Turtle Beach headsets are known for their superior sound quality, and the DXL1 is no exception to this rule. Based on an extra large speaker design, the DXL1 set delivers a clear sound even on the louder sound settings. This set also comes with the DSS2 Sound Processing Unit which further clarifies the sound quality. This set does support Dolby Digital, but it is virtually created. This doesn’t make the set sound any worse than a true set would, but it is worth mentioning. Compared to other headsets in its class, the quality is one of the better sets we’ve encountered. There is also equalizer presets that you can take advantage of to further customize the sound. Between all the functions in this package, you’ll be able to get a full and rich sounding experience from a budget package.
As mentioned earlier, this headset features a 50mm driver which is 25% larger than the competitors models. It does a great job and has plenty of power to make any game sound great. Unfortunately, since the headset only utilizes one speaker per ear cup, the Dolby sound package is a simulated surround sound. This works just fine for most applications, and the unit comes with software that allows this virtual effect to be adjusted. With some fine tuning, you can get this unit fairly close to sounding like a true surround sound headset. This package also includes the DSS2 Sound Processing Unit which decodes the signal from your Xbox 360 to the set. This is also where you get your virtual Dolby sound from. The unit also has several pre-set equalizer settings and independent volume controls for the surround sound on the box itself. From here, you can fine-tune the sound coming from your Xbox, and it gives you complete control of the audio down to a fine level of detail. We were able to get this unit close to some of the higher end sets we tested. The performance was solid, and this is definitely one of the best features of the set.
The unit also has a fully customizable mic boom with a high sensitivity mic. The boom is completely flexible, and stays in any position you put it in. We tested the mic in a room with background noise playing, and we found that we were able to communicate effectively with little interference. This set also came with a mic monitor that will playback your voice in the headset when you are speaking. This is especially handy when playing at higher volumes since you will not be able to hear yourself talk. This feature will allow you to play it loud and still hear yourself say what you need to say, which makes it easier to communicate.
Many headsets today come with the ability to use the set with your everyday electronics and this set is no different. Simply use the analog input and connect the set to any device you wish. Though the digital sound and Dolby connections are exclusive to the gaming features of the headset, you can still take advantage of the superior sound quality outside of just gaming. Since there is an inline controller as well, you will be able to take the convenience of controlling your headset from one controller outside of the gaming space.
Finally, all these feature run on USB power. Luckily, there are no external AC adapters to content with. You just plug it in, and it works. There is a beauty in such simplicity, and it was great to see that this set gives you so many options while keeping the installation simple and hassle free.
This is where the DXL1 surpasses all other headsets. Retailing at $99.95 USD, few headsets can boast such a low price with so many high end options. To find a set that has Dolby decoding, a large speaker driver and the quality of the sound you would easily have to spend up to $150 USD. This is an excellent price for an excellent headset, and it is certainly deserving of our highest recommendation in this price category. For those looking for higher end features like wireless capabilities and true 7.1 sound, take a look at Turtle Beach’s high end lineup where there are several options that offer quality, inexpensive and high-end products. However, if you are just looking for an everyday, good-sounding set, this is a great option to consider.
Ease of Use / Comfort: 10
Installation for the DXL1 is very easy and only takes a few minutes. All the cables necessary are included in the box and the instructions are clear and easy to follow. They include the controller link cable for the connection to the Xbox 360 controller, which some sets exclude. They even give you patch-through RCA cables if you don’t have an optical cable or a Xbox 360 cable that allows for optical cable installation. Once the set is hooked up to the system, everything you need is on the inline controller, most of the time. This set does require some tweaking according to preference, and all of those options are on the DSS2 box. However, changing settings on the fly is easy and once you find a setting combination you like, you won’t have to change it again.
As far as comfort is concerned, the set has the standard options that make it comfortable to wear. You only have the option of material padding for the head strap and ear cups. They do a nice job of keeping the player comfortable and cool during extended play sessions. The set fit comfortably around our head and we couldn’t find any reason why it wouldn’t do the same for anyone else. The set itself is completely adjustable so no matter what size your head is, the set will conform to you.
Overall, we found this to be an exceptional set for the price range. For just under $100 USD, you get plenty of high end options and a sturdy, comfortable headset that will satisfy your everyday gaming needs. Especially when you consider how complicated Xbox 360 sets can be, this set is quite simple to install and its ability to work right out of the box is both elegant and encouraging. We hope that all sets can work as seamless as this did for the Xbox. Therefore, we highly recommend this set for any 360 gamer that is looking for a quality headset for not a lot of money. Sure, there are sets that will do more for your gaming experience, but if simplicity is important to you, you cant go wrong with the Turtle Beach Earforce DXL1.