Wireless gaming headsets are very appealing, but they are more expensive than their wired devices.The Stealth 450 is an unobtrusive, unobtrusive headset. It’s mostly matte black plastic over the earcups and headband, with elliptically shiny black plastic backs on the earcups that hold illuminated Turtle Beach logos. The ear cushions are also elliptical and surround your ears comfortably. The tension of the headband was a bit too tight for my taste and pushed from the sides to my head. I have a larger than average head and the Stealth 450 became uncomfortable after modest periods. The headset does not feel cheap or chunky, but it lacks the plush, solid body of the expensive Logitech Artemis G933 or the cabled Astro Gaming A40 TR . The padding on the ears feels a bit stiff and thin compared to the Astro and Logitech headsets, which really affects the head of the Stealth 450.
In the left auricle is a detachable boom microphone connector, a small black plastic tab at the end of a flexible metal arm. The right auricle holds all other connections and controls. A micro-USB port charges the headset (Turtle Beach takes up to 15 hours of listening time), and a 3.5mm jack plug allows the use of the headset wired with the supplied 3.5mm, 4-pin audio cable is. Two plastic wheels control the volume of the headset and microphone, and a large preset button in between switches between four EQ modes (Bass Boost, Bass + Treble Boost, Natural, and Vocal Boost). Finally, the triangular Turtle Beach logo on the back serves as an on / off switch.
The Stealth 450 has a wireless USB receiver. It lights up when the headset is plugged in, but it lacks other controls or ports. While billed as a PC headset, the Stealth 450 works with the PlayStation 4. I connected the receiver to the USB port on my PS4 and it was automatically registered as a wireless headset. However, 7.1-channel surround sound decoding of the headset is not supported. It works as a stereo headset when connected to a PS4. The music sounds solid in the Stealth 450, but does not impress much by its power or clarity. It handles our bass test track “The Silent Shout” by The Knife without distortion, even at maximum volume. However, the maximum volumes are not that strong; The Subbass tones have a vague sense of power, but the Astro A40 TR and the Logitech G933 are missing all over.
The sound of the Stealth 450 is heavily weighted to the lower mids, with the higher frequencies being somewhat, but not quite, enough to equalize the sound for the music. This is a normal audio profile for gaming headsets, but even the Natural EQ setting on the Stealth 450 may not appeal to music purists. The upright bass in Miles Davis’ “So What” sounds deep and full, but the more subtle parts of the mix, like the sound of the string plucking, barely get through. The opening acoustic guitar notes in Yes’ “Roundabout” are clear, but have no sense of texture, and when the bass synth is in it, it overpowers the mix and pushes the accompanying guitar sounds into the background.
The 7.1-channel surround sound of the headset is pretty much useless, but this is a problem with all gaming headsets. Headphones do not have enough room to reflect to create the right impression of positional recordings. The front and back sounds are mixed differently by the headset’s stereo drivers to create subtle differences. However, this is not enough to produce a clear directed audio.