Steel Series ARCTIS 3 Headset Review
There is nothing flash about the ARCTIS 3 headset from Steel Series, but that is perfectly OK with me. I’ve been using this product for a few weeks now – on both my Xbox One and PS4 – and I can safely say that for 79.99, you are getting a product that is definitely worth the price. Read on for more of our thoughts on the ARCTIS 3.
If I had to use one word to describe the ARCTIS 3 headset, it would be ‘Classy.’ With a very standard shape and look – whether in black or in white – and with very few flashy features, some may look at other headsets – say those from PDP that light up – and be drawn to the flashy design as opposed to the classy design. While many people want those light up features that some companies provide, a growing number of gamers are looking for something much more muted; the ARCTIS 3 provides that look, for a very modest price.
Out of the Box
The ARCTIS 3 comes packed with a cable to extend the length of the auxiliary cord and the usual bits of paperwork. The headset design is plain, and includes a volume up and down dial, and a mute microphone button. The microphone is not detachable, but can be pushed back into the ear cup when not in use.
The build quality of the headset is top notch, and enjoys many of the same features as the more expensive Steel Series headsets, including the dual band head support. By creating two bands – one that shapes to your head and one that provides structure to the headset – Steel Series has found a great way to create a sturdy product that doesn’t sit on your head like a ton of bricks. Although this definitely isn’t one of the lighter headsets available on the market, once it is on your had you would barely notice it.
Classy looking headsets are generally expensive, and out of the range of many consumers. In the 70-80 price range, the ARCTIS 3 provides that look, but maintains a strong audio component. The S1 Speaker Drivers are the same drivers that you find in the most expensive Steel Series products, which means that although the ARCTIS 3 won’t necessarily have all the audio features of the more expensive models, it will have consistent and equal audio quality.
Although it is not available on consoles, when using the ARCTIS 3 headset on Windows platforms, gamers can also experience 7.1 surround sound, a feature previously only available through USB connected headsets. Very few – if any – headsets in this price range are offering that as a feature on their introductory models, but Steel Series is showing once again how they distance themselves from the pack.
Microphone quality on the ARCTIS 3 is also top notch; by their own admission, even Steel Series has said they have been using sub par microphones in the past, and that the inclusion of the ClearCast, noise cancelling microphone in their ARCTIS lineup of headsets is putting them one step ahead of the competition. For the record, their assertions seem to be correct; I’m having a chat experience with this sub 100$ headset that would rival even some of the most expensive sets I have from other, high profile companies.
Finding quality headsets under 100$ isn’t necessarily the easiest thing to do, but Steel Series is giving gamers a legitimate, every day headset option. The audio and microphone quality of the ARCTIS 3 rivals headsets that are much more expensive; I don’t often say this – because generally, if you can afford a more expensive headset, you should buy it – but I recommend this headset to anyone as a go-to, even if it is only 79.99!