Turtle Beach Ear Force Recon 50 PC Gaming Headset Review

Introduction


Picking the right headset is no easy task, although it may seem quite simple. There’s a huge range of products on the market to pick from, so many that it can be quite daunting trying to find the one that will best suits your needs, or your bank balance. The latest from Turtle Beach, the Recon 50, is targeted at the budget-friendly end of the market and with an RRP of just £29.99, it’s certainly going to appeal to a large part of the market. Obviously, that low price does mean it’s not going to be as amazing as some of the more expensive products on the market, but I am eager to see just how much you can get for such a small price tag.

“Experience the sleek, lightweight design and crystal clear audio of the Ear Force Recon 50 gaming headset. With 40mm Neodymium speakers and in-line controls, the Recon 50 conveniently places Mic Mute and Master Volume at your fingertips, and you can use the high-sensitivity adjustable boom mic for in-game and online chat, and then remove it when listening to music and watching movies. The Ear Force Recon 50 connects to virtually any PC, Mac and mobile/tablet device, and is also compatible with the PlayStation 4 controller, the new Xbox One controller with the 3.5mm headset jack, and other Xbox One controllers via the EAR FORCE Headset Audio Controller (sold separately).”

With powerful drivers, a detachable microphone, multi-format support, a lightweight design, and even a basic in-line controller, the Recon 50 isn’t exactly shy on the features you’re actually going to need. Let’s jump right in and take a closer look at what this headset has to offer.

The packaging is typical Turtle Beach, bright colours and a stylish picture of the headset, with a few of the main specs detailed down the side.

Around the back, we have more information detailing the 40mm drivers, mobile support and detachable microphone.

In the box, you’ll find the headset (obviously), as well as a quick start guide, detachable boom microphone and a 3.5mm 4-pole to dual 3.5mm 3-pole adapter cable.

The Recon 50 comes hard-wired, making it plug and play ready with most devices, including mobile. Just remember that you’ll need the adapter cable (see above) to use the microphone and audio on PC.

What is a little worrying is that the cable is quite thin, especially the part that goes from each driver to the in-line controller. They’re no thicker than most in-ear headphone cables and while they’re going to do the job just fine, extra care should be taken as they could be a little more prone to breaking if you’re a bit rough with them. The in-line controller is a bit basic, but it does have a master volume control and a microphone mute switch, so it’s certainly a welcome addition to the setup.

At first glance, the headset looks to follow the design of most other Turtle Beach headsets. It still has that oval ear cup shape and mounting system, as well as a semi-open back design. However, a few things are slightly different, such as some cheaper materials being used, which is no doubt a requirement for the price to be brought down lower.

The headband is quite thin and while there is an extension slider on each side, the interior components are also plastic. They’ll do the job, but I’d be careful not to sit on your headset any time soon.

On the bottom edge of the headset, there’s a jack socket for the boom microphone. I do like that the microphone is detachable, as it means the headset can double up as headphones for mobile devices.

The ear cups fold inwards, which is great for when you’re wearing the headset around your neck between games.

There’s a good amount of padding on the ear cups, which does provide a snug fit while the leather coverings help block a lot of external noise. They’re a little uncomfortable at first, but as it often the case with this type of padding, it takes time to wear-in to the user. The 40mm drivers in this headset are quite surprising, they’re quite powerful at max volume, have a good amount of  base and bright and clear treble. There could ideally be a little more punch to the mid-ranges, but for gaming, watching movies and listening to music, they sound on par or above most headsets in this price range.

The headband on the Recon 50 is quite thin, with a grippy rubber coating on the top and a little bit of Turtle Beach branding.

There’s minimal padding on the interior, with a rubber grip coating. This isn’t great for comfort, but the headset is lightweight, so you can get away with it. The main issue is that the red rubber coating grips your hair, sure it keeps the headset in place, but trying to adjust the headset during use can feel a little uncomfortable.

The microphone boom isn’t the most flexible, but you can bend it a bit to get a more ideal speaking position. Much like the drivers, I was pleasantly surprised by the microphone performance. It’s bright and clear with no distortion and at this price, that’s more than enough to make me happy.

Turtle Beach Ear Force Recon 30X Xbox One Headset Review

Introduction


Picking the right headset can be a virtual minefield as there are a seemingly endless range of products to choose from. Of course, if you pick out what you really want from your headset and set a budget, things do get a lot easier. The latest headset from Turtle Beach is perfect for use on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, PC, Apple/MAC and Mobile, so there’s no doubt that it’s versatile in terms of formats, and the single ear-cup design means it’s tailored to suit those who only need a headset for chat functions. Add to that a price tag of just £19.99 and the 30X is shaping up to be an interesting entry-level product.

“Experience the crystal clear audio and comfort of the officially licensed EAR FORCE Recon 30X Xbox One chat headset and enhance your multiplayer games by communicating with your team.” – Turtle Beach

  • Direct 3.5mm connection to the new Xbox One Controller, and to other Xbox One controllers via the EAR FORCE® Headset Audio Controller (sold separately)
  • Unique slotted ear-cup design allows external game sounds in
  • Large 40mm Neodymium speaker delivers crystal clear chat audio
  • Lightweight and comfortable over-ear design
  • In-line controls place Mic Mute and Chat Volume conveniently at your fingertips
  • Use the high-sensitivity adjustable boom mic for in-game chat

The packaging is nicely designed, keeping in theme with other turtle beach products. There’s a clear image of the headset, as well as a quick rundown of the major features, such as the in-line volume controller.

In the box, you’ll find the headset (obviously), as well as a few bits of documentation, nothing fancy, but at least everything you need is here.

The headset comes hard-wired and doesn’t require drivers, meaning you can just unbox, plug in and play.

Turtle Beach Reveal New Battlefront & X-Wing Pilot Gaming Headsets

 

Turtle Beach are on of the biggest names in the gaming peripherals market, and Star Wars is one of the biggest names in movie history. With Star Wars set to enter the realm of gaming once again, which the launch of Star Wars: Battlefront, is was only a matter of time before a brand launched a special edition headset, or two, to celebrate.

The Star Wars themed Sandtrooper and X-Wing Pilot gaming headsets are the perfect match for fans of Battlefront, although I personally think they look pretty cool in general, so perhaps you don’t have to be a hardcore Star Wars fan to enjoy them.

The Sandtrooper headset (above) is themed after the squad of Stormtroopers donning the signature orange shoulder pauldron and is available for a MSRP of £69.99.

The celebrate Star Wars: The Force Awakens, the X-Wing Pilot headset is themed after the signature orange jumpsuits worn by Rebel Alliance pilots and is based on Turtle Beach’s all-new lightweight and comfortable entry-level Recon series design and features a very reasonable MSRP of £34.99.

Star Wars is one of the hottest, must-have consumer brands heading into the holiday season and we’ve got two truly unique, high-quality Star Wars-inspired headsets fans will definitely want to add to their collections,” said Juergen Stark, CEO, Turtle Beach Corporation. “Turtle Beach is filled with hardcore fans, so it’s been a real pleasure for us to design these two headsets that will let gamers further immerse themselves in theStar Wars universe.”

Star Wars Battlefront launches November 19, 2015 on the PS4, Xbox One, and on Origin for PC. The Star Wars Battlefront Sandtrooper and Star Wars X-Wing Pilot Headset are available now. Which of the two headsets would you rather own?

Turtle Beach Recon 320 PC & Mobile Gaming Headset Review

Introduction


Turtle Beach are one of the hottest and biggest gaming brands around, time and time again they’ve delivered great quality headsets for a range of budgets and a wide range of formats. Their new Ear Force Recon 320 is a mid-budget headset, so it’s not completely over the top with features, but it does still promise high-end performance and build quality; not that I would expect anything else from a well-known brand such as this.

The Recon 320 may not be the most expensive headset that Turtle Beach produce, but it still packs plenty of features. It supports the latest Dolby 7.1 Surround Sound virtual processing, a pair of powerful 50mm drivers, customisable backplates, an in-line controller, detachable microphone boom and more, so I’m really looking forward to putting it through its paces to see what it can do!

The headset comes equipped with  a USB connection for PC, but also a detachable 3.5mm cable that makes it perfect for mobile use, or for use with just about any device in the world with a headphone socket. Just keep in mind that the Dolby Surround features only work via the USB connection and that the headset will run in stereo mode via the 3.5mm cable.

The microphone is pretty standard, but features a flexible/positional boom and can be easily removed from the headset when not in use; perfect for those who want to use the headset as headphones.

 

The in-line controller is nice and compact, but has a volume dial on the side, as well as a master microphone mute switch that’ll prove handy while playing online.

The headset has a somewhat minimalist style. There’s some matte finish plastics for the bulk of the headset, but the backplates on the drivers are glossy. The back plates are held in place with magnets and can be easily removed to allow you to customize them with your own design; you can also purchase pre-customised plates directly from Turtle Beach.

Each ear cup is quite deep, this allows plenty of room for all that thick padding, as well as those large 50mm drivers; so we should get a good level of bass performance from this headset.

There’s a pair of sockets on the left ear-cup, one for the microphone, the other for the mobile/PC cable.

The headband is lightweight, yet still quite strong. There’s some really nice quality padding on both ear cups and on the headband. The headband padding may not look like much, but the headset is surprising lightweight, so comfort really shouldn’t be an issue, even after a long gaming session.

The headband can be easily adjusted to suit your personal fit.

While both ear cups can be rotated inwards so you can wear it around your neck between games, but there’s also a few degree of pivot to provide a better fit over your ears.

Overall, it’s a really cool looking headset. It has a bright red trim that some may find a little garish, but I think a welcome contrast to the dull grey plastics and I can see this design proving quite popular with gamers in general.