SteelSeries Arctis 9X Review

Fresh out of the box and through our SteelSeries Arctis 9X Review a headset that completely took over as my daily driver was the Arctis 9X. There is a bit of mixed feeling with this headset over the ones I currently use, the Arctis 5. Mainly, the reason for replacing the Arctis 5 headset I use, this one is wireless with Bluetooth but with a twist.

As I mentioned in my review of the Arctis 7P+ wireless headset, the production of this headset has a steel frame and the same signature headband. The Arctis 9X is easy to setup to your Xbox One and to other consoles via Bluetooth. What makes this headset a nice replacement for the previous is included in this review.

SteelSeries Arctis 9X Wireless Headset
Manufacturer: SteelSeries
Release Date: June 23, 2019
MSRP: $199.99 USD

Upon opening the package, I had a similar experience but this time with less accessories; besides the headset, it’s just a charging cord. While other headsets typically have a dongle for their 2.4Ghz wireless, this is strictly Bluetooth, so it can connect to many more devices. This introduces one of my favorite things that I couldn’t wait to talk about.

You can directly connect to your Xbox with Xbox Wireless, which acts like a controller and connects seamlessly. However, there is another aspect of this headset besides connecting to the Xbox; you don’t have to choose being connected to your console and your PC. You read that correctly: you don’t have to disconnect from one connection to use another one.

The biggest selling point to me is the Simultaneous Bluetooth which allows you to connect to Bluetooth and Xbox. With this, you can play and hear Xbox game audio and also be in a Discord call or listening to music. This is further helped by the audio dial that lets you choose which audio you hear more of.

Along with these connectivity standards, it also features Windows Sonic Spatial Audio support used for hearing every detail in game. Those two great features are also coupled with the great sound profiles, so bass hits heavy in games like Mortal Kombat 11. Audio is the biggest and best thing about these headsets and it dominates everything else.

There are a fair bit of downsides to this headset which is why I recommend looking into uses for it. The range on this headset, regardless of connection, is shorter than other headsets that I have used. I can barely step away from the any device for more than 15 feet before I notice distortion and sometimes it may drop the connection completely.

Some settings like the equalizer and mic volume control can only be accessed by plugging in directly to a PC. It removes some utility from being useful if you’re looking for more sound profiles like Bass Booster, Smile, or Flat. The fortunate upside is that the 9X sounds great out of the box but lacks functionality if you can’t connect to a PC.

Another drawback that I noticed in the time I had is that using mainly Bluetooth; if you have the Simultaneous Bluetooth connectivity, it turns on the Xbox as well. There are workarounds from the community that will help negate this but require unplugging the console when turning on the headset. It’s the biggest flaw in an otherwise great sounding headset.

My uses are a bit different and I have the flexibility to switch to headsets if I need to, but I shouldn’t have to. I mainly use my headsets separate from the Blue Yeti microphone I use for talking. While I’m not terribly mobile with my wireless headsets, it’s better to have the range than to not have it.

To be honest, with a price tag of $199.99 USD, I would thoroughly look for what your uses are or will be in the future. This is an excellent headset and the ease of connecting it to devices is a dream come true. The drawbacks are something that should be noted when doing some decision making; for general use however, you really can’t beat this.

The SteelSeries Arctis 9X is now available on the SteelSeries online store and at participating retailers.

SteelSeries Arctis 9X Wireless Headset was reviewed using a review unit provided by SteelSeries. You can find additional information about Niche Gamer’s review/ethics policy here.

The Verdict: 8

The Good

  • Connects to Xbox just like a controller
  • Simultaneous Bluetooth is amazing
  • Windows Sonic Spatial Audio is natively supported
  • Crisp sounds and music come through great

The Bad

  • Configure on PC only through USB
  • Shorter range causes distortion
  • Microphone is just a little below average


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