Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Turtle Beach's Z2 Review

Turtle Beach is well known for making quality headsets. The Z2 headset is meant to be the best Turtle Beach headset for the PC that's coming to the UK. So does Turtle Beach keep up their reputation of good quality and brilliant build quality or should you save your money?

The first thing to go over is that this headset is HUGE! The ear cups eclipse your whole ear, this keeps the sound in so people can't hear what you’re lessening to and you can't hear loud background noises. As you would think this ads allot of weight on your head (0.27 kg), this does add some irritation when used for a long period of time. On the other hand there's not as much irritation at all on short periods of time. Adjusting the headphones to fit your head is easily done with flexible speakers and adjustable headband.   

The headset is very pretty to look at with an almost full black look with the only bit of possible colour being the blue "Turtle Beach Ear Force" written on the speaker case, silver Turtle Beach logos and silver rings round the speaker case. The whole thing just looks good to look at. I must add that it also doesn't feel fragile or cheep, it feels solid and you can't hear the plastic flex under weight or like anything’s going to fall off at any minute.

One of the problems I had with it is taking any where because of its huge size and very hard to fit in a backpack without something getting in the way. This headset is not made to be taken around anywhere or to be used on a laptop this is made for your computer and not meant to be taken anywhere.

The headset's wire to plug into your PC reaches 10 ft; this is very long for any headset and is good because you don't need to take it off for going short distances. If you find the wire to be a little too long you can always rap the extra wire and tie it up using a piece of Velcro. you have a in-line volume control so you can change your volume without needing to push a button and it also comes with a mute switch and you can use it for your Xbox as well (do need to buy additional wire to use though).  

Now we got past the look of the Headset now let’s get down to the nitty gritty. The mic is very clear and crisp (video showing it off above). However the mic is very sensitive picking up breathing when at mid range away from your mouth; people next to me and at one point me eating (mouth closed) which was pretty embarrassing when talking to someone over Skype. To say the least it's a paint to get the mic in the right place, yes you could change the sensitivity on the game you’re using but it's a bit of a hassle. One way they could have fixed this is by adding a foam cover over the mic which would block out the breathing and only make your voice herd. On the other hand this would remove some of the slickness the headset has and wouldn't fit the style of it at all. (Being very clean and crisp) 

The Speakers are high quality being 50mm meaning that the bass is deeper. The sound quality is pitch perfect, I tested this out with hundreds of games and music (...well not literary) and they all sounded great, explosions where loud and had a satisfying boom to them and help with immersion. Couple this with a game with good sound design (e.g. Battlefield Bad Company 2) and you'll believe you’re really in that world. The sound is the most impressive about the whole headset, not that the mic is bad but it's not as mind blowing as the sound. 

All in all the Z2 is a brilliant peace of kit and if you’re looking for something cheep and high quality, I would go for the Z2, it costs £49.99 and you get your money’s worth and even a little more I fully recommend it. It may have its flaws like the almost too sensitive microphone and it size, however if you’re looking for an all in one headset that you'll only use in one location I would pick this up.

Liam Hackett

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