SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless review: sounds great with everything

The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless could be your next gaming headset

The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless next to an Xbox
(Image credit: SteelSeries)
T3 Verdict

There's no doubt that the SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless is an impressive gaming headset: the connectivity options are top tier and all kinds of audio sources are handled well. The price is right too, though true audiophiles might be wanting a little bit more - and there's no active noise-cancelling (ANC) which many will see as a must-have feature.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Very good audio performance

  • +

    Lengthy battery life

  • +

    Multiple connection options

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Doesn't have active noise cancellation (ANC)

  • -

    The fit could be more secure

  • -

    Not the most affordable

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The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless headset has ambitions to get into our best gaming headset and best wireless headphones guides, though with a retractable mic and a bundled wireless dongle for console use, the device is first and foremost for gamers.

Our full SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless review has all the details you'll need to work out whether or not this is the audio upgrade for you. It's certainly a headset that offers lots of versatility, being able to connect to pretty much every gadget out there.

The expert reviewers here at T3 have got lots more advice to help you put together the perfect gaming setup: check out our curated lists of the best gaming chairs and the best gaming keyboards, for example, if you're in need of some more gaming gear.

SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless: price & availability

The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless is available to buy now, and the widgets embedded on this page will direct you to the best prices for it on the web right now. At the time of writing, you can pick up the headset for around £175/$180. If you're in the UK, you can find it at retailers including Amazon and Argos.

SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless review: design & setup

SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless lyring on a table

(Image credit: Future)

As soon as you pick up or even look at the SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless, you know you're dealing with a quality product. It feels solid and well constructed, with a nice finish and an appealing mix of plastic and metal. Weighing in at 325 grams, the headphones are relatively lightweight, and you won't find them weighing down your head during long gaming sessions.

Thanks to the memory foam ear pads and stretchable fabric headband, it's comfortable to fix on your head, and although the fit could be a bit tighter and more secure, this of course has trade-offs in terms of the comfort. What you don't get is any kind of RGB lighting, which for some of you may add to the appeal.

Meanwhile we like the retractable microphone, which pulls out when you need it and slides away when you don't. A decent number of controls are placed on the headset itself - mute, volume, Bluetooth connectivity, power, and ChatMix (which balances in-game chat audio levels with the rest of the sounds you hear) - is all neatly and tastefully done in terms of the design.

The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless is "designed for Xbox" – which as far as we can tell just means the fabric headband is green, because the bundled 2.4GHz USB-C dongle works with Xbox, PlayStation and Switch consoles, as well as PCs. Bluetooth and 3.5mm cable connectivity are options too, and two audio connections can be used together, so you can (for example) pipe through the sounds from a game and music from your phone.

SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless review: features & performance

The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless hanging on a chair arm

(Image credit: Future)

We tested the SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless headset in a variety of scenarios, from gaming on an Xbox Series X to watching movies on a PC to listening to music on a tablet. In terms of sound quality, the headset gets close to top marks, with the 40mm neodymium drivers producing audio that's crisp, balanced, and assured. 

The audio performance is maintained across bass, mids and trebles as well, and we didn't notice anything in the way of stuttering or lag. While it's not quite top tier in terms of the sounds it produces, the headset is nevertheless very competent in what it can do, and isn't going to disappoint. As for the mic, we didn't notice any problems with that either – it gets across what you're saying clearly and effectively.

There's a 360-degree Spatial Audio feature here that works with Microsoft Spatial Sound and Tempest 3D Audio for PS5, and provides even more immersion for compatible games. A note too about the Sonar software you can get for this headset if you're using it with Microsoft Windows: it's really well done and offers a ton of audio mixing and equaliser settings, and is another reason to pick this headset over some of its rivals.

SteelSeries reckons you can get around 38 hours of use from these headphones between battery recharges if you're using the dongle, and while we didn't get quite that much, it was certainly well over 30 hours. You're going to be able to use these for several days at a go no problem at all, though it's worth noting that Bluetooth uses up battery power faster. The wired connection works with or without battery power of course.

SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless review: verdict

The SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless lying on a table

(Image credit: Future)

SteelSeries has been in the audio game for a long time, and it would be a surprise to us if any of its headsets were below par in terms of their form or function. The Arctis Nova 7X Wireless certainly maintains that reputation: we wouldn't say it's one of the very best headsets we've ever tested, but it's certainly getting towards the top in every department.

Sounds come across as rich and distinct, no matter what device you're connected to or what content you're listening to. While some high-end features such as active noise-cancellation (ANC) are missing, no one who puts these headphones on is going to have any major issues with the quality of the sound they're hearing.

What really impresses about the SteelSeries Arctis Nova 7X Wireless headset is the choice of connection options you get – and the ability to stay connected to two audio sources at once. Add in the very respectable battery life and the customisation software for Windows, and it's another really impressive headset package from SteelSeries.

The price is about right too, somewhere between budget and ultra-premium for a gaming headset. There's a huge amount of choice when it comes to these devices, including plenty of models just from SteelSeries itself, and yet the Arctis Nova 7X Wireless manages to do enough to stand out – especially when it comes to compatibility and connectivity.

Also consider

You've got plenty of other top quality options when it comes to gaming headsets. We like what the wired Sony Inzone H3 has to offer, though it's primarily made for the PlayStation so bear that in mind: the audio quality that the headset produces is excellent across the board, and you can pick it up for significantly less than the price of the SteelSeries.

If you're after an alternative that will also work with multiple devices then check out the wireless Skullcandy PLYR: it has a funky design aesthetic and offers excellent sound performance, and it'll connect to just about anything. Shop around and you can pick it up for less than the SteelSeries, although its wireless USB-A dongle is sold separately.

David Nield

Dave has over 20 years' experience in the tech journalism industry, covering hardware and software across mobile, computing, smart home, home entertainment, wearables, gaming and the web – you can find his writing online, in print, and even in the occasional scientific paper, across major tech titles like T3, TechRadar, Gizmodo and Wired. Outside of work, he enjoys long walks in the countryside, skiing down mountains, watching football matches (as long as his team is winning) and keeping up with the latest movies.