Ear Force XL1 (Xbox360)

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I first came into contact with Turtle Beach when I met the people from Apex Interactive at a DBNGamers event and, quite frankly, I was blown away by what I saw. Turtle Beach definitely does pride itself in delivering aesthetically pleasing products, and whilst at rAge I did spend a bit of time ogling the awesome headsets that they had on offer. I’d never really considered using a headset before, but I sure did start thinking about it after seeing the goodies on offer. So, it was with undisguised enthusiasm that I took on the task of reviewing the XL1.

Before I even approached my console I decided to read the specs and, because I’m a bit of a hardware n00b, I was a bit intimidated by all the wires (seriously, my wife had to help me hook up the ADSL!). The XL1 is advertised as a “Gaming Headset + Amplified Stereo Sound” and, according to it is the “perfect entry-level headset for gamers looking for immersive game sound and crystal-clear communication at a great value.” Awesome – just what I needed.

Turtle Beach Ear Force XL1

So, with a bit of trepidation, I approached my console and started plugging things it, and I got it right first time. This basically means that the headset is simple to set up and you can be enjoying the “immersive game sound” straight away. That word immersive is a good one to describe this headset. The speakers are comfortable and really reduce outside noise, and it picks up the sound from the game exceptionally well. I was hearing things in games that I simply didn’t know were there from previous game time.

The first thing that I noticed about the headset was that it is very comfortable. I’m not normally comfortable with things on my head but, after a while, I didn’t even realise that they were there anymore. Another thing was that I realised that I was even more immersed into the game than I used to be. I think this was due to the cutting off of outside noise that helps you focus and really get into the game. The next thing I noticed was that I now really want a headset for my Xbox 360!

Turtle Beach Ear Force XL1

Ok, so for you technical nuts, here is the tech speak…

Included with XL1 you get the headset with an In-line amplifier, the Xbox 360 talk back cable (conveniently plugs straight into your controller), USB power straight into the console and audio jacks that can either plug straight into your console or television. The headset consists of 50mm diameter speakers (nice and comfy), quality sound both incoming and outgoing, and a cable that is long enough not to cause any irritation or pulling.

What this basically means is that the XL1 is comfortable, produces quality, immersive sound at a very reasonable price (less than R500) and is a very good entry-level headset. In fact, this would be the perfect Christmas present for your loved one, a kid or, heck, even yourself. Go on – spoil yourself.

Turtle Beach Ear Force XL1

Rating Score  
Aesthetics 5/5 Very nicely put together piece of hardware.
Quality 5/5 Comfortable and of high quality.
Functionality 5/5 Easy to set up and the amplifier provides ease of access and good control over the unit.
Value 5/5 Very reasonably priced.