I had to purchase a new headset out of necessity (in a gamer sense) last week. My roommate sat on my Turtle Beach Ear Force PX4s and broke them. Bummer.
I decided to give Sony’s PlayStation Gold Wireless Stereo Headset a try. Here are my impressions of both, beginning with the Turtle Beach PX4s.
Firstly, the PX4s sound fabulous. I liked the depth of the audio, and I felt present in the game. I have zero complaints about the audio quality out of the PX4 headset. Good job, PX4, you sound nice on my PS4.
The PX4s are comfortable on top of my head, too. The headpiece didn’t dig into my skull, the ear pieces held up great considering how often I had the thing on my head. Granted, if given the choice, I prefer gaming with my stereo on, not a headset, but if I’m chatting with friends, it’s on. Speaking of chatting…
Stupefyingly, the PX4s aren’t Bluetooth compatible with the PlayStation 4. I’m not sure if that ridiculous oversight falls on Sony or Turtle Beach. This is what that means: if you don’t want to chat with anyone, you’re fine. You can use the headset without connecting it to anything, so long as it’s charged. If you do want to chat with anyone, you need to plug in a 24” or so cable from the headset to the controller.
Want to get up and refill your water? You either take off the headset for the short trip to the kitchen, or you bring your controller along for the ride, but it’s connected to the headset so you constantly have to carry it around and can’t set it down for lack of mobility. DUMB.
Does your cat want to be in your lap? Move the cable first or the cat will lay on it because the cat doesn’t give a s**t, and then you have a 20 lb. cat impeding your movement.
Even better, let’s say you need to charge the headset while you’re wearing it. Now, you have one cable coming out of your right ear connecting the headset to the PS4, in addition to the cable coming out of your left ear connecting the headset to the controller. It’s a tangled mess, and it’s frustrating and needless.
The PX4s aren’t exactly elegant in their appearance, either. I looked like an air traffic controller, but from the ‘80s. The mic isn’t internal, so it curves down in front of your mouth. Not that I’m an advocate for eating while playing, but c’mon, we all do it on occasion – I bet my mic is disgusting, now that I think of it. It’s probably best off in the dumpster.
The PlayStation Gold Wireless Headset has a giant advantage over the PX4s in that they’re made by Sony, and therefore really super duper compatible with the PS4. When you hit the PS button on the controller to bring up the home screen, you’re given icons indicating both the charge your controller has and the headset. With the PX4s, I had to wait until the low battery indicator started beeping (LOUD) before I knew to charge the set.
Initially, I didn’t have the audio settings tweaked to my liking, and I felt like the game sounded distant. I’ve messed with the settings and the Golds sound much, much better now. I feel like the PX4 has a slight advantage in terms of audio quality, but the perks of the Gold Wireless make up for any small degradation of sound.
And yes, they are completely wireless. I felt like a free woman walking around the house, chatting with my friends as I grabbed a drink from the kitchen or stepped outside to check if the cat was getting rained on or not. The range isn’t fabulous, but I don’t have a giant house, or even a big one, so it works fine for me.
I don’t think the Golds are as comfortable as the PX4s on my head – I’m literally speaking of on my head. The Golds seem to dig into my skull a bit. However, the Golds kill it in terms of having an INTERNAL MIC. There is no mouthpiece stretched in front of my gaping maw. Liberating! I don’t have to move a mic to take a drink!
Oh, and the price? The Golds are cheaper, which brings me to what I imagine will be my obvious conclusion: if you’re looking for a great headset under one hundred dollars that’s actually wireless and sounds great, buy the Golds for sure. They look neato too.
Emily Reese is an on-air host for Classical Minnesota Public Radio. She is also the host and producer for Top Score, Classical MPR’s podcast about video game soundtracks, and created MPR’s Listening to Learn series. She earned an undergrad certificate in music education and jazz studies from the University of Colorado — Boulder, and a Master’s degree in music theory from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. Emily lives in Twin Cities with her cat June Bug and loves gaming, with or without friends.