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Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE vs SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless: Which to Buy?

This is the review of the comparison between the Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE and the SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless. Both of these headsets are good at their price, but to choose the right one as per your need and to buy the right one for you, it’s necessary to go to the detailed review.

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Corsair virtuoso RGB Wireless SESteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless
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PROSPROS
Powerful hi-res audio. Immaculate presentation. Excellent battery life.
ICUE software is easy to use with many options. Detachable microphone. USB-C charging.
Excellent audio quality.
Two batteries with charging compartment in transmitter.
Comfortable fit.
Better sound than its Siberia 800 predecessor Feature-laden base station.
CONSCONS
Wireless range depends on house construction.
Expensive but you get what you pay for, this is Corsair’s flagship device after all.
Soundscape is treble-heavy.
No Bluetooth connectivity.
Expensive.
Lacks bass, and EQ, more in just leads to a muddy sound.
Doesn’t feel quite as premium as similarly priced headsets.
No ChatMix thumb wheel on earcups.
Needs base station to charge.

SPECIFICATIONS:

MODELCORSAIR VIRTUOSO RGB WIRELESS SESTEELSERIES ARCTIS PRO WIRELESS
BrandCorsairSteelSeries
Series
ModelVIRTUOSO RGB SEArctis Pro Wireless
HEADPHONESCORSAIR VIRTUOSO RGB WIRELESS SESTEELSERIES ARCTIS PRO WIRELESS
Headphones Form FactorFull Size
Connectivity TechnologyWirelessWireless
Sound Output ModeStereo
Frequency Response20Hz-40KHz10Hz-40KHz
Sensitivity109dB S.P.L. at 1KHz102dB SPL
Impedance32 ohm32 ohm
Diaphragm
MICROPHONECORSAIR VIRTUOSO RGB WIRELESS SESTEELSERIES ARCTIS PRO WIRELESS
Microphone Technology
Response Bandwidth100Hz-12KHz100Hz-10KHz
DIMENSIONS & WEIGHTCORSAIR VIRTUOSO RGB WIRELESS SESTEELSERIES ARCTIS PRO WIRELESS
Width
Depth
Height
Weight0.79 lb0.8 lb
FEATURESCORSAIR VIRTUOSO RGB WIRELESS SESTEELSERIES ARCTIS PRO WIRELESS
FeaturesUncompromising
Sound Quality

Comfort is King

Hyper-Fast Gaming-Grade Wireless

Broadcast-Grade Detachable Microphone

Premium Lightweight Construction

Wide Device Compatibility

High-Fidelity 24bit/96KHz USB Audio

Dynamic Dual-Zone RGB Lighting

Intelligent Control, Unlimited Possibilities

Storage Pouch Included

All-Day, All-Night Battery Life: Game for up to 20 hours at a time thanks to a custom, high-capacity lithium-ion battery and an accelerometer-based smart-sleep/wake function

Dual-Wireless technology provides rock solid, 2.4G wireless lossless audio for gaming, combined with Bluetooth connectivity for mobile devices

Premium Hi-Res speakers with high-density neodymium magnets reproduce a full, expansive frequency range from 10 – 40,000 Hz with stunning realism and clarity

Luxurious lightweight steel and aluminum alloy construction offers maximum durability and a consistent fit

Two included swappable batteries allow you to charge a battery in the base station, while using the other for more than 20 hours of gaming

Widely recognized as the best mic in gaming, the ClearCast microphone delivers studio-quality voice clarity and background noise cancellation

Expert Reviews of Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE:

By pcgamesn.com
One of the best-sounding Corsair headsets, with the stunning build quality, and robust wireless technology. But it just misses out on its more audiophile target with a slight lack at the low…

By Games Rader
Fantastic, full sound with strong spatial audio detailing and anesthetic to sit proudly on any PC…

By techteamgb.co.uk
When this headset launched a few months ago, it sold out, worldwide, in something like 48 hours. That’s insane. It better be worth the hype then eh? Let us take a look and see. Corsair’s Virtuoso headset is definitely in the premium category for gaming…

By PCWorld
Corsair’s new Virtuoso RGB SE doesn’t sound quite as good as it looks, but it looks really damn good. If nothing else, it’s a much-needed alternative to Corsair’s cheap Void line.

By ThinkComputers
From the start, we knew that CORSAIR had designed the VIRTUOSO RGB Wireless SE to be a premium gaming headset. By incorporating machined aluminum, comfy memory foam, and tons of attention to detail, this headset has a lot going for it. As we stated…

Expert Reviews of SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless:

By WCCTech
Wireless headsets don’t come better than the SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless. The only alternative that comes to mind that might offer some competition in this price range is the Astro A50. While the microphone on the A50 performs somewhat better, the…

By Tom’s Hardware
It’s a big outlay that SteelSeries is asking for with their top-of-the-range Arctis Pro Wireless, but for the money, you’re showered with premium features that assuage any buyers…

By APH Networks
Now that we have seen and tested the SteelSeries Arctis Pro, I can safely say SteelSeries has implemented an amazing full-featured headset, but there is still some room for growth. Starting at the top, the Arctis Pro headset is a very well built headset…

By PCWorld
The Arctis Pro Wireless is easier to recommend in 2018 than its aging Siberia 800 predecessor, but its charging system feels less useful than it once did and the audio isn’t much better than the much cheaper Arctis 7.

By PC Mag
The SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless is a remarkably full-featured wireless gaming headset, with a handy transmitter with its own controls and display, and both Bluetooth and wired connectivity as…

Detail Review:

INTRODUCTION:

Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE

The Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE headphones are for $200. If there is one word that I can use to describe how the virtuoso headset feels, it’s premium. You feel rich when you have these.

SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless

This is one of the most expensive gaming headset available on the market today that is the SteelSeries Arctis Wireless Pro gaming headset. This thing retails for under 330 dollars.

DESIGN:

Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE

The things that come inside the box are the case which is nice, they have a magnet right there to help keep it closed, there are two main attachments that I find myself using all the time, and an additional but very nice auxiliary cables, this is a USB-C cable and it’s 6 feet long, it’s very long, there is the dongle which if you didn’t notice actually has the same theme as the USB cable and same theme as the auxiliary cable.

In the downside of the mic there, we have a button, this is the mute button. If you click it turns red, so when you have these headphones on and you have that in front of your face, kind of you can see it is red and you can get to know that, it’s muted. That’s very cool, I like that a lot, it’s very premium. When you press it again, it turns green.

When your headphones are connected to your PC, you can see the different programs, the lighting effect, do all these different things. You can change the color of the logo that’s there in the headphone through this program. It looks amazing but I think it will kill your battery just a little bit faster. This one is very premium feeling headphones.

SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless

What SteelSeries has really done here is taking all the best parts of the Arctis 7 Wireless, revised certain elements of it to make it even better and they’ve incorporated all the best elements of their older flagship wireless model, the Siberia 840. So, the design itself is an evolution from the Arctis 7. They do use the same ski goggle and system and they tip the scales at about 370 grams. I did a flex test with the unit and it exhibited zero issues.

You’ve got denser ear foam padding, thicker earpads all around, you’ve got metal hinges and lure the plastic from the Arctis 7, and you’ve got a slightly wider stance on the headband. The hinges still move 90 degrees, though they are a lot stiffer there’s no movement at all when you shake the headset around, and they are made from the same air weave material which for me breathes a lot better than the fake leather ear cups do, and they don’t attract nearly as much lint or pet hair as a velour ear cup would. These things are just gorgeous with like matte black or gunmetal, everything and nothing about this design say PC gaming, which is a huge plus. This is practically the first headset I would feel comfortable wearing outside the house.

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COMFORT:

Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE

The earcups are totally made of memory foam. It has memory pad foaming both up there on the band and on the ear. It’s really soft and comfortable. You will see only one complaint sometimes when you wear this, your ear gets a little warm after like an hour and that happened to me a little bit. But, you can just open your ear and give yourself like two minutes of air or even ten seconds of air. 

The headbands do turn, they do open a lot and they turn both the sides in and out. You can also turn it with one hand. It’s really good. They do have an adjustable band. They can be adjusted as per the size of your head whether it is small or big. 

SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless

The Arctis 7 is a little small for me, it’s ideal for small to medium-sized heads. These actually fit for all right out of the box with no modifications. You have to be really careful if you’ve got a tall head or really thick dense hair, or you like to wear a hat when you wear your headset. The new widen stance of the headband actually makes it possible to wear these around the neck although, I find them pretty comfortable, either way, either rotate it or not.

Ear cushions here are really comfortable. they have enough ear cushions. They support the ear in a good way. Overall, the comfortable level is pretty good in this headset.

FEATURES:

Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE

These are not Bluetooth headphones, so if you want to use these headphones with your phone, forget about it. These are not Bluetooth headphones, these are wireless high fidelity gaming headsets, this is meant for very fast zero-latency feedback. For example, when using some early generation Beats headphones that are Bluetooth, when we connect Bluetooth to the iMac or the Windows PC and want to play a game with these Bluetooth headphones, there is a delay. We will pull the trigger in a game and we will hear the sound of the gunshot like a half a second late it’s noticeable. With the wireless dongle being used with these headphones, it makes the wireless connection so much faster.

When we go back down, there you have the auxiliary, you have the USB-C connection, and you have a light indicator and it’s green means you have a high battery, then it’ll be yellow for medium battery, and then it’ll be red for low battery, and it’ll tell you in your ear low battery with this very nice feminine voice.

You get the on and off switch or the wireless/wired switch, and you get a very nice, very premium feeling of the dial there, a volume dial. It doesn’t have a limit, you just keep on going down all the way and eventually you’ll get to zero percent but you can keep going down, the same thing you can go up a long time and it doesn’t go up to a hundred percent very fast, it might take a few more spins than usual and that’s fine because I think that allows for much more precise audio adjustment. So, it’s if you just want that just-right volume, this does that. It has a very long battery life, that is they do have 20 hours of battery.

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SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless

The Arctis Pro line actually contains three different units, it’s got the pro headset itself which is the baseline USB headset, the pro-Wireless, the Pro Plus game DAC. With the game DAC, you’re gonna see two things touted in the marketing a lot, one that it’s using an ESS Sabre chipset and the other that it’s capable of High-Res Audio or 24-bit, 96k low Hertz audio. It’s important to note that even though the headset is near-identical amongst the three, they all use the same 40-millimeter drivers. The wireless unit does not have the ESS saber chipset and it’s not ready to High-Res. It’s gonna top out at 16 bit 48 kilohertz and it’s using 2.4 gigahertz wireless if you’re curious.

They do transfer footstep noise, which I noticed as I walked around my place it doesn’t bother me at all, but it’s worth pointing out if you’re sensitive to that kind of thing. The range on these is positively incredible. I walked through every single area of my apartment walls doors, nothing caused any issue at all, just a strong clear signal the entire time.

The one caveat here is that, if you want to be able to charge the battery and communicate with your computer or your Xbox, you’re gonna have to have two leads coming off the base station. So, that’s gonna actually take up two USB ports or USB port and a wall warrant or if you want to you can charge it the old-fashioned way. Basically, this thing’s never without power I’ve owned it for three weeks and I have had zero downtime for this thing to recharge and I’ve used it a lot.

It’s important to remember that these are essentially the same cans that come packaged with the game DAC unit, so if you already have a DAC or a headphone amp and you want to prioritize audio fidelity audio quality over wireless convenience knock yourself out. Simply use the 3.5-millimeter cable and plug into your DAC, your headphone amp, if you got something cool like the Mayflower Arc, you can adjust a splitter cable at the end of this thing, and retain mic function while you’re sitting at your desk.

If you’re going to the base station, you’ll find a setting called volume limiter, which you can turn on or off it comes on by default, once you deactivate it, you can crank these things up. I will say that with the volume limiter enabled, it seems to make better use of the preset EQ settings that are included here, the sound seems more like cohesive, but if you’re willing to disable that and spend some time with the custom EQ, you can really squeeze some great fidelity out of these. They do have an audio sharing port that uses a standard 3.5-millimeter jack for audio sharing.

MICROPHONE:

Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE

The microphone is removable. When we remove the microphone, it automatically turns off. This is a very high-quality sounding microphone and it’s wireless, that’s awesome. The mic quality is very clear. I really do like the quality of my voice coming through this mic, it’s very clear, nothing is bad about the quality of this mic. Many people may like to put it near the noise level because if we put it down nearby nose there, we’ll breathe into the mic. This mic is good enough to record music in, so if you want to do some music, if you want to sing, this mic is a very high-quality mic.

This mic is a very high-quality mic, but you can hear all the background that’s the only thing that bothered me, but no mic is perfect. But here you can add filters. If you’re recording a game or something, I like to use OBS stream labs or just regular OBS, the Elgato software is not that advanced but if you get stream labs OBS, you can click on your audio device and you can add a filter, called a noise gate. If you want, you could have a soundproof room but not everyone’s room will be like that. So, we can add this noise gate. It’s just a filter on top of your mic in the stream labs program. It will make a huge difference.

After adding this filter you may not hear the noises in the background and that’s much better, and when you stop talking you stop hearing the background noise. If you want you can add some more filters too like, you can add noise suppression. That’s on top of it and you pretty much don’t even hear the noise anymore, and you can mess around with the strengths of the noise gate, the strength of the noise suppression, and you can find your sweet spot. It’s just the default, but the quality of this mic, it’s great. I like it a lot, you could totally use this as a professional studio microphone.

 

SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless

The wireless pro is still using the same retractable adjustable clear cast mic which is great. They did include a windscreen this time around. I used this with the windscreen for this test. The noise floor looks really clean and gets a little noise reduction here. SteelSeries listened and the size and tactility of the mic, mute button, has been greatly improved here. You can even adjust the brightness of the mic mute LED. The volume wheel is very pronounced, it’s very easy to find without being accidentally adjusted by couch cushions, chair backs, or hoodies.

The sidetone is still there and it comes with off and nine additional levels of adjustability. At the highest volume level, I can leave the mic retracted all the way into the ear cup and monitor the room around me and why would anyone do that, because it mimics an open-back headsets ability to let you hear if someone’s trying to get your attention. You can turn it on or off on the fly with the mic mute button, it’s pretty slick.

This thing just pulls ahead from the competition in a big way and it comes down to two major factors one is the base station transmitter in lieu of a regular wireless USB dongle, and the other is the addition of Bluetooth. Every single wireless gaming headset manufacturers should be putting Bluetooth in their headsets, I don’t know why they’re not. If you are playing single-player, you get a text from your buddy he wants to play some multiplayer. you pull out your mic, unmute it. You are good to go. When you’re done playing games, you can make the headset to your phone Bluetooth and you can now listen to music. If while playing wirelessly a call comes in, you can take the call, hands-free with no wire in the call, and go back into your music. No point in time you have had to remove your headset. If you need to take a call, while you’re still in-game, you can use discord on your mobile, activate it without having to exit your game. This thing has completely changed the way we work with every other wireless gaming headset.

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SOUND:

Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE

It’s really premium feeling headphones when you play video games on your PC. I think it does make a difference, so you can get 7.1 surround sound enabled on your PC. It’s very nice to have out play games like Rainbow Six Siege and you can hear where the sounds are coming from in that game and hear footsteps and stuff like that of your enemies and this game will take your sound whoring up another level. It’s a very good 3D audio. They have high-quality noise, good bass, these things have a great base.

They’re wireless, you’re not tied down to anything. As far as the distance, you can walk away and still hear the game, but when you walk too far away, you start to lose audio.

SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless

The base station is big, it’s glossy, and it’s infinitely configurable. The reason it’s glossy is that it’s got its own LED display which is clutch. The biggest reason why is because you can use this to access and adjust virtually every feature of this headset via this big clicky tactile knob on the front. This means you can be in-game and change settings like chat mix, turns simulated 7.1 on or off which is Dolby headphone x 2.0 here, or you can change EQ settings on-the-fly in-game, you can even create new custom EQs and name them and rename them.

You can basically tailor the audio experience in real-time all without having to exit or tab out of the game to do so. The base station shows the connection status and the battery level at a glance. It’s big because it also charges the battery, the second one that’s you get two, you get one inside the earcup that it ships with and you get another one that lives inside the base station. So, you can charge it while you’re not using it and each one is rated for ten hours. If one goes down, you pop it out replace it with a fresh one and you’re back up and running in under a minute.

You can also go to the base station to adjust the auto-off of the headset itself from anywhere from 10 minutes to 2 hours. On the back of the base station, you’ll also find pass-through for 3.5 millimeters and for optical which means you can wire in desktop speakers or a surround sound and their Auto-sensing. So, your speakers or your surround system will cut off as soon as you turn the power on to the headset.

These for me out of the box flat EQ with no adjustments, the mid highs are harsh for me. They’re borderline uncomfortable and they do lack a little bit in the bass department. Still, I will also say that spending a little time with the EQ completely nullifies all of that. With a custom EQ setting, you are able to get these to sound for you on par with any other wireless headset that you have, so far you need some more bass, go ahead.

The drivers can handle it, you want to really be able to pick out those footsteps easily. Being able to have multiple custom EQ settings there per game is invaluable because it can even help you overcome some annoyances, you have that are baked into the sound design of the game itself for instance. You can just use the EQ to downplay. The 40-millimeter drivers that use here stand up to just about every audio situation so far.

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WHICH TO BUY?

Both the headsets are pretty good at their price. In my opinion, if you looking for a premium, good looking, stylish headset then you should go for the Corsair Virtuoso RGB Wireless SE but if you are looking for a headset with many EQ settings, and the bass then you should buy the SteelSeries Arctis Pro Wireless.