snakebyte – HEAD:SET X PRO Review

Manufacturer: snakebyte
Where to buy: snakebyte
Price: £21.35 – Or Region Equivalent

The last time I reviewed something from snakebyte, it was one of the most comfortable gaming chairs I’ve ever had the pleasure of sitting my ass on. Now, here I am, a long while since past with the snakebyte HEAD:SET X PRO. When it comes to gaming, picking the right headset is vital, and can oftentimes be the difference between winning and losing. The big question here is whether or not snakebyte has what it takes to stand tall in a market that’s already so heavily dominated by leading giants. The answer? They’re off to a good start.

The HEAD:SET X PRO arrives in a neatly compact box. Here, you’ll pull out the headset, additional ear cushions (more on that shortly), the Y-Splitter for use on the PC, the holder, and of course, the manual. It’s all relatively straightforward stuff. The holder comes with a super-stick edge that’s designed to stick to your television, in which you’ll then place the HEAD:SET X PRO on top of the holder’s hook to keep them in place. Granted, it’s hardly the most innovate of holders, but it gets the job done and proves to be a welcome addition.

Before we dive to the specifics, I want to go over one neat feature that the HEAD:SET X PRO houses; magnetically attached ear cushions. Out the box, you get a total of four ear cushions; all memory-foam based but with slightly varied materials across both pairs. Thanks to the magnetic technology, you’re able to pull these from the headband at will, and simply plug the ear cushions you want to use back in place. It’s as easy as putting a magnet on a fridge, and despite my concerns that they would fall apart on the head, they don’t.

The magnets are strong, but not so strong that you’ll need to use excessive force to plug-in or pull out the ear cushions. Sure, it’s quite a gimmicky feature, but it’s nice to have the option to alternate between cup fabrics. Speaking more technically, the HEAD:SET X PRO sports some decent specs for a kit that doesn’t sport a premium price-tag; solid passive noise cancellation, and some sturdy 50mm drivers for delivering those all important cues. I’ve tested the kit across a range of different medias, and can only report good results.

Whether it’s been the ever so looming noise of footsteps growing closer in Call of Duty, the thunderous roars of engines in Forza, or anything in between, the audio quality and crisp feedback of the HEAD:SET X PRO is undeniable, especially for its cheap cost. Here, you’re getting high-end performance for a fraction of the cost. Sure, this doesn’t have a scratch on the more sophisticated, more costlier headset options in the market, but if you’re taking your first steps into taking your gaming hobby more seriously, you certainly cant go wrong.

I also tested the kit through the likes of Netflix and YouTube, and once again, the quality is top-notch. Moving to the mic, party chat and private messages were great. The headset cancels out a good deal of background noise, and pulls over your voice magnificently well. I didn’t witness any distortion nor interference at any time, and those in my party could hear me loudly and clearly at all times. Further, thanks to how well you can hear yourself, at the same time as not hearing too much from outside the kit, you don’t run the risk of shouting.

When all is said and done, here, you’re getting a solid setup that achieves much of what it set out to accomplish. The quality is more than decent across all fronts, and the kit does a remarkable job at balancing the audio in a way that doesn’t see any element being overpowering. There’s only a few headsets that I’ve seen in this price bracket that deliver this sort of top quality feedback, making this an essential purchase for those of you that are seeking something akin to what you would normally pay an arm and leg for elsewhere.

Sadly, despite my high praise of the kit’s technical performance, its physical performance is slightly less commendable. The HEAD:SET X PRO feels a lot cheaper than it should. Whilst very light, the plastics used feel somewhat flimsy. I wont go so far as to say that it’s a deal breaker, but it certainly feels as though you could easily break the kit with a moderate amount of force. Everything from the flip-up/flip-down mic and on-wire control panel, right through to the headband itself and the ear cushions, come across quite fragile by design.

That being said, I have put the kit through the ringer and haven’t suffered any damage as of yet, but I would certainly caution against anything that isn’t absolute care and delicate handling when it comes to putting on and taking off the kit. My final grips sits with the on-wire control panel. Here, you have just two functions to utilize; a volume wheel, and a mute slider. Whilst the volume wheel functions as expected, the mute slider makes a habit of sticking – leading to moments in which you’ll constantly need to check to see what you are.

On several occasions, I thought I had muted myself but found that the slider was not quite all the way towards muted. The lack of a “click” when using this feature means that you’ll need to often check to see what status you’re in. Once again, this isn’t a deal breaker, but a niggling drawback I felt the need to point out. Perhaps the money spent on high-end drivers forced some downgrades on its framework to ensure that the cost could remain low? That’s a guess for anyone, but as it stands, the only thing holding it back slightly is exactly that.

Still, for as flimsy as the kit can feel, it’s remarkably comfortable. I wore the kit for hours on end across several sittings, and thanks to its lightweight design and its well set structure, I often forgot I was wearing a headset at all. The 3.5mm wire leading from the headset to the controller is also rather lengthy, giving you a lot of room to play around with as a result. Onto the actual design of the kit, I give the HEAD:SET X PRO a thumbs up. Whilst it’s not the slickest looking kit available, it certainly looks attractive and well made from close and afar.

The ear cups swivel too, and there’s a nice range of extension to the headband, making this a suitable choice for heads of all shapes and sizes. When all is said and done, despite its few drawbacks, snakebyte clearly know their craft. It’s a brand I’m rapidly growing fond of, and have no doubt whatsoever that I’ll be sticking with them should they continue to impress. If you’re looking for a new headset that’s cheap, yet goes on to offer amazing audio feedback with good noise cancellation, for its price, the HEAD:SET X PRO is a no brainer.

Sure, you’ll certainly need to handle them with extreme care to ensure that they live a long and healthy life, but this lack of sturdiness in the face of such a top quality overall feedback, is well worth the time and attention. I’ve heard things whilst playing with these that I’ve never heard before, in games I’ve played over and over again prior. Believe me, issues to the side, the HEAD:SET X PRO is a worthy investment, and one you’re not likely to regret any time soon. Plus, who can scoff at magnetically changeable ear cushions, eh? Precisely.

Conclusion

The generously affordable HEAD:SET X PRO is a worthy choice for those of you looking to step into the world of gaming with a headset. The audio quality and mic clarity is remarkable for its cost, granting you an overall feedback that sits up there with the more expensive options in the market. It’s a shame the kit feels quite as fragile as it does, because with more study materials, this could have been a showstopper.

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Good
  • Great audio quality.
  • Solid mic feedback.
  • Decent, slick design.
  • Neat features; such as changeable ear cushions.
Bad
  • Headset feels a bit flimsy.
8
Great
Usability - 9
Design - 8
Durability - 7
Value for Price - 8
Written by
Howdy folks! Now, as of July 23rd, 2019, I no longer operate here at Xbox Tavern. It was one hell of a ride; creating this, building this, and operating it for several years, but, we all hit a proverbial point that encourages us to move on, and that's what I've done; handing the reigns to the very capable Jamie. Want to keep in touch? My Gamertag is Kaloudz Peace! Love to you all, Mark!

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