Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox review

The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox is a versatile, ambitious gaming headset

Stealth 700 sitting on couch
(Image: © Tom's Guide)

Tom's Guide Verdict

The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox delivers great sound and excellent compatibility, but with a few major caveats.

Pros

  • +

    Works with almost every system

  • +

    Excellent sound quality

  • +

    Long battery life

Cons

  • -

    Way too tight

  • -

    Convoluted interface

  • -

    Cramped controls

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Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox: Specs

Compatibility: PC, PS4, PS5, Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, mobile
Drivers: 50mm
Frequency Response: 20 Hz – 22 kHz
Wireless: Yes
Weight: 13.3 ounces

I wanted to love the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox. I wound up just liking it instead. This headset builds on the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2, offering more features and better compatibility, albeit at a higher price. (The Gen 2 cost $150; the Gen 2 Max costs $200.) To be fair, the Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox does just what it promises, delivering high-quality wireless sound across a variety of platforms, including Xbox — a system that doesn’t play nicely with other wireless protocols.

On the other hand, the headset has some drawbacks that are impossible to overlook. The fit is uncomfortably tight, and not even Turtle Beach’s novel ProSpecs technology can completely fix that. The buttons and dials are all jammed uncomfortably close together, meaning it’s hard to reach the right one in the heat of the moment. The software is also a bit of a mess, requiring both a PC and a smartphone to adjust even the most basic functionality.

The Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox isn’t the best gaming headset for every player, but it has its charms, particularly if you own both an Xbox and a PlayStation. Read on for our full Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox review.

Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox: Design

The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox Series X/S and Xbox One (rolls right off the tongue, doesn’t it?) looks pretty similar to previous Stealth 700 designs. It’s a large, heavy headset with oval earcups and a padded headband. The device comes in either blue or black (get the blue; it’s much more striking), and doesn’t require any wires, save for the occasional USB-C charging cord.

Stealth 700 on table

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

While I have some concerns about how the Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox fits (more on that later), it looks pretty cool. It’s not as plain as most audio headphones, but not as over-the-top as most gaming headsets, either.

Stealth 700 ports and power button

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The button layout, however, leaves something to be desired. The left earcup has nothing on it. The right earcup, on the other hand, has a chatmix dial, a volume dial, an audio mode button, a power button, a Bluetooth button, a charging port and a foldable microphone. If this sounds like a lot of controls, that’s because it is. The two dials feel identical to one another; the audio mode and Bluetooth button feel almost identical to one another; the power button is sort of hidden away in the middle. Trying to find the button or dial you want, when you want it, is a constant struggle, and it only gets more complicated when you realize that functionality varies by console.

Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox: Comfort

Actually wearing the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox isn’t as comfortable as it could be. At 16 ounces, the headset is pretty heavy, but the real issue is that it’s incredibly tight. The memory foam earcups pressed down hard on my ears, and the adjustable steel headband helped only with height, not width. (There are also no notches on the headband, which makes it obnoxious to find a good fit.)

Stealth 700 sitting on couch

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Using the Turtle Beach ProSpecs tech, I was able to remove the earcups and set small “channels” to accommodate my glasses. This meant that wearing the headset wasn’t painful, but it wasn’t especially comfortable, either. After about an hour with the headset, I was usually ready to toss it off, if only to give my temples a break.

Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox: Performance

One area where the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox excels is in its sound quality. With 50mm drivers and a rich default soundscape, the Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max sounds fantastic, regardless of what you’re playing or watching.

Since the Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max works with so many different systems, I tested a wide variety of games, including Age of Empires IV and Final Fantasy XIV on the PC, Nioh Remastered on the PS5, Hades and Yakuza 5 Remastered on the Xbox Series X and Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 on the Switch. Across the board, the headset provided nuanced, balanced audio, whether I was listening to chill background music while assembling medieval armies, or fighting off goons with quippy superheroes. The Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox did a fantastic job of balancing voicework, sound effects and music.

Stealth 700 ear cups

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

It's also worth pointing out that by default, the Mode button on the headset activates Turtle Beach’s signature “superhuman hearing” mode. This emphasizes noises such as footsteps and gunshots in first-person shooter titles, and it did make games such as Doom Eternal and Halo: The Master Chief Collection a little bit more immersive. However, superhuman hearing can also play havoc with dialogue, so you may want to stick with a more balanced soundscape for single-player adventures.

I also tested the headset for music and TV, listening to tracks from Flogging Molly, Old Crow Medicine Show, The Rolling Stones and G.F. Handel, as well as watching an episode of Bob’s Burgers. Provided you remember to turn superhuman hearing off, the sound quality is impressive. Dialogue has a close, immediate quality, and music has a lot more bass than you might expect from a gaming headset.

Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox: Features

The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox has an awful lot of features. Trying to actually make use of them all can be a challenge, however. First off, to manipulate the Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max, you’ll need two different pieces of software across two different platforms. The Turtle Beach Audio Hub on PC handles firmware updates; the Turtle Beach Audio Hub on Android/iOS handles button commands, mic sidetone, equalization options and other common headset customizations. (You can’t set up profiles for individual games at all, which is a pain.)

Having to grapple with two different software packages is inconvenient, but not as inconvenient as trying to get all the commands you need on a single profile. The secondary dial can control chatmix, or mic sidetone, or Bluetooth volume; the Mode button can enable superhuman hearing, or change equalization options, or do something else entirely. This also varies depending on whether you have the headset connected to an Xbox or a different system. Essentially, you’ll have to have the audio hub on your phone open pretty often if you want to use all of the Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max’s features.

Stealth 700 laid on table

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

On the bright side, the headset does live up to its name. Due to Microsoft’s proprietary protocols, relatively few wireless headsets can connect to Xbox consoles; even fewer can also connect wirelessly to other systems. The Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox solves this problem with a wireless USB dongle that has an “Xbox/USB” switch on it. 

Stealth 700 USB

(Image credit: Turtle Beach)

Toggle Xbox for Microsoft’s console family; toggle USB for anything else. There’s also Bluetooth connectivity, although like other headset features, it can be a bit of a struggle to turn on and off when you need it.

Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox: Verdict

I generally have good things to say about the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max for Xbox. It works effortlessly with a ton of different systems, and sounds great doing so. At the same time, I have no real desire to pick it up again. The SteelSeries Arctis 7X has the same kind of connectivity with a much more comfortable fit; the Razer Kaira Pro delivers similar Xbox performance at a much lower price.

Still, for gamers who own a variety of different consoles and want a one-size-fits-all solution, the Stealth 700 Gen 2 Max is worth considering. And if you’ve always wanted to own a gaming headset in blue, rather than black, so much the better.

Marshall Honorof is a senior editor for Tom's Guide, overseeing the site's coverage of gaming hardware and software. He comes from a science writing background, having studied paleomammalogy, biological anthropology, and the history of science and technology. After hours, you can find him practicing taekwondo or doing deep dives on classic sci-fi.