is the place to go for all your customisation needs. This software is so easy to install and has such a user-friendly interface. Here, you can use the ‘Sonar’ to make your own sound profiles. You can make your mix from games to chat to media and mic until your heart is content.

The real way to go software-wise is the Arctis Nova 5 Companion app for the mobile phone though. This very impressive add-on has over 100 unique game profiles to choose from with even music and movie profiles. From ‘Ark’ to ‘The Witcher 3’, ‘Call Of Duty: Warzone’ and ‘Street Fighter 6’; every influential game is there.

This is innovative because each is individually and automatically adjusted and you can tweak volume and sidetones and toggle on and off the limiter. Each really catered to each game and I thoroughly enjoyed using my phone to control my headset as I switched between titles and even playlists, changing tones, mids and bass levels at just a tap of a finger. Genius and innovative.

Overall, the SteelSeries Arctis Nova 5x Wireless Headset is a powerful and impressive headset. SteelSeries continues to show its skill in the audio scene by delivering quality sound at the price of AU$299. If you want a headset that can be used with multiple devices wirelessly, then the Arctis Nova 5x Wireless Headset is a very strong contender.

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The Good

  • Stylish and sleek
  • Comfortable and flexible fit
  • Stealth retractable microphone
  • Functional buttons
  • Compatible with a range of devices
  • Hassel free mode switching
  • Crystal clear sound
  • Clear voice delivery
  • Fast and long charging life
  • Great accompanying apps
  • Over 100 game profiles on the mobile app
  • Excellent on PC

The Bad

  • No AUX cable
  • Messy look using the adapter with an Xbox

Written by: Stacey


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