Turtle Beach PX22 Amplified Universal Gaming Headset Review

Finding a decent set of headphones these days isn’t an easy task.  The market is flooded with brands, styles and features.  I’ve just spent the last week using Turtle Beach’s new PX22 wired stereo headphones which are compatible with both consoles and mobile devices.  From a value standpoint these are some of the best headphones I have reviewed to date.

The first thing I noticed upon receiving these was Turtle Beach has certainly upped their game in the packaging department.  Sliding the outer marketing sleeve off reveals a white box with the Turtle Beach branding elegantly embossed on the top. The black headphones are presented nicely and all of the cords and accessories are neatly organized in individually labelled boxes.  As trivial as unboxing might seem I always appreciate attention to this experience.  You’ve just paid hard earned money for something and attention to small details like this gives me good feelings before even putting it in to use.

The build quality of the PX22 headphones is up to Turtle Beach’s typically high standards.  50mm speakers are located inside leatherette ear cups which sit comfortably over your entire ear.  While there is a little rotational play to fit different sizes and shapes of people’s heads the ear cups do not rotate for more comfortable wearing if you have to put the headphones around your neck.  That’s too bad.  Matte black finished plastic is highlighted with PX22 and MLG branding on each ear.  The cable to plug into your 360 or PS3 is plenty long enough for any home setup. I was disappointed to find the microphone is not removable.  While it does rotate up and along the headband you are unfortunately stuck with it in situations where you aren’t gaming.  I understand the argument that it is always there and ready for use but I would just prefer the option.

The headphones can be plugged directly in to any headphone jack on a mobile phone, handheld or computer.  Using the included amplifier requires a USB port for power and allows you to dial in how much base or treble you want.  You can also adjust in-game and chat volumes.  Provided you have a power source near you can jury rig things so that you can use the amplifier with mobile devices and handheld gaming systems. For home use the PX22’s are great but I don’t really see many people packing along both the headphones and amp when traveling, especially if you’re a light packer like myself (these things aren’t small). I’ll be sticking with my Bose MIE2i’s when I’m on the road.

A word of caution. Before you use these headphones with consoles you are going to need either the PS3 AV cable or the Xbox 360 Audio Adapter.  Neither of these come in the box with PX22’s so be prepared if you’re looking at picking these up.  PC setup is far easier since they generally have a typical stereo headphones jack.

I reviewed Turtle Beach’s Ear Force Kilo headphones back in January  and you can read that HERE. I thought the fidelity of the sound was good but they lacked a low end punch when gaming. For the same price, the PX22’s drop the Call of Duty branding and add in a USB-powered amplifier. This amplifier makes all the difference. Without it (you can plug the headphones directly in to any device that has a typical stereo headphones jack), there is no discernible difference in sound quality compared to the Kilos. The fidelity of the PX22’s is excellent. Sounds are crisp and clear. Being able to dial in treble and bass via the amp is where these headphones shine. The bass gets rich without distortion. The rumble of big engines comes to life in driving games while gunfire and explosions have substantially more impact in action games. The improvement over the Ear Force Kilos when gaming is impressive. Listening to music is equally so.

If you are looking for a set of stereo headphones that works with several devices around the house or office for a reasonable price the Turtle Beach PX22’s are an excellent option. The addition of the in-line amplifier really enhances sound quality and gives it a depth and adjustability not found in other similarly priced headphones from Turtle Beach.


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