Overall and Final Verdict
Normally you can kind of see a product coming simply because there is a big hole in the market. But These headsets came as a surprise to me when they were announced. That isn’t to say there wasn’t a big gap in their product line at the high end, but frankly, all of the gaming headset companies have had the same hole for years and no one has really wanted to jump into it. People who want higher quality audio in a gaming headset have been left to pick up options from traditional headphone companies and add their own microphone or more recently a few of those companies have finally started to make a push into the making market. I think that is the reason you see SteelSeries making this jump, people have been spending the money buy expensive headphones and expensive microphones to go with them. Not to mention headphone DACs and amps to go with them.
Now the Arctis Pro + GameDAC and the Arctis Pro Wireless have a bit of a different market focus. The Pro with GameDAC is perfect for people who want an all in one solution that will guarantee them great audio quality. This is a good portion of the market, not everyone has the time to find a DAC that will work for them, then find the best value in a pair of headphones then add a microphone. Don’t get me wrong, if you do that I guarantee you will be able to put together something cheaper with great performance. But the Arctis Pro + GameDAC is that out of the box for everyone else. The Arctis Pro Wireless, on the other hand, might be made specifically for someone like me. Someone who hates plugging their wireless device in to charge, who wants good audio quality while understanding that wired will still be better, and someone who wants something comfortable. The H-Wireless back in the day had years of use from me while not being all that comfortable or having great audio performance. I put up with all of that just to have that easy battery hot swap. After all those years I moved to the Arctis 7 because it did have good audio quality and was very comfortable. But I lost the battery swapping. Well, I can finally have both and they have added Bluetooth to get my phone calls while in game as well.
Both options have customization options available from SteelSeries in the way of headbands and the new magnetic earcups that match. Like before I was a little disappointed to not see single color options that people could get to match their setup. The color wave look they have is kind of cool, but I know a lot of people just want their red or orange or green etc. They also dropped the other earcup padding options like the velour that I wanted to upgrade my Arctis 7 too. The Arctis Pro Wireless has the same old screen setup that goes back to the H Wireless, I know I would have preferred it be a lot more like the GameDAC. I would also be just as happy to drop the screen and additional input options as well and just have a nice wireless headset for my PC with swappable batteries if it would save some money.
Speaking of the pricing, both headsets aren’t exactly budget friendly. The Arctis Pro + GameDAC has an MSRP of $249.99. That is a big chunk of money for a headset, that said I do think it is competing with high-end headsets from companies like Sennheiser. Hell, their headsets don’t even come with a DAC at that same price. So while expensive, I don’t think it is out of line. The Arctis Pro Wireless costs even more with its MSRP of $329.99. That, on the other hand, does seem high. Now with console connection options and being wireless it does compete with headsets like the Astro A50 that isn’t far off in price. But I wouldn’t be against an option in the future that cuts out all of that if it would bring this back down into the 200-225 range. Don’t get me wrong, this is a great wireless headset, but I think there might be room between the Arctis 7 and the Pro Wireless for something.
Live Pricing: HERE
Live Pricing: HERE