Turtle Beach Ear Force X4 Reviewtacohunter52 - January 25, 2009
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Headsets are an essential part of every gamer's setup. They allow you to communicate with others, they give you the ability to have your game as loud as you want without disturbing others, and, for some people, they make for a nifty pair of headphones. Because of these essential needs, headsets come in a variety of price ranges for a variety of different purposes.
You can obtain a cheap $20 headset at your local Radio Shack solely for the purpose of minimal usage/minimal quality VOIP in Crysis, or you can order a $100 dollar headset designed for a higher level of gaming experience. Therein lies the question. Are the higher-priced headsets worth it for your needs? Do you really need the 50Hz Frequency Response, the surround sound quality, or even the noise cancellation abilities? The answers to these question will depend on budgets, the product, and most of all, YOU, the gamer.
The EAR FORCE X4 is a little bit different; it is designed for the Xbox 360. However, that is not to say it falls short of great gaming features. Along with the ability to stand more then 30 feet away from your Xbox and still hear the 13 year old boys screaming at you for taking the sniper rifle, you also get over-sized, high-fidelity 50mm speakers that are capable of Dolby 5.1 Channel Surround Sound. Oh yeah, baby! If your computer, or Blu-Ray/DVD player has an optical output, you can use the EAR FORCE X4 as a pair of normal headphones. This may not make these the most attractive headset for someone buying soley for PC use, but it is a great feature if you own an XBOX and like listening to loud music withought disturbing others.
And if you ever get tired of being shouted at by the other players, Turtle Beach was nice enough to include the ability to adjust game and chat volumes separately. Now when you get shouted at you can turn THEM down and the GAME up. You also have the great option to hook these up to your home entertainment system. This way you can watch The Matrix turned as loud as it will go with the Bass Boost on and no complaints from those you live with. But is all of this worth the $200 dollar price tag? Is the EAR FORCE X4 really that much better than the included Microsoft Headset. Let's find out.
The package came in an ordinary brown box with the Turtle Beach logo and website on it. The box inside the box is wrapped in plastic. Through that protective wrap you can see the headset, the transmitter, and a few specifications of the EAR FORCE X4 (I love writing that! It has a zing to it).
After taking it out of the plastic, you can get a clearer picture of the box. On the back is the EAR FORCE X4 logo, as well as some pictures on how it hooks up to your Xbox. At the top right there is another logo that says "LATE NIGHT GAMING", meaning you can play your games at night with as much noise, chaos and world destruction as you want without being arrested by your neighbors for disturbing their peace and quiet. Under that you can see a few more specifications, as well as a quick description of how comfortable the headset is.
Turtle Beach did not waste any space on the box. On the right they offer a few sentences of how much better the Dolby 5.1 Surround Sound makes the headset, as well as how you live in your game world without being disturbed or disturbing any one else. The opposite side features a diagram of both the headset and the transmitter. The bottom of the box goes on to list the package contents, a full list of specifications, the system requirements, and the copyright agreement.
Pulling the headset out revealed two fold open side doors that both read "Play Like a Pro." You can also see some of the package contents in the back.
Taking out the headset revealed all its contents. A power adapter for the transmitter, an Xbox Controller Cable, a Digital Optical Cable, a pair of AAA Batteries, a user guide, a mini brochure, and a sticker uniquely/oddly proclaiming, “All Your Ears Are Belong To Us.” And no.., that is not a typo on my part and you are not going crazy. It actually reads, “All Your Ears Are Belong To Us.”