The SteelSeries Arctis Pro Gaming headset is available for the proud price of 199.99 Euros. The expectations placed on the new headset are correspondingly high. To what extent it can fulfill these, our following test should clarify. We will not only examine the sound of the headset in detail, but will also examine its construction, design and wearing comfort.
Design and Workmanship
After unpacking, the Arctis Pro simply presents itself in black. Colour accents are not set. This is left to the user, who can illuminate an LED ring at the edge of the ear cups as desired. Without this LED lighting, the headset is unobtrusive and unobtrusive, making it suitable for everyday use. If you want to use the Arctis Pro as a headphone replacement, you will most likely benefit from its simplicity – in public, headsets should usually not blink brightly or otherwise attract attention with their bright colors. With regard to use in the gaming sector, the LED ring should again be referred to, which enables individualisation. The microphone also has an integrated RGB LED.
A closer look at the headset reveals combinations of matt black ABS, rubber coating and metallic hinges that make the headset look rather classy. The details reveal that SteelSeries attaches great importance to excellent materials and first-class workmanship.
The left earpiece, which also contains the microphone, also has a volume wheel and a microphone mute button. Different illumination colours can be set for the microphone depending on the status.
In addition, the rigid alignment of the headband is conspicuous. With many other headphones it serves the adaptability to the skull of the wearer – not so with the SteelSeries Arctis Pro. There is a special textile band for this purpose, which is attached in addition to the headband and can be adapted to the anatomical conditions of the wearer by means of Velcro. The presence of two bands distinguishes the Arctis Pro optically from numerous other headsets.
The wearing comfort is correspondingly dependent on the textile tape already introduced. In principle, the idea of adjusting the width of the headset by means of Velcro is quite clever, as it allows great flexibility. In practice, however, there are weaknesses that affect the wearing comfort. The SteelSeries Arctis Pro is clearly not suitable for skulls of above-average size. The flexibility of the textile tape is naturally limited. However, this frame is simply too small for some skulls.
The straps are attached to a biaxial joint, which can be adjusted quite flexibly and can therefore be adjusted in all directions. This idea also proves to be extremely practical – but it is also subject to limitations. Overall, therefore, it would have been advisable to allow flexibility within a somewhat broader framework. So people with a broad skull will not be able to enjoy Arctis Pro because it is simply too narrow.
If, however, the anatomical conditions of the wearer move within what is possible with the band, the wearing comfort is absolutely pleasant. The removable ear cushions also contribute to the headset’s comfort. The headset fitted me very well and I was enthusiastic about the wearing comfort.
The microphone differs significantly from conventional headset microphones, which usually rely on cardioid or omnidirectional characteristics, due to its figure-eight characteristic. Overall, the performance of the microphone is satisfactory. The microphone arm is sufficiently long and flexible to allow the microphone to be adapted to your needs. If the microphone is not needed, it can be retracted.
With regard to the recorded sound, it should be noted that ambient sounds directly in front of the microphone are also recorded and can be heard very clearly. All in all, the recorded sound is quite clear and can be recognized and understood without difficulty.
The SteelSeries Arctis Pro’s 40 mm neodymium drivers can reproduce frequencies between 10 Hz and 40 kHz. They thus offer an extended frequency range that goes beyond that of many other headsets. Even particularly high tones can still be reproduced. DTX Headphone:X v2.0 is also supported, allowing 7.1 surround sound to be virtually emulated.
The sound quality of the Arctis Pro can be summarized as great. The bass is enormously deep and very clear. It is by no means unpleasantly booming, but is reproduced in a very differentiated and nuanced way. Music lovers can look forward to hardly falsified instruments and very well reproduced low voices in the bass range.
The sound quality in the midrange is also far above average. The sound can be described as spatial and still very nuanced. In music, the midrange is again of great importance for some instruments as well as for most female voices. In addition, the sounds generated by games are to a large extent also in the midrange. The balance of this range is a clear advantage for a gaming headset like the Arctis Pro.
Also the heights are clear. They can be described as neutral, which should suit gaming enthusiasts, as all tones sound quite natural, which is naturally pleasant. The spatial location of the sound in the game should not be a problem with the Arctis Pro. So the sound is really excellent.
The SteelSeries Arctis Pro can be used on any platform. At the computer the connection including ChatMix control via USB is possible. RGB lighting also becomes active and can be controlled via the SteelSeries Engine 3 software. In addition, however, a jack adapter is included in the scope of delivery, which allows connection to many other devices that offer a jack connection.
A registration as for example with the Arctis 3 is not necessary to use the SteelSeries Engine 3. The headset is digitally connected via USB and thus automatically detected. In the settings you will also find DTX Headphone:X v2.0 for the virtual 7.1 sound in addition to the lighting. In addition, various other settings can be made for the microphone and the drivers.
The software also supports different profiles, which can be changed automatically depending on the started application. With special engine apps it is also possible to synchronize the RGB lighting.
Conclusion on the SteelSeries Arctis Pro
The SteelSeries Arctis Pro is an excellent gaming headset that can also be recommended to music lovers. Outwardly restrained and yet noble, it offers the best sound and thus enables extraordinary gaming experiences. The positive overall picture is rounded off by a harmonious microphone. The only point of criticism is the unsuitability for people with particularly large skulls – for the majority, however, it should fit without problems.