Turtle Beach Ear Force i60 Wireless Headset ReviewThu, Mar 27, 2014 - 9:49 AM
Subjective Listening: Music, Movies, and Games
Not everyone hears the same as each other. People’s ears are different and preferences dictate our style. The subjective listening tests in our reviews not only compare the product with other gaming headsets, but also audiophile-grade headphones. Those who don’t regularly listen with higher-end equipment may not notice the sound quality deficiencies we are able to notice.
When connected wirelessly, the i60 sound character has a distracting midrange peak at around 800 MHz that was creating too much reverb. Equalization significantly improved the experience revealing a headphone that was quite detailed and energetic though not as crisp as we would expect from something that costs $400.
Plugging in the 3.5mm analog cable gave a different result. The headphone sounded hollow and undetailed. Using the wireless connectivity options is preferred. We were hoping that bypassing audio processing directly to another dedicated source would improve upon the sound and work around any if any limitations the Ear Force i60′s own built-in processing might have had.
As when noticed while listening to music, the i60 sound character didn’t accurately reproduce movie audio. The midrange peak works against the sound quality by detracting from the impact and energy. However, the stereo soundstage is wide and sound effects that move from ear to ear have a sense of direction and distance. The “fun” virtual surround sound preset profiles on the other hand, such as the super human hearing setting, are far from fun and negatively impact sound quality.
Gaming is what the Ear Force i60 is best suited for which is surprising since this headset isn’t pushed foremost for games. While it lacks the tuning for serious competitive gaming, this headset does have some respectable positional audio recreation and the characteristic emphasizes many of the critical noises in multiplayer gaming.
The boom-less microphone is well implemented on the i60. Expectedly it’s omnidirectional because it’s not attached to a boom and it is sensitive enough to record keyboard keystrokes and mouse clicks. Voice recording quality is more than good enough to render the user recognizable to others over voice chat applications such as VoIP and multiplayer gaming. There are several voice morpher profiles which are High Morph, Low Morph, and Reverb, though we didn’t find any meaningful use for them.